Writer’s Block Wants You! – Editorial Board Vacancies 2018-2019

WRITER’S BLOCK IS LOOKING FOR NEW EDITORIAL BOARD MEMBERS!

Writer’s Block is looking for fresh, new, enthusiastic, talented, and creative editorial board members! Do you like writing, editing, or do you have any journalistic aspirations? Then join the Writer’s Block editorial board!

What/ who is Writer’s Block?
Writer’s Block magazine is the student magazine of the English department at the University of Amsterdam, but we have an international readership and contributors from across the globe. In our magazine, which is released every 3 months, we publish articles, essays, reviews, interviews, short stories, poetry, photography, and artwork. Even though the magazines are published in English, we also encourage students from outside the English department to join our board, so it doesn’t matter if you study astrophysics, law, pedagogy, history, or play the clarinet in the national orchestra – everyone is welcome at Writer’s Block.

Why should you join the Writer’s Block? What do we offer?
Joining our editorial board gives you the opportunity to improve your own reading, writing, editing, and organization skills greatly. You will not only be doing editorial work for the magazine but you also get the chance to use your creativity in writing monthly website articles where you get to express your own thoughts and ideas. Joining Writer’s Block is also a nice addition to your CV, since it shows experience in writing and editing in English for a media platform, as well as experience in the management of a small student organization. More importantly, you will be working with a close-knit team of fun and creative people.

What are your tasks at Writer’s Block?
Your main role in your year at Writer’s Block will be that of general editor. Your tasks as a general editor are to attend weekly meetingswrite a monthly website article (of around 500-1000 words), and to provide the submitted articles for our magazines with feedback, edits, and suggestions. As for the meetings, we have a two-hour meeting every week. Of course we take everyone’s work and study schedule into account when planning the meeting, and during busy periods (like exam weeks or deadlines) there will be room for you to focus on your studies. Apart from the meetings, you are expected to write a website article every month which can be on any topic, as long as it is non-fiction. You will receive feedback from your fellow board members and, in turn, give feedback on their work as well. Lastly, as a general member of the editorial board your task is also to give good, useful, and constructive feedback on magazine submissions. Writer’s Block is a magazine for students and by students. In this, we heavily rely on contributors, so it is important to find a balance in being critical and showing respect to the work of our contributors. Apart from being a general editor, you will also be performing a role-specific function (see below for descriptions). Overall, your tasks at WB will take up 4-6 hours per week.

How and where do you apply?
If you are interested in joining the 2018-2019 editorial board, send in your application together with your CV, a motivation letter, and (optionally) a piece of written work of no more than 800 words[1] to info@writersblockmagazine.com. You can submit a general application or you can have a look at the list below to see if a specific function in the editorial board has your name written all over it. Please note that due to a limited number of spots we might not be able to give you the role which you initially applied for. If this would be the case, we might be inclined to offer you a different position on the team.

The deadline for the applications is Wednesday May 27th at midnight.  If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us!

For general inquiries you can contact us via: info@writersblockmagazine.com

For more information, please check out our
Facebook : @wbthemag
Instagram : @wb_magazine
Twitter : @wb_magazine

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Secretary
Are your notes flawless? Do you always answer your emails within 1 or 2 business days? Are your emails eloquent and well-structured? Do you like having an overview on things?  

A secretary plays a crucial role in any organization. In Writer’s Block you will be the right hand of the Editors-in-Chief, supporting them by keeping a clear overview on what is happening in the board as well as outside the board. Practically this means that your job is to keep track of the email and make sure that nothing remains unanswered. You will manage most of the email by yourself and keep the Editors in Chief informed about our contacts. Additionally, you will be responsible for taking the minutes during our meetings and sending them to the editorial board.

May be suitable for those who

  • Are precise, alert, and attentive;
  • Like to have a clear overview;
  • Can be active and assertive in supporting the Editors-in-Chief.

Treasurer
Do you tend to spend your money wisely? Can you keep a financial overview? Do you enjoy keeping things nice and organized?

As a treasurer you will be in charge of the financial side of Writer’s Block. Your job is to keep a financial overview of Writer’s Block’s incomes (from donations, UvA subsidies, earnings from advertisements) and outcomes (from magazines, promotion material, events) throughout the year. You will be responsible for our subsidy application in October and February, and together with the Editors in Chief you will attend the Alpha meetings which take place about four times a year. Since Writer’s Block does not have an own bank account, you will be working closely with the treasurer of Etcetera (the study association of English at the UvA).

May be suitable for those who

  • Are precise and are good at keeping a (financial) overview;
  • Are good with numbers (though we don’t require a mathematical genius);
  • Are orderly.

Final Editor – Website
Are you familiar with WordPress, or are you willing to master this easy-to-learn web blog software? Can you easily spot spelling mistakes and grammatical errors?

As the term suggests, the website editor maintains our website. This means that your task is to post our magazines and the monthly articles of the editorial board on our website. Simultaneously, you will also play the role of the final editor of our website articles, making sure that our web posts don’t contain any grammatical errors and spelling mistakes.

May be suitable for those who

  • Have experience with WordPress, or are willing to learn to work with WordPress (which is super easy!);
  • Can correct texts from spelling mistakes and grammatical errors.

Promotion/ Social Media Editor
Are you a social media butterfly? Can you make 20 hashtags out of two-word sentences? Do you have ideas on how we can turn Writer’s Block into a trending topic?

Being on the promotion side of Writer’s Block, you will be in charge of our social media accounts. Your main goal is to generate likes, views, shares, retweets, etc. – anything basically to make Writer’s Block known to the world. At the moment we work with Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook but if you have more ideas on how to get Writer’s Block ‘out there’ we would love to hear them from you!

May be suitable for those who

  • Are frequent users of social media;
  • Are creative, original, and innovative;
  • Have ideas on how to further promote Writer’s Block on social media.

Graphic Designer
Do you enjoy thinking about what makes a stand-out visual? Do you like working with programs like Photoshop and Indesign, or would you like to learn? Do you think you can help the team set a vision for that Writer’s Block “look”?

As our graphics designer, you get to be in charge not only of designing posters and other visual material for Writer’s Block, which we like to keep updated at least once a year, but you will also have a lot of freedom in making the lay out of the actual magazine. This is a large responsibility, but one that comes with a lot of satisfaction when you have the final product in hand.

May be suitable for those who

  • Know how to work with Indesign and similar programs, or are willing to learn (not all that hard!);
  • Are creative and original;
  • Have a feeling for visuals.

 

[1] Sending in an example of written work is not compulsory but it can play a decisive role in our decision-making process. We’d also just like to read your work!

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Meeting the board: Sona, Elise and David

For the final entry of our board introduction series, meet Sona, Elise and David.

Sona Simonian – Social media manager

Sona

Freshly 20, my name is Sona Simonian and I’ll be the next and new social media manager of Writer’s Block. Currently doing my second year of the English BA. Loves Murakami, Eurovision, wine and dumplings. Already owns an imaginary cat called Toto and can’t wait to adopt a real cat. Screams a lot. Shameless. Prefers to spend time in bed either sleeping or sleeping. Uses a bullet journal and will try to convince you to start using one as well. My biggest dream is to finish writing a book. Will fail at cooking and write about it. Will most likely fail at life too and write about it. Please look forward to my failures and even more to my posts on both Twitter and Instagram.

 

Elise van der Linde – Graphic designer

Elise

I’m Elise and just like last year, I will be doing the graphic design for Writer’s Block. Besides that, I will be writing horoscopes, short stories, poetry, and articles about cats. I will also be working closely with Sona to bring our readers a newsletter in between our issues. Some interests outside of writing include knitting and crochet, trying out new recipes, staying warm, and watching bad TV. I am a cat mom, a lover of instagram, the chair of Etcetera, and a turtleneck wearer. Over the past year, I have learned many things, most importantly, I am now always 10 minutes early.

 

David Kleinsteuber – Final website editor

David

For one more year, I will be continuing at Writer’s Block as the final website editor, which means it’ll be my job once more to make everything as pretty as possible before it’s posted on the site. As you may have read in an earlier introduction piece, my previous position of treasurer will this year be taken up by the very awesome and very competent Cat[i].

As for a more day-to-day description of myself – I’m a simple pleasures kind of guy. On a warm day, bring me a glass of cold lemonade with no more, no less than three medium-sized ice cubes, and I’ll be in a state of bliss all week. I also enjoy playing the guitar, going for walks and listening to documentary podcasts.

Lastly, I want to say that I’ve really enjoyed reading and working together with all of you on your submissions over the past two years, and that I look forward to seeing what you’ve got up your sleeves this year. Bring on the submissions folks!

[i] Go Cat!

Meeting the board: Paulina and Cathelyne

In this outing of our ongoing series of board introductions: Paulina and Cathelyne.

Paulina van Bergem – Secretary

Paulina's Picture

My name is Paulina. I am a Dutch-American girl, who moved to Amsterdam a year ago to study English at the University of Amsterdam. I have been singing and making music for more than half of my life now and I could not imagine living without it. Besides music, I am obsessed with food, fashion and film (and alliteration apparently). Recently, listening to podcasts and the radio have become two of my favorite pastimes. There is a common thread running through all of my interests and that is the concept of storytelling. I guess that comes from my deep-rooted fascination with people and my belief that everyone has a story to tell. I joined the Writer’s Block team to be able to seek out the special ones and hopefully be involved in the sharing of them.

 

Cathelyne Top – Treasurer

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Hi, my name is Cat! I am a third-year English and first-year Business Administration student (a very logical and not-at-all weird combination, I know). This year, I will be collecting receipts as the new treasurer for Writer’s Block. I am a huge film and videogame fanatic and will be using our awesome magazine as an outlet for said interests as much as possible, especially since most of my university life now revolves around economics, business and something straight out of a horror movie called “Quantative Data Analysis 1”: a wondrous world where lectures are attended by over a thousand students and essays have a word limit of 300. Luckily, I will have all your wonderful submissions to keep me sane!

Meeting the board: Roos and Luc

The editorial board of 2017-2018 would like to introduce itself to you! First up: Editors-in-chief Roos Gravemaker and Luc de Vries.

Roos Gravemaker – Editor-in-chief

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Finishing my Literary Studies Research Master, I will be the editor-in-chief for the second time. I was sad to say goodbye to my partner in crime Paul but I am really looking forward to working together with Luc. From Shakespeare to detectives and from Czechoslovakian children’s TV shows to Kanye West, I like to write about things that fascinate me. Next to tackling complex literary theory on a daily basis, I just started a new job as an English teacher at my old high school. When I am not reading Derrida or ordering around 26 fourteen-year-olds, I like to run, watch playthrough videos on YouTube, and go on cycling trips on my mountain bike.

 

Luc de Vries – Editor-in-chief

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Hello, friends and readers. I’m Luc de Vries, and the new editor-in-chief for the year of ’17-’18. To some of you I might be a familiar face. Having spent last year as a final editor for the magazine, the honor has now befallen me to follow up our beloved Paul Hofma at the helm of the editorial board, alongside Roos Gravemaker.

For those who don’t know me, I can inform you that I’m not a very complex person. I love stories in both reading and writing. Music and film aren’t far removed from this premise, which I think explains my affection for these arts as well. I believe storytelling is the closest thing us humans have to magic.

I am happy to start this year knowing we have a board full of wonderful and talented people, all of whom stand ready to create new magazines from your submissions. Please look forward to our publications this year, and I hope to meet you all in person at our events and drinks.

Meeting the board: Anna, Elise and Sophie

The last members to introduce themselves are Anna, Elise and Sophie!

Anna de Boer – Social media manager

annaI will be this year’s Social Media manager for Writer’s Block. I’m a second year English student and my interests lay in literary theory and medieval literature. I find it fascinating how religion got to have such an amazing impact on life, whether you are part of it or not. Although I find literary work incredibly interesting, I find myself going frequently bankrupt for buying up the whole YA section in Waterstones. Nothing makes me more happy than making music and listening to music and I find that what interests me about music also interests me about books: “We are all stories after all”. My writing varies from deep existential self-help articles to monthly favourites, to cheesy lyrics and book reviews. I always thought so many things were interesting and never saw a reason to choose only one, after which I procrastinate it all and go watch vlogs. As if living in Amsterdam wasn’t expensive enough, I will also use any excuse to plan trips and visit friends abroad and it’s still on my bucket list have lived in London, Paris and New York. In the meantime I will just embrace these places through the kitchen. I’m guilty of taking pictures of food and laughing at my own jokes, but hey I might just be really funny (or not. probably not).

Elise van der Linde – Graphic design

eliseThis 20-year-old Aruban girl will be Writer’s Block brand new graphic designer. I’ll be making some sick layouts for the magazine, writing horoscopes and maybe some experimental pieces (in more than one language, I hope). Besides writing and designing, I’ll be running around with a camera, trying to get right angles of books, coffee, and co-members, some of which you’ll find on WB many social media sites.

Besides experimental writing (read: prose-fragments that could be poetry if you changed the line-breaks), you can catch me enjoying knitting, looking up slow-cooker recipes, pretending to garden, writing (bad) horoscopes, and planning imaginary trips across the globe. Furthermore, I’m a mother of two cats, a lover of instagram, forest-walker, and a bike-rider-in-training.

Please don’t ask me to be on time, I’m approximately 10 minutes late to everything.

Sophie van Hellenberg Hubar – Website manager

sophie

Having completed my bachelor’s in Utrecht, I have now arrived in Amsterdam to do the master’s program redacteur/editor. That being the case, I thought it would be nice to gain some editing experience – so here I am. I well remember when my love for literature started: I was eleven years old and I watched the BBC adaptation of Pride and Prejudice with my mother. One thing led to another, and now my cat is called Miss Elisabeth Bennet. Later on in life, I’d like to have an extremely fluffy and grumpy-faced cat called Lady Catherine the Bourgh, and a small, black one called Mister Collins.

Moving on: I feel very passionate about food. I love cooking, baking, eating en talking about food. I dislike people who do not exclaim when eating something delicious. Furthermore, I love dancing (quickstep is my favorite), swimming, crochet (still learning), jigsaw puzzles, Harry Potter marathons, autumn, board games, socks with animals on them, bookstores and movies (preferably featuring Lee Pace or Meryl Streep – though for slightly different reasons).

 

Meeting the board: David, Luc, Rachel and Tom

Second in line for the introductions are David, Luc, Rachel en Tom!

David Kleinsteuber – Treasurer & Final website editor
david
Hey, I’m David! Since last year I’ve been the treasurer and final website editor at Writer’s Block, and I’ll be continuing my work in those functions once more! This means that I manage the finances at WB and that I make sure that any articles posted on the website are free from errors (so if you see any mistakes on the site, you know who to blame! :D).

Like Paul, I’m bit of an infiltrator as I don’t actually study English, and I’m just finishing my BA in Philosophy. I can get pretty dreamy and confused, but sometimes I feel that my confusion is legitimate. In those cases, I actively try to pursue that confusion to see what I can make of it.

Should you and I ever meet, go on a date, have a great time, go on more dates, get married, have a kid, have more kids, include each other in our wills, grow old together, make a demonic blood pact with the devil, become immortal, become satanic rulers of the world – should I, during all this, tell you that I love you, know that this is a lie. The first and last love in my life is burritos. I have a large heart, but in the end it is truly the heart of a wrapper, and it only has place for burritos.

I kid, though. In truth I’m a big sentimental hippy, and I really look forward to reading your submissions and to helping contribute to the great platform for expression that Writer’s Block can be!

 

Luc de Vries – Final editor

luc

All the way from Nijmegen comes a new final editor. He is twenty-two years old, and he weighs in at a malnourished 74 kilos. Add an Arian face mixed with a few years of self-induced sleep deprivation and you have Luc de Vries.

Hi.

Currently in the third year toward my English BA, I have developed a passion for literature over my three years here in Amsterdam. Living in a room of about eight point five square meters, I have run out of shelves for my book collection about two years ago. I am currently resorting to sorting new purchases in piles on the ground. Eventually, I’ll probably read one or two of them. That’s what entering an English BA does to you.

Next to reading and writing, my other interests lay with film and music. I try to check out as much as possible, even if it’s not my thing. Also, while I don’t like to admit it all that much, I am a big fan of videogames in my spare time.

If you meet me at one of the borrels, don’t hesitate to walk up to me for a chat about any of these things. I’ll buy you a beer.

 

Rachel Aisa-Bonoko – Email secretary

rachel

Hello, I’m Rachel! Writing about myself isn’t my forte, but I’ll give it a try. I’m the secretary of this year’s board, which means that I am in charge of responding and answering e-mails. Apart from that I’ll also write monthly articles for the website. I’m in my third year of the English bachelor and very excited about being in Writer’s Block! I’m interested in a lot of things, but I particularly love everything related to the arts. In my free time I like to read a variety of different genres (I’m not stuck to a particular one), paint portraits, when I have the time and run long distance.  I’m an animal lover (dogs, especially) but unfortunately don’t own any myself. Before moving to Amsterdam at 18 I lived in Panama for a couple of years where my interest in South American literature grew—authors like Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Isabel Allende and Pablo Neruda ( amongst others) were part of my school curriculum, and their work hold a special place in my heart.  Anyway, I think this is enough information about me for today. I hope you’ve come to know some things about me through this short description 🙂

 

Tom van Veenendaal – Secretary & Final editor

tom

I’m the keeper of meeting minutes and one of the final editors for this year’s Writer’s Block board. Captivated by the broad essays of Hazlitt and Carlyle, the prose and botany of Ruskin, the poetry of John Clare and the late Sir Geoffrey Hill, and the stories of John Updike, I look for the rich sensuality of literature everywhere. Since my roommates crave peace and I cannot provide it, I am always on the road, on the look-out for literary and social events, often visited under false pretenses, or wandering to some unknown location… At night I return and read from tarnished volumes with heart’s ease. After first hearing Górecki’s Third Symphony, I became possessed by Norman Mailer’s Mind of an Outlaw, and that “cyst of the weak, the unreal, and the needy” broke in me too. Assisted by the modern trinity of art, women and alcohol, I try and live as a volcano of sedition, raising hell and enjoying this resplendent world, in which it remains a luxury to draw the breath of life.

Meeting the board: Paul and Roos

The editorial board of 2016-2017 would like to introduce itself to you! First up: Editors-in-chief Paul Hofma and Roos Gravemaker.

Paul Hofma – Editor-in-chief

paulOh gods, I have to actually write something about me? Well, that’s new. So, hi: resident scientist and brand new Editor-in- Chief Paul here! Together with my fab co-EiC Roos I’ll be spearheading the new Writer’s Block board for this year. Basically, that means it’s my job to be lording my newfound powers over everybody as much as I possibly can – preferably by having them meet deadlines. ಠ_ಠ

As for me, I’m bit of an oddball in the Writer’s Block board, being a Master’s student in Physics, for example. Also, I’m crazy about rowing – if I could row every day, I probably would. As it stands, free time is an absolute lie: between studies, rowing, and Writer’s Block, I don’t have much time left except that tiny bit set aside for eating and sleeping. I do it all with passion and love, though, so it’s been a blast so far.

Writing is love, writing is life – but poetry is the bestest life. While I’m currently (read: permanently, and with shifting attentions) working on a long-form prose project too, my poetry is definitely my true love.

And, on a final note: coffee.

That is all.

 

Roos Gravemaker – Editor-in-chief

roos

Having just finished my BA English and studying now for my MA Literary Studies, I will be the Editor in Chief of Writer’s Block this year together with Paul. The reason why I wanted to study English is embarrassingly cliché but true; from the age of sixteen I became obsessed with the Jane Austen novels. Luckily, my literary interest now reaches beyond 19 th century romanticism, so I don’t intend to end up in a worrisome relationship with some ultra-rich male entrepreneur whom I had to interview for the college newspaper because I had to cover for my friend/ roommate who got ill. Having escaped this Fifty Shades of fucked up scenario, I love authors that make me laugh like Roald Dahl and David Sedaris, but I also have great respect for the works of Zadie Smith, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, and Hillary Mantel. Apart from books, I like to watch British detective series, and because of my for love Amy Winehouse I just started to listen to Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday as well. Movie-wise, I like all genres as long as it doesn’t have any creepy dolls in it. When I am not reading, vicariously solving crimes, or having sleepless nights over the puppets in Dark Chrystal and Spitting Image, I like to bake, go on cycling trips on my mountain bike, and go roller skating.