Another leisurely morning, but I did want to get things done today. I first went to the children’s bookstore— Bankstreet Bookstore— to see what was new in children’s literature, especially since that’s what I want to specialize in in publishing.
I got two new books:
Super excited to read both!
I then went to the stationary store and bought resume paper, because for our Time, Inc. visit we needed to bring our resumes on nice paper, per instructions.
After going to the J-School and printing it out, Ryan, Gaia, and I went downtown to meet Tig at Washington Square park, where he was waiting for us to go to (a rather late) brunch.
Washington Square Park definitely has a different vibe than Central Park— Central Park has a lot of families, dogs, and tourists, while Washington Square Park is clearly locals and is a much younger, hipper crowd than Central Park. It’s very interesting.
Tig knew of this good brunch place a few blocks down, so we walked and ended up at this placed called Pera. It was this really cute, posh-y place, but it was utterly delightful. By this time, it was 3 PM, so I had clearly lunch. It was delicious.
Tig was thinking about renting their rooftop for his birthday celebrations, so we went up to the rooftop and saw it. It’s a really cute area! And it has views of both the Empire State building and the Freedom Tower, so that’s really cool:
We then went more uptown to Bryant Park, where we wanted to go inside the New York Central Public Library and then on to Rockefeller Center.
Alas, alas, the library closed at 5 PM and it was 5:04 PM when we got there, but another day! I’m determined to see it.
We then continued onward towards Rockefeller Center. After making pit-stops into several shops along the way (no, Mom, I didn’t buy anything…) we made it to Rockefeller Center. I really liked it there— I like wide open spaces within cities. I’ll have to go back for a proper tour!
We then traipsed home for more Chipotle for dinner… it was cheap and so filing. Yum.
We all slept like the dead, post-magazine workshop day. I didn’t get out of bed til 11, though I woke up frequently, as though my body was confused as to why I wasn’t hauling it out of bed lat 8 AM.
Rose and I went to the Met last week, and when you go to the Met, with your admission there you get free admission to the Cloisters up to a week after, so, it being the last day, we decided to take the trek up north, to the very northern tip of Manhattan, nearly, to the Cloisters.
The Cloisters, a branch of the Met, houses the art, architecture, and sculptures from the Medieval age.
Taken from the website:
The Cloisters museum and gardens, which opened to the public in 1938, is the branch of The Metropolitan Museum of Art devoted to the art and architecture of medieval Europe. Located in Fort Tryon Park in northern Manhattan, on a spectacular four-acre lot overlooking the Hudson River, the modern museum building is not a copy of any specific medieval structure but is rather an ensemble informed by a selection of historical precedents, with a deliberate combination of ecclesiastical and secular spaces arranged in chronological order. Elements from medieval cloisters—Saint-Michel-de-Cuxa, Saint-Guilhem-le-Désert, Trie-sur-Baïse, Froville, and elements once thought to have come from Bonnefont-en-Comminges—and from other sites in Europe have been incorporated into the fabric of the building.
I’m not a huge fan of anything medieval, particularly their art. How much two-dimensional, gold-tinted Jesuses and religious scenes does one really need to see? But, like everything else, this was very well done.
I particularly enjoyed the Gardens; they were delightful, and were modeled after traditional monastery gardens.
The only bad thing about the Cloisters is that getting there is a pain in the ass. It’s 30 minutes each way by subway; 45 minutes by bus. They were doing construction on the 1 line this weekend, in which stops 103 through 137 (Columbia is 116) were being skipped uptown, so Rose and I were forced to take the M4 from 116th all the way to the last stop at the Cloisters. Although the ride was tedious both ways, it actually worked out better because since the Cloisters is on a hill, it would’ve been a nightmare to take the subway and then walk 20-30 minutes up a hill. The bus took us straight up the hill and dropped us off and picked us up right at the front door of the Cloisters. it was like a proper tour bus. I was quite pleased; I love it when people have foresight regarding public transportation!
We didn’t get back until 530 PM and most of our other friends were off in the village brunching and running around, so I got Chipotle and ate on my own. After everyone got back, we were all too tired to go out drinking, so we stayed in and hung out. It was lovely.
Yo Pataki is a re imagining of the Hey Arnold characters as young adults. The series (hypothetically) would center around a 26 year old Helga Pataki who is now a bartender works at the family owned business, Big Bob’s Cafe.
During book workshop, one of our resource persons, Emily, told us that when she took the course several years prior that magazine workshop was more difficult than book workshop.
"It’s a different stress than book workshop," she explained. "It takes a toll on people. I remember more people cried in magazine workshop than they did in book workshop."
While we were alarmed at the time, we were also a bit incredulous, and slightly disbelieving: magazine workshop was shorter than book workshop, and because the majority of us were “book people” we all expected to be less stressed producing a product we weren’t as “passionate” about, to quote the magazine lecturers.
Alas, Emily’s prediction came true: magazine workshop was infinitely a different (and more extreme) layer of Hell than book workshop ever was. (People definitely cried.)
There, perhaps, were a few different factors that played into it: the second to the last week, people are getting increasingly antsy about post-CPC plans: where are they going to live, who are they going to live with, and how the hell can they get a job as quickly as possible?
Additionally, many people are unfamiliar with how magazines work, and perhaps felt uncomfortable in their new roles.
Unfortunately, I can’t, because this is a public blog, say what I believe is the real and most significant reason why magazine workshop week was so awful. Sorry.
That aside, magazine workshop functioned a little bit differently than book workshop. Instead of a little over a week to complete our magazines, we had only five days total: four full days and two half-days. Also, half of the groups were making websites, while the other half were making magazines. I was in the magazine group, my focus being teens. It wasn’t my first (or second or third) choice, but whatever. It seems I’ll never graduate to adult content (which sounds a lot more scandalous than it sounds.)
I was Circulation Director, which, whatever. I wanted to be an editor or EIC, but it was interesting learning a role I wouldn’t normally. My job was to identify our target audience, our main competitors, and then figure out how to reach them and boost our circulation numbers, either through single sale copies or subscription copies. I worked a lot with the Business Manager to model and predict what our sales would be like a on a 5-year basis.
My group produced a magazine called Metropoliteen that was an urban-based magazine for teens that covered general content, like long-forms, arts and culture, entertainment, fashion, etc.
There was a lot of stupid drama, particularly in my group, and the majority of the time I felt frustrated and helpless. It was difficult to work under those conditions, but, as always, I did my best, and I know that under the circumstances, the majority of my entire class did as well. We are not a group that is okay with handing in second-rate work, whether or not we are “passionate” about it. Which, as I said last week, is really all anyone can ask for.
“The best way to get kids to read a book is to say: ‘This book is not appropriate for your age, and it has all sorts of horrible things in it like sex and death and some really big and complicated ideas, and you’re better off not touching it until you’re all grown up. I’m going to put it on this shelf and leave the room for a while. Don’t open it.”— Philip Pullman (via abookblog)
The majority of people have Sunday routines. For many people, it’s Church. For New Yorkers, brunch is their religious experience of choice. But I’ve found my Sunday institution of choice and it’s the Met.
I’d been to the Metropolitan Museum of Art last weekend with Anja, but that was for a measly 90 minutes, and today I wanted to see as much as I could, so Rose and I got up, got pizza, and meandered over to the Met for nearly four hours of viewing pleasure before we were dragged off to the hell that is Magazine Workshop.
I’ve said it before, but I’ve missed going to museums. I’ve learned to really appreciate art, and the Met does its best to make art viewing a transformative experience. Whole rooms are curated to specifically showcase art— a courtyard from a 15th century Spanish villa was brought in to house Spanish artwork, for example. Entire rooms are installed as displayed, from small chapels to studies to sitting rooms. It’s beautiful and so, so well done. It’s breathtaking. This is my place of worship, everyone— and this place and its contents are worth worshiping.
Rose and I then trudged, in humid rain, back across Central Park and a few additional blocks back to Broadway to catch the subway. We arrived on campus in just enough time to freshen up and then magazine workshop began.
Two Drifters, Off To See The World (There's Such a Lot of World to See)
Well, I gladly would’ve slept away the entire day, but an entire day off is a rare thing at CPC, so I did not. Tig was insistent upon fulfilling his dream of getting cronuts and eating them at Tiffany’s, a la Audrey Hepburn, so I figured, why the hell not.
Tig, Jon, Ryan, and I picked up cronuts at the local market (considering how late we got back the night before, I suppose we could’ve stood in line at the original cronut place, but tbh, I don’t give two fucks about cronuts, so I’m glad Tig did this instead). Jon and Ryan headed back— they wanted a chill day before seeing Beyonce that night at MetLife— and Tig and I continued on, taking the subway to Columbus and walking west to east along the southern border of Central Park until we reached Tiffany’s.
Breakfast at Tiffany’s is one of my favorite movies, and while this was something I wanted to do, it was never at the top of my list, so thanks, Tig, for being so insistent upon doing this! I’m glad I got to.
What I wanted to do was visit The Strand Bookstore at Union Square, and Tig wanted to go to DSW, so we headed there, shopping a bit at DSW, Forever 21, and Nordstrom Rack (no, Mom, I didn’t buy anything….)
(…. Because I was saving my money for books)
Why, yes, Belinda Carlisle, you are correct, heaven really is a place on earth, and that place is called Strand Bookstore. Three floors of books, aisles and aisles with shelves ten, twelve feet high of books. All types of books, every book imaginable. The third floor, only accessible by elevator, has nothing but rare books. I get goosebumps thinking about it.
I restrained myself and only bought two books and one tote bag; Tig bought two books and a novelty item as well. We were quite pleased (and exhausted— last night was catching up with us) with our purchases. We stopped in at Whole Foods to grab some dinner and then Tig went off to SoHo to shop and I went home to sleep.
Someone was having a birthday party that night and I really really wanted to go, but I was so exhausted from the night before, I slept off-and-on for three hours, then did laundry, called the folks, and relished my downtime. I missed my friends and hoped they were having fun at Beyonce, but honestly, a night in alone was exactly what I needed.
And some parting advice to everyone, via The Strand Bookstore:
Friday gets its own post because fun things actually happened! Yay!
This morning our first speaker was Elaine Tyson, president of Tyson Associates, Inc. who talked to us about direct mail and advertising. She graded the assignments that were the bane of our existences upon first arriving at Columbia— nobody knew anything about direct mail, and in addition to coming up with original magazine ideas we had to design what our direct mail for it would look like, which was confusing at first.
I really liked her. She actually taught us concrete facts and was concise and jolly and completely unpretentious. She was great.
In the afternoon was Sarah Brown, beauty director at Vogue. The fashion girls in the course were losing their shit over this. Sarah was nice enough; I liked that she tried to cater her speech to us and what she thought would be most useful to us; she was a graduate of the course and gave us advice on interviewing and getting a job. I appreciated her consideration and thoughtfulness when constructing her speech; not many other speakers did.
The evening was one we were looking forward to: Sara Nelson, editorial director from Amazon. Amazon and Hachette battle aside, we were all hungry for a different publishing perspective and hoped she would speak to that.
Disappointingly (and that’s an understatement), instead Sara and Michael Solomon spent close to two hours going through 40-50 of our original magazine ideas and saying whether or not they liked them and how they thought they could be better. The exercise was supposed to help us when thinking about original magazine ideas for workshop, which would start on Sunday.
A bunch of us planned on going out tonight, especially to The Heights, a nearby bar most of our class had already explored at some point or another. Nondescript otherwise, The Heights has a rooftop bar— and who doesn’t love a rooftop bar?
After The Heights, some people wanted to go back, while others wanted to keep going. Predictably, I wanted to keep going, so we headed downtown to the meatpacking district. One of the girls in our group, Alyssa, really wanted to go to her favorite bar, Brass Monkey, which also had a rooftop bar. Alas, the line to get in was insane, so we walked around a little and eventually found another bar, which was semi-outside and played great dance music.
Eventually we made our way to Brass Monkey for a drink. I was exhausted by then, but it was really great to see other parts of town. The Meatpacking District is so cute! I’m a sucker for cobblestone roads (although they must be a bitch when you’re teetering in stilettos and drunk off your ass)
The Meatpacking District is quite far south, so by the time we sleepily stumbled into our dorm rooms, it was a little before four. I had enough foresight to drink some water and shower, and was out like a light.