Welcome to our internship FAQ page! Here you’ll find the answers to all of your burning questions about Brink’s seasonal internships.
At Brink Literacy Project, our community outreach work is just as important as our career-building work. We care deeply about low literacy rates in both the prison system and underserved communities. If you’re passionate about the literary industry and nonprofit organizations, then you’ve come to the right place!
What’s the internship all about?
As a vital part of Brink’s mission to elevate new and underrepresented voices in the publishing arena, our internship is aimed at bringing diverse experiences to the literary table. Interns from all walks of life will contribute to an organization that enacts positive social change daily.
Over the course of twelve weeks, we educate five promising interns who will learn about all levels of surviving in the industry. The first eight weeks of the internship include an intensive training program with our professional editorial staff. Interns learn how to coach writers from first drafts to polished publications. For the remaining four weeks, interns will have the opportunity to work as independent Junior Editors.
Interns will also work with our publishing department to develop writing samples and will be directed toward the tasks best suited to their writing abilities. This can include writing book reviews, conducting author interviews, contributing to the resource center, and other tasks.
Additionally, interns will develop outreach and marketing skills, gaining experience in industry correspondence, writing for social media, and completing other vital tasks that contribute to Brink’s international reach.
For each session, Brink selects an intern who has previously been published with us to receive a paid stipend.
What are you looking for in internship applicants?
Ultimately, Brink seeks candidates with a dedicated work ethic, a passion for literature, and the ability to work with stringent deadlines. We particularly keep an eye out for:
It’s great if you only found out about us through internship postings, but please do your homework. Read F(r)iction, our print journal. Learn about our programs. Figure out what makes Brink Literacy Project special.
When we’re looking through applications, we’re always drawn to people who can self-motivate. For example, we love to see that you’re editing, even if it’s just your friends’ short stories. We want to see that you’re getting your teeth into something you care about.
The single most important thing we look for in any application is hunger. Simply put: you have to want it. We will take a less-qualified applicant who resonates with passion over an awe-inspiring resume and lukewarm ambitions any day of the week.
What is the difference between the paid and unpaid internships?
While each intern will work intimately with editors and publishers on the Brink staff, paid interns are expected to take on a greater level of responsibility. This will include editing works unsupervised, working closely with leadership staff, and contributing to various aspects of the Brink site.
How many hours a week are interns expected to work?
Typically, unpaid interns work approximately 10–15 hours per week, and paid interns work approximately 15–20 hours.
What is the interview process like for potential interns?
After applying for an intern position, our selected applicants will be invited for an interview with a member of our leadership team, likely our Marketing Director/Internship Supervisor Kaley Kiermayr. You will be asked a series of questions pertaining not only to your application but to your work as an author, student, and contributing member of society. All applicants are asked to display their passion for the written word and describe what they hope to contribute while interning for the organization.
For most applicants, this interview will be held over Skype.
I love to read and write, but I’m not very good at grammar. Is this a deal breaker?
The simple answer is: “Yes.” Since a large portion of our interns’ workloads includes writing and editing, it is essential that each applicant understand the grammatical system. If you make it to the final round of interviews, we may even throw in a few grammar questions!
Why am I asked to provide references?
All applicants must provide at least one referrer’s contact information (name, title, and email address). Applicants hoping for a paid position must provide contact information for two referrers.
A member of our staff will email the contact(s) you provide and request a letter commending your work ethic and skills. Applicants are responsible for ensuring their referrers are aware of and can meet the deadline. Applicants whose referrers miss the deadline will not be considered.
How can I get college credit through the internship?
We are happy to provide any documentation your school requires to get you academic credit for an internship with Brink. We’ve done this plenty of times for interning students.
What’s the difference between an individual application and applying through my university?
The application process is the same for both individual and affiliated school applications. The difference is that when applying, students that belong to the partnered schools use their school email and select the university they belong to. This extra step in the process notifies the school and Brink that one of their students is enrolled. The student’s time in the program is monitored by the school, though students must arrange for their hours to be counted as credit.
Why do universities partner with Brink? How can my school become a partner?
Brink is passionate about nurturing the next generation of great writers, publishing industry professionals, and literacy activists. The universities we partner with advertise exclusive internship positions to their students. This helps us to ensure that we’ll work with today’s brightest scholars. Read more about our current university partnerships or find out whether you attend a partnered university here.
I’m not a student. Can I still apply?
Yes! A talent for writing, editing, marketing, or outreach is something that no amount of schooling can guarantee.
I don’t live in the United States. Can I still apply?
Of course! Although Brink’s headquarters are in Colorado, the majority of our international organization is operated online. It’s great when our interns are located in one of our primary hubs (Denver, Seattle, or Edinburgh), mostly so we can have coffee with them and invite them to journal release parties, but it doesn’t affect our selection process.
Much of the workload required of our interns can be done independently—save for Skype staff meetings—and there is absolutely no advantage given to United States residents over other applicants. As long as you have internet access, you’re golden.
How will interning for a nonprofit organization like Brink benefit me?
If you are looking for an inspirational and extensive exploration into the world of writing, editing, and publishing, then our internship might be the very thing for you! Brink interns gain invaluable knowledge of the publishing world and all of its inner workings, communicate with established editors at credited publishing houses, network with authors frequently, assist with community outreach, and spend hours doing what we all love most: reading and writing. An internship with Brink will benefit any applicant in acquiring publishing and writing connections, glowing letters of recommendation, and an excellent addition to one’s resume or CV.
One last sneaky thing to know about our internship program…
If you’ve ever had the strange pleasure of meeting any of our staffers, you’ll quickly find out they were nearly all interns once upon a time. From our leadership to our junior editors and marketing kids, almost every single one was once where you are now, wondering if a Brink internship was the right move. We use this internship to find people to stand beside us. If you can make it through this internship, if you can climb your way up, if you can show us that you are passionate and stubborn and plain crazy enough to fight the good fight, then you can call Brink home. And one final thing. Brink is committed to providing a platform for diverse voices and experiences. We absolutely do not discriminate on the basis of…well, anything at all. As such, applicants with disabilities; applicants young and old; applicants near and far; and applicants of color, LGBTQ+ background, indigenous background, diverse religious beliefs, and/or significant personal engagement with low-income and underserved communities are highly encouraged to apply! We want to hear from you, so go for it—click on that Apply button!