I wrote this post last year on my personal blog, Aubrey Out Of The Box. Today I will embark on a week’s work experience with my favourite magazine, Cosmopolitan. I am now 23, still have every issue I’ve ever bought and am excited about the week ahead. As you will read below, I have been passionate about Cosmo for years. It was always my dream to work in magazines.
In the past year and a half or so, I’ve lost sight of that dream. I focussed on my journalism subjects at university and became more interested in sports like AFL and Rugby.
I also fell into the world of PR and am heading down a path which I now feel I am being pushed down. PR was something I was always intrigued by, but sometimes I feel as though I am living someone else’s dream. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy PR but I’m not entirely sure whether I want a career in it.
If this blog has taught me anything it is to try different fields in media and see if you really enjoy it and want to pursue it.
This week I have decided is the make or break. If I enjoy the magazine world I will pursue it further when I’m back in Melbourne. I realize how lucky I am to have had a range of intern experiences in PR, Sports and now at Cosmopolitan. I need to get back on track and think about what I really want and not what someone else wants me to do.
I recently read the story behind one of my favourite songs, ‘Like a Rolling Stone’ by Bob Dylan and this quote resonated with me in so many ways.
“Truly to know yourself and find fulfillment, you must face the world alone, mould your future and your philosophy from your own experiences, without relying on the comforts of favor or patronage; instead, one has to push off the shore, head out into uncharted waters with “no direction home.”” – Andy Grill ‘Bob Dylan: The Stories Behind the Songs 1962-1969.’
Wish me luck xo
BY AUBREY HAMLETT
July 21st 2011
Today I will dedicate my blog to a magazine who has been in my life for 7 years.
Magazine, no more like a friend.
I have religiously bought Cosmopolitan magazine at the start of every month for the past 7 years. I have never had a subscription, but I get a kick out of remembering it’s the start of the month and making my way to my local super market to purchase the new issue.
I have kept every issue and just the other week my mother suggested I throw them out. I replied with a stern “no.” I should have told her that what she spoke of was blasphemy.
Yes girls and boys, I was reading Cosmo when Mia Freedman was editor.
I bought my first issue of Cosmo in September 2004. My sister told me to do it. I remember hesitating but bought it anyway and my Mum was with my Dad in the UK so what my sister says, goes. The ‘oral sex’ headline gained a mass amount of media scrutiny and was subsequently covered up with a sticker while on sale for the rest of the month.
While reading Cosmo I also fell in love with Zoe Foster’s beauty column. Although I will admit that I am not as into beauty as some people (eg. Zoe) I really enjoyed reading about when she cut her hair to a shoulder length bob and then when she got hair extensions. Zoe left Cosmo for a couple of years (I was devastated) but sometimes a girl can’t resist and she has returned as Cosmo’s own Carrie Bradshaw dishing up relationship advice each month. Zoe’s column is always helpful and entertaining.
I don’t know what it is that makes me excited about Cosmo. Some issues are great, hit the mark and satisfy my every need. With articles on celebrities, relationships for the single girls, career and topless men is always a bonus. Some issues are just a bit…blah or contain too much couplely stuff (sorry loved up couple girls). edit – how funny, I am now one of those loved up couple girls!
My only complaint is when Cosmo does a ‘footy’ spread, there are never enough AFL players. I’d love a photo shoot with just AFL players. I recently tweeted acting editor, Jessica Parry asking for a feature on Rugby. I turns out that they already had a photoshoot in the works and I might get to see my favourite Rebels player, Nick Phipps in the mag. Ah dreamy. edit – Nick Phipps was in Cosmo with his shirt off. His picture is now on my wall. Ah, dreamy.
Seven years on I can’t imagine not buying Cosmo every month. I wonder if there is an age when I can’t buy it?35? 40? 64? 92?
Maybe if I feel I’m too old, I can always steal my daughter’s copy.
Elissa Ratliff contacted me through the My Interning Life facebook page and wanted to share her story doing work experience at Cosmopolitan Magazine. Elissa is currently studying a Bachelor of Arts and will be doing more work expereience at Cleo Magazine in July this year.
In two weeks, I will also be at Cosmopolitan Magazine completing my own weeks worth of work experience.
Elissa shares her story on My Interning Life…
My name is Elissa Ratliff and I am in my first year of a Bachelor of Arts in Communication (Writing and Cultural Studies) at the University of Technology, Sydney. I expect to finish my course ultimately in 2014, that is if everything goes well.
At the moment, a Beauty Editor at any mag that would have me, but long term, sitting in the Cleo Editor’s desk at 54 Park St Sydney.
Previous interning experiences, where and how long?
I was lucky enough to be accepted to do a weeks work experience at Cosmo at the eager age of 16, which is three years ago now, but it still feels as if it was yesterday.
Why did you choose Cosmopolitan Magazine?
They were and still are my idols, so for me, to get experience where they had once worked was a dream come true. And of course, who really wouldn’t want to experience a week at a place known as ‘The Bible’ to women, and of course the highest selling woman’s magazine in the world?
How did you apply for your internship?
I did my research, and sent off my resume and a cover letter to the then Editorial Coordinator Michelle Jackson. I was lucky enough to receive a reply that night saying that Cosmo would love to have me, and luckily enough for me, it was that easy.
I now know, that what happened then was a once in a lifetime thing, as Cosmo is overrun with work experience requests, so I was simply very, very lucky.
What was your first day like?
My first day was everything I imagined it to be, and more. I was greeted in the lobby by Michelle, and then taken through the crisp marble foyer of the ACP headquarters, up to level 5 where I was introduced to all the staff, and consequently scored a compliment from the Editor Bronwyn McCahon who liked my dress (by far the highlight of the day).
I then accompanied Michelle down to the basement to collect the parcels, I did not realize that I would be bringing back two trolleys stacked with clothes, makeup, flowers and lollies, all for the lovely ladies who work there.
The rest of the day was just a rush, I was overwhelmed by the fact that this was actually happening to me, and was really happy to be doing anything that they needed.
What did you do on a daily basis while at Cosmopolitan?
When I arrived I would do a coffee run, then go and collect the parcels in the rusty old ACP storage elevator, transcript interviews, assist the Cosmo Bride team in cleaning out their fashion cupboard, run errands for the fashion department (One day, I found myself in the headquarters of Louis Vuitton returning a bag), and assist Michelle in the production of the magazine.
Did you get to do something at Cosmopolitan that you did not expect to do?
One thing I did not expect to do was help out on a fashion shoot, which was incredibly awesome, just to watch the models get their makeup done and then just to be in that atmosphere, it is something I will never forget.
Will you do more interning? Why/why not?
Has twitter helped you connect with fellow students and prospective employers?
Yes Twitter has been amazing for me, and has allowed to connect with the magazines I love, and those whose writing inspires me. Latley I feel I have been neglecting facebook for twitter, which is actually a bit of a surprise.
facebook or twitter pages.
Mia Freedman’s advice to a group of UTS students, in which I was one of, was think of yourself as a brand on twitter, on facebook, on your CV- everywhere, and I think this is so true. You can make such good connections through twitter to get where you want to be, so upload things that matter and retweet.
Also, never back down. If you have a dream, keep applying for internships, keep applying for work experience, because even if you get knocked back a billion times, the only way you will get to where you want to be is to get back up and try again. And also, be pushy, send as many emails as you can, and keep sending them until you get a reply, and if its good, it would have paid off, and if its bad, try again.
Always remember what the Rolling Stones say, “You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometimes, you just might find, you get what you need.”