Megan Townsend is deputy editor at Mixmag. Previously, Megan freelanced at CRACK and DUMMY, but credits her full-time gig at The Independent as the reason she has her current gig. “I’d done a lot of work around a newsroom and it helped because it meant that I was familiar with the way online media works,” she explains.
How did you get to where you are today, professionally?
I started working full-time at The Independent when I was still at university. I would do shifts helping out at pretty much every desk in the office—I’d be on uploading, picture editing, video, shopping, production, news… I even did a stint as a night editor, so I knew how to maneuver a newsroom. At the same time I was going to clubs a lot, I’ve always loved dance music and I kind of fell in with “scene” by accident. All my friends were going out/putting on nights etc, so it made sense to write about it. I started by writing features for The Independent and pitching to desks there, but on the side I’d write some freelance pieces for publications like CRACK, DUMMY and Mixmag. By the time I left and went to Mixmag I’d done a lot of work around a newsroom and it helped because it meant that I was familiar with the way online media works. I think my biggest advantage really has been since I started out is that I’ve not been afraid to just have a go at anything, I’m not precious—I’m happy to muck in and help keep things running. So now I have a decent knowledge of media law, of using adobe programmes etc.—alongside writing.
Did you have any mentors along the way? What did they teach you?