Friday, June 8, 2012

Big-City Movie Montage

To put it simply, my first week in New York has been a big-city movie montage, only a little less graceful.

Instead of bopping down Fifth Avenue with beautifully bagged clothes, a fresh blowout and a pearly smile, I clumsily swung heavy plastic bags over the subway turnstiles. Instead of zipping my MetroCard through the reader like a seasoned pro, I unsuccessfully swiped it, dropped it and wound up holding up what seemed like the entirety of Manhattan’s rush hour crowd. No sunny days in Central Park for me — just a whole lot of rain, the one jacket I packed and an umbrella that flips inside out almost always.

But this, more than anything, means adventure. New York City isn’t a mere movie set. It’s the real, working world of media’s masterminds. I’m anticipating a summer of surprises, of adventures and of valuable experiences. As a journalist, I value the art of the story, and I am very sure that this two-month stint in New York City will give me, and the other ASME interns, quite the story to tell. And as a food lover (of both eating and making), I certainly value The Big Apple’s palate and strange obsession with arguing about the best pizza (which, for the record, I believe to be Grimaldi’s in Brooklyn).

Orientation ended today. I took two bites of my bagel on the morning of Day 1 before being swept into a 7-hour whirlwind of magazine journalism advice, facts, insight and industry connections. Over the course of the next two days, orientation plunged us deeper into the heart of the magazine industry with the best of the magazine industry. ASME goes far beyond the journalism textbook. Though interning in New York is a great starting point on its own for budding journalists, ASME takes it levels higher by bringing the magazine industry’s brightest right to us. I’m excited to see what’s in store for me at one of my favorite publications, Reader’s Digest.

But what’s just as important as connecting to the magazine pros is forming relationships with the magazine newcomers — my fellow interns. We are magazine’s future, and it’s vital to collaborate starting now. After spending just a few days together, it’s clear to see this ASME class is a talented bunch, and I’m eager to help one another out as we develop our strengths and take on the industry as a team (I’ll just overlook the fact that there’s a “ME” in “ASME”).

And as for my idealized movie montage, I’m still holding out for it. After all, the summer has only begun. Now if only it were a musical…is that too much to ask for?

-Sheri Alzeerah, Interning at Reader's Digest

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