My First Semester Writing for Her Campus

I’ve always loved to write. Even when I was young, I was always jotting down my thoughts and ideas in various journals and making up stories. Throughout high school I took several writing-based courses that expanded my understanding of how to write. Now, as an English and creative writing major at Concordia, I do a fair amount of writing—as one might imagine—on both a creative and academic level. Producing written work for creative writing courses as well as English courses and electives has allowed me to explore different focuses of writing, and has kept me constantly busy with essays, papers, stories and plays. However, this past summer I realized that I wanted to do something productive outside of school that I could be proud of. Despite my plethora of work, I’d never been published. The idea of producing something that would not only be evaluated, as my schoolwork had always been, but also be read by a potentially wide audience was intimidating to me. So, when my friend, Juliet, told me about Her Campus and suggested I join their writing team, I was hesitant. I had never considered writing on a journalistic platform, and representing a media brand seemed like a lot of pressure, but the experience has proven to be incredibly rewarding.

 

 

As a contributor for Her Campus, I am given so much freedom with the topics I choose to write about. Because us writers choose our article subjects, I’ve been able to cover certain areas that I’m passionate about, such as film, television, and pop culture. This doesn’t mean that I can just write about anything—we pitch our ideas to our editors and they are either approved or denied. What it does mean, though, is that I can write from a place of interest, thus allowing me to focus more intently because I care about what I’m putting out there. The vast range of subject matter that us writers have to choose from actually helps us to write better articles, I’ve found, because it doesn’t feel like work to write them. That’s not to say that there aren’t expectations for the quality and effort put into these articles, but rather, that writing about stuff you enjoy can yield the best results.

 

 

Not only am I writing about topics that I’m enthusiastic about, but I am also able to share these articles with others, through word of mouth and social media. I’ve always been afraid of showing others my writing out of fear of judgement or rejection, but having published work on Her Campus has lessened this fear because of the connotation behind an article attached to the publication. Friends and acquaintances have brought up my articles in conversation with me after seeing them on my Facebook page, which has sparked passionate discussions on the subject matter. People around me are able to see what I can do, and I can be proud of something I’ve done rather than be afraid of criticism.

Her Campus has strengthened me as a writer. Initially, I was worried about the extra work load, but being a contributor has forced me to write on a regular basis, rather than just when it’s required for school. Though I do love to write, I don’t always find the time to do it for myself, so having a frequent deadline for Her Campus has kept me focused on what I love this semester, and I couldn’t be more grateful for that. My experience writing for Her Campus this semester has been, I can honestly say, nothing but positive, and I can’t wait to start up again in the new year.