When I was in grad school I had a part-time gopher job at the New York Daily News. But my dream was to be a reporter in a big-city newsroom, so one day I put together my best clips and walked into the office of one of the paper's top editors.
I'd toiled at several student papers and had an internship under my belt. I'd also worked part-time at a local daily paper when I was an undergrad. So I asked her if I had what it took to get a reporting job there. No, she said. Not yet.
"This is the big-time," she told me. "You can't afford to make mistakes here. Go and make your mistakes at a smaller paper, then come back when you're ready."
She was right.
To continue reading, please click here.