Liberal Arts Career Services
Liberal Arts Career Services

Texas Monthly

Fall 2019

Position: TM Studio Intern
Student: Psychology Senior

For this semester, I have interned at Texas Monthly with the TM Studio department. Our department focuses mostly on supplemental magazines, such as Texas College Guide and Texas Sports Facility Guide, that ship out around the same time as our main monthly magazine. For the most part, my responsibilities involved numerous editorial tasks, such as copywriting, proofreading, and editing for my and others’ articles.

In general, Texas Monthly is a friendly work environment with plenty of supportive co-workers ready to help whenever needed! My supervisors were always happy to answer any questions I had about certain tasks. There were also times when I was able to interview members of different departments, such as marketing, events, and HR. All of them were able to schedule times to interview and have an engaging conversation about their duties at Texas Monthly. It was nice to not only explore different responsibilities about the company as a whole, but also get to know different people around the office on a more personal level. It felt less like being a cog in the machine, and more like an intimate collaborative effort in order to accomplish common goals.

As far as my personal responsibilities, I proofread and edited others’ articles that talked about different tourist attractions across Texas. For my own copywriting assignments, my topics ranged from student athlete profiles, community college articles, and introduction pages for the city of Houston. Although some topics were harder to write about than others, I always had the help of my supervisors to help me guide me toward finished products that were worth publishing, and I’ll be sure to keep those lessons with me moving forward in my career.

Fall 2017

Position: Custom Publishing Intern
Student: English Junior

Working in the Custom Publishing department at Texas Monthly, your day-to-day life is never quite the same; each day is unique and brings its own set of challenges along with it. You might spend your day at the office trying to scour the internet for a photo for an article, or you might be editing or proofreading a story, or you might even be writing your own piece for either our blog or one of the magazines we’re working on, it’s different each day. Sometimes you might even be asked to help another department with a task or go through the supply closet and take inventory of the things in there, but for the most part you will stay within the Custom Publishing Department. Basically, your job is to be an assistant to the project managers in your department and help them with any tasks that they need help with. With that being said there is at least a little bit of structure in your day to day life.

Depending on how you decide to schedule your time at the office, they do ask that you work between ten and twelve hours each week, and that you try to make the shifts at least three hours long, so that you can actually get some work done. The first thing that you do when you come into the office is log into your computer over at your desk and then from there once you’re settled it is essential that you check your email because that is the main point of communication that they use in the office.

From there, once you’ve checked your email you can then go on to see what you’re going to be doing that, as I said earlier each day is different, so depending on what projects you are assigned you might be doing one thing one day and something totally different another. A couple of examples of what you might be doing are trying to track down a photo that we can use in an article, or proofread a piece, or even write a piece for our blog or even a magazine. It all depends on the day.

All in all, this is a great place to intern at, one that will provide you with a lot of experience and give you a little taste of what it’s like to work at a magazine.

Position: Editorial Internship
Student: English & Plan II Junior

A Texas Monthly editorial intern works about 12-15 hours a week, which I broke into three 4-5 hour shifts. I would usually come into the Texas Monthly office, which is a beautiful one with a breath-taking view of the state capitol, sit down at my desk, and check the intern Slack channel where requests come in from editors and writers. Every day was different and the tasks could range from transcribing an interview with state Congressmen, doing research on the craziest things Alex Jones has said for Texas Monthly’s Bum Steers editorial, fact-checking magazine pieces, and writing my own articles for online publishing on Texas Monthly’s website. You should be able to research well, deliver quickly, and should be willing to do work outside of the office if you take on bigger responsibilities like fact-checking or writing pieces. Sometimes, especially around deadlines, all of the editors and writers will stay until 1 am to finish pieces, and while you don’t need to stay late you should be willing to answer emails and do edits even after you leave the office. Texas Monthly is, however, very flexible if you need to move your schedule around for school, and the overall vibe of the office is casual and friendly.

Biggest advice would be to take advantage of the free food and newly-released books that the office always offers and do not be afraid to ask for jobs you want. Texas Monthly does not give jobs fact checking, for instance, to interns who do not ask. Overall, if you have an idea of what you want to accomplish, voice it. While they can always turn you down, they want to see you succeed there. Also, they will never make you go get their coffee or clean plates in the office. You will only be doing substantial work directly involved with Texas Monthly editorial content, which is huge, and not something all editorial internships offer. 

Spring 2017  

Position: Audience Development Intern
Student: International Relations and Global Studies Senior

During the spring 2017 semester, I was an audience development intern at Texas Monthly (TXM). TXM is a monthly consumer magazine that covers Texas lifestyle and politics. Much of my work helped the audience development department conduct audience and market analysis. At the end of each week I would complete postage reports for TXM and the other publications once covered by the audience development department. Each month I would complete customer service reports. These types of reports help my supervisor analyze the TXM audience and how each publication is publically received.

On a more day-to-day basis, I would have several administrative tasks. This would include fulfilling back issues requests, mailing out TXM BBQ-club packets and completing any sort of specific project my supervisor assigned me. My last week at TXM, the audience development department head asked me to complete a cover analysis for the top-selling newsstand magazine covers in Texas. I learned just as much from observing at department meetings and talking with TXM employees as I did doing my internship projects.

 My supervisor made me feel more than comfortable to ask questions. She always gave thorough directions and would tell me why I was doing the work I was doing. Meaning that she related my small contribution to the TXM monthly enterprise to the larger effort of running a monthly publication. I attended department meetings every week and through out the semester my supervisor set up meetings with TXM employees so that I was able to ask questions and learn about their role in the company. TXM also has an intern orientation where department heads come in to talk to the new interns about their job and their work with TXM.

Summer 2016 

Position: Custom Publishing Intern
Student: English Junior

The day-to-day work at the summer Custom Publishing internship at Texas Monthly can vary. Throughout the three months you will be working during the summer, expect a myriad of opportunities for research, writing, and publication. The supervisors will work with your schedule and give you a one-hour lunch break. An example of a schedule would be working on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays from 9am to 3pm. Each day you will go to your desk and work on whatever has been assigned. The desks and workspace are of high quality and include a computer and phone. From writing weekly travel blog posts for textraveler.com and austinrelocatingguide.com to completing photo research, there is alway something to do. Work can include writing articles about festivals, people, and day road trips for Ride Texas Magazine 
and pitching ideas for the My H-E-B Life monthly issues, creating inspiration PowerPoint slides for the upcoming magazine. Every week at least one intern blog gets published and because there are two Custom Publishing interns, the publications alternate. At least once or twice a month, a blog you write will probably get published.
Expect to be motivated by the work environment at Texas Monthly that helps with motivation and one’s success. Employees at Texas Monthly are often positive individuals and make it a pleasant day to go into work. While sitting in the breakroom during lunchtime, employees may involve you in their conversations and ideas for stories.

Spring 2016 

Position: Publishing Intern
Student: English Junior

The first thing prospective interns should know is that there are several different departments working within Texas Monthly.  I intern with the Custom Publishing department, which is essentially an in-house publishing unit that produces a variety of publications such as Ride Texas magazine, a motorcycle riding magazine owned by our department.  However, depending on your interests, there are several options to choose from such as Editorial, Sale and Marketing, Design, among others.   

The office enjoys stunning views of the surrounding city and skyline, which could never get old.  I personally worked for Texas Monthly Custom Publishing for 12 hours per week, divided into four-hour chunks on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.  I arrive at the office at 9 am and some employees are already at work, while others are just arriving.  The company seems to be relatively flexible with hours and work schedules.  


In the morning I generally say hi to the people in my department, check my emails, make coffee, and then get started on whatever assignment I have been working on or inquire about a new assignment if I have completed those from a previous day.  My main responsibility was creating blog posts for websites such as TexTraveler.com or AboutAustinRelocating.com.  I really enjoyed crafting this content - it was both fun and educational for me.  I also was tasked with drafting stories for Ride Texas magazine, so now my work will be published in print (as of this summer).  Aside from writing I also worked fact checking, copy editing, and brainstorming editorial ideas.

Position: Editorial Intern
Student: Plan II Junior

The Texas Monthly Editorial Internship is a creative way to investigate culture and politics in the great state of Texas. Texas Monthly is a monthly publication that covers happenings across the state. Based in downtown Austin, TX right on Congress Avenue, Texas Monthly offers a broad bi-partisan survey of the State and what it means to be Texan. It offers a glimpse into the life of the modern Texan in the context of our ever-changing national and international landscape. The general interest publication looks for creative and unconventional ways to tell the narratives of Texas.

This internship offers students interested in writing, journalism, or media a chance to see the inner workings of a monthly publication. Working for Texas Monthly gave me a chance to explore more accessible writing styles and a new industry. Additionally, it gave me a new appreciation for everything Texas. The tasks of an intern vary depending on the needs of the writers and editorial staff. I’ve transcribed interviews, gathered data on oil rigs, created a presentation on the history of corn, and assisted writers in smaller editorial tasks.

An interesting part of the internship experience is the requirement that editorial interns submit pitches for monthly editorial meetings. Seeing the renowned editorial team bat ideas back and forth taught me a lot about vetting my own stories for our specific audience.

Finally, the “Day in the Life” of a TM intern is, honestly, whatever you make it. The office is incredibly laid back with unlimited Topo Chicos, clementines, and an oatmeal station. The attire is hip-casual. You report to yourself, which gives needed flexibility with a hectic college schedule, though you must come in a minimum of twelve hours a week. Through seminars with writers and editors, you will gain a much greater appreciation for language and awareness of long form writing and editing techniques.

Fall 2015 

Position: Media Marketing Intern
Student: English Junior

Here’s a look into my typical day at the office. I would first check the marketing mailbox and deliver mail to various marketing employees. Once I got to my desk, I signed into my computer and checked my email for my daily assignments. If I had any questions about my tasks that day, I would head over to my supervisor's desk for clarification. And then my day would officially begin.


My responsibilities as a marketing intern ranged from administrative tasks to marketing specific tasks. The administrative tasks included a lot of random assignments to help the marketing team operate, such as creating FedEx labels for shipments, printing out and organizing forms, and creating booklets of marketing plans. The marketing tasks, which were much more exciting, including creating event entries and slideshows on WordPress, updating social media platforms and drafting tweets, fact checking the promotional content, and ad copy editing.

I also spent a lot of my semester working on various ​Texas Monthly​BBQ Festival tasks. The TMBBQ, which takes place on the first weekend of November, aims to promote ​Texas Monthly​and bring together the entire Texas barbecue community. Shadowing is an important, beneficial part of the internship that you should definitely take advantage of. Find out what all the marketing employees are up to and ask them questions. See if there is anything that you can do to help. This internship is what you make it, so take advantage of the vast amount of resources that ​Texas Monthly ​provides.

Spring 2015 

Position: Editorial Intern
Student: English Senior

As a Texas Monthly editorial intern, you will be completely immersed in a professional culture, and you will learn the detailed ins and outs of magazine journalism. Writing opportunities are not guaranteed, however, interns are tasked each month with creating and researching story ideas. Everyone on the editorial staff does this, not just the interns. Before the monthly editorial meetings, the Editor in Chief, Brian, will look over everyone’s ideas and pick a few to put on the “short list” to be discussed in meeting. If you have a good enough idea, yours might be picked, and you might have the opportunity to be featured in the magazine or online!

A lot of your day will consist of compiling research for stories that are in the works, transcribing interviews, and reading the magazine. Honestly, reading is a huge part of the internship. When you read, you are exposed to the voice of the writers, and it makes it that much cooler when you get to talk to them about their process of researching, structuring, and writing the story. The interns were able to speak with fact checkers, editors, and writers throughout the internship about the process of story telling, and often, these staff members would give the interns a story to read before the meeting, so that there would be something specific to discuss. Transcribing interviews will sometimes take up the entirety of your day, which may sound daunting, but in reality, transcribing was sometimes the most interesting task assigned.

As an intern, you get to listen in on really incredible interviews, sometimes with big time musicians and movie stars. This gives you the opportunity to hear how the writers approach an interview, and when the story is published, you get to feel proud that you played a part in it. I highly recommend the internship if you are looking for an independently structured journalism internship. At Texas Monthly, you get what you put into it. You can go that extra mile to meet everyone on staff and learn as much as you can, or you can do the bare minimum. It’s up to you.

 


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    University of Texas at Austin
    FAC 18
    2304 Whitis Ave. Stop G6200
    Austin, Texas 78712-1508
    512-471-7900