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Whip Your Website Into Shape to Improve Your Pitch Acceptance Rates

Professional-website-articleIf you’re a freelance writer, you probably link to your personal website in your email signature and social media profile pages. Your site may be a blog on a hosted domain, a page you haven’t updated in months, or it may be a well-executed window to who you are as a writer.

When sending out  pitches, your website can be a make-or-break factor for editors deciding whether to give your story the go-ahead. Establish your trustworthiness and showcase your best work with a professional, well-designed site.

[Carol Tice, freelance writer and founder of several web resources for writers] highlights four main components of a killer website: a homepage, an “About” page, contact info, clips and testimonials. The homepage should clearly and concisely state what you do and how you can help your client, while your About page can delve into the work you’ve done recently. “A lot of people’s About pages start, ‘I first knew I wanted to be a writer when I was five years old.’” Tice says. “This is not what the client wants to know about you — they want to know, ‘Who have you been writing for lately?’”

For more tips, read: How to Create a Writer’s Website That Gets You Work.

The full version of this article is exclusively available to Mediabistro AvantGuild subscribers. If you’re not a member yet, register now for as little as $55 a year for access to hundreds of articles like this one, discounts on Mediabistro seminars and workshops, and all sorts of other bonuses.

Dyllan McGee Explains: ‘Explosion of Platform is an Explosion of Opportunity’

Photo credit: Jan Goldstoff

We recently caught up with Emmy Award-winning producer Dyllan McGee at the WiCi Awards sponsored by New York Women in Communications (NYWICI).

The event honored rising stars in media and as McGee emceed, we couldn’t help but get a dose of inspiration from the filmmaker herself.

She created and founded MAKERS, a digital and video storytelling platform that aims to be the largest and most dynamic collection of women’s stories ever assembled. It launched online in 2012 and premiered on-air in 2013 on PBS.

MediaJobsDaily: What were your thoughts when you started out doing a documentary about women only to find out it had never been done before? Read more

Good News! Monthly Jobs Report Shows Another Dip in Unemployment

ImproveJobProspectsWhat a way to end the week on a high note! The monthly jobs report was issued today and employment looks really good.

For the ninth consecutive month, more than 200,000 jobs were created. In October alone 214,000 new jobs were added. Plus, unemployment decreased to 5.8 percent. We should point out that’s the lowest it’s been in six years. Read more

Should You Reveal Your Pregnancy During a Job Interview? Experts Weigh In

baby bumpIf you’re sporting a baby bump, congratulations!

And if you’re interviewing for a job while you’re pregnant, you may be wondering if you should disclose your pregnancy to potential employers.

According to employment attorney Donna Ballman on AOL Jobs, you shouldn’t disclose it while you’re searching for a new role. Read more

Five Ways to Boost Your Productivity in the Morning

yogaIf you want to be more productive, raise your hand! Maybe that’s because you’ve just had your umpteenth cup of coffee for the afternoon and it feels like the afternoon is in slow motion.

Why not try a few new things tomorrow morning? Perfect timing for a Friday. And if all goes well, you can challenge yourself to five full days of productivity boosters next week.

According to a piece on U.S. News & World Report, there are a few ways we can change things up in our morning routine to bolster output before noon. Read more

What 12 Years in Food Television Taught Celebrity Chef Danny Boome

Danny-Boome-articleIt’s sometimes hard to remember when you’re starting out that it takes time to become really good at what you’re doing. You might feel lacking in light of the talent and polish you see in those around you, but it’s worth remembering that talent usually isn’t innate, but the product of years of hard work.

Even for someone like Danny Boome, whose outsized personality earned him a contract to host a TV show — a role he wasn’t even seeking at the time — it took years to figure out how to effectively wield that personality on television. Now a seasoned veteran of shows like Food Network’s Rescue Chef and current host of Z Living’s Good Food America, Boome reflects on what it took to get him there.

When I started I didn’t really have the maturity. There’s no training for it. No one teaches you how to read the teleprompt, no one teaches you how to throw to the camera, no one teaches you how to manipulate the camera and also take a beat for the editor. There [are] technical production angles that take time. I didn’t realize what vehicle I was driving, and now over those 10 years, my knowledge base has grown. My maturity has grown. I think probably the last five years have been the best years of my television career.

For more, read: So What Do You Do, Danny Boome, Celebrity Chef and Host of Good Food America?

Man Suspended From Job After Answering Phone in Robotic Voice

retro phoneApparently one man learned that answering a help line on the job in a robotic voice is not a good move.

According to DNAinfo, Robert Dillon was suspended for 20 days without pay, mainly for speaking that way to customers in the winter of 2013 on an information technology support line. Read more

NPR Issues Social Media Reminder to Employees on Election Day

flagWe first read about this NPR reminder on JimRomenesko.com and it’s worth repeating not only for Election Day but for any other day as well.

While many HR policies now include a social media one, it’s a powerful reminder that whatever you tweet or post will look like it’s essentially coming from your news outlet.

The guideline emphasizes: “The first rule of the day is simple. Just as “there’s no cheering in the press box,” it’s not appropriate to cheer (or boo) about election results on social media.” Read more

Schmoozers Can Save Their Jobs With Social Words Like ‘Baseball’

sportsHow about that big homecoming for LeBron James?

When it comes to sports, if you know a thing or two (and even if you don’t), as long as you talk shop at the office it could bode you well.

According to new research from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, if you message colleagues with chatchat such as sports or food, you’re significantly more likely to keep your job during layoffs. Read more

Three Things You Should Never Ever Do At the Office

multitaskingWe’ve all had bad days, we get it. So, how you react to a colleague’s inane conversation or a boss’s unrealistic deadline is key to your success. Reputations aren’t build overnight but they can certainly crumble in an instant.

According to this piece we saw on Monster, several factors stand out to keep your cool. In other words, avoid doing these four things at the office.

1. React to anything out of rage or spite. If you’ve ever responded within an instant to an email that made you completely irate, we’re with you. The next time you receive an equally disturbing message though, try to take a walk. Step away from the computer. And definitely breathe. Read more

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