Leaving NYC = Awesome. Leaving NYC = Not Awesome / by Dana Wood

Of course she's happy! Her only job is to have fun!

Of course she's happy! Her only job is to have fun!

August 1982. That's when I first landed in New York, sooooo nervous and excited ("nervous-cited" as a former Conde Nast colleague is fond of saying) about starting my first semester at the Fashion Institute of Technology. I had a trunk full of Fair Isle sweaters, a milk crate of Vogue back issues and oodles of drive and ambition. 

What I was leaving behind in Newport, Rhode Island: The ocean, which this born-in-Tulsa broad adored; a fleet of low-paying part-time jobs (supermarket checkout chick, bus girl, factory worker); and an out-until-4-am-every-night lifestyle. If rehab for youngsters were a "thing" back then, I would have been in it. Yikes. I shudder to think of how punk-rock we all were. (Although I was always tan. And spotless. Nancy Spungen by way of Malibu Barbie....)

My major at FIT was Fashion Design, among the most difficult at the school, which is largely a commuter college and is part of the SUNY system. 

Wait...time out: I want to get off this nostalgia train before I'm even officially on it. This is a brand new blog, and I want to stay true its mission of dissecting how I'm taking a 25-year career in magazines - with a sizeable off-ramping at the biggest beauty company in the world - and exporting it to the Gulf Coast of Florida. 

I'm nervous-cited all over again. But if I'm being honest - and I absolutely, without question want to be honest here - anxiety is the prevailing emotion, not the "Yay! Anything can happen!" vibe underscoring my move from RI to Gotham. 

My background is in a dying industry - print journalism - that's 99% based in New York.

I'm not kidding myself. This will not be easy.