PW Student Spotlight: Katlyn Lindstrom


“So what PW things have you been dabbling in during your time at MSU?”

“I’ve done a lot. Actually, I wish I would have brought my resume with me so I don’t forget something.”

Like many of our fabulous P-dubs here at MSU, English and Professional Writing junior Katlyn Lindstrom is making the most of her time here at MSU both in and outside of the classroom.

“MSU for me has to do with giving students a wide variety of opportunities and a place where they can call home,” said Lindstrom.

10980714_10205755044580298_7875296784013244270_nSuch opportunities for Lindstrom currently include being the student liaison for the MSU College of Arts and Letters’ Peer Mentor and Student Ambassador programs, a member of the English recruitment taskforce, multimedia chair for Circle K, guest writer for ing Magazine, website redesign for MSU Young Authors’ Conference, editorial team member for the Red Cedar Review, and Communication Strategist for the MSU College Assistant Migrant Program (CAMP) through her WRA 202 class.

Because of Lindstrom’s extensive knowledge of the admission process and her passion for MSU and getting students excited about the opportunities available to them, she was hired to work with Quinn Moreno and Sarah Whitaker to research, design, and implement the College of Arts and Letter’s peer-mentor program and strengthening the student ambassador program.

Lindstrom explained, “I designed the application, I
10671440_10152601906537928_4300275128200512818_ndesigned the Peer Mentor contract and I have been helping with the recruitment process. I authored the content on the website for the College of Arts and Letters under ‘Advising’. Anytime you see any information about the program, I most likely wrote it…I will also be supervising the program next year and helping strengthen
the Student Ambassador program by taking what is already there and figuring out how to make it better to have student engaging with prospective students more…I will eventually be designing the handbook so I have been researching MSU brand standards…It is giving me really strong experience with finding where to go to find information and make that information accessible to people like how to tailor to a certain audience and how to collaborate with other people…It’s fun to be on the ground floor of something like that and its fun to be creating something to help make first year experiences better for College of Arts and Letters students.”

The two most professionally impacting experiences Lindstrom has had so far have involved exploring coding in both her WRA 210 course and while redesigning the Young Authors’ Conference website.

“It really gave me a lot of confidence in my abilities to make my own website and take ownership of myself and start branding myself online,” said Lindstrom about her WRA 210 course with Assistant Professor Casey McArdle, who referred her to the Young Authors’ Conference. “That was a moment of pride that he had enough faith in me to refer me even though I only had a semester’s worth of experience. [The Young Authors’ Conference] was my first experience with paid website design consulting which was really fun. I really enjoyed it and I can’t wait to do more.”

Lindstrom’s passion for website and document design is equaled by her love for writing.

“I have always wanted to be a writer,” said Lindstrom. “In February, I wrote a guest article for ing Magazine and I didn’t even think it would get published. I remember when the issue finally came out, I picked up a copy thinking I didn’t make it in but when I opened it up and it was right there on page six I freaked out and called my mom because that was the first time I had ever been published. There is really no experience like seeing your name in print. It was one of the most exciting things. At that moment I was like ‘if there was any doubt that I am a writer, this moment would remind me that yes, yes I am’ because there is no feeling as good than seeing something that I wrote there for other people to read.”

Despite everything she already has on her plate, Lindstrom still made time to study away in LA this Spring Break. During which time she was shown the ins and outs of the entertainment industry through numerous networking events (including one at DreamWorks), studio visits (including trips to mOcean and MPC), and independent explorations of the city (including a “magical trip” to Disney and Universal Studios).

Read more of Lindstrom’s inspiring story and witness her endless passion and dedication to Professional Writing and English first hand by following her blog.


Practice Coding on Your Phone


Coding is something every PW must do and while it can be intimidating at first, practice can build confidence and skill. So whether you are completely new to coding or have some knowledge and just want practice, you should check out Apple’s new program Swifty. It is one of the easiest and simplest way to get started learning coding. It walks you through coding and teaches through trial and error, like in WRA 210! Swifty is an app you can purchase for your phone, which makes it great for learning when you are on the go. I know how boring it can be sitting and waiting in the hall for a class to start, but that’s what is great about Swifty. Just pull out your phone and start practicing. For more details about the app, check out the app description here or at the ITunes store app on your phone.

Writing & Self-Doubt: As Told By Virginia Woolf


Writing can be an excruciating task. It invites us to feel incredibly vulnerable. It opens us up to rejection and criticism, and in turn can incite quite a bit of self-doubt.

Almost all writers experience self-doubt at one point in their writing career. This article from Brain Pickings showcases Virginia Woolf’s own struggles with it in her own writing, and how she turned this commonplace experience among writers into the 1928 novel Orlando: A Biography.

It’s definitely an interesting read, and shows that even the most talented writers dealt with feelings of inadequacy. Be sure to check it out!


What Are Literary Agents?

The first time I heard about literary agents was while sitting in my WRA 380 course. A fellow student said she wanted to be a literary agent when she graduated and since then, I have been wondering what that might be. Being a lover of literature, I just had to find out. In my search, I came across three great articles that went a long way to explaining this professor I have never heard of before. They explained that literary agents are sort of the mediator between the author and the publisher, particularly large-scale publishers. They are always working in the author’s face to negotiate the best deal and the most rights when it comes to ownership of a piece. These are just some of the many things literary agents do though. I recommend referring to the following articles for more details about the profession, especially if you are interested in publishing a book or working as a literary agent.

Literary agent references:

Nathan Bransford’s “What Do Literary Agents Do?”

Independent Publisher’s “The Role of The Literary Agent”