Read My Latest: An Ode To Working Girl 

working-girl-mainGrowing up Working Girl was one of my favorite movies. It taught me early on lessons about working, love, breaking the rules, and reaching your dreams. In some way I never realized until writing this ode to Working Girl (for its 25th anniversary) how much of an impact it had on me. It helped me balance out my dreams of fairy princesses with dreams of carrying a suitcase and leading meetings.

And you can find all of my articles for Refinery29 here.

Read My Latest: Lessons From Christmas Movies

openerSo I know there are some people out there that pretend they never watch all of the cheesy holiday movies that come on this time of year. Heck, maybe I will even believe there are some people who truly don’t watch them at all. But, I am not one of those people, as this article proves.

Since there is no time like the holidays to be honest, I went through and wrote a story on what I have learned from Christmas movies (particularly the gems found on ABC Family, Hallmark and Lifetime, which yes, are the main channels I watch once the TV shows go on hiatus).

And you can find all my articles for Refinery29 here.

Read My Latest: Why Shailene Woodley Will Be The Perfect Tris

opener-1Yes, I am 23 years old. And, yes, I have quite a collection of books that includes new releases, classics, texts that are banned, texts taught in every school in America, and ones that have won awards. However, my literature collection also contains a lot of Young Adult books. I am beginning to think that I will never outgrow a good YA book. And that may be OK, since it seems Hollywood won’t either.

I just finished the Divergent series this weekend. Honestly, I wasn’t expecting to truly like it, but I did. I read all three books in three days. And, the ending left me crying and questioning and smiling and sorting out my thoughts in the way only a really great story can. I still am processing how I feel about a lot of it. But, what I do know is that I loved the character of Tris Prior, and I think Shailene Woodley will be great at it. Here are the top 10 reasons why.

And you can find all my articles for Refinery29 here.

Hello World, You Have A New Working Girl

I moved here with dreams of finding a job that mixed my passion of journalism, the Internet, solving puzzles, creating beauty, fashion, art, and people. For a little bit I was worried that I would never find that opportunity, that my dreams would forever stay out of my reach.

So, I am beyond excited to share with everyone that as of last week I started a new job as an SEO Editor at Refinery29.com.

I am so exciting to start my journey working for a company I have loved for so long, surrounded by exciting and creative people, and to share with you all of my experiences and lessons now that I am a “working girl.” (Yes, cue the opening sequence of Working Girl with Carly Simon’s “Let The River Run” playing as we see our first glimpse of New York City. It truly is the most appropriate right now).

Things I have learned since moving to NYC

“I live here.” I find myself saying that on a regular basis. I have lived here, truly lived in NYC, with my own apartment, my own struggles, and my own dreams for four months now. Yet, I still will find myself stopping in my tracks every so often to say “I live here.” I am pretty sure I will be finding myself having the same epiphany over and over again the whole time I live here. Everyday is not perfect. Some days are difficult, some days are awful, but it is OK, because some days are magical. Some days are more than magical.

I have learned a lot. It is a different life in many ways than you could have anywhere else, and with that you learn new things. Here are some of the things I have learned so far.

1. There is a New York look: I have always known that New York was diverse, but I never realized that  such an eclectic group of people could all adopt the same mannerisms. But there is a New York walk, a New York look, and a New York attitude to common occurrences like panhandlers, subway dancers (especially if they are really good), and that person who  talks really loud on the bus. Most of the time each person is dancing to his or her own drum and having a party of one in order to find their dreams, but once New Yorkers get on the street they all carry themselves the same way. And, its not because they are mean or lacking personality, but because they are determined, goal oriented, and really just wants to get to Trader Joe’s before the line gets too long.

2. How to shave a few minutes off my travel time: It may seem silly but if you have time in the subway is important to walk to the side of the subway that is closest to your exit. It truly saves you so much time.

3. If there are three empty seats, live room for people: It’s just an unspoken word that if there are three seats available on the subway, you should take the seat that is not touching someone. People just want some space. Also, on the way to work and the way home from work, people want peace and quiet. So just give it to them.

4. Just dance in the rain: Let’s be real during busy times an umbrella is not really going to keep you dry on the streets of New York. When you are on a skinny sidewalk with like 30 people all toting umbrellas, everyone ends up hitting each other and dripping water on each other. Also walking up and down the subway stairs, water is going to fall on you from all directions. So if you aren’t walking to something important, just enjoy the rain.

5. Have a plan-B always: You thought that you were going to that restaurant for dinner tonight? It has an hour wait. You thought you were taking the F uptown? It isn’t running. Anywhere else in the world, these things could be a sign that you should turn around and go home. But, don’t. You have a life, and part of the adventure is forgetting about what you thought you should do, and instead find a plan B. It’s a big city, there are a lot of things to do, a lot of trains you can take, and a lot of people to meet.

6. NYC Rent: Before I moved here if I heard anyone paying the amount the average person does here for a tiny apartment, I would have thought they were insane. And, well I still do. We are all insane. But, let me tell you having a little bit of New York, little being the key word, that you can call yours, makes it all worth it. 

7. Commute time is important time: It can be hard to imagine how people in New York have time to rewind. To be honest, the time that you get to relax the most is when you are commuting. I live in Chinatown and three of my best friends live in the UWS, so I spend almost an hour each way to see them during the busiest time of the day. This is the perfect time to read each day, or listen to music, or write. One of my favorite thing about every big city I have lived in — London and New York — is that there is someone within eyesight reading each time you are headed somewhere. It may just be me romanticizing my reality, but I would love to think that I am continually attracted to places exceptionally full of readers.

But the greatest thing I love and the best thing I have learned?

8. It is always a good thing where you live somewhere that amazes you on an almost daily basis.

“One belongs to New York instantly, one belongs to it as much in five minutes as in five years.”

Tom Wolfe said the words that I used for as this posts headline. And well, I realize that most people don’t consider me a New Yorker yet, and in some people’s minds I will never be a New Yorker. But I feel like part of New York belongs to me, and part of me belongs to New York, no matter what anyone else thinks. I think all eight of us that Imagetraveled on this program, and moved to New York together, feel that way already.

Five days. Think about the last five of your life, or any five consecutive days in your life. Very rarely does that much change. We hear it takes just an instant to change your life, but those instants are not normally very close together. Well, since I moved to New York five days ago I have had so many life changing moments. I have moved states, moved into my new (but temporary home) in Chelsea, met so many new people, bought my first 30-day unlimited metro card, attended eight different networking events, and visited the Condé Nast and Hearst offices. Sure these offices may just be buildings, but they are buildings filled with the people who have helped create the words and images in the magazines I have treated as my personal guidebooks for everything . I even tried Ukrainian food for the very first time.

And while I am making all of these changes, I am already having to look out for the next batch of changes. I am looking for the apartment that I will move into August 4th (because being homeless in New York is not something I want to experience) and constantly applying for jobs and networking events. It is hard to imagine how the next five days, or the five days after that, could bring even more changes. But I know they will.

According to Tom Wolfe, five minutes and five years are the same. So with that math where does five days leave you? Well, right now in love with this city. And well, perhaps, ready for a pay check 🙂

“I would give the greatest sunset in the world for one sight of New York’s skyline.” -Ayn Rand

My whole life I have wanted to move to New York City. As an avid reader, I grew up falling in love with words. I wanted to meet people, learn about the world and find a way to tell the best story. Where is the best place to be a storyteller? New York City, of course. The city that has inspired my mind since I was a little girl, making me imagine this paradise of people and words and art and creativity and intelligence. Is this place real? No. I know that New York isn’t what I imagine it to be. I realize it may let me down at times, but I also am sure that it is going to be the most amazing adventure, love story, and experience of my life.

I love fairy tales, but in honesty, I love the originals with the less-than-happy endings and the creepy factor. So, knowing that sometimes dreams are shattered and you end up as sea foam, I am moving to New York on June 2nd to follow my dreams.  While I always planned on moving there, I didn’t know it would be a reality until mid-February when I found out I would be participating in a new program at Elon University called Bridges. I will be moving to the City with 7 other recent graduates and 2 staff members from the University and will be living in a New School dorm.

I will have until mid-August to decide if New York is right for me. But let’s be honest, I highly doubt the city I have had a love affair with since I was a little girl will break my heart so quickly. Even the most toxic love affairs typically last a few months.

So here is to the next adventure, a dream coming true, a new love affair and a new life in a new city. Oh hello, real world, I am excited to meet you.