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Old 07-29-2008, 09:31 AM
3,225 posts, read 7,494,082 times
Reputation: 868


Another thing, I don't want to feel like a failure, going home, facing friends and family after tooting my horn about moving to NYC and coming back not having found a job.

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they'll love ya just the same. better to cut your losses now and return with a little money in your pocket than to return later with borrowed bus fare. they'll understand. the big apple if full of stories like yours - some who come on a pipe dream and make it, others who never make it but persist on the fringes, and others who pack up, head home, chalk it up as great lieftime experience and move on to the next city/next chapter in life.
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Old 07-29-2008, 09:52 AM
Location: No Sleep Til Brooklyn
1,413 posts, read 4,673,890 times
Reputation: 591
What makes you stand out from the thousands who are trying to get into publishing? Do you research each company you apply to so that you can personalize your cover letters? Have you had any informational interviews? Are you doing an internship in the city while you are looking for a job?
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Old 07-29-2008, 10:01 AM
Location: NJ/NY
10,634 posts, read 16,211,555 times
Reputation: 2787
Do you have internships on your resume? One of my best friends works in publishing, and she had to do about 2 years of unpaid internships to get a foot in the door. Plus, what salary are you asking for? Entry Level publishing jobs pay like $25-35k, no joke.
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Old 07-29-2008, 10:41 AM
90 posts, read 379,728 times
Reputation: 62
I write for a magazine (a bit different), but know a half dozen people who have gotten jobs in publishing. A couple things about moving back...I've spoken to people in hiring positions at publishing houses who say that if your current address is not in New York, the resume gets thrown out or not highly considered (unless you're in school). The reasoning being that they want to hire fast or don't want to pay to fly someone in. A lot of them also publicly post positions for company policy reasons, but really already have someone in mind for the job.

A lot of them also recruit from specific programs. NYU has a summer publishing program that costs several thousand dollars that's really popular. To me, it seems like people basically buying a job. Unpaid internships are another route. Working for no pay (while still looking for a paying job) is definitely better than not working at all. I've heard of friends offered intro salaries as low as $25,000 also. That should be criminal, but it's just the way it is. $30,000 to $35,000 seems to be more common. $35k is at least approaching a livable salary within commuting distance of Manhattan, but keep in mind that publishing also doesn't have a huge upside for higher positions.

UpsonDowns mentioned informational interviews, and those are a huge advantage for any kind of media. Just e-mail someone in a hiring or recruiting position at a company and say you're trying to break into the industry and were wondering if they could spare a few minutes to talk about breaking in, how you should portray yourself, etc. It's ok to say that you're looking for a job, but really emphasize that that's not why you're asking for the interview. If they don't respond in a week, it's ok to follow up with another e-mail. Although the interview is informational, if they like you, they're going to think about you when they do have an opening or even forward your info to friends of theirs who do need someone. If you have trouble connecting by contacting the people directly, try going through your college alumni network. Basically, you want to be getting in touch with these people BEFORE they have a posted opening. That way you can BE that person who's already in mind for a position by the time it goes up.

Anyway, good luck and I hope you keep us updated on your search.
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Old 07-29-2008, 02:55 PM
Location: Brooklyn
40,057 posts, read 29,718,655 times
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I used to work in book publishing. If this is what you're after, there's a little more job security with the smaller companies as opposed to the big trade houses. I worked for scientific/technical publishers (they've got a steady market, you see).

Just keep sending as many resumes as you can. Believe me, I understand that the job searching game is about as depressing as things get. (Then get the latest issue of The Chief and start putting in applications for civil service jobs--which is what I did!)
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Old 07-29-2008, 03:37 PM
Location: New York City
4,036 posts, read 8,648,723 times
Reputation: 3699
The publishing industry, or any media-related industry for that matter, is very competitive New York. The jobs are very hip and don't pay well, at least to start out. If you want a trendy job in the city: e.g., publishing, journalism (especially magazines), graphic design, advertising, fashion, anything to do with an art gallery, most non-profits, event planning, television/film/music/theater, etc., you have to intern. These are Devil-Wears-Prada/Sex-in-the-City-type jobs and this city is crammed with people (often younger women who went to colleges like Williams or Barnard and are usually subsidized by their parents) looking to break into these industries. A New York Editor, like a Wall Street Banker, is one of the great New York archetypes. These days, when everyone is so obsessed with media in all its forms, one could argue that it's more prestigious to work for Knopf than for Goldman Sachs.
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Old 07-30-2008, 12:18 AM
52 posts, read 233,454 times
Reputation: 18
All points well taken. I've done a couple of informational interviews--one at Harper's Bazaar. I'll go over my resume again and give it to some well-informed friends for constructive criticism. My address is a legit NYC address on my resume. I decided to give myself at least six months before bowing out of the publishing job search. In the meantime, I'll start applying for non-publishing jobs as well. Cirlin 6, do you mind if I private message you? I have a couple of questions. Thanks, all!
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Old 07-30-2008, 12:21 AM
52 posts, read 233,454 times
Reputation: 18
Also, a thing about internships--don't they usually want college students or those just out of college? I'm (ehem) 33 and making a career change.
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Old 07-30-2008, 01:05 AM
Location: Noo Yawk, Noo Yawk
624 posts, read 1,286,154 times
Reputation: 625
Summer is always slow, but there should be some temp work to cover the people who go away. How many agencies did you register with? You should be registered with at least ten agencies and call them every day to remind them you are available. And I mean EVERY DAY you call them all with a cheery voice, "Just checking in to let you know I'm available!" - you can't expect them to remember you and call you up with assignments if you don't "harass" them (nicely) EVERY DAY. They get so-o-o-o many applicants!

I wouldn't look outside Manhattan for work - just wait tables, or work at Macy's or The Container Store - you could even take a dreaded telemarketing gig - while looking for work in your preferred field. You may have to work two cr@ppy part-time jobs while searching for your dream job. Keep sending out that resume and look at internships, too (they can lead to jobs). I remember once getting a job after I had sent out sixty resumes. It took that many.
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Old 07-30-2008, 09:57 AM
3 posts, read 4,497 times
Reputation: 10
I am in a similar boat as you except I don't have a place in the city yet. (I have to live alone which means i really have to get that job first) I am taking some of this advice and branching out my finance job search to greenwhich and stamford. I can move in to NYC once i have a job.

I wouldn't leave the city yet. I would ask yourself if your goal was to move to the city - or succeed in the city. I think NYC has a lot of character that it can build in to you. Persistence will pay off. I intern at a recording studio in Midtown. No jobs are available - but paid work comes around every once in a while. See if you can get a small job to pay rent and then intern or help out at a publishing house.

Make yourself indispensable to someone - and then you'll find yourself with a job!
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