Inspiration and Editors / Journalism Jobs / Journalism skills

“Persistence pays off, Amy”

After my constant blog-moaning of ‘The Job Hunt’, downloading every job ‘app’ possible and spending my evenings patiently waiting to hear back from any job applications, I finally have a job! It all happened really fast but I was over the moon once I found out!

But the way that I got the job definitely deserves a blog post because I really do think, as the title says, persistence pays off. After being adamant that one day, I thought I would find my job through ‘Twitter’ (proving its use as not just a social tool), this wasn’t the way it happened at all. One morning before work (yes around 7.45am), after being tired of looking at the same websites every day I simply googled ‘Editorial, Sussex’. The first link that came up was a job advert for an ‘Editorial Assistant/Sub-Editor’ on PTA+ magazine in East Grinstead on the government website. I was a bit annoyed I hadn’t seen it sooner because it didn’t have a closing date on the application. So that morning, I emailed the editor asking when the closing date was and she emailed back sending an application form too, asking me to send it back by Wednesday at 10am. This was Monday and I completed the application form straight after work that evening and sent it off.

I felt this was a job that would really suit me well. There have been countless jobs I have applied for that even I have forgotten about, because they were insignificant and I applied for the sake of it, not because it was what I really wanted. But this one seemed like the perfect entry position into magazines. I made a note in my diary on the following Friday to ring them up and follow-up my application. When it came to Friday, I got in from work at 5.25pm, and it was a last minute decision to quickly ring the office before they closed to ask about the job, but I am so glad I did. Unfortunately I got through to the commercial director, who told me that people had already been shortlisted for the interviews on Monday and if I hadn’t received an email then it probably wasn’t good news. I was a bit gutted but tried to hold out hope as he asked me a couple of questions, whereabouts I lived, my educational background and if I could drive. He said he would pass a note onto the editor on Monday that I had rung, but I knew by then she would already be doing interviews.

Monday morning arrived and I got a call in the morning from the editor. “I got your email… and your phonecall” she laughed, “Persistence pays off, Amy and I know it’s short notice but I was wondering if you would be able to come in this afternoon for an interview as I ideally wanted them finished by the end of the day.” Even though she offered that I could come in the next day, I immediately said I would be able to come in this afternoon, and began preparing for the interview, reading everything I could about the magazine, the subject matter and the team at the magazine.

By 4.30pm that day, after an hour and a half in the office with the editor, I was absolutely buzzing. It was my first interview for a job in the industry I wanted and she said she would let me know in the next couple of days. The drive there was easy, the office was lovely and spacious and I met everyone else working there too. The next day, around the same time she called again to say I was down to the final two. Although I was so happy, it made me even more nervous to know that if I didn’t get it, I would’ve been so close! We were both given an article to write for the magazine, as well as a feature to proof read. I got home from work at 5.30pm that day and started doing the tasks straight away – I didn’t stop until I emailed her them back at 10pm. I got myself so worked up over wanting it to be perfect, but I wanted to show my dedication to the job as I knew the other candidate would probably be doing the exact same thing.

And FINALLY, I can say my hard work paid off! After obsessively staring at my phone ALL morning the next day, I was ecstatic to receive the call in the afternoon, offering me the job. I really felt like she was able to see how passionate I am about journalism, magazines, and everything we spoke about in my interview.

I begin my job on August 5th and can’t wait to finally start my career.

So, for those jobs you apply for that you really want:

  • Take note of the closing date – write it in your diary/on a post-it, don’t just apply and forget about it
  • Decided a reasonable amount of time after the applications have closed to follow up your application
  • Ring, ring, ring. Emails are easy, and don’t always warrant a reply. You can’t be ignored if someone picks up the phone to you.
  • If you do get through to the next stage, with a chance to show your potential, don’t treat it lightly. Put everything you can into it and try to put that little bit extra in that the other candidates may not.
  • Once in a while, look for jobs in places that might not be splashed all over Twitter
  • Be persistent and memorable


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