‘I am a hardworking and confident writer, looking to strive and learn within your team…’
I stared blankly at my computer screen as the cursor blinked away at me, daring me to carry on writing. Sighing, I threw my laptop off my lap and sat at the edge of my queen-sized bed, searching my room for a trigger of inspiration.
Even I wouldn’t hire me, I sound pathetic. After 119 job applications (no seriously, it’s been that many), I have officially lost faith in my ability to be a journalist and of course, in my general self-worth. I am just going to have to be an intern forever. A penniless, coffee-grabbing, errand-running intern; forever. People can survive in London on just £750 a month, right? Who am I kidding, most people pay that per week in rent here. I am totally screwed.
“I will not call my parents, I will not call my parents,” I whisper to myself as I pick up my favourite ‘best auntie’ coffee mug from my desk and make my way to the kitchen. Coffee. Coffee will help.
Walking down our small, white hallway and into the open communal space, I saw my roommate and best friend Georgia, sprawled across our adorable Chic Ikea sofa – a gift from dear old mum – a sea of white paper surrounding her long, slender frame. Her perfectly manicured hands resting on her face told me her new job wasn’t going that well. She’d only been there a week and this was how I had found her every evening. At least she has a job, I keep reminding her.
“Coffee?” I ask, hitting the kettle on with my left hand and opening Facebook on my iPhone with the other. Alex, the other girl that interned with me at Stylist had sent me yet another party invitation, this was the third this week. ‘Saturday Night, at 68 and Boston in Soho. Bring your friends’, it read. That’s tomorrow night. How does this chick afford all these nights out on our lousy £750 a month? I peer over the breakfast counter waiting for a response on my coffee offer.
“Arggghh. Can you put a shot of vodka in it?,” she asks pulling her knees up to her chest and bringing herself to a sitting position. It’s hard to not be envious of Gee, with her incredible good looks and perfect body. She shouldn’t be wasting her time in PR, the girl is quite clearly supermodel material.
I laugh while starting to make us both a white coffee with one sugar. One day I will be a health freak that enjoys it black, when I’m rich enough for that personal trainer I need.
“I wish I had some to offer you”. Pointing at my chest I remind her, “you’re lucky I’m even making rent this month.”
To be honest with you, our flat had been a pretty good find on Gee’s part. Two bedrooms, relatively spacious, newly decorated, only a three-minute walk to the tube and only £1000 a month – in London, that’s pretty much a goldmine.
Walking around to the living room, I place her favourite ‘this could be wine’ mug in between the endless amounts of paper on our coffee table – another Ikea Chic special from mum – and took a seat next to her.
“What is all this, anyway?” I ask taking a sip of coffee. I can’t wait for the day I can afford a coffee machine and avoid the bitterness of instant, I think as the taste hit the back of my throat.
“I am trying to come up with ideas for a new book release coming up. I’ve only been there five days and she’s just thrown me into the deep end. I don’t even know what she likes and dislikes. If I screw this up it could set me up for her hate-list pretty quick.”
When we first arrived in London Georgia worked as a Barista for Starbucks. It was easy enough to get a transfer and her parents lent her money to tie herself over until she got a ‘real job’, as they call it. She couldn’t wait to ditch the early starts and ignorant customers so it’s no surprise she snapped up the first PR job offer she got – I mean, who wouldn’t? But it just so happened, the first one came from one of the biggest PR agencies in the city. It all fell perfectly into her five-year plan; some people have all the luck. All she had to do was stay there for two years, get her foot in the door then move up somewhere else if it wasn’t available there.
But since she started all she has been is stressed. Her boss basically lives on a war-path and only seems to hire new people to create new targets. Gee was determined to not become one of them.
“Well what’s the book about?” I ponder, seeing if I can help her out.
“Just another girl writing about another sexual fantasy. Nothing new or big, I am still the newbie after all,” she sighs. “Mmmm, thanks for the Coffee, Lil’, she says taking a big gulp. ‘It’s going to be a late one trying to figure this one out”.
“You’re welcome. Who knew we’d spend our Friday nights in the big city fawning over book releases and cover letters?” I laugh thinking back to us being in Leeds, planning all the glamourous parties we would attend and fabulous clothes we would buy. To be honest, if I didn’t laugh, I would have probably cried, sitting here in my cream Primark jumper and H&M leggings.
“Hey, why don’t we go out tomorrow night? I know I have no money, but this girl I intern with has just sent me this party invite in Soho. We should just get drunk on cheap wine and go have some fun, we definitely deserve it.”
“Oh why not, maybe this party will give me some inspiration for the book launch. What’s it for?”
“Pretty sure it’s for some new play that she’s always raving about in the office. Something about homosexuality in the 80’s. It’s meant to be all inspired or something, the next big thing on Broadway. Who knows, theatre folk always throw the best parties though,” I smile.
Gee raises her eyebrows at me, how would I know she silently questions.
“So I’ve heard anyway,” I reply giddily. “Anyway, back to work lady. I need to go try and convince someone to hire me so we can live the glamorous London life we always dreamed of.”
“Arghh, okay,” Gee moans as she returns to her previous position. “But tomorrow night, all party, no work. Promise?”
“I promise, all party, no work,” I laugh taking myself back to my room and my dreaded laptop screen.