A Buzzfeed-style Listicle with Some Thoughts on LA: #4 May Shock You! Or, Please Hire Me, Buzzfeed!

Editor's Note: This is the third post in a series from our Spring 2016 LA Interns. Check back soon for more!

  1. I’m interning at Mad Chance Productions (a few of us are), which does development. Before I got here, I thought it might be something I was into - but I’m not. Development doesn’t interest me for a long-term career path. Choosing scripts makes about as much sense to me as astrology. And that’s okay. Even though some days I’m struggling to stay awake and focused, I don’t regret interning here. Now I know: development isn’t my thing, and I’m using the time to ask questions about how the industry works on a more big-budget scale, and “networking” with people at Mad Chance and trying to set meetings with people they can refer me to.
  2. “Networking” makes me feel dirty. There have been a few people who said that pretty much every encounter you have with industry people you should use to “network” (sorry, I’m having trouble getting that word out of emotionally-distancing quotation marks), but I am trying to wrap my head around it. Maybe it’s just that I grew up with the old “pull yourself up by your own bootstraps” mentality, which pretty much meant that asking for a favour first was committing yourself to voluntary slavery. Learn to ask for things (nicely) early - it’ll help.
  3. My sleep schedule is more out of whack than it was in New York, the irony of which is always a little funny. Most internships do not pay the bills - mine doesn’t - and so I’m working overnights at a restaurant 5 days a week to make rent. Trying to convince your body to stay awake on total opposite time frames is damn near impossible. But you do what you have to do.
  4. Email is not the devil, but it’s his own creation. I dream of a day where I can live in a cabin with electricity but not internet, can cut movies alone, and communicate solely by typewritten letter, landline, and in-person visits. That being said, I’m still learning how to not be absolutely terrified of my email. This is a bad thing. Don’t have this mentality. Embrace email, you technology-native you. Protip: use it to “network”!
  5. Driving is tremendously better than taking the train. I know others feel differently, but I’ve totally embraced the needing-a-car thing. No more needing offline music. No more smelly trains with homeless people. No more wondering if the train is even running. No more carrying everything you might need on a jam-packed train, and having to carry it back even if you didn’t use it. My gym bag is in the trunk, I keep water and protein bars in the backseat along with an umbrella and a spare pair of shoes, along with probably 20 other things I might use that day or I might not. It’s fantastic.
  6. I have learned to embrace the fact that I cannot multi-task. Instead, I short-burst-task (but still call it multi-tasking because buzzword). My brain gets caught up in trying to remember everything that I’m supposed to be doing and I end up having to go over whatever it was because I wasn’t paying enough attention the first time. The jury’s still out on whether or not this is an acceptable thing to say.
  7. Not everyone needs to be a writer. At least this semester, many of the people we’ve had come speak to our meetings have been writers or producers. There are other jobs. Also relevant - not all of the advice applies to you. I went three meetings hearing that you need to work at an agency and become an Agency Certified Assistant (tm pending) and then I finally asked “so, if I want to be an apprentice editor, do I too need to go to an agency?” And then everyone was like, NO, no of course not - you can, but it might actually hurt you in the long run. But for like three weeks it was drilled into us as a MUST. So, still working on developing an advice filter.
  8. I am woefully behind in watching films. It’s actually a problem. People reference things that they’ve seen recently or not-quite-classics but important films and embarrassingly often I’m like “I know the concept and it’s in my watchlist but most of the time I have to choose between getting sleep at all or seeing movies and I can’t stay awake anymore”. The only thing that’s remotely comforting is that Walter Murch doesn’t watch a lot of films. Ultimate Life Goal: Become Walter Murch.
  9. (ten is such an arbitrary number anyway. we’ll go with nine useful ones and this one where I phone it in.)
  10. There’s not a day that I regret coming out here. Yes, there’s things I miss about NY, and I certainly miss friends (and the ease of seeing people I kind of know but not well enough to text [see #4 about my Luddite tendencies] around campus), but for the most part, being out of school - even in a transitionary capacity - is freaking magnificent. When I get home, it’s my time. Homework doesn’t invade my inner sanctum. Granted, most of what I do is drink beer & watch TV or sleep, but there’s never stress about whether or not I can finish this episode vs when I’m going to write this paper. There is no paper. Autoplay next episode? Yaasss queen.