Off the Wire: News for the Canadian media freelancer Mar 12-18

Once a week, we gather stories about the media business, journalism, writing, communications, and freelancing—with a Canadian focus—and share them in Off the Wire. Who needs a water cooler?

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From Canada:

From The U.S. and beyond:

Recently on Story Board:

  • The Born Freelancer’s Q&A with “Light Writer” Maggie MacPherson: As a word person (primarily) I’ve always been fascinated by those skilled in the visual arts. Maggie MacPherson is a Vancouver-based freelance photographer whose work I admire greatly. A lifelong hobbyist, she turned professional about five years ago…
  • PWAC Toronto editing seminar March 25: “Polishing Your Work: From Expert Tips to Editorial Workflows” is presented by PWAC Toronto Chapter and Magazines Canada on Monday, March 25  from 7:15 to 8:45 p.m. at the Miles Nadal Jewish Community Centre…

Spot a story you think we should include in next week’s Off the Wire? Email the link to editor@thestoryboard.ca or tweet us at @storyboard_ca.

Posted on March 18, 2019 at 6:00 am by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: ,

The Born Freelancer’s Q&A with “Light Writer” Maggie MacPherson

This series of posts by the Born Freelancer shares personal experiences and thoughts on issues relevant to freelancers. Have something to add to the conversation? We’d love to hear from you in the comments.

As a word person (primarily) I’ve always been fascinated by those skilled in the visual arts. Maggie MacPherson is a Vancouver-based freelance photographer whose work I admire greatly. A lifelong hobbyist, she turned professional about five years ago.

The Born Freelancer:  So, Maggie, what motivated you to “go pro”?

Maggie MacPherson:  I remember the day I nervously took a big breath, and proudly proclaimed “I’ve decided to become a photographer”. My partner looked back at me with confusion and said “… but you already are a photographer.”

I had already been doing headshots and creative photoshoots for years but it was properly charging for my work that made me consider myself a professional photographer.

It’s tempting to keep doing free work so you can just treat your work like art all the time and can therefore never fail. To me, being a professional artist means being good enough at your craft that you can collaborate with clients to get them what they need (regardless of what you might feel inspired to create in that moment).

TBF:  Did you need specialized training to become a pro?
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Posted on March 14, 2019 at 9:26 pm by editor · One Comment · Tagged with: , , ,

PWAC Toronto editing seminar March 25

Toronto-area writers, there’s an evening seminar coming up that will teach you how to do a better job of editing your own work.

“Polishing Your Work: From Expert Tips to Editorial Workflows” is presented by PWAC Toronto Chapter and Magazines Canada on Monday, March 25  from 7:15 to 8:45 p.m. at the Miles Nadal Jewish Community Centre.

At this evening seminar, three editors from different areas of publishing (consumer, freelance and agency) will share their best tips for freelance writers on how to polish their work, keep clients happy and get repeat business. We’ll talk about preparing your work for submission, editing, proofreading, style guides and more.

The speaker panel consists of:

Liann Bobechko is the Deputy Editor at Cottage Life, where she handles feature profiles, service and how-to pieces, articles on science and the environment, issues pieces, personal essays, recipes, and building projects for the magazine and online. After more than 15 years in the business, she still gets a thrill from seeing an idea become real on the pages of a magazine.

Franklin Carter is a self-employed editor and certified proofreader who works in Toronto on non-fiction books, magazines, reports and occasionally websites. In recent years, he has edited and proofread military books, multi-author medical reports, accounting journals, agricultural magazines and an annual review of censorship in Canada. He founded Franklin Carter Editorial Services in September 1996.

Kat Tancock is cofounder of custom content agency Tavanberg. She has worked as an editor at Reader’s Digest, Best Health, Canadian Living and Food & Drink and her writing on travel, food, health and other topics has appeared in titles such as Westjet Magazine, enRoute, the San Francisco Chronicle and The Globe and Mail.

COST: PWAC Toronto Chapter evening seminars are free for PWAC members and full-time students. The fee is $15 for non-members who register online, and $10 for members of partner organizations (Association of Registered Graphic Designers, CMG Freelance and Editors Canada) who register online. Fees are subject to service charges. Online registrations close at midnight the day before the event. If you do not register online, the cost is $20 at the door (cash only). Receipts are available.

The seminar venue is fully accessible, including washrooms. Space is limited, and tickets are available online now. You can register for a ticket at this link.

 

Posted on March 12, 2019 at 6:00 am by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , ,

Off the Wire: News for the Canadian media freelancer Mar 5-11

Once a week, we gather stories about the media business, journalism, writing, communications, and freelancing—with a Canadian focus—and share them in Off the Wire. Who needs a water cooler?

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From Canada:

From The U.S. and beyond:

Recently on Story Board:

  • Webinar: Tax time freelance finances: Tax time is coming up and a CMG Freelance free webinar is just what you need to start to learn how to run your sole-proprietorship finances…
  • PWAC panel advises freelancers to ask for raises: Stagnant or low rates should motivate freelancers, not make them timid. That’s according to a panel of experienced freelancers who spoke recently at an event in Toronto called “Let’s Talk Rates: How to Ask for What You’re Worth and Get Paid On Time”…

Spot a story you think we should include in next week’s Off the Wire? Email the link to editor@thestoryboard.ca or tweet us at @storyboard_ca.

Posted on March 10, 2019 at 6:49 pm by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: ,

Webinar: Tax time freelance finances

Tax time is coming up and a CMG Freelance free webinar is just what you need to start to learn how to run your sole-proprietorship finances.

Mark your calendars for Tuesday, March 26th at 12 noon ET (9am PT) for a financial “lunch-and-learn” (or “breakfast-and-learn” if you’re on the west coast) with the New School of Finance.

The webinar will answer questions such as:
– How do I know if something is a business expense or a personal expense?
– How much should I be saving for income taxes?
– What about HST – what is that?

The webinar will be presented by Liz Schieck, certified teacher & financial coach from the New School of Finance, an unbiased financial planning and financial coaching firm.

To register click on this link. When the form asks for your affiliation type Storyboard.

The live version of this webinar is free. We’ll be making a recorded version available to members of CMG Freelance after the event.

BONUS!  CMG Freelance is also offering a limited number of free tuition spots in the New School of Finance’s online Sole Proprietor Course, a $400 value. Some of the places will be offered by lottery to members of CMG Freelance, and as a bonus perk to any new members signing on before the webinar on March 26th.

For more information about this offer please email Don Genova at freelance@cmg.ca.

Posted on March 8, 2019 at 6:25 pm by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , ,

PWAC panel advises freelancers to ask for raises

by Meagan Gillmore

Photo courtesy of PWAC Toronto Chapter

Stagnant or low rates should motivate freelancers, not make them timid. That’s according to a panel of experienced freelancers who spoke recently at an event in Toronto called “Let’s Talk Rates: How to Ask for What You’re Worth and Get Paid On Time.”

The event was hosted by the Toronto chapter of the Professional Writers Association of Canada (PWAC) on February 25 and featured writers and editors Diane Peters, Allan Britnell and Carol J. Anderson.

Peters said she disapproves of the mindset that sees cutting back on personal expenses as the best response to low rates. Instead, she said, freelancers should “push themselves” to earn more.

“Money is one of those things that motivates you as a freelancer” said Peters who, in addition to writing, teaches at Ryerson University. “You always have to hustle to get the work that you love and to make more money.”

All of the panelists said their careers have mainly been freelance, and they’ve all managed to earn comfortable incomes. It’s possible for freelancers to make between $75,000 and $95,000 a year, they said.

Anderson, who mainly works as an editor, said that, in her view, rates are always open to negotiation. “I think we’re often afraid to ask for more, and we shouldn’t be,” she said.
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Posted on March 5, 2019 at 7:17 pm by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , ,

Off the Wire: News for the Canadian media freelancer Feb 26-Mar 4

Once a week, we gather stories about the media business, journalism, writing, communications, and freelancing—with a Canadian focus—and share them in Off the Wire. Who needs a water cooler?

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From Canada:

From The U.S. and beyond:

Recently on Story Board:

  • The 5-Minute Freelancer Q&A #40 — Kalli Anderson: Award-winning freelance audio producer, filmmaker and journalist Kalli Anderson spoke with Story Board recently about the value of working in a variety of media, the ways in which teaching complements her journalism, and the importance of sharing information among freelancers…

Spot a story you think we should include in next week’s Off the Wire? Email the link to editor@thestoryboard.ca or tweet us at @storyboard_ca.

Posted on March 3, 2019 at 7:00 pm by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: ,

The 5-Minute Freelancer Q&A #40 — Kalli Anderson

In this regular feature, Story Board asks Canadian freelancers to share a few details about their work habits and their strategies for navigating the ups and downs of freelance life.

 

Photo by Jenna Wakani

Kalli Anderson is an award-winning freelance audio producer, filmmaker and journalist based in Toronto.

She has produced radio documentaries, news reports and current affairs segments for CBC Radio. Her writing has appeared in publications such as The Walrus, Chatelaine, Today’s Parent, and The Globe and Mail. Her short films have screened in festivals across North America.

Kalli also teaches multimedia reporting. documentary production and feature writing at Ryerson University School of Journalism.

She spoke with Story Board recently about the value of working in a variety of media, the ways in which teaching complements her journalism, and the importance of sharing information among freelancers.

 

You work in a lot of different media — print, audio, film.  What are the challenges of balancing all of those various skills? 

I see it differently than it being a challenge. I’ve always consciously tried to be able to be skilled in different media because I think that helps me get different kinds of work, which has practical implications.

But also a journalist and as a documentary maker, I really like to be able to think “what medium would be best for this story or for this material?” I think it helps me do different kinds of work creatively if I have the ability to do it in these different media — because I don’t think all stories fit super well as a magazine piece.
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Posted on February 28, 2019 at 10:13 pm by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , , ,

Off the Wire: News for the Canadian media freelancer Feb 20-25

Once a week, we gather stories about the media business, journalism, writing, communications, and freelancing—with a Canadian focus—and share them in Off the Wire. Who needs a water cooler?

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From Canada:

From The U.S. and beyond:

Recently on Story Board:

  • Freelancer-related highlights of the CMG’s tentative agreement with CBC: The proposed agreement will provide more clarity to distinguish between the various types of freelance engagements. The CMG will have access to additional contact information for freelancers to improve communication about their rights. As well, we negotiated freelance rate increases in line with the across-the-board wage increases for other members…
  • Public Lending Right program’s 2019 registration period now open: If you’re a Canadian author, illustrator or photographer with one or more published books, it’s time to register for the Public Lending Right Program. The program is a Canada Council for the Arts initiative that sends payments every year to creators whose books are in Canadian public libraries…

Spot a story you think we should include in next week’s Off the Wire? Email the link to editor@thestoryboard.ca or tweet us at @storyboard_ca.

Posted on February 25, 2019 at 6:00 am by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: ,

Freelancer-related highlights of the CMG’s tentative agreement with CBC

The Canadian Media Guild’s bargaining committee reached a tentative agreement with the CBC earlier this month. Highlights of the tentative agreement as it relates to freelancers are as follows:

The proposed agreement will provide more clarity to distinguish between the various types of freelance engagements. The CMG will have access to additional contact information for freelancers to improve communication about their rights. As well, we negotiated freelance rate increases in line with the across-the-board wage increases for other members.

You can find more information about the CMG’s tentative agreement with CBC on the CMG website.

If you have any questions about the contracts you’ve been given for your freelance work at CBC, you can email CMG Freelance president Don Genova anytime at freelance@cmg.ca.

Posted on February 23, 2019 at 9:18 am by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , , ,