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The 3 Most Important Things About Getting a Writing Internship

Mon, Sep 17, 2012

Internship Information

The ability to write and write well is a surprisingly scarce talent in today’s business world. There are a plethora of innovative, high-quality writing internships out there for skilled and talented writers, and you might be more competitive than you think in this field. If you believe you have a skill and passion for great writing, editing, and understanding text for a successful company, then here are 3 important things you need to know.

1. Create a Portfolio

You’d be surprised how often this necessity is overlooked. All job interviews are in some way a discernment of character, compatibility, and professionalism, but jobs based in the writing field require a portfolio of your best work in addition to a great resume and cover letter, to give your employer/interviewer a sample of your voice and style on paper. Without this, it’s nearly impossible to land a writing job without the main requirement companies want to see before they hire you – your writing.

A portfolio isn’t difficult to compose, either. You might already have all the components sitting in documents on your computer or folders in your desk. Simply collect a handful of your best writing and compile them into a professional, quality portfolio. Variety is also key as well. Even though the company you are applying to resides specifically in the blogging/online field, bring some examples of short stories, reviews, and creative works. This will give you character, depth, and a glance at other skills you have in this field.

2. Find Your Niche

With the staggering number of different writing fields, it’s important to find your niche. If you know what you like to write, this could save you from a very boring or uninteresting internship in a writing field you have no skill or interest in. Working on a particular style can really launch you into a great career in a field from a simple internship. Here are some examples of popular writing internships ideas in the business world:

Sportswriting: Detailed and analytical reviews of sports teams, players, coaches, colleges, and trends within a given sport. REquires creativity and an analytical approach to statistical information and behavior.

Blogging: Speaking on behalf of a company’s identity and image through online writing. Requires interesting content with practical applications of a company’s services.

Social Media: Creating fun, interesting, and relevant info about a company, as well as maintaining a company’s image and online reputation (i.e., reputation management articles by Owen Tripp)

Grant Writing: Composing grant requests and professional proposals on behalf of research and development companies. Requires flawless proposal language and persuasive writing for grants, scholarships, and financial support.

3. Perseverance

Finally, it sounds trite and cliche, but this may be the most important advice you can get in this field. Even though there are countless areas of employment and internships in writing, it is still a difficult field of work to get your foot into the door in and excel. As with any internship, it requires patience, perseverance, and a lot of potential attempts before you can snag an internship. Even the best portfolio, sharpest outfit, and most fund interview can still leave you jobless, for the time being. Don’t give up, and apply for the next one.

Internships are a great way to build experience, gain invaluable insight, and get your foot into the door. Don’t write off any internship just because it’s unpaid or a little obscure – you can find an effective network and experience in even the most uncommon of internships.

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