Monday, October 11, 2010

Feeling the Competition

Hey fellow Edsters!

So last time I blogged to you from cloud nine, totally enthusiastic about the future of magazines and their digital platforms. But reality checked back in today when I found that my fellow intern was working on her second web clip! Just three weeks into the internship! And worst of all, they were both ideas she had pitched herself! (Okay, fine, that’s actually fantastic news, but I just realized that I need to step up my game and start pitching my own ideas!)

I want to preface that I really like my co-intern. I think we work super well together and have taught each other a lot over the course of the last few weeks, plus she’s a hysterical — we actually laugh all day. But sometimes, she absolutely baffles me. She sits at her desk doing homework or checking Facebook, and yet somehow she’s racking up all these clips! I just didn’t get it!

Until she explained that she’d been pitching a couple story ideas to our editor every day, with hopes of getting to write one up for The Mag (most likely for the website). I, on the other hand, had been keeping a list, thinking I’d be prepared should an editor ever ask me if I had a story idea. So I was seriously impressed that she was proactive about it (and pretty jealous of her awesome story idea!).

But that brings me to my main point. My co-intern is a hard-working and enthusiastic intern — when a task interests her! If not she’ll pout a bit and try to put it off. So to avoid the duller tasks, she pitches light-hearted fun content she’d enjoy researching — fun stuff that would catch a reader’s attention on Twitter or while browsing The Mag’s website. I’m not sure that’s the best approach to an internship, but it’s definitely the best way to leave with clips!

So on that note Edsters, how do you think up story ideas? Do you get them from your daily life or other newspaper/magazine articles? My co-intern gets them from her favorite TV shows and celeb fashion trends! (Her advice: anything that leaves you with a strong opinion, either positive or negative, is a story idea!) But better yet, what are your favorite web stories to read?

Until next time,
Features Intern


  1. This is exactly what I want to know. How do you come up with story ideas? How do you get story ideas from content already out there? Advice??

  2. I feel like if we ALWAYS have a "story idea mindset", they'll come easily. If you go through your day- hanging out with friends, going shopping, eating, people-watching, and always have "I need a story idea" in your head, you can come up with something interesting to write about pretty easily! Some are better then others, so you have to weed out what is particularly interesting to others rather than what is interesting to just you.

  3. The word competition along sounds so scary for those cowards but without competition life is so boring. You got to compete to prove how tough you are and the best will win.

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