A reporter’s role is sometimes seen as a lowly occupation, but the truth is that a journalist must be multi-disciplined. The smaller the publication, the wider the range of skills needed. And these skills can be applied to other kinds of writing.
Whether you’re just setting out as a writer or have years of experience behind you, I recommend taking a job or internship at a regional newspaper.
While major publications may ask for a journalism degree, a small-town paper is likely to take you on if you can string words together while making coffee for the boss.
I was already an established freelance writer when I decided to take a job at my local newspaper, hoping to expand my skills. In fact, I was in my 50s, making me probably the oldest “cub reporter” in the business.
My predecessor had enrolled in a university course in journalism, hoping to further her career. Within weeks, she’d returned home, asking for her old job back.
“I’d done it all before,” she complained.
She clearly didn’t recognize what a valuable training course the role of junior reporter was. Unluckily for her, I’d already been appointed to her former post and I was learning the same skills she had while drawing a salary.Continue reading
Do you know what vanity metrics and analytics are?
Have you ever opened up a tracking program (like Google Analytics or Fathom or Clicky) and stared at all the data – unsure what is the most important?
If your answer is anything even vaguely related to “Hell to the frickin’ yes!”, then you are not alone.
These days, you can find metrics and statistics to validate or invalidate anything.Continue reading
Even after engaging in a few video calls or virtual hangouts, I admit I am still nervous to speak in front of a webcam. In most cases, especially before a call, I will Google desperately for ways to engage better, but everything falls flat immediately when the conversation begins. Even my usual mantra doesn’t help!
I believe I have some kind of social anxiety that makes me turn down any conversation or interaction via a webcam. Or maybe it’s imposter syndrome, making me hide behind emails.
Camera shyness is a typical thing for most people, especially millennials. One survey found that 73% of millennials still prefer to communicate through email and aren’t comfortable with web conferencing. Many, like me, are struggling with social phobia.
That leads to live videos, virtual communication, and virtual hangouts being immensely underutilized by the millennial workforce.
If you provide writing services, chances are you will need to speak to prospective clients, sources, and other writers through platforms such as Skype, Zoom, and Google Meet.
While each person may have valid reasons to avoid virtual interactions or online interactive events, such connections can offer you additional skill sets that you can draw from in your career and business.
Let’s look at ways virtual interactions and hangouts can help you in your work. From realizing the power of web meetings to fighting writer’s block using virtual technology, modern solutions have a lot to offer to a writer.Continue reading
Writing is not a standalone profession. It involves many creative skills in addition to being able to put words on paper. Creating written content such as blog posts, sales copy, articles, and other forms of writing involves skills like research, photography, videography, editing, and more. As a writer, you’ll need to be able to do more than just write if you want to grow in your career.
It takes a lot to become established as a writer. Many professionals worked on their craft for years before achieving success. This is because when they started their careers, they hadn’t worked on building the skills necessary to market themselves as a business. Instead, they probably started out with paid writing jobs, trying desperately to grow their client list as they struggled to pay their bills.
One of the major reasons writers struggle is that they do not see their writing as a business. When you manage your writing as a business, you should draw up a business plan that includes how you will build your skills and business. Work hard,and invest in your business by learning complementary skills, and you’ll be on your way to growing in your writing career.Continue reading