Department, university, and community magazines can be a great way to start compiling a portfolio and getting editing experience.

  • Re:Search. This peer-reviewed undergraduate journal for literary research is published annually.  For information on getting involved, email
  • Montage. This undergraduate literary journal is published by students in the U of Illinois English department.  To submit your own literature or art to the journal or to get involved as an editorial assistant, email
  • Ninth Letter. Supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, this journal is a collaboration between the Graduate Creative Writing Program and School ofArt & Designat the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.   Students who take CW 460 (Introduction to Literary Editing) can work on this journal while learning about all stages of literary editing.  Ninth Letter also sometimes has an internship available.
  • Buzz Magazine; published weekly on Tuesday and The Daily Illini; daily. These two print publications are produced by Illini Media, which has a single portal for applying to work for either of them.

Smile Politely.Com is an independent online magazine serving Champaign-Urbana. They offer internships for students new to freelance writing and they pay for contributions from more experienced writers.

The following academic journals are published by U of Illinois faculty and periodically offer internships for English majors.  Stay tuned to your email, the department Internship webpage, and the U of Illinois Dept of English Advising Facebook page for information about these opportunities:

There are several local and national (with local chapters) campus publications that offer writing, editorial, and even management positions: Black Sheep, Spoon University, Her Campus.  These sites rely on unpaid writers to supply their content, but they can give you writing practice and help you build your portfolio.  Before committing to write for one of them, you should be clear in your own mind about the benefits that you will gain from writing for free. Some questions to ask yourself:

  • Is the subject matter of the publication consistent with your professional goals?
  • Will the publication expose you to a readership that matters to you?
  • Will you get a byline for your contributions?
  • Will you get knowledgeable editorial feedback that will help you grow as a writer?
  • Would your clippings from this publication impress your dream employer?
  • What advantages will you gain from this work that are worth the time it will take from other pursuits?