My career certainly started that way: from writing for Honi Soit, the student newspaper at the University of Sydney, I fell quite by accident into an internship at Time Out Sydney Magazine, where the then-Deputy Editor (and now Editor) Nick Dent was a brilliant mentor. Internship led to job, job at Time Out led to freelance work with Australian Gourmet Traveller, and all within a year of graduating my Arts degree.
When I decided to move to England, my friends and colleagues were confident I would find a job quickly. The industry is so much bigger there, they assured me. You're experienced and you've got a solid resumé, they said. I agreed. What hubris.
As it turned out, we were wrong.
Almost four months after I began looking, I have a job in market research, and a folder full of cover letters to different companies which went, apparently, unheeded.
I have still been writing – and I've had some very enjoyable, if unpaid, freelance work with some respected publications. But I want my words to equate to money, and this brings me to the point of this blog.
I've decided to do one thing every day which will be to the benefit of my career.
Some of my ideas are:
-Contacting journalists and editors
-Reading a bio of someone I admire, for inspiration or ideas
-Reading about the industry (apparently print isn't so popular nowadays?)
-Taking a course in sub-editing (I do love a good proof-read)
-Reading an article about Search Engine Optimisation
-Finding out the business side of freelancing
-Getting advice on how to pitch an article to a publication
The list may well extend significantly depending on how long it takes me to find a job. What I intend is that I will get some good professional development as I search for a job, and that the blog will give this a focus, and I shall be accountable to my imagined legions of readers. Eventually, I hope also it will also become a useful resource to others in my situation.
In honour of my inaugural post, my "thing" for today was to write an email to Mark Frith, Editor of Time Out London, to ask if I can do some freelance writing for them. I'll let you know what he says.