At The Medium, our largest cohort of writers hail from the sciences, and only a fraction of our writers are in the Professional Writing and Communication program.
If you are in PWC and aren’t a writer for The Medium, shame. You’re missing out on one of the best ways to better your writing: experience. As much as you may learn about writing in class, you learn ten times more by actually doing it in a professional setting.
So, what’s the problem? Insecurity? If you have doubts about your talent or skillset, let’s take that off the table. Our editorial staff are in your writing classes and your editing groups. We listen to your stories when they’re workshopped in class. We hear the talent, and we can see it too. Sure, the newspaper isn’t the creative personal non-fiction narratives you might be used to, but our paper requires the same four core principles you’re taught in every single PWC course: economy, directness, detail, and voice.
If the problem isn’t insecurity, then what is it? Is it inaccessibility? Or a lack of knowledge on how to volunteer for the paper? Well, let us lay it out for you. Volunteering for the newspaper allows you to write when you want. Express your interest and send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to be included in the mailing list of whichever section interests you the most. When the section editor sends out their weekly email, you email them back asking to cover the topic that peaks your interest. Simple? If not, our office is located in the Student Centre, room 200. Just look for the big window on the second floor. We’re always there.
Ask yourself why you’re even studying writing in the first place. For most, your decision to pursue PWC may be driven solely by your passions. For others, you may want to pursue a career in a writing-related field. Future writers need to start writing. And if you don’t build up your portfolio now, good fucking luck.
A writer needs clippings to build their portfolio. Course work doesn’t really count. Writing because it is mandatory doesn’t really count.
Writers in the PWC program should be the cream of the crop. We’ve certainly had great Medium writers come out of the program, but not enough.
Writing is hard. Writing for a newspaper is even harder. If you think The Medium isn’t good enough for your skills and expertise, write an article for us. Most likely what you write will not be what we publish. It will be heavily edited to clarify meaning, as well as to correct any grammar, spelling, punctuation, and syntax errors. Writing is an art form nobody masters. Take advantage of the opportunity to better yourselves as writers.
The PWC program has already set its students up for success. History and Writing gives you the skills to write a gripping features article. The Journalistic Investigation course is geared towards news writing, and Editing: Principles and Practice is a vital course every PWC student should take.
Writers are always needed because there are always stories to be told, and interesting stories need engaging writers to tell them.
If anything, the PWC program should make writing for The Medium a requirement. Students need to step outside their comfort zones and become real writers.
So, when you get the guts to come write for us, visit our office in the Students’ Centre. We’ll be waiting.