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I've been out of the newspaper business for a while...

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by NancyLou, Dec 6, 2013.

  1. NancyLou

    NancyLou Member

    Is it okay to ask for advice when looking at and talking to different newspapers?

    Since revamping my resume and cover letter, more editors are taking an interest in me. A newspaper I contacted yesterday is wanting to talk to me today.

    It's a very small newspaper, very small audience. It's not in the greatest location, being pretty far from any major airport. BUT - the position is diverse, would require me to do a number of different types of articles. Any journalist's first response might be, you can use this as a jumping off place to move up in the world to a larger newspaper. And were I younger and hungrier, I'd be thinking the same thing.

    However, I'm exiting an over two decades marriage that required a lot of moves, which meant starting over both in my career and a new place every three or four years and I'm looking to grow roots.

    I'm curious to hear what you guys might think of this? I don't want to say no to it right out of the gate because it does look like an interesting situation there. But I also don't want to say yes immediately, either, because another offer might come in that has a better "fit" for what I'd like.

    I should say, I've not been offered anything yet, but I'm the sort of person who likes to have her ducks in a row and plan ahead in situations like this, wanting to put my best foot forward, where I'm usually a "fly by the seat of my pants" kind of person.
  2. mash4077

    mash4077 New Member

    I was in a similar spot when I got laid off from a good job writing for a newsletter in my mid-30s. I took a weekly GA job in a rural area about an hour from the nearest city big enough for a college, two from any decent-sized airports, and at half the pay of what I had been making before. I made it work and achieved a goal of working at a daily within a year of that. Since, I've been able to cover a variety of things, including sports, (on staff and as a freelancer) and I'm now working in an area of the country I prefer and covering subjects I prefer also for a small daily.

    I'd say that if your meeting/interview with this paper yields a job offer, decide whether it would be a good fit for your current needs/wants and not judge it by whether you "might" get an offer from somewhere else at some point in the future (I'm not sure if you've interviewed with anyone else recently and you're waiting to hear back, if you have another pending interview or are just hoping to hear back from a paper in a preferred location). I understand about not wanting to be so nomadic after the bouncing around you said you have done. But even though it might not be the ideal location, if the job/employer is good, you'll get the experience you need quickly and can accelerate your path to a better location with good work. It's what I've been able to do. Good luck.
  3. NancyLou

    NancyLou Member

    I've looked a little more deeply into not just the newspaper but the company that owns them. I'm seeing some red flags that the problems at the paper might not entirely be within the newspaper itself.

    I can see all sorts of things that could be done to revamp the paper, but I'm not 100% corporate would allow any of them. I don't know I want to walk into a newspaper that "can" be saved, but the owners would prefer to spend their time and money elsewhere.

    There's nothing worse than an owner who isn't willing to allow some creative freedom because they're ego won't allow it.
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