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Intern Submissions | A Practical Wedding

Before we put out a call for APW interns for 2014, a quick update on our current crop of amazing team of ladies. I know all of you are as in love with APW’s current writing interns, Rachel and Elisabeth, as we are, and they’re not quite done yet. Rachel is getting married in February (stay tuned to see if Maddie and I can make a business trip out of her wedding), and will be writing to the bitter end. Elisabeth will be rounding out twelve months with doing a little writing early in the year about wife-hood. And both of our ladies will stay on as paid contributors, when all is said and done. Meanwhile, our business interns rocked it this year. Joanna’s work at APW was subsumed by a whirl of busyness in her professional life (high fives). And Lucy has now joined the team as our Deputy Editor, and we could not be happier to have her. Beyond all that, I’d like to offer up my personal thanks, and endless gratitude to this years team. Rachel, Elisabeth, Lucy, and Joanna came on board the year we decided to rebuild the site from the ground up, and not only did they roll with the punches, but they were integral to this years success. They are kind, hilarious, smart, and deeply talented ladies, and I count myself lucky to have been able to work with each of them.

Here is what they have to say about the experience:

My APW internship was an incredible learning experience (and a ton of fun)! Thanks to Meg and Maddie’s encouragement, I took risks with my writing that I never would have taken on my own and explored new topics that I had been itching to write about. The internship really helped me find my voice and come into my own as a professional writer.

— Rachel Wilkerson

I’d been reading APW for about six months, ostensibly wedding planning but not really doing much of it, when I saw the call for writing interns last Thanksgiving. I’d loved following along with the 2012 interns as they went through the wedding planning process, and something just sprang to life. “Oh, I want to do that,” I thought, and I started writing a potential post that very same day. It seemed like the perfect start to my 2013 New Years’ resolution: “Be Elisabeth, but be brave.” That is, skip stuff you don’t like, but be willing to try new adventures anyway. At the time, I didn’t have much of an online presence, and though I’ve kept near-daily journals for years, I was doing very little writing that wasn’t for my own consumption or appreciative friends.

So I had a few goals that I hoped to get out of the internship—I wanted to experience what it felt like to write in a public way, for a larger audience with multiple points of view, and I wanted to become a more disciplined writer. I accomplished those goals in spades, thanks to the simultaneous freedom and excellent editing support from the APW staff, and to the insightful, witty, thoughtful dialogues that always came up in the comments.

But I was surprised to find that the internship also had this really positive effect on my relationship; that writing about our process, and discussing it with readers, and thinking about all the different viewpoints raised, was this incredible lens reflected back for us as we struggled to articulate what sort of a wedding would be a meaningful start to our marriage. I feel so lucky that I got to experience this internship in those public and private ways.

And getting to work with the conscientious, courageous and hilarious APW staff was tremendous. You all already know this, but this is a rare and lovely bunch of women.

— Elisabeth Snell

The time and effort I put into my work with APW, I received back in tenfold from the team in the form of thoughtful conversations, sound advice, and hilarious Google Hangouts. I count myself extremely lucky to now be a part of this awesome staff, who helped me grow through 2013 in more ways than I could possibly count.

— Lucy Bennett

We will once again be looking for two writing interns. For this position, you should be someone who is in the middle of wedding planning, who will be getting married in mid/late 2014 or early 2015, and is interested in writing about planning every other week over the course of the next year. I want to make it super clear that the qualification for this internship is simply: good writing. I’m dyslexic, so pre-internet I didn’t have a shot at professional writing because I couldn’t spell (which is a fancy kind of bullshit). While you should have your application proof read (obviously), please don’t let a learning disability hold you back. For this gig, you just have to be willing to write your heart out, and enthusiastically participate in our collaborative editing process. In exchange, we’ll do everything we can to help you find your voice as a writer, develop your work, and help push you towards your professional goals.

We’ll also continue to have one spot for a business intern, though we’re considering this spot optional. What that means is: we don’t need a new staffer, but we’re willing to take you on if you’re The Person That Needs To Be Here. This internship offers a lot of flexibility. We’re looking for someone who’s committed to helping further the goals of APW, who isn’t afraid to be flexible or get their hands dirty sometimes, and who’s interested in the mentorship of the APW staff.

Last, we’re adding another spot for a production intern. This position is for someone located in the Bay Area who is interested in helping manage our bi-monthly(ish) tutorial shoots. This internship is for someone who is super organized and looking to build their skill set, whether it’s in photography, production management, or producing content for online media. For this position, you’ll need to be free for daytime shoots a few days a month. You’ll do everything from helping us organize logistics, to idea sourcing, to creating moodboards, to running to get coffee (which has up till now been my job on shoot days, and I will happily pass the baton). In exchange, you get to participate in the most fun workdays we have, and be packed in a room with to learn from us first hand. This is the internship you’ll get tons from (plus get a lot of free meals).

All of these are unpaid positions, but you’ll be joining an awesome team and you’ll get to learn a whole ton about online writing and publishing. We’ll work to make your resumé better and your life a little more fun (our staff email chains are epic). We’re committed to teaching you what you want to learn and letting you dive into projects you’re passionate about. That, and if you happen to be in Northern California, you’ll get to come to our super fun photo shoots and APW staff parties (Editor’s Note: Lucy is so jealous). But more than all that: we’ll invest in you.

We’re accepting applications until December 18, and we’ll be offering slots early next year. Please email applications to team at apracticalwedding dot com. We can’t wait to read them.

What we’re offering:

  • A chance to work with the (awesome) APW team for a year. You will love them.
  • Opportunity to learn about the business of online publishing, and build your resumé.
  • The chance to showcase your work (design work, writing work, social media work, etc.).
  • Any perks we can throw at you. Staff parties. Cocktails. Trips to Maddie’s pony farm.

What you need to include in your application:

  • A cover letter that includes
    • Which internship you’re applying for
    • Your Twitter handle if you have one
    • Your blog URL, if you have one
    • What you hope to learn from the internship
    • Writing/Production Internship: What experience you will bring to the role
    • Business Internship: Your availability and what kind of work you are interested in contributing to the site
    • Your relationship with APW
    • Links to any past APW posts, if you’ve written any (not mandatory)
  • A resumé
  • Writing Internship: Two writing samples of posts you would write on wedding planning (These can include posts you’ve already written for APW.) We look for writing that’s more than just a journal entry: writing for the site should be a starting point for conversation. More than that, make your writing specific, because that’s where you connect to universal emotions.
  • Business Internship: Answer one of the following questions prompts in a few paragraphs.
    • We want to introduce a new feature or series to the site. What feature would you propose and why?
    • We want to improve our social media reach. Please tell us how you would ramp up APW’s social media engagement, either holistically across our social media channels, or specific to just one.
    • We’re exploring new ways to monetize the site without having to increase the number of sponsored posts we publish each week. What solution(s) would you suggest and why?
    • If you have another idea, ask and answer your own question.

We’ll be looking over the writing samples, cover letters, and resumés, and will contact a handful of people to interview in January. We can preemptively say that it breaks our hearts not to be able to offer a slot to everyone who applies, but we can’t wait to meet the new interns, whoever they are. Let’s do this!

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