Tuesday, 22 March 2011


"We've all been there." // "Everyone has to do it" // "Once you're 'in', you're 'in'."

Sound familiar?

And though we all know these things are true they hardly prepare you for the ups and downs of interning. I've been an intern for a while now, since I graduated in July 2010, and still have no idea about my future, which is why I have decided to write this blog. I needed somewhere to bounce out my frustrations, my exhaustion and my optimism. I am choosing to remain anonymous to allow me to be completely honest about my experiences, I won't be naming names, I won't be divulging specific details, but I will be your fly on the wall.

Currently I can be found in magazine offices and fashion cupboards across London desperately trying to carve out my career. Let me just take this opportunity to say I am not some little rich girl, typing this in a dingy flat in East London, moaning about how unfair life is, then phoning my Dad for some more money before going out tonight and getting shitfaced. I am extremely lucky that my parents live in London, and let me live with them rent free while I'm trying to 'make it'. I am constantly broke, and when I say broke I mean it. I haven't had a paid job since September 2010 when I quit my summer retail job to become a full-time intern. Never in those heady money-to-burn-student-loan-days did I imagine that the Big Issue bloke would one day have more dosh then me. If I want to go out and buy some new clothes I have to sell the old ones on eBay. Occasionally I do get handouts from my parents when they can no longer bare to hear me moaning about how long the queue in the post office was but that's as good as it gets. Nights out are dependant on PR invites and plus 1s.

Currently I am between placements. I finished at my last publication just over a week ago, but like a bad boyfriend, they keep calling, and I keep going back. Why? Because there is a PAID position going there, but the truth is, even if the paid position didn't exist I'd still keep going back in the hope someone there might pluck me from beneath a pile of returns.

Internships are the same as bad boyfriends, they never call you when they say they will, then they screw other girls behind your back while you make excuses for them.

What I'm having the most trouble with at the moment is managing the expectations of family and friends. Nothing like industry outsiders to wipe out your excitement about that new placement, no matter how prestigious.
"That's amazing! How much are they paying?!"
Excitement is zapped away as you explain for the millionth time that paid positions are currently non-existent in this 'economic climate' and that this is your life for the foreseeable future. It's hard not to punch them in their well-meaning faces as you scream

- Phew, I'm feeling better already.


  1. hmmm i like what you have to say I will follow you. I never found a "real" job after graduation. I even stopped searching because I have pride issues. I have other aspirations that do involve earning money but I'm through with asking/begging for someone to hire me to sit at a desk.


  2. I know exactly how you feel. It gets to the point where you wonder how much experience you need and if you'll ever have enough for some people. I've met interns who are in their thirties which is so disheartening.
    I have another, non anonymous fashion blog and write for a few websites on top of interning - through this I was contacted by a New York fashion website who asked me if I would like to write for them everyday, or every other day....for FREE!!! - so I could "gain industry experience"... Ahem... I haven't emailed back.


  3. i totally understand you..i graduated two years ago from high school and now i at university..in my country even if you have a certificate from a university you cant find a job easily..
    for now i only tutor kids -just a part time job that i cant do for ever-
    we live in tough times,what can we say?


  4. Thank you for following! Here in the UK uni gets you nothing. I finished 8 months ago, £23,000 in debt, I have a good degree, lots of experience, and still interning!
    But we must keep smiling!!! ; )


  5. Love the inside scoop on the intern life! Now following you!

  6. Thank you Marcia. I'll be dishing the dirt for sure! XXX

  7. Lovely start of blog!Welcome :))))
    greetings from serbia

  8. Oh man story for most of us young ppl, I have a job but it's not what I want even though it better than most jobs. I recently graduated as well.

  9. Oh man story for most of us young ppl, I have a job but it's not what I want even though it better than most jobs. I recently graduated as well.

  10. So difficult isn't it? Good luck :)

  11. Thank you ladies. We'll all get there in the end, just have to keep working and smiling... and ranting anonymously.

  12. Sooooo agreed with you there.

    I finished uni in July too, did all my work placements while still at uni (at some very nice magazines too) then ya graduate and nothing!

    I wish I had family who lived in London, I spent a fortune on accom during my internships and once I graduated there was absolutely no way I could afford to go to London and work for free!

    Will be looking forward to your posts and sharing your frustrations!

    Sarah xx

  13. love this post! thanks for sharing your experiences!


    Rebecca Holland


  14. Thank you Sarah. It's so tough. Most of the people on my course are in the same situation as you, it's really bad, if my family didn't live in London I would be totally screwed.

    I'm glad to see that so many of you reading this agree with me or are at least enjoying my rants.


  15. Hiya,

    I stumbled across your blog yesterday, I think through an IFB friend request? This is a sweet idea and I appreciate your honesty and the actual reality of interning you share.
    You seem to know what you're talking about. As someone who has a number of internships under their belt I was just wondering if you had any advice on acquiring the right sort of internships in the first place? (I know you must get this all the time. so sorry if I sound like a broken record).

    What makes you jump off the page? Is it more than often the case that internships can only be acquired through having contacts in said publications?

    I am desp struggling to find something for the summer when I graduate.

    I look forward to hearing from you and appreciate your time.

    Feel free to email me your response dressingupdressingdown@hotmail.co.uk / comment on my blog.

    Helen, X