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The Job

April 7, 2014 - Carrie Olson
So New York City is pretty expensive. That goes without saying. The land of the $10 beer and the more expensive martini, it's not an easy city to live in without some kind of funding.

I learned that the hard way as I saw my savings account take a sudden a dip as I frantically applied for jobs, any jobs, and got rejection after rejection or no response in return. And while I had put a kibosh on shopping, museum visiting, and restaurant going - rent and other bills never stopped.

A month before those funds were almost completely depleted, something kind of wonderful happened: I had two job interviews, one at a textbook publishing company and another at a magazine.

And while I was offered both jobs, I chose the latter at Soap Opera Digest.

When I was younger, I used to watch two different soaps with my mom in the summer: As The World Turns and The Bold And The Beautiful. I remember taking my grilled cheese into the living room to watch the glamorous Ridge and Brooke light up the screen on B&B and to see dramatic kidnappings and other storylines on ATWT. It was not only an escape but a fun bonding time for me and my mom, something that we could share.

So what do I do at the magazine? A lot of different things. In some ways, it's pretty similar to working at the Daily Freeman-Journal. I interview actors, transcribe features, go through rounds of editing, and update Facebook, Twitter and our website. Honestly, my training and work experience at the paper is what led me to my current job.

The only thing that I can say is really different is that we do have to watch every soap opera on our televisions each day. Each person is expected to know what is going on in the storylines, as we all contribute to various parts of the magazine. In a way, it's like going to a sporting event, concert, or city council meeting and reporting back on the events that happened. Just a tad different, that's all.

It's been funny when people ask me about my current job. "People actually do that?" It kind of reminds me of the reaction I would get when I worked in marketing at the Iowa State Fair one summer. "Oh, it's not just a volunteer thing, they pay people to do that?"

Not only can my job be fun, but I have to say that my walk to work is pretty spectacular (and quick). I cross the Hudson River in six minutes on the PATH and spend 15-20 minutes walking through the winding cobble streets that surround the New York Stock Exchange. Maneuvering through tourists and other people on their way to work has kind of been a dream come true, as I always imagined that kind of commute when I was younger.

I'm very grateful for the position I have, especially since it is extremely difficult to get into any kind of publishing work in the city without having many connections. It's been a year since I've started, and I can't tell you how glad I am to be in the job I am (and for the paycheck as well). That dwindling savings was pretty worrisome, I must say.


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