Lindsay Moore, VP of Communications for Ed at Indiana, recapped last week’s Us Weekly and Time meeting.
For Ed’s third Skype Hype this semester we were lucky enough to speak with two writers for weekly magazines. They gave us an inside look on how to land an interview, impress editors and be a standout intern.
We spoke with Us Weekly beauty writer, Rose Walano, about the differences between web and print and how to excel in both. Walano has worked at Elle.com, Glamour.com and Teenvogue.com and basically every other dream publication you can think of.
- Cover letters need to be tailored to the organization you’re applying for. Walano recommends being very familiar with the publication’s style and attitude so that you can mimic it in your cover letter.
- She also recommended adding some of your own personality. Cover letters are your first impression with editors—so make it sound like you!
- Absolutely no grammar or spelling mistakes! This sounds like a no brainer but submitting sloppy work puts you first on the chopping block.
Your work isn’t over once you land the internship. Walano gave us insider tips on what she did to stand out as an intern and what she notices about her own interns.
Being an All-Star Intern:
- If you don’t know how to do something— learn! Don’t be deterred if an internship calls for a specific set of skills, take it as an opportunity to further your skill base. Walano said she had no idea how to code before her first web internship, but took a crash course beforehand.
- It’s all about attitude! Walano said the most noticeable interns were the ones who were positive, energetic and ready to work. This is especially important on deadline and during hectic days. “Not everyday is a great day but it’s nice when someone comes in with a smile on their face.”
- Walano also stressed being talkative and reaching out to other editors and writers in the office. Internships are perfect for not only networking, but also creating substantial relationships.
- Lastly, don’t let them forget you! Stay in touch with the people in the office you connected with— they may be able to help you in the future. Don’t be afraid to ask for job help in the future either, Walano said. Editors are there to help, so don’t feel guilty.
Walano talked about her experiences with web and print as well. She described her web work as faster paced and more immediate compared to print magazines. She suggested promoting that you have both web and print skills when trying to make the transition from one platform to the other. Editors love to see that you have a variety of skills.
Edtsers also had the opportunity to Skype with IU Alum and Time magazine reporter, Josh Sanburn. Sanburn worked at Golf magazine and Time Moneyland before Time.com and Time magazine. Sanburn gave advice on how to get your foot in the door and what to do once you secure your dream job.
How to land the first interview:
- When you’re applying to a specific publication make sure to reach out to anyone you know who works there. Even if there aren’t any open positions listed, make sure to keep asking. People in the office will be the first to know of job openings, so try to get the inside scoop.
- If you have at least one person’s professional email then you can contact other people within the office. For example, if a publication has emails that are formatted with firstname.lastname@example.org then you can mimic that format to reach out to other editors. Use what you know!
What skills to have:
- In the age of Buzzfeed, it’s important to know how to draw in readers with quick poll and quiz ideas. Sanburn suggests being able to cover a story through various formats whether it be 100 words, 500 words or just a quick survey.
- Sanburn also suggests becoming an expert in at least one topic. Sanburn has done several stories on the US post office, the World Trade Center and Lethal Injection. Although they are varied topics, he’s gone in depth with all of them and now he’s the go to guy when they need to be covered.