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Posts Tagged ‘magazines’

junk_food_junkieYou are sending out resumes, making contacts and taking on new freelance work, but what about your health? Often we find it hard to put all our concentration towards one thing and be successful at something else at the same time. The same is true of eating right and exercising during a transition period like losing your job.

Here’s a list of what I do to keep myself in check. None of these are amazing revelations, yet we still don’t do any of them and they all can help tremendously.

1- Write it down.
I spend my day writing—cover letters, blog posts, articles—so I write down what I eat, too. Did you have a bagel for breakfast? Don’t have a sandwich for lunch; try soup instead. If you had pizza last night for dinner, have some eggs and turkey bacon for breakfast instead of a toaster strudel. Being able to see what you’ve been eating (don’t forget to include the little things too—like that Hershey’s kiss every time you pass the candy jar), will help prevent you from binging or treating yourself a little too often.

2- Close your laptop and get your butt off that chair. Take 30 minutes to an hour at noon or so for a physical break. I understand that the computer has power over you and you can’t bare to tear yourself away from it, but you must. I have a treadmill and elliptical machine in my basement, so I utilize those during my physical break. But you don’t need that kind of equipment. And just because its somewhat cold out, doesn’t mean your legs can’t move. Take a brisk 20 minute walk around your neighborhood and maybe pick up your laundry while you’re at it—double the efficiency.

3- Sleep at least 7 hours. I’ve talked about this before, but keeping yourself on a good sleep schedule is super critical to successfully taking care of yourself. You can’t pass out to infomercials every night and wake up after 11 a.m. everyday, and expect yourself to get a bunch of productive work done. Try to get up at 8:30 (or 9 at  the latest) and hit the sack by midnight. You will have more energy, get more work done and be doing your body a big service, all at the same time.

Till tomorrow,
C

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I missed you blog. But now, I am back. Back to writing about navigating my way around this crazy media landscape that is New York City. What has changed since I’ve been gone and why am I back?

In July, I started working as an Editorial Assistant at a start-up, self-help website that had some big investors, one being a major media company. I learned so much, worked with great people and was beyond satisfied with my position. I looked forward to going to work in the morning and was eager to continue gaining experience at this company. As you know (unless you have found some amazingly cozy, group of rocks/cave to live in/under), the stock market has been a bit unpredictable and very shaky. The shaky market and overall economic environment of the country/world shook things up at work and there were lay offs, and I was one of them.

Enter roller coaster of emotions. I was in complete shock. I had been religiously following how bad the markets were doing but for some reason, I thought I was exempt from their effects. I felt as if a rug was ripped out form underneath me and most of all, I felt embarrassed. I was so excited about the position I had and about working in such a wonderful place, I didn’t realize how low I’d feel after such a high. Enter phase 2: From sadness to anger/bitterness. I felt cheated and ripped off, as if I just realized I lost half my money in a pyramid scam.

Once I got over feeling angry, the way I felt next could best be described with this phrase, “Shit. I need to get a job NOW.” I realized new undergrads would soon be becoming college graduates and they, too, would be job hunting and more people would be getting laid off soon, not less, and they, too would be searching. Therefore, I needed to hop off my emotional roller coaster, quit feeling and just start doing.

So for the last few weeks, I’ve been doing. I’ve been getting in touch with all my contacts, not being embarrassed and telling them what went down and how they can help, I’m applying to jobs, interviewing for positions, emailing editors at places I want to work for informational meetings, sending my resume and asking about open positions. I’ve discovering new job web sites and resources, I’m taking a freelancing course, designing my own website to showcase my clips and who I am and making more connections every single day. It took me about a week to get back into job search mode, but I haven’t stopped now that I’ve started. I’m the busiest unemployed person I know (unfortunately, I know a lot).

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I wanted this blog to talk about my experiences in the media, but its hard to talk about something that is currently almost non-existent. Everyday I apply for jobs, sometimes I hear back, sometimes I go on interviews. Everyday I read I WANT MEDIA and MediaBistro’s news of the day. Everyday I say to myself, “Of course I am trying to get into a field whose pages shrink daily and during an economic downturn nonetheless. I am crazy.”

So in the meantime, everyday I pick MediaBistro Video On Demand videos to watch about blogs, the internet, advertising, etc, everyday I look for conferences and courses to sign up for to learn about different aspects of the publishing industry, meet new editors and how to write a cover letter that doesn’t suck or sound like a robot and everyday I read articles in the ASME The Best American Magazine Writing 2007. Since I am only doing side projects, these activities make me feel like I am at least doing something in my field.
Perhaps none of the panels I attend or people I meet will be able to help me right now, but it is giving me peace of mind and maybe we’ll be able to help each other in the future (also helping with the peace of mind bit).

So what news am I reading that is stressing me out? I used to talk about my views, opinions and ideas on the media in my analytical Media Studies courses at Hunter, but graduation stole those from me, so now I must rant here. Maybe it will help take my blog in a new direction–my experiences, my views, my media. Catchy.

Last Friday, Meredith Corp. cut 60 jobs and opted not to fill 60 open positions. This, alone, made me sigh aloud since 20 of the 60 job cuts came from the magazine business (for all you mathematicians, that is 1/3 of the jobs) and Meredith owns big names like Better Homes and Gardens, Family Circle, Ladies’ Home Journal, Parents, Baby, Fitness and More.

Next year, weekly giant U.S. News & World Report will be biweekly. The mag’s editor, Brian Kelly said: “‘News’ and ‘week’ becomes an oxymoron.” Ok so that isn’t exactly an epiphany, since the 24-hour news cycle turned never-ending news cycle thanks to Al Gore, err I mean, the creators of ARPANET (what a ’90s joke!) has been going on for quite some time. But it nevertheless is disheartening to see the country’s No.3 weekly drop its frequency. BW Chicago, BusinessWeek’s first city-focused monthly, has been offed with the June issue as the last issue because of, you guessed it, slow ad sales.

Where are all the ads going? Print is literally shrinking everyday (if you noticed, the NYPost isn’t as tall as it used to be) and even Rupert Murdoch can’t quite figure out how to make money on the web. Google can’t be getting all the ads. The good news is that cool ways to engage the public online happen almost everyday. YouTube is going to launch a “Reporter” channel for pros and amateurs to submit news and the super cool part is that the site is teaming with the GOP for a contest to send an amateur to the Republican Convention. But we already knew Google knows how to engage the people.

But what about magazine sites? Wired has a good handle on it but by the look of other mags’ sites, it seems like some mag editors are more scared of the net than anything else. When are we going to be more engaging? MarketWatch.com has an article today, titled ” 8 simple rules for succeeding on the web. Commentary: Magazines should find opportunities, not obstacles”. The 8 ways are : 1- Have an attitude. 2- Make it easy to read. 3- Stress interactivity. 4-Entertain. Know your audience. 5- Maintain an identity. 6. Live in real time. 7- Be true. 8- Experiment. Though I whole-heartedly agree, I wonder: magazines didn’t know this already?

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I know, I know. Where have I been? The truth is I’ve been around and though I’ve been quite occupied, I haven’t exactly been swamped to the point where not posting for three weeks is even remotely acceptable. So what has been going on?

Life after graduation is kind of exactly like life before graduation, but now I just feel guilty for being off during the summer. My dad makes coffee for the house in the morning, which is definitely a fun bonus of being home (though I’m still sipping on a skim iced late at my favorite office, Starbucks, as I write to you my dear blogiverse. Hey, fancy people that work at Wired mag aren’t the only ones that can make up cool internet words). Anyway, the graduation parties are depleting my bank account, though they are helping me make killer facebook albums. At graduation, Hunter’s President Raab told us we could now officially change our facebook status to “Alum.” Social networking could actually take over the world.

Our keynote speaker, Chris Matthews of Hardball on MSNBC, said we were going out into the world at a historic time, since Obama has just become the first African-American to get the Presidential nomination.

“This is one of those moments in history, people always remember where they were when it happened,” Matthews said. “You’ll always be able to say, “I was at Radio City Music Hall graduating from Hunter College.” (from the news page on http://www.hunter.cuny.edu) I hadn’t thought of it that way, so that is pretty cool. It’s way better than when people ask me “oohh you are from NYC? Where were you on 9/11?”

Both Matthews and one of the honorary degree recipients, Abbe Raven, president and CEO of A&E, talked about how they started at the bottom and with much determination they both landed on the top. Cliché as all hell but you bet your bottom dollar I was dreaming about how bad I want that to be me one day. Plus, I think Hunter would be thrilled to invite me back to speak.

In other media news, I went to an Ed2010.com Magazine Conference last weekend and loved every minute of it. They had good speakers, I learned some helpful tips, made contacts and met one of the women in magazines I really have been dying to meet. I finally successfully sent my “I almost creepily adore you” letter, telling her what she already knows, how inspiring she is to hundreds of aspiring mag editors. She was receptive and that made me feel good.

I hate that I am not working. My job prospects fluctuate everyday but I figure I literally just graduated not even a few days ago, so my hopes better still be up. I bought the ASME Best American Magazine Writing 2007 to make me feel more a part of their world (don’t lie you were thinking of The Little Mermaid when you read that. What do you call them? Feeeeeeeeeeeeet”). Next week starts more freelancing attempts.

Ok this weekend is filled with graduation parties and even an engagement party, so we shall meet again on Sunday, blogiverse.

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