A Certain Antipathy

These days it’s been hard to conjure up the time and energy to post daily. I don’t know if just because I am so busy, or because of my conversation with my brother’s friend, Jimmy. Jimmy used to be a managing editor at KoreAm, and he graciously agreed to meet me for dinner just to talk about magazine stuff.

Over tapas at the Block (some huge mall in Orange), he basically told me that getting a magazine job is hard, very hard, and that I will not make very much money. He also told me flat-out that blog-writing counts for zip in the publishing world because it is not edited at all.

Now, I’m not saying that Jimmy is a bad guy or even a pessimistic guy – far from it – he is clearly a very sweet, solicitous guy who was trying to give me as much helpful information as he could. I appreciated his advice and his time; it was just perhaps too large a dose of reality for me to handle at the moment. I should expect to get an entry-level position. I need to work on building a portfolio of clips (which are published pieces). Both my thesis and essay in the art catalog are too long to be useful for this. If I want to get clips, I need to start pitching ideas to editors all over the place, and expect to be rejected a lot. He did say that the kind of experience I would get working for a private educational firm would not help me get a better job in the magazine world – so there is less temptation to go in that direction now. Basically, he said bluntly that leaving teaching and trying to work in the magazine world was a bold move – and he said that with a low whistle and a shake of the head.

So, it looks like I need to start busting out applications to these editorial positions in Irvine that start at $25,000-$30,000/year. That’s not much cash for south OC.

I have been checking out a few different websites for jobs. Jimmy recommended ed2010.com, but those are mostly NYC jobs. The second site he mentioned,  journalismjobs.com, has been much more helpful and I have been checking it daily. I’ve also been checking monster.com, the OC Weekly, and artandeducation.net. I’ve only sent out one inquiry letter (to a friend of the family) and one application (part-time associate editor for an LA art magazine).

I did get an interesting tip today. A woman who used to write for the Hi-Desert Star (Susan Chaney) is now an editor at Fancy Magazines in Laguna. Curiously, I have seen several positions open for Cat Fancy, Bird Talk, and Horse Illustrated; the positions are for a managing editor,which is out of my league, but I think I’ll send a letter anyway. She may smile upon a fellow desert denizen.

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