Sunday, July 15, 2012

On Feeding My Journalistic Obsession



 I think I’m finally in.

This past week, I got to blog, do research on health, music and nutrition and go to two different press events. It’s really hard to remember work is not supposed to be glamorous when you’re being fed by a celebrity chef, getting to sample salty snacks (bacon ranch popcorn, anyone?) and scoring jaw-dropping freebies like a free month-long gym membership, gym attire, some Greek yogurt. Even though I’m learning a tremendous amount from my experience with Fitness, I’m always terrified I’m falling short.

Sometimes, I get edits back on my blogs, and wonder how many changes are considered “normal.” I’m still trying to adopt the magazine’s tone. And I feel like every time I run an errand, I end up having to redo something because I wasn’t clear on something that was probably pretty obvious. As per my EA’s advice, I want to become “that girl”—absolutely indispensible. I don’t want to be the intern the editors are relieved to see leave.

I’m getting plenty of on-the-job practice. But it’s not enough. It’s never enough. I need more writing.

I’m currently sitting at Starbucks, working on this as well as an application for a travel-writing opportunity. I also want to start a personal blog, but I’m not sure what kind it should be.

At first, I toyed with the idea of writing a blog about being a New Yorker and write about my observations of this city’s culture. But I think, after living in this city my whole life, my tone is way too sharp and sarcastic for that. I wrote one post, read it a couple weeks later and realized even I felt insulted.

Meanwhile, from hanging with the other interns, I’m finding that I know very little about my own backyard. I think that’s just the nature of the beast—New Yorkers are so used to New York that we don’t always bother to visit the attractions. 

Either that, or we were five when we visited sights like the Empire State Building and were more fascinated by the elevators than by the observation deck (true story). So we depend on tourists to help us explore the city. My family and I are creatures of habit. We have a favorite deli, a favorite pizzeria, and we get lost downtown. Pretty dull, actually.

So scratch that. I was thinking of writing a health and fitness blog. Seeing as how I’m interning with Fitness and spend much of my week jogging, doing yoga and dancing, this seems like a reasonable topic. But I think I’d prefer to cover a different topic after work.

Dating? I don’t want to write something I wouldn’t want my mom to read (she doesn’t need to know I’m already dating at the tender young age of twenty). An environmental blog? Maybe, but I want something a little less heavy for the weekends.

I guess this will just be a work in progress. I still need a better reason than using Facebook to work in a café and drink over-priced coffee on weekends.

No, wait. I take that back. The coffee is a good enough reason to buy coffee. I really do love coffee. If only I could blog about that.

--Laura Cofsky



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