A career that’s always en vogue

susanSusan Devaney, 27, has gone from working as a fashion assistant for the Herald newspaper as a student, to living the high life in Dubai where she’s now a features writer for high-end fashion title MOJEH. Susan, who studied English at Strathclyde Uni followed by a master’s in journalism from the same institution, tells Source about her amazing career – prepare to be well jel.

Why did you want to be a journalist?

I love a great story. In short: I love reading stories, telling stories and hunting for a good story.

Were you always interested in a job in fashion journalism?

No. I started working for my local paper when I was 16 and I was writing about music. It acted as a catalyst for my career into journalism and confirmed for me that I wanted to be a full-time writer.

I love fashion (and I have done since a very young age). But it’s women’s magazines that hold my interest. I think over the next few years we’ll witness a surge of change within the industry – for the better.

How did you go about getting the job at MOJEH magazine in Dubai?

I never planned to move to Dubai. That’s one of the great aspects of this industry is that you have the freedom to move with the job (and I love to travel). I saw the job advertised, knew I wanted international work experience on my CV, got offered the job and made the leap.

What’s life like in Dubai?

It’s different! The weather is definitely one of the major pull factors for expats (and there’s a lot of us). Moving away from home is difficult, but I would recommend it to anyone. I can guarantee you’ll learn a lot about yourself and other cultures.

What does a typical day in the life of a high-end fashion writer involve?

We’re a monthly magazine and we also have a website, so my days are constantly busy – but that’s the way I like it.

Susan interviewing Donna Karan in New York

Susan interviewing Donna Karan in New York

What is your favourite part of the job?

I’m always captivated. I’m very fortunate that every day I get to write about the things I love and that are of great interest to me. If I weren’t being paid to do this job, I’d be doing it in my spare time.

Is your job as a fashion writer what you expected it to be?

Yes, I was fortunate enough to be able to experience this environment whilst I was still studying at university, so I knew it was the industry for me. I worry that young people nowadays (who are pursing a career only in fashion magazines) think it is a carbon copy of the Devil Wears Prada, but I hate to tell you that it’s nowhere near as exciting!

What has been your biggest accomplishment working at MOJEH so far?

It would have to be reporting from New York Fashion Week. It was a great experience and an opportunity I’m very grateful for. I got to interview Diane von Furstenberg and Donna Karan – two female designers that I have always admired. I attended many shows and had the privilege of witnessing some of the most respected journalists in the industry in action.

What advice would you give any aspiring fashion journalists?

Be prepared to work (very) hard. Don’t be fearful of rejection because you’ll face a lifetime of it.

Find out more about MOJEH at www.mojeh.com

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