Every month or so the OTW will be doing a Q&A with one of its volunteers about their experiences in the organization. The posts express each volunteer's personal views and do not necessarily reflect the views of the OTW or constitute OTW policy. Today's post is with Megan Diane, who volunteers as a staffer in our Volunteers & Recruiting Committee.
How does what you do as a volunteer fit into what the OTW does?
I am a volunteer for the OTW Volunteers & Recruiting Committee. The OTW is completely volunteer run, and those volunteers need training, access to tools, and support. I like to think of Volunteers & Recruiting as one of the backbone committees of the OTW; we help provide infrastructure for current volunteers, onboard new volunteers, and thank any volunteers who leave us.
I also volunteer for the AO3 Policy & Abuse team, which helps answer complaints received about content on the Archive. It’s definitely a unique experience being involved in both inward and outer facing committees for the OTW.
What is a typical week like for you as a volunteer?
Every week is different. When we recruit, I’m busy organizing applications, creating contacts, answering any queries, as well as managing the database and websites we use. Recruitment can be a really hectic time, and there have been times where I get upwards of 40 emails in a few hours! There are also a lot of small tasks that have to be done for any volunteer whether they be incoming, outgoing, or current. If we aren’t recruiting, I’m usually helping with larger projects like our yearly Still Willing To Serve surveys, implementation of new OTW-wide tools, or discussing volunteer or staff needs with other OTW committees.
What made you decide to volunteer?
I fell in love with the Archive first, and after doing a bit more research fell in love with the OTW itself. It’s a great organization for fandom that not only supports the Archive but rescues fic through Open Doors, lobbies governments through Legal, and supports academic work through Transformative Works and Cultures. I wanted to help make the organization as successful as possible, as well as maybe try to make a small mark on Fandom.
What's the most fun thing to you about volunteering for the OTW?
Definitely the community here. Not only do we get to be part of larger fandom, but the OTW has its own unique culture; everyone here is so passionate about our larger vision. I’ve picked up several new fandoms since I’ve volunteered, as well as made some really good online friends!
What fannish things do you like to do?
I enjoy reading and writing fanfiction, and have been teaching myself editing via Photoshop. I’ve been involved in a lot of different fandom oriented discords and discussion groups as well. I’ve been able to attend a few local conventions and liveshows from podcasts I follow...eventually I’d like to make it bigger conventions! I’ve recently started enjoying cosplay -- though mainly closet cosplays!
Now that our volunteer’s said five things about what they do, it’s your turn to ask one more thing! Feel free to ask about their work in comments. Or if you'd like, you can check out earlier Five Things posts.
The Organization for Transformative Works is the non-profit parent organization of multiple projects including Archive of Our Own, Fanlore, Open Doors, Transformative Works and Cultures, and OTW Legal Advocacy. We are a fan run, entirely donor-supported organization staffed by volunteers. Find out more about us on our website.