Thursday, July 29, 2010

I Am Interning in a Material World… and I am a Material Girl!

Where else can you have a job where you can attend exclusive previews of new products from huge companies, be given awesome gift bags, and request free samples of anything from gummy bears to blow dryers? This is life in the publishing industry. My favorite part of my internship is definitely going to events. The editors get invited to so many previews and launches that I wind up going to most of them — sometimes as many as four in one day! The picture is my loot from one of my busier event days this week. All I have to do is show up, take notes, and bring back the press kit and whatever other goodies I’m given!

One of the perks I sometimes get is transportation — a lot of the events will provide a car service if you request it. This is especially nice when it’s raining outside or if the event is so far away that you’d need to take a bus, a subway and walk for 20 minutes to get there! For one event, I even had a car pick me up at my house outside of the city and bring me to the event in the morning. It took an hour and a half to get to the event, as opposed to the 45 minutes it would have taken me with my normal commute, but the experience was worth it.

As my internship has progressed, I’ve grown more confident in this world and have learned more about interacting with people at these events. Many times, people don’t know if I’m an intern or just don’t want to assume I am, so I get treated with a lot of respect and friendliness. It’s nice having the power for once!

The only incident I’ve experienced was at an event I attended this week. As one of the representatives showed me around the product line, she pointed out a very cool item that I would get to take home in the gift bag! I always give the gift bags to the assigning editor, but often they’ll let me keep the product if they know they don’t want it. Either way, I was excited to show my editor the item. When I went to leave, I asked the girl at the door (probably an intern at the PR firm) if I had everything I needed while gesturing to the gift bags at her feet. She replied, “Sorry, these are for editors only.” I was a little taken aback. I didn’t want to argue with her and cause a scene, but of course I was going to give it to my editor! And how did she know I wasn’t just a very young-looking editor myself? When I got back to my office I told my editor what happened. She was outraged and said we wouldn’t feature the company in our magazine! It’s nice to know that the editors have my back.

Of course, my favorite part of the events is all the free products I get to sample and sometimes keep. I get to try moisturizer, perfume, chocolate, fruit, cameras and state-of-the-art earphones. I’ve gone home with water bottles, ski bags, and even a bra! Who cares if the publishing industry is a low-paying field- you can pick up plenty of necessary items just by going to events!

Do any of you Edsters get to go to cool events for your job? What are some of the items you’ve been able to take home?

Sophisticatedly yours,
Lifestyle Intern

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