Secrets of the “Girls” Melville House Internship Scene: Revealed


Folks with a fondness for indie presses who watched the first episode of Girls may have had a similar experience as they watched Lena Dunham’s character awkwardly attempting to parlay her internship into a full-time job. Specifically, they may have uttered some variation on the following: “Hey, wait a minute — is she working at Melville House?” From the books on the walls behind her, it looks like that might be the case.

As the Los Angeles Times‘s Carolyn Kellogg has learned, this is somewhat based on Dunham’s own experiences as a literary intern — though for a very different small press: Soft Skull. Which leads to comments from the eminently quotable Richard Nash, publisher of Soft Skull during the time Dunham worked there, confirming the veracity of the scene and throwing in support for Dunham’s work in film and television: “You always want to feel like your interns are going to go on and do great things.”

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