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Writing Samples?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Bristol Whipped, Jun 26, 2010.

  1. When you guys include writing samples along with a resume, how does everyone do it? A link to the stories on the internet? Word documents? PDFs?

    More importantly, those of you who do the hiring, what do you prefer?
  2. Greg Pickel

    Greg Pickel Member

    This is a great topic and question, thanks to anyone who gives some feedback in this thread!
  3. Writer33

    Writer33 Member

    I'm currently looking to fill a sports reporter position. There are a couple of things I've come across that were a bit bothersome. I've had a couple of instances where I've clicked to links that had stories, but I couldn't tell if they had been published. Linking a Web site is not a problem. It saves everyone time, but I want to be able to see that the stories were published. Not related, but in another instance, a candidate emailed his interest in the job. The problem was he had copied and pasted a previous email he had sent out. It included the email address of the editor he had sent it to. I felt bad for the guy, but he was immediately dropped from consideration. The best advice I can give is to carefully go over your material before you send it on its way. Good luck.
  4. Stitch

    Stitch Active Member

  5. flexmaster33

    flexmaster33 Active Member

    I use pdf copies of the pages...in large part so employers can not only see my work as a writer, but also my photography and page design. Regardless, I find it to be the most universal way to get clips across, even if it's only story clips.
  6. BobSacamano

    BobSacamano Member

    I use PDFs because you'd be surprised how many journalists are too dumb to make one -- in this job climate, no less. It's cleaner, shows a grasp on technology, and is easier, in general.

    One thing I like to do is find out as much as I can about the editor who will review my work. I go old school if the editor is a seasoned veteran. That means big ol' envelope, cover letter, and physical copies of clips. It's worked once, but I've heard back every time.
  7. Dan Feldman

    Dan Feldman Member

    I was actually having a conversation with a friend about this topic recently.

    Are you trying to hire the best journalist or the person who can put together the best application?

    Should accidentally including the other editor's e-mail address really be a disqualifying offense? Sure, it's a negative indicator. But is it really that terrible you wouldn't consider the applicant and make an overall evaluation (with that mistake playing a factor)?

    If that applicant had a mistake in one of his clips, would you stop considering him, or just consider it a negative? Isn't a mistake in an article more relevant?
  8. sportsguydave

    sportsguydave Active Member

    It's a tough call, but I think a mistake like that speaks to a certain carelessness, or inattention to detail that we wouldn't want to see in a story. Of course, nowadays many of us are taking a shotgun approach to job searches, so I can see where such a mistake might occur. But still...
  9. Stitch

    Stitch Active Member

    I'd fire you if your sports section has any errors in it.
  10. Mark2010

    Mark2010 Active Member

    I guess I'm old school. Still do the clip and copy thing. (That's why they're called clips, right?). Some websites only keep stories up for a certain amount of times. I have sent blogs, but I would always print them out and send on real paper.

    I try to send a variety: game stories, features, profiles, columns, blogs, analysis.
  11. Writer33

    Writer33 Member

    Dan, I think you make a good point. We received a large number of applications for this opening. Far more than in the past. Additionally, the talent level of the applicants is superior. To me it was a sloppy mistake that could have easily been avoided with a little attention to detail. As for Stitch's remark, I've made plenty of mistakes in my time.
  12. mustangj17

    mustangj17 Active Member

    PDFs. PDFs always PDFs. Everything I send is a PDF.
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