By Julia Heming
When I was 14, my parents finally allowed me to download social media. Unlike most of my peers, I instantly began following publications, fashion influencers, and writers – this is how I found Her Campus. I signed up for the newsletter, pored over articles, and dreamed of working at a magazine. It sounds cliche but the last semester as the wellness intern at Her Campus has truly been a dream come true.
It hadn’t hit me until I received a message on Instagram from a random girl in Rhode Island who said she loved my writing and had been following my work for Her Campus. Yup, I have officially made it – I have fans now.
This semester my main focus was on the wellness section covering topics related to physical, mental, and sexual wellness. And honestly, I had no idea it would be quite this fun. I minored in women’s studies while at SBU so the opportunity to focus on sexual wellness and offer real advice to make everyone feel empowered was in and of itself incredibly empowering. I was able to chat with Olympic Medalist Gabby Thomas about her work with the Seize the Night & Day campaign with Idorsia, interview sexologists and connect with astrologers about the Mercury Retrograde, which honestly had everyone I know asking for details about how their own astrological placement would be impacted.
It was also eye-opening to learn about how online publications work to trend with SEO and socials. I was able to lean into my content creation background and create social content based on a story I had written about a crystal shop in Islip, where the head witch teaches customers to make spell jars. iPhone in hand (with the help of my best friend) I took Her Campus’s Instagram and TikTok followers to the store and made a self-love-inspired jar.
This story was highlighted in one of the weekly newsletters as a top story which was a surreal feeling. I also learned a lot about how packages work with online publications, Her Campus’s weekly editorial meetings all focused on a specific topic and what content would be written or created for social related to specific events like the Met Gala, or holidays like Valentine’s Day.
Some of these topics pertained to me, and others were more focused on other sections, regardless I learned coming up with a list of pieces was always beneficial but ultimately we worked as a team bounding ideas to create the actual content list. I also learned that listicles for HC do better with 40+ items, so if I was pitching a listicle, I better be ready to actually find or come up with 40+ mantras, Instagram captions, or sex positions. As of April 27, I have published 27 articles to the Her Campus site.
This was unlike any kind of writing I had done before. I took the inverted pyramid, broke its heart, and then wrote a Taylor Swift song about how I made it sad. My ledes were full of personal anecdotes, text shorthand, and of course many many pop culture references. My writing was casual, relaxed, and friendly – there was no audience, I was writing to my best friend who just wanted to know why Francesca Stugot was trending. I was able to write about books I loved (in three separate articles actually,) discuss working out with a positive mindset, and recommend cocktails based on the reader’s astrological sign.
The community created at this publication is wonderful and I was so lucky to be a part of it. Even luckier actually, because, I will be staying on as a contributing writer to the wellness section this summer.