How to stand tall after 70 rejection letters

I can’t tell you how long I debated whether or not to post this.

Facebook is the red carpet of social media. But instead of boasting five-figure clutches and oh-so-dreamy backless LBDs, we boast engagement rings and triathlon medals, Happy Hour beers and Utah ski trips. We paint ourselves as carefree beneficiaries, whom life has chosen to make everything work out. We place our successes before a jury of our social followers, and fight to suppress our stories of depression, or addiction, loneliness and disappointment.  Because we don’t want others to know we’re wearing knockoffs.

So I debated sharing how after graduation I will be working as a researcher in the investigative unit of Washington, DC’s local CBS-affiliate station.

But here’s the catch. Here’s the pimple, here’s the nip slip, the awkward beauty mark, the lowdown. I worked the hardest I’ve ever had to work. I was rejected 70 times to get to this point.

I’d like to share with you the arduous application journey of landing your first job.


October 2016

Washington Post Summer Internship — will be notified on or before Dec. 2 Washington Responded: Rejected

NYTimes Summer Internship Washington/New York

November 2016

The Atlantic Media Editorial Fellowship Washington/New York

WUSA9 Newsroom Internship-SPRING Washington Responded: Accepted!!

WUSA9 Online Internship- SPRING Washington  Responded: Rejected

Bloomberg- London Newsroom Summer Internship London Responded: Rejected

Reuters 2017 Summer Journalism Internship New York

WXIA-TV (NBC-affiliate) Editor Atlanta, Georgia

Bloomberg BNA News Intern Summer  Arlington, Virginia

Newsweek Breaking News Fellowship (International Business Times) New York

Fortune Magazine (TIME Inc.) Reporter Manhattan, New York

Vox Media Editorial Operations Intern New York

Vox Media Copy Editor for Curbed, Eater, Racked New York/Washington

Vox Media Editor Eater Washington

December 2016

Google News Lab Fellowship- 10-wks SUMMER Reveal (California), ProPublica (New York), IRE (Missouri), Pew Research Center (Washington) WITNESS (New York)

NY1 News-Time Warner Cable- News Assistant (salary requested $34,000) New York Responded: Rejected

CBS- Summer 2017 Editorial Intern – CNET New York

The Baltimore Sun Media Group- Editorial Opportunities Baltimore, Maryland

Associated Press- Summer 2017 Internship 1choice — Washington, 2choice — New York, 3choice — Chicago Responded: Rejected

Fox News Channel- News Desk Assistant Washington

New York Post- Part Time News Reporter  New York

New York Post- Digital Reporter/Producer  New York

The Huffington Post- News Editor Washington or New York

WTOP- Part- Time Freelance News Assistant- Washington Responded: requested interview,  immediate need, touch-base in May , circled back with email 3/24

New York Daily News- Digital News Reporter New York

Washingtonian Editorial Fellowship (Summer) Washington (send January 1st again)

USA Today Newsroom Internship (Summer) Virginia

U.S. News & World Report Internship (1 year) Washington, DC

NY1 News- Time Warner Cable- Writer New York Responded: Rejected

TIME Inc.- Breaking News Reporter- New York

Frederick News Post — Frederick, Maryland

Buzzfeed- Foreign Affairs Reporter Washington

January 2017

Mental Floss — Staff Editor- NewYork

Cox Media Group — Associate Content Editor — Washington

NBCUniversal- Digital News Reporter — New York City

Simon & Schuster- Summer 2017 Internship Program — New York

Penguin Random House- Assistant/Associate Production Editor — New York Responded: Rejected

Real Clear Politics- Junior Assistant Editor SENT EMAIL — Chicago/ Washington

Bloomberg BNA — Junior Reporter — Arlington, Virginia

NBC Universal — News Group Associate — New York

Turner — CNN — PM Breaking News Editor, CNN Politics DC- Washington Responded: Rejected

Chicago Sun Times — SENT EMAIL — Chicago

The Trace- Digital News Fellow (Sep 2017-Dec 2017) SENT EMAIL- New York

Penguin Random House- Editorial Assistant- New York Responded: Rejected

CNN-Newsgathering Intern- SUMMER 2017-Washington

CNN- Newssource Intern-SUMMER 2017- Washington

February 2017

News4 News (NBC)- Summer internship- Washington Responded: Because I am not going to be a grad student, I’m disqualified Responded: Rejected

Investigative Journalism Consumer Reports Summer Internship — Yonkers, New York Responded: requested I apply for their Health Editorial internship, however the description requires you be attending graduate school while interning

CNN Summer 2017 Intern – Documentary Unit- New York

CNN Summer Intern 2017- Special Events- Washington, DC

Mother Jones- Editorial Fellowship (6-12 months)- Washington, DC

Consumer Reports- Investigative Internship- Yonkers, New York Responded: Rejected

Consumer Reports- Health Editorial Internship- Yonkers, New York Responded: She’s going to pass my name and resume onto her supervisor HAD INTERVIEW 3/16/2017 SUBMITTED PITCHES 3/20/2017 Rejected

March 2017

The Washington Times- General Assignment Health Reporter — Washington, DC

FDAnews — Editor/Reporter — Falls Church, Virginia

Atlantic Media –Production Assistant — Washington, DC

E.W. Scripps — National Investigative Associate Producer- Washington, DC Responded: Rejected

TMZ- field reporter — New York

Bloomberg- Correspondent — Arlington, Virginia

Time Inc.- Junior Copy Writer- New York

Baltimore Sun- Writer, Staff- Baltimore, Maryland

Vox Media- Staff Writer/ Religion and Faith-  Washington, DC

WUSA9 — Content Creator/Researcher — Washington, DC Asked to apply by General Manager and Senior Producer. Interview: OFFER!! OFFER!!! DING DING DING DING!!! 4/13/2017

WTTG- Desk Assistant- Washington DC

WRC- Content Producer- Washington DC

ThinkProgress- Investigative Reporter- Washington, DC

US News & World Report- Assistant Editor- Washington DC

April 2017

The Baltimore Sun- reporter- Baltimore, Maryland

As you can see, I’ve broken the Facebook code. I’m telling you everything Facebook users try to hide. Because after every rejection letter, or worse, no response, something died in me.

Landing your first job is no small feat, it takes an encouraging support system, a tireless spirit, firm self conviction, and a seven month supply of mint ice cream.

To my friends, you kept me sane.

To my sister, you kept me crazy.

To my Bubbie, you kept me sharp.

To my mentors, you kept me hungry.

To my boyfriend, you kept me happy.

To my parents, you kept me in line.

To God, you kept me hopeful.

To myself, you kept me going.




About the Author
Two truths and a lie: Eliana Block is a Zionist. She learned sex-ed really for the first time in college. She aspires to write her first novel while skateboarding around the world and sampling different peanut butter recipes. Lie: roller-blading*