The Newbie Nerves
I was nervous coming into this semester. This was my first internship ever and I had no idea what to expect. I had no idea what assignments I would be given and how this could affect the rest of my semester. Did I take on too much? Would my grades suffer? I was pleased to find out that my grades did not suffer, but there was plenty of work to be done this semester.
Research with Singularity Press
The Writing Arts internship was working on two publishing projects this semester: continuing our working with Ben Allen Media and Rowan University’s startup, Singularity Press. The four interns were split to complete assignments from either area, Destiny Hall and I provided research for Singularity Press. We researched other university presses, like Ohio State University, how to apply for a grant, and fandom/world-building. While we never got a chance to work with the whole Singularity team, I enjoyed researching these topics for them. I was able to reflect on my own experience while writing about fandom-building. I could really understand how these fandoms are created and stabilized in popular culture. Nonetheless, they were all incredibly interesting topics and I hope to work more with Singularity Press in the future.
Facebook: Harder Than It Seems
The Writing Arts social media outlets were divided up between interns this semester, and I was assigned the Facebook page. Growing up social media, I thought that I would have no trouble posting on Facebook. This was the first site I ever had my own profile on, I thought I knew the ins-and-outs of Facebook. I proved myself wrong when I kept putting Facebook last in priority. The page suffered for much longer than it should have but I set myself a goal number of posts for each week. This opened my eyes to the world of writing beyond campus classrooms. At least once a week I was searching “writing arts news” or some variation in search for something worth posting. Posting on Facebook meant that I also got in contact with Stephen Royek and the “Rowan Writing Arts Events Update”.
Rowan Writing Arts Events Update with Stephen Royek
It was after I pulled up my bootstraps and began regularly posting on Facebook that Rachel Barton, our head intern this semester, transferred Stephen Royek’s newsletter from her email to mine. Near the beginning of each week, Royek would put together a list of events within the department, events and meetings alike. Receiving these emails also meant that I would update the Bulletin page on the Writing Arts website. Each week I would edit the list, if needed, and add a new post to the Bulletin. Then that link was shared to Facebook, spreading the news.
Website Building: A Whole New Territory
Updating the Bulletin page wasn’t my first assignment on the Rowan Writing Arts website. My first assignment was adding a page for “Magazine Article Writing”. I had to find the course number, any prerequisites, a summary of the course, and a photograph for the page. For the picture, I ended up asking Rachel Barton to pose as if she was reading a magazine article. I can say that I have a credited photograph on the official website now. But when it came to setting up the actual page, this was my first time working with any sort of website-building. It took me probably an hour to do this page. But after that navigating the Weebly site, behind-the-scenes became so much easier. I had even found incorrect links on other course pages, and after some practice, I was able to have those links fixed in minutes!
A Look Into Writing Arts Events and Variety
This semester I was enrolled in the internship and also the Introduction to Writing Arts course. It was in that class, during a discussion about the Rowan Writer’s Project that my course of action for the semester took a turn. A student asked if there were any events in the Writing Arts Department that weren’t creative writing-focused, and our professor couldn’t name one off the top of their head. This issue stuck with me until I discussed it with the internship team. We brainstormed ideas together during a meeting, but I still wasn’t satisfied, most of our ideas were New Media events. So, I set up a meeting with Dr. Fillenwarth, a Technical and Professional Writing professor in the department, to brainstorm ideas that were related to that concentration. With a sufficiently large list of events, I had one more step to complete. I wrote an email to the Chair of the Writing Arts Department, Jen Courtney. I explained who I was, the story, the brainstorming, and the list of events. To my surprise, Courtney informed me that lots of these events were in the works! I’m looking forward to seeing these events come together in the future.
The Writer's Insider
Each semester, the Writing Arts interns put together the Writer’s Insider and contribute articles to that semester's issue. My article was focused on my search for new events in the department. I didn’t expect to, but I struggled with the article. Every introduction felt wrong, and the tone felt foreign but I had to remember that writing is recursive. I could write a terrible first draft but I had to sit with it and really dip deep when revising. My biggest issue was actually revising it. I kept procrastinating and procrastinating. Deadlines passed and I felt guilty for breaking promises to my team. Finally, I sat down and made myself edit the article, it needed to get done and I had to stop missing deadlines. It was an exciting sequence of events and I’m looking forward to seeing more New Media and Technical and Professional Writing events on campus.
Overall, I enjoyed my time with the internship this semester. There were weeks that I didn’t want to do any assignments or any Facebook posts, but we treated each deadline like a promise. And my mom taught me to never break a promise. I can say that although some promises were broken, I feel like I stayed on top of the assignments I was given. I made new friends and strengthened relationships through this experience and I’m excited to do it all again next semester.