A&E is looking for columnists for the fall semester! Applicants should be people with a strong, lively voice and an interest in the arts. A columnist is free to take on topical current events, discuss a personal experience, or do anything in between. Above all else, a columnist should be able to digest whatever they’re writing about with a sharp, critical eye.
Over the years, we’ve had food, music, lifestyle, fashion, art, film, TV, and sex columnists. If you have an idea, don’t be afraid to pitch! Even more out-there ideas are welcome. We ran a film column called "Drunken Spectator" for the past two semesters that's a must-read.
To apply, please send the following to email@example.com by Aug. 24 at NOON:
1) A short description about what you envision for your column: the theme you plan to focus on, why you think it’s a theme that’s sustainable for a whole semester (running roughly every other week), and why it would be interesting to readers (a.k.a., the student body).
2) A list of five potential column ideas—specific topics you feel fit with the theme of your column. Briefly (1-3 sentences) explain what you’d plan to do with them.
3) A sample column, on a topic selected from the above ideas. This piece should be roughly 650 words in length and representative of what your column would be like, both in writing style and in content.
Some frequently asked questions about being A&E columnist:
How is an A&E columnist different from an Opinion columnist? While an Opinion column might responds to administrative issues, academics (the Core curriculum; pre-professionalism), mental health, student activism, and politics, A&E columns have something to do with one of A&E's subsections (film, visual art, style, music, food, books, dance, TV, or theater).
What can an A&E column be about? Our columnists usually write Columbia-relevant pieces (check out music columnist David Ecker’s response to the haters after last year’s Bacchanal announcement and food columnist Krista White's guide to cooking in the dorms), but they always produce columns with student interest in mind.
Why should I write an A&E column? An A&E column can give you an excuse to go on adventures and write about them. Plus you get your own headshot to run with your column, courtesy of weekend deputy editor Charlotte Murtishaw.
A&E is also looking for new bloggers to contribute to Spectrum! In addition to helping A&E's online deputy Emma Finder publish newsy posts, bloggers will also have their own series. A blog series is your chance to share with Spectrum readers your own voice, whether that's writing about your favorite music trends, adventures at NYC food trucks, or whatever comes to mind. Writers should have a strong voice and will be expected to contribute a weekly or biweekly post of 300-500 words, incorporating photos, videos, and gifs. For examples of past A&E blogs, see Columbia Style File and Noticeably Netflix.
Please send your responses to the following questions to firstname.lastname@example.org by Aug. 24 at NOON (same deadline for A&E columnist apps).
1. Name, school, year
2. What's your favorite book/play/movie/A&E-related thing from the last year and why?
3. What arts & entertainment blogs/Twitters/websites/magazines do you read/look at?
4. What would make you a great A&E blogger?
5. A&E bloggers will contribute at least one post post per week. What would the focus of your series be? What would a typical post (<500 words) be for you? What kind of photos, multimedia, etc. might you make use of?
6. Include a sample post (<500 words)! This can be the first post of your blog series, but it doesn't have to be used.
7. Critique any three A&E Spectrum posts from the past year (100 words each).