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You might think I'm crazy...

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by MizzouBrave, Mar 8, 2010.

  1. MizzouBrave

    MizzouBrave New Member

    I'm looking for a little career advice here from you experienced writers out in SJ land. Since graduating in 2008, I've worked as a staff writer for one of the subscription-only "recruiting" sites, covering football/basketball recruiting as well assisting in coverage of both teams for a BCS program.

    However, I don't view this as a destination job by any means, and I'm looking to make the next step in my career. My question is this:

    Would I be an idiot to jump back into print if I had the opportunity to be the beat writer for a college team?

    There are a few reasons for my consideration of this career move. For one, I miss the effect a competent editor can have on my writing. With these sites, there's not a whole lot of advice given for maturing as a writer and structuring better, more engaging narratives. Although I receive grammatical editing, I feel like I'm treading water, and at this age, I can't afford to do that.

    The second reason is that I feel like I can't get noticed on these type of sites. I write for a bigger BCS program site, but we don't have the largest base of subscribers. Plus, how many future employers actually check out these sites? I have no idea.

    The third reason is I realize there is a certain stigma attached to these sites, and I worry if I hang around too long, people will lump me into that "fanboy faux-journalist" category. Am I being paranoid?

    I realize this is long, but if anyone has any thoughts/feelings/ideas/witty insults, I'd appreciate it. Thanks for listening, ladies and gents.
  2. SF_Express

    SF_Express Active Member

    Well, understand, anything you jump back into anymore is certainly not going to be strictly "print." Not anymore.

    You wouldn't be an idiot to make such a move in an abstract sense, but of course, where you'd be jumping to would have a lot to do with the wisdom of your decision.
  3. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    Paranoid? Maybe. If the money is OK and the site seems secure, you're doing better than most.

    Good on you for wanting an editor and his/her hands-on help, but understand that not all editors have that kind of time anymore. They might say they do, but maybe it's a different story a month after you're there.
  4. MizzouBrave

    MizzouBrave New Member

    Thanks for the insight so far, guys. Is it arrogant of me, though, to want more exposure somewhere else? Or is it unfounded to worry about the stigma that comes with those sites?

    Of course, I understand all of this depends on the opportunity available.
  5. WriteThinking

    WriteThinking Well-Known Member

    Your feelings aren't wrong, or arrogant, or anything, for that matter. You know what they say about feelings: They just are.

    I'd submit that what you're describing with regard to your work is a common experience, especially among those who have previously worked in newspapers.

    That is, there is the sense you get that you are working in a vacuum.

    The Web is so big, and so esoteric and nebulous, and yet so pervasive, which, in that sense is supposedly good for your work/chances of exposure, etc.

    But the problem is, the writer doesn't feel who/what he or she is working for in the same sense that he/she does with a print product. In other words, the reach is potentially so big that your mind loses the handle on it, and your audience, and who's really interested in your work on the more personal level that's needed in order for people to really know, themselves, that it's happening.

    Does that make sense? It's hard to explain, but I'd bet there are lots of people on here who get what you're saying, and what I'm trying to say.
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