For the past six months, Adoption Choices of Nevada has had the honor of having Devon Thornton as an Editorial Intern. Each week, she worked diligently to provide new content, and graciously took each piece of critique as a learning experience. She asked amazing questions, and sought to understand all she could about the adoption industry. Even on her more challenging weeks, Devon was patient, respectful and kind, displaying the richness and depth of her character. She’s been a joy to work with, and a valued member of the team.
Sadly, Devon’s contract concluded on October 1st, and she has moved onto the next season of her life. Adoption Choices greatly appreciated everything she has done for us. She will be greatly missed.
Before she left, Devon reflected back on her journey with us and how she has grown. She gives us a glimpse into what’s next for her, and what her future goals are. We wish her the very best in everything she does!
RR: When did you start as an intern, and what prompted you to apply for the internship?
DT: My internship with Adoption Choices of Nevada began on April 1st of 2019. Many things led to me finding this internship, but mainly it was my desire to write. When I decided to look for an internship, I had been out of school for 2 years. I had worked two different jobs, neither of which were in writing, and felt that I wanted to get back to my roots. I found Adoption Choices via a job post on Indeed and immediately applied. I loved that it was remote and I thought it’d be cool to write blog posts for an adoption company. It ended up being the perfect situation for me. I packed my bags and uprooted my life at the same time I started the internship. It’s been the best way to transition and I’m going to miss being a part of the team.
RR: What knowledge of adoption did you have coming into the internship? How has that changed/not changed?
DT: Coming into the internship, my knowledge of adoption was pretty limited. While I have family and friends that have been touched by adoption, most of what I knew were small details about where their birth families were from and such. With Adoption Choices, I have learned SO much. Not only do I know so much more about the actual processes of adoption, but I also have a better understanding of the emotional struggles the adoption triad (adoptees, birth mothers, adoptive families) face.
RR: Over the past six months, what do you feel you’ve learned through being an intern with Adoption Choices?
DT: The list is long. As far as myself, I feel that my abilities as a writer have greatly improved. I’ve learned to write in a more concise way for readability and have a better grasp on SEO now. With a degree in Creative Writing you would assume that I’d be good at most types of writing, but it’s like any skill. It takes a lot of practice to perfect. This internship has really pushed me as a writer and I’m so grateful to my team for helping me improve my skills. As far as adoption, I can’t even begin to list all of the things I’ve learned over the last six months. I know that I’m not an expert, but I do feel that my knowledge probably exceeds that of the average person. I’ve conducted a lot of research in my time with Adoption Choices and I know that if I were ever to pursue adoption in any capacity that I would already have a good head start.
RR: What was one of the biggest challenges you faced?
DT: There were a few for me. For one, it could be difficult at times to write from the perspective of someone with experience in adoption when I personally have none. There were many topics that, even with a lot of research, I had no true understanding. Another challenge was learning how to write for readability. My writing experience is mostly in the creative realm. I was used to writing for myself and the critiques I got were usually on story or plot. Writing style is so individual. Even though I kept my individuality during this internship, I had to learn how to write for everyday people to understand me. I had to make sure what I was writing never came across the wrong way, sounded professional, and also easy to read. That’s not as easy as it may seem.
RR: What was a highlight of your experience?
DT: Working with my Wonder Women. Having a team to work with, get feedback from, and bond was the best part of this experience. I was able to build a connection with a group of women from all over the country in a way I never thought possible. We had monthly ZOOM (video-chat) meetings that I always looked forward to. We even created a Facebook group for us to connect and share with each other. I definitely feel like I have friends all over.
RR: What advice would you give to help us improve the program in the future?
DT: Overall, I believe this program is fantastic. Adoption Choices and Rachel have done an amazing job at building a program that helps the writers grow, creates connections, and builds knowledge. I feel more capable as a writer now than I did six months ago. Keep doing what you’re doing.
RR: Anything you’d like to ask, say or suggest to your Intern Supervisor?
DT: Rachel, you’re a rockstar.
RR: What is next for you?
DT: After my internship concludes, I will be beginning a Montessori training program in order to become a certified Montessori educator. I hope to continue my writing journey in the meantime and maybe even publish a book in the future.
I want to thank my Adoption Choices family for allowing me this time and space to grow as a writer and a person. You all are truly amazing and I’m so grateful to have worked with you all!
About the Author
Rachel Robertson is a published journalist, book editor, certified Publishing Specialist, and aspiring novelist. She graduated from Central Washington University (CWU) in March 2011, having found her writing voice within the Creative Nonfiction genre and grew to work as a freelance book editor for small presses all across the United States.
In June 2018, she embarked on an internship with Virginia Frank and came on board with Adoption Choices Inc., Not for Profit 501(c)(3), in December 2018. Between her mutual passion with adoption and surrogacy, and her own personal history with adoption, Rachel is excited to research and share topics each week that will spread awareness and better serve the faithful patrons of Adoption Choices Inc.
When Rachel isn’t haunting her local Starbucks or Barnes and Noble, she’s avidly pouring over her Writer’s Digest subscription or cozying up with a cup of tea and book. She currently resides in the beautiful Pacific Northwest with her beloved wife and Border Collie.