Who can join The Tattoo?

We’re always looking, as we say, for talented teens with an interest in journalism.
But what does that mean?
The simple answer is that if you are 13 to 19, you can do it. We’re most happy when younger teens come calling because, of course, we can keep them in our clutches longer. There’s obviously a lot more time to learn and do things when you’re 13 than the week before you turn 20.
The idea, in American terms, is for people to join when they are in eighth grade or their first two years of high school.
You don’t have to fit that mold, though. We’ve had older teens who have done terrific work and whom we love dearly.
You also do not need to be American. Much as we love our countrymen, we’re most happy when a teen from far away asks to join. We love having Tattoo writers in El Salvador, Ireland, Malta, Singapore, England, India, Wales, Canada and beyond. It adds a welcome diversity to our group – and winds up turning kids all over the planet into friends, with us and with each other.
Though most of the teens we find are writers – or want to be – we’re also eager to have photographers and cartoonists come aboard. Photographers are especially welcome. We’ve usually had a problem getting decent pictures, which is ridiculous in a digital age. We’re hoping that our photography drought is finally over, with a few talented kids finally here to help.
To join, you only need to send us an email telling us about yourself. Don’t just write something like “hi i’d like to join. what can i do?” Tell us about yourself: your name, your hometown, your school, your interests, what you think you can contribute and why. Tell us something memorable so that you stick in our thick, old brains.
And then JUMP RIGHT IN. Find stories, toss out ideas, email other members and us, read the old stories, look at the pictures, become a part of a continuing tradition that’s brought some of those long-ago Tattoo writers into the news business as professional reporters. The Tattoo is for teens. It’s for fun. But it’s also the finest possible training to find out if journalism is really your thing.
If it is, you’ve found the world’s best showcase for your work. And even if it turns out that this isn’t your thing, you can make some friends and learn a few things.
If you’re interested, drop an email to Steve Collins and Jackie Majerus at

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