Megan Smith shares what it takes to be the WEB EDITOR of Grapeshot.
What does a Grapeshot web editor do?
It’s the web editor’s job to maintain Grapeshot’s online presence. I tend to the website by putting up articles, updating our social media channels (yeah sorry, that’s usually me annoying you on Facebook), and I obsessively check the stats to see if we’re filling our view quota. I also try to bribe writers into doing articles for me with cupcakes, or threats.
How do you do it?
I spend most of my time hunched over “my” computer in the office staring at Nicholas Hoult on my desktop background. But actual work wise, a significant amount of time is spent fiddling with WordPress and sourcing photos for pieces. I also consume a lot of sugar to keep me energised.
What do you love the most about your work at Grapeshot?
I genuinely like my job at Grapeshot. I love figuring out patterns in viewership and seeing what gets our student body excited in the comments section. Most importantly though, I love the people on the team. The Grapeshot regulars are a bunch of whip-smart, funny people who like to drink cider and dissect pop culture. We all get along famously. I’ve made invaluable friendships this year and had a ridiculous amount of fun outside of my comfort zone. P.s. I get paid.
How do you manage your time being a Grapeshot web editor and a student with your other commitments?
Um, Grapeshot has been my priority this year. Between the website, helping out with editing the magazine and writing my advice column (which takes more time to write than you may think), I’ve become very talented at pretending my uni work doesn’t exist. I assume it’s not like this for everyone though, just for people like me with terrible time management skills and a general ambivalence towards their education.
What challenges have you encountered and how have you overcome them?
To be frank, the majority of the student body will never be interested in picking up the magazine or visiting the website. In fact, most of them don’t seem to be aware of our existence. When you put as much work into Grapeshot as we do, it’s easy to become disheartened by our general invisibility.
Yet, the majority of the fans that we do have (yes, we do have fans) are lovely and supportive. The appreciation that we do get for our work from our slowly-growing readership makes it all worthwhile in the end. Another struggle I’ve faced is having to deal with *someone*, who is definitely not our editor in chief, listening/singing/humming to Miley Cyrus songs in the office, which goes against my personal religion. My religion is not listening to songs by caterwauling young ladies having butt seizures and calling it twerking.
What are some of the expected and the unexpected this year?
I signed on as a contributor initially and was offered a contract for the web editor position when I showed my aptitude for never leaving the office and playing around on the website. This was a really unexpected development. I tried not to come on to the team with too many expectations, and all the ones that I did have were surpassed by my excellent experiences this year.
What advice would you have for those who are looking to apply for the web editor position?
Don’t worry too much about experience, you can be taught most of it. Not by me though, I still have no idea what I’m doing. Expect to work hard. Set yourself goals to keep the often-barren world of the web interesting. Prepare your liver and your wallet for spending an embarrassing amount of hours at Ubar with a jug of Five Seeds. On a final note, this is going to look great on your resume so just have a go!