Author Bio: Rachael O’Bryan grew up in Louisville, Kentucky. She attended college at Temple University. After college she pursued her law degree, starting off at Tulane University and then graduating at American University. Rachael is a lawyer, but pursues writing in her free time. Besides writing Unlocked, she keeps a blog. Also, on June 1st she launched her own business – an online women’s magazine. The magazine is operated under Rachael Magazine LLC. The self-titled magazine is geared towards professional women in their 20s and 30s that want it all. You can subscribe HERE. When Rachael isn’t working, writing, or running her own business she enjoys reading, traveling, watching The New York Mets. and following the University of Louisville basketball team. She currently resides in New York City.
My Not So Chick Lit Life
In college I worked at a summer program in Louisville, Kentucky called Summerbridge. As I was driving to a work related event with a fellow summer teacher she told me of her desire to have a Carrie Bradshaw type of life in the future – an apartment in New York, a live in boyfriend, etc. She loved the independence and glamour of what was portrayed on HBO at the time. I had never seen Sex and the City at that point; I unfortunately didn’t get HBO in my college dorm. However, I now am the proud owner of the whole series on DVD minus the second movie.
And after watching the most notorious example of a chick lit based series, I see why the life is so appealing. Carrie was able to have an amazing apartment in New York, that prior to becoming a successful author, seemed completely unrealistic. She spent money on the best brands in fashion and took cabs everywhere. She seemed to have this endless money supply, until she really needed it to buy her apartment. Her finances didn’t match her lifestyle and as an aspiring writer and a new New Yorker, those things bother me to no end. I know life in New York doesn’t exist for most people like that and certainly not for me.
I moved here with no job, but was able to after about a week land my first contracting job (which was what I was doing in Washington, DC before I moved). And since moving here I’ve also been working on my writing career through blogging, promoting my book, starting a second book, and launching my online women’s magazine. I do all this from my tiny studio apartment in the East Village after I fit in 40+ hours of work at my day job (that sometimes turns into a night job and weekend job). Not only do all of these things fight for my time and attention, they also fight over my financial resources.
Besides my insane jealousy of the make believe financial situation she had, she also had lots of dates and relationships. Ugh the world of dating is one I can barely navigate, especially in New York. I mean I’m not longing to be broken up with on a post-it note, but if that means that someone is breaking up with me because I had a relationship for awhile than maybe I am wishing for it (I’d prefer the relationship without the break-up though of course). Besides the post-it break up Carrie definitely had lots of ups and downs with the opposite sex, but in the end she got her guy. Big rescued her from that Russian guy she dated (that I was not a fan of ) in my favorite city in the world – Paris.
But with all this said I still find myself tuning into Sex and the City and dreaming of my Carrie Bradshaw life. I don’t need Manolo Blahnik shoes, I’m perfectly happy with my shoes from DSW. I don’t need expensive bags, although a part of me does want to buy a Marc Jacobs bag, but that’s for when I make it big with my writing (hey you have to treat yourself every once in awhile). And I do love my Chanel sunglasses, but I’ve had them for years. So what’s the appeal then you may ask? It’s the same appeal of every other chick lit book – love. Every girl, every person wants love. I haven’t found that type of love yet and it’s always refreshing even if it’s in a TV show to see it happen. As much as her financial/living situation wasn’t realistic in parts of the series, her struggles with love were. The heartaches, the infatuation, the nerves, the over thinking, the happy moments – those are all relatable. However, the one difference between me and Carrie is that I don’t need someone to rescue me in the City of Lights and Love, I need someone to board the plan with me at JFK to go explore the city. I want someone to share my life, not save it, because the hero of my story has always been myself and that’s the way every woman should think. Unless my ideal Mr. Big would like to save me from my law school debt, then save away … I’m joking … mostly … law school wasn’t cheap.
I leave you with my favorite quote from the series by Carrie Bradshaw: “Some people are settling down, some people are settling, and some people refuse to settle for anything less than butterflies.”
**Click HERE to read my review of “Unlocked!”