Some days I feel like a dinosaur; we all know how their story ended. Not just due to age, but my chosen profession just keeps getting gloomier as it seems headed toward extinction.
Most people probably know journalism is anything but a high-growth occupation. Declining revenue and what seems like more and more bottom-line-focused hedge fund owners do not paint a rosy picture for those of us in the news media.
Thousands of reporters, photographers, copy editors and other positions have been eliminated over the last decade. News outlets have closed down, leaving what some call a “news desert” in the communities they formerly served and kept informed.
A few bright spots surface here and there, Continue reading “A few kicks left after all”
Truth be told, I never found writing breaking news stories that hard. You’re really just telling what happened where and, if possible, why. It’s an important role for a journalist but it never really lit a fire under me.
Not so with most of the stories I’ve written over the last several years. As a freelancer, I get to pick and choose the stories I write. My clients are not interested in breaking news, although some probably wouldn’t turn it down if I learned of something that merited immediate coverage. They’re more interested in features and details, so I get to dig deeper and find an angle and a story.
My most recent case in point involves Continue reading “I dig digging in to find a story”
“Time is money” is a saying most people have probably heard. It’s something I’ve found to be true over and over again. And now that I’m freelancing, I’ve kept it in mind nearly every day.
Most of my clients pay per word or per project, only one pays an hourly rate. (They pay well, too, but it’s pretty sporadic.) To track how much time I spend on a project, article or story, I use Toggl. I’m using it now to track how much time I spend writing this blog post, too. It’s all career-connected, right?
One of the most recent stories I finished probably set a personal record. It was about the 50th anniversary of a Colorado municipality. Since the records Continue reading “Time to determine my worth?”
Meeting people and learning something new are two things I like best about writing and reporting. I have been fortunate to have had a career that didn’t get too focused on any one subject, although many in the freelance arena argue that a niche is a key to success.
At any rate, the other day I was reminded of the joy of learning something new. And in this case, it dealt with something I use every day — a word! Continue reading “Now I know what a ‘triune’ is. Will I use it? Hmmm.🤔”
For freelance writers like me, with a strong journalism background, one of the areas I’ve wanted to learn more about and give a good try is story pitching.
Instead of having an editor assign stories, the writer tries to convince an editor they should publish or post a story. As a reporter, I would often actually pitch story ideas to my editor. But one main difference was those stories often resulted from some event or news release I read that morning. And since stories, or content, is what newspapers, TV stations and any other news outlet need to survive, it wasn’t too hard to get my editor to say “go do it, Mike.” 👍
As a freelancer, I don’t have that relationship with an editor. I get asked by clients to do this story or that story, Continue reading “Pitching my pitch gets closer”