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Sports/news writer opening in Upper Sandusky, Ohio

Discussion in 'Journalism Jobs' started by lmcmillan33, Aug 5, 2014.

  1. lmcmillan33

    lmcmillan33 Member

    The (Upper Sandusky) Daily Chief-Union is hiring a sports/news writer. The DC-U publishes six days a week in the afternoons in Upper Sandusky, halfway between Columbus and Toledo. The position is about two-thirds sports with the primary focus on high school sports. Responsibilities include photography and page design. Experience in both is helpful but not required. Please send cover letter, resume, references and clips to sports editor Lonnie McMillan at lmcmillan@dailychiefunion.com.

    This should be posted on journalismjobs.com in the next couple of days. I can answer any questions anyone has. Based on questions I've had before, here's a few notes:

    - I don't know exactly how much it pays but I think it pays pretty well for an entry-level kind of position at a very small newspaper.
    - Part of why the pay is decent is because it is 48 hour per week. You do get paid overtime on a weekly basis.
    - That said, 48 hours a week is a lot, usually equates to working six days a week and is overwhelming to some people. However, summers give a nice break.
    - Upper Sandusky is a small, rural city of about 6,500 people and the entire county is about 22,000 people. It can be very boring for some people who are not used to small towns. Findlay and Marion are bigger cities about 25 minutes away and you can get to the edge of both Toledo and Columbus in about an hour.
    - Working sports for a small afternoon paper has both advantages and disadvantages.
    -First, the disadvantage is that you have to come in at 7 every morning to put together that day's paper. You get to go home by noon. Then you cover something in the evening, so it's kind of a split shift. Fridays are long days because Saturday's paper comes out in the morning and we put it together Friday night. Another negative is then having to get up to cover stuff on Saturday mornings sometimes.
    -The positive is you usually have one or two nights a week without an evening responsibility and if you stay on top of things, you can get out at 12 or 1 and be all done for the day. If you cover soccer or cross country or something like that, your afternoon break is shorter but you probably can get home by 7 and have evenings free, which is something most sports journalists don't get much of. Also, in between seasons and summers, Friday night responsibilities are alternated and you get longer weekends that start around noon Friday. Except for basketball season, you usually have Saturday evenings free, another thing most sports journalists don't get. We try to work in a free Saturday or two each sports season. Sundays are pretty much always off.
    - We cover five high schools and do so pretty in-depth. We use stringers on Friday nights and generally get all five team's games covered every week. Of course, we don't go to those extremes with other sports.
    - Because it's a small paper with a small staff, you have a variety of responsibilities. Most people come in not knowing much about photography but we teach them enough to get by and most people enjoy it. As noted above, page design ability is helpful but also can be taught. You'll also have to do some proofreading. News coverage is usually a few meetings a month and a feature or two per week.
    - Our current guy is moving on because he doesn't like the small town and misses his friends and is going to go back home and work in another career path. He's been with us for two years. The guy before was local to here and moved on after a year because he wanted to go into teaching and coaching. Before that, we had a guy who stuck with us for more than five years. I've been working here for 10 years. I think that kind of turnover compares pretty favorably to most small papers. There's good and bad, as with every job, but in general, I think it's a pretty good job.

    I'll answer any other questions I can.
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