TVNewser Show TVNewser FishbowlDC AgencySpy TVSpy LostRemote PRNewser SocialTimes AllFacebook 10,000 Words GalleyCat UnBeige MediaJobsDaily

Journalism Advice

Enhance Your Writing Career By Becoming An Expert

specializingBecoming a freelancer after working a traditional 9-to-5 job can be daunting. One way to make your life easier (and hopefully score more job opportunities) is to narrow your writing down to a specific topic.

Although you may be tempted to write about any random subject that pops in your mind (hey, you’ve got bills to pay), the experts advise against this tactic. Instead, find your specialty, and try to branch out within that:

Whether you’re a new freelancer or an established one, you may already gravitate toward a specific subject or two. Focus on a topic you’re truly interested in, and the writing will come naturally. Don’t worry about markets just yet. There are paying markets for every niche, and you’ll land those gigs if your work is strong. Reaching out across social media can boost your presence and reliability as an expert in a specific field.

To get more tips on how to hone your specialty to grow your career, read: Growing Your Writing Career By Becoming A Specialist

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.

How To Negotiate Pay Increases as a Freelancer

LifeAsAFreelancer

Becoming a freelancer full time can be an overwhelming undertaking. The reliability of your old job is long gone, replaced with a constant need to hustle for work.

And that’s not even going into the money issue. Freelancers often deal with a fluctuating financial situation. Some months you be may have more clients than you know what to do with, other times — not so much.

That’s why it’s so important to know what your work is worth:

I’ve found editors rarely pay much in increases; they have a budget for stories and that’s that. However, if you’re a steady contributor, you may be able to finagle an extra $50 or so. If the work isn’t too demanding, it might be worth your while to keep this client. Or perhaps you can negotiate other benefits. For example, instead of all rights to the work, your client takes only one-time rights, so you can easily sell the work (and make money) elsewhere.

To get more advice on freelancing, read: Pros and Cons of Life as a Freelancer.

– Aneya Fernando

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.

How To Get Your Personal Essay Published

CraftPersonalEssays

The personal essay is enjoying a surge of popularity. We share more personal information online than ever before, whether it’s on social media, blogs or even national publications.

Personal essays force you to observe your life from a different perspective, to get inspired from your own experiences and to be brave and share controversial opinions. But first, you need to get your work published:

Unless you already have a relationship with an editor or publication, you need to write your essay before sending it out — rather than selling it as an idea in a pitch letter. Carinn Jade, blogger at Welcome To The Motherhood, prefers to have a particular market in mind when she’s crafting her essays. “It’s really about knowing the periodical or site, knowing their voice and point of view and tailoring [your piece] to fit with their content.” She recommends reading profusely, finding publications that speak to you and trying to join that community instead of doing a broad search for markets.

For more tips on writing personal essays, read: Your Life in 1,000 Words: The Craft Of Personal Essays.

– Aneya Fernando

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.

HuffPost Live Executive Producer Shares Her ‘Hard-Learned Lessons’

AllisonGirvinControlRoomThere’s a helpful post today on Maria Shriver‘s site The Shriver Report. It comes from Allison Girvin, executive producer of HuffPost Live.

Girvin prefaces her nine informal edicts for fellow female broadcast journalists with the admission that she has come to most of her professional wisdom via trial-and-error. She warns that it remains harder for women in the business than it does for their male counterparts:

You will be asked to take the notes at meetings because you are the only woman in the room, even though you’re also the most senior person there. Your boss will forget to invite you to happy hours even though he remembers to invite the rest of your (all male) team. I can’t tell you how often I’ve been asked if I’m the secretary. The higher you climb, the worse it gets…

Read more

What to Do After Your Story Has Been Killed

KilledStory

Let’s say you landed a pitch (hooray!) and after all the effort you put into the research, reporting and writing — the piece gets rejected. What’s your next move?

It can be hard to pick yourself up after your story gets killed. It’s easy to take it personally — but there are countless reasons why your story didn’t make it to publication, and it may have nothing to do with your writing. It could be a time issue, internal changes at the magazine or it could be a new editor who just doesn’t care for your topic.

The latest Mediabistro feature looks at what you should do when your hard work doesn’t make it into the book. Here’s an excerpt:

Be prepared to take responsibility for any shortcomings or misunderstandings. Most importantly, be able to learn from the situation. Not every editor is willing to be your mentor, but some are willing to give you feedback as to why something won’t or didn’t work. And whatever you do, don’t be overly apologetic. You’ll only appear desperate and needy to the editor, which doesn’t bode well if you hope to work with him or her again. I learned the hard way that editors simply don’t have patience for it. Instead, thank them for the opportunity and assure that you’ll apply the lessons from the experience to future assignments.

For more advice on how to move forward, read: 6 Things to Do After Your Story Has Been Killed.

– Aneya Fernando

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.

How to Pick the Right Market for Your Writing

right-market

Nowadays, there are a plethora of pubs for a writer to send submissions to. Thousands of blogs, online magazines, newspapers, literary reviews, the list goes on. You may feel the urge to pitch them all, but it’s important to stop and think about your audience beforehand.

In the latest Mediabistro feature, veteran freelancers give their advice on picking the best market for your work. One main factor a freelancer should consider? Print vs. digital:

When considering whether to submit your work to online or print markets, there are a few key pros and cons for each. Koa Beck, editor-in-chief of Mommyish.com, says that “digital often doesn’t pay as well as print, but you can respond to a current event in a super timely manner and have it go viral… if it resonates with people.” Although print does generally pay more, writing for print is a double-edged sword. Travel writer Susan Barnes states, “I have found for the most part that print pays more, but then again, that market is diminishing.” If you’re a new writer, it can be helpful to bolster your resume by getting published online before jumping into the more competitive world of print. Many popular magazines have online counterparts that are largely fed by the work of new freelancers as well.

To get more tips on how to pick the right market for you, read: Finding the Right Market for Your Work.

– Aneya Fernando

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.

WATCH: Five Things I Didn’t Learn in J-School

Something they don’t always teach in college is that the learning doesn’t really happen until you’re out of school. But by then it’s called working on your craft. And you get paid for it.

Stephanie Tsoflias, New York market TV reporter and Mediabistro instructor gives her list of the top five things she didn’t learn in journalism school.

If you like what you hear, click on this link to sign up for Tsoflias’ “TV News reporting” class or go to mediabistro.com/courses to search for something else you may want to learn.

How to Monetize Your Blog

Everyone has a blog nowadays, but not everyone manages to make money from it. If you’ve managed to strike upon a large readership for your blog, thanks to breaking news or a great idea, your road to monetizing is far from over. Just because the masses come to you for info or entertainment does not mean advertisers will do the same, or that a book deal is in the bag. In the latest Mediabistro feature, Blair Koenig shares her experience from building a successful blog STFU, Parents, which gets 1.5 to 2 million page views a month:

When you’re building your own personal blog, it’s up to you to figure out how to make money — whether it’s from ad networks, independent advertisers, book deals, stores or through other media outlets. Koenig jokes, “I know there’s a lot out there that makes it sound like if you’re a popular blogger someone’s going to just ring your doorbell and be like, ‘Hey, I want to make a movie [based on your blog]!’ But it’s really, really hard and usually a lot of that stuff is created from the blogger [rather] than the other way around.”

Koenig uses three different ad networks and a couple of independent advertisers to earn money on her blog. She landed a book deal after completing the grueling process of writing a 60-page book proposal. She has plans to build a store within her website featuring STFU, Parents-themed merchandise as well. But money doesn’t suddenly start flowing in when your blog becomes popular, according to Koenig. She’s appeared on Good Morning America and various news outlets to talk about her blog, and although these appearances spike traffic to her site, she’s not getting paid outright for any publicity.

For more tips and advice on blogging, read What You Need to Know About Writing for Blogs.

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.

What Are The Downsides of Freelancing?

Journalism is an ever-changing profession and at the moment, freelancing is having a surge popularity. A quality piece of freelance writing is a hot commodity, but it better be meticulously researched, well executed and an all-around engaging read.

In theory, freelancing sounds great. You have flexible hours, you can work from home, you can spend more time with loved ones. But there are plenty of downsides too, like an unpredictable income, no benefits whatsoever and the isolation of working alone. In our latest Mediabistro feature, a freelance writer talks about the struggles of separating her work and home life:

When there’s no boss hovering over your shoulder, and you can’t get that vision of the overflowing laundry basket out of your head, and you don’t really have any immediate deadlines, it’s difficult to stay on task. It’s taken me four years to develop my little system, and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t still duck away for the occasional afternoon nap or throw in the towel early to watch TV on a bad day. But like any other job, when something isn’t working, you adapt to the drawbacks and work to restore balance the best way you can.

To hear how she overcame her freelance challenges, read Balancing Your Freelance Life With Your Personal Life

Aneya Fernando

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.

New York Jets Huddle Up to Some Basic Media Rules

There is absolutely nothing wrong with a pro sports team media relations department trying to coach players on how to handle a press conference or locker room interview. However, when such guidance is printed up as a laminated cheat sheet and shared via Twitter by a sports reporter, well, mocking media X’s and O’s are pretty much assured.

Photo evidence of the laminated card was aired out last night by New York Daily News NFL/Jets reporter Manish Mehta. Here’s the front:

Read more

<< PREVIOUS PAGENEXT PAGE >>