Off the Wire: News for the Canadian media freelancer Dec 2-9

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 around the web:

Recently on Story Board:

  • CMG Freelance on the move: As of 2020, the independent membership portion of the Canadian Media Guild Freelance Branch will be moving to a new home at our parent organization, CWA-Canada. This move will give our group more autonomy to run our own affairs while at the same time preserving the benefits we currently enjoy from being part of a national media union…
  • CMG election December 5 to 9: The vote will take place from Thursday, December 5 at 9:00 a.m. (Eastern Time) to Monday December 9 at midnight (Eastern Time) using CMG’s online automated voting system run by an independent third-party…
  • Submissions open for the 2020 National Magazine Awards: If you’re a writer, photographer or illustrator who does freelance work for magazines, it’s time to start thinking about making a submission to the National Magazine Awards…

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 December 8, 2019 at 8:00 pm by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: ,

CMG Freelance On the Move

My fellow members, as of 2020, the independent membership portion of the Canadian Media Guild Freelance Branch will be moving to a new home at our parent organization, CWA-Canada.

This move will give our group more autonomy to run our own affairs while at the same time preserving the benefits we currently enjoy from being part of a national media union. CWA-Canada is the oldest and only all-media union in Canada, with about 6,000 members at 17 Locals across the country representing workers in the communications industry.

The really exciting part of this move is that it comes as our colleagues at PWAC, the Professional Writers Association of Canada, are preparing to vote on joining us at our new home.

With a positive outcome of the vote, this new organization, tentatively named the Canadian Freelance Guild, will swell to nearly 400 members and will become a force in advocating for better rights, contracts, and pay for freelance communications professionals across Canada.

For now, our website, cmgfreelance.ca, our Story Board blog, and our social media channels will all remain with the CMG Freelance brand while we make the transition. You can continue to renew your memberships, view webinars, ask me for advice, and take advantage of the other benefits you’ve been enjoying since you joined. In due time you will be sent new membership cards, and for those who have qualified, a new media card.

Unfortunately, this means leaving behind our freelance colleagues at CBC/Radio- Canada, which I regret deeply. I have represented them as individuals and at the bargaining table through a number of collective agreements for the past 20 years. I hope that our new organization can continue to work in some way with CBC freelancers as we all face similar challenges in pursuit of our careers.

From Thursday, December 5th until Monday, December 9th, our independent members have one more chance to vote in the CMG national elections. Contested positions include CMG President and Vice-President, as well as Director of Equity and Human Rights. You should have received an email on Thursday with your membership number and a passcode so you can vote electronically. Let me know if you don’t get that email or need to know more about the election.

There will be much more detail to follow in the coming weeks and months.

Please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me with any questions that you have, at freelance@cmg.ca or 778-991-4439 (Pacific Time).

Regards,

Don Genova
CMG Freelance Branch President

Posted on December 6, 2019 at 8:00 am by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , ,

CMG election December 5th to 9th

For the next five days, members of CMG Freelance can vote in the Canadian Media Guild’s national elections.

The vote will take place from Thursday, December 5 at 9:00 a.m. (Eastern Time) to Monday December 9 at midnight (Eastern Time) using CMG’s online automated voting system run by an independent third-party.

Contested positions include CMG President and Vice-President, as well as Director of Equity and Human Rights.

If you’re a member, you should receive an email by Thursday night with your membership number and a passcode so you can vote electronically.

If you did not receive your membership number or have questions about how to vote in the election you can email CMG Freelance president Don Genova at freelance@cmg.ca or call him at 778-991-4439 (Pacific Time).

Posted on December 5, 2019 at 6:00 am by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT

Submissions open for the 2020 National Magazine Awards

If you’re a writer, photographer or illustrator who does freelance work for magazines, it’s time to start thinking about making a submission to the National Magazine Awards.

The awards program has 18 writing and visual award categories, including feature writing, investigative reporting, fiction, photography and many more. The gold medal winner in each category receives a $1000 cash prize.

If your publisher isn’t planning to submit your work, you can submit it yourself. The awards foundation offers freelancers a discount on entry fees with the Freelancer Support Fund, which allows freelancers to submit two entries for the price of one.

The call for entries is open until January 22, 2020.

For more information about the categories, rules, and submissions process, check out the National Magazine Awards Foundation’s website.

Posted on December 3, 2019 at 8:48 pm by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , , ,

Off the Wire: News for the Canadian media freelancer Nov 26-Dec 1

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 around the web:

Recently on Story Board:

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 December 1, 2019 at 6:49 pm by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: ,

Dalton Camp Award submissions open December 2

If you have thoughts about the link between democracy and the media in Canada, it’s time to start thinking about your entry for the 2020 Dalton Camp Award.

Submissions for this year’s contest open on Monday, December 2. 

The competition is run by the Friends of Canadian Broadcasting and is open to Canadian citizens and permanent residents. Essays must be written in English and not exceed 2000 words in length.

The winning essay will be granted a prize of $10,000. A second prize of $2500 is also available for the best essay submitted by a student journalist.

For more information or to submit an entry for the Dalton Camp Award, check out this page on the Friends of Canadian Broadcasting’s website.

Posted on November 29, 2019 at 6:00 am by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , ,

Off the Wire: News for the Canadian media freelancer Nov 19-25

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 around the web:

Recently on Story Board:

  • The Born Freelancer on Not Sharing Unmerited Credit: Creative collaborations are often mutually profitable. They can be the beginning of lifelong associations that eventually benefit all parties. Sometimes they fizzle out despite everyone’s best efforts. And, on occasion, they can be problematic…

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 November 24, 2019 at 6:00 pm by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: ,

The Born Freelancer on Not Sharing Unmerited Credit

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.

 

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Earlier this year I wrote about protecting your ideas while still participating in the rough and tumble world of freelancing.

One of the best ways to do that is to make them as uniquely your own as possible. This becomes increasingly more practical as your brand becomes better known.

But it’s also important to use caution when collaborating with others in order to bring your ideas into the marketplace.

I would like to share a cautionary tale to illustrate the type I hope you never have to suffer.

This particular collaboration necessitated the sharing of “creative intel,” not with another writer but with an actor in order to try and sell a project. Having a recognized actor associated with a speculative script (especially in the world of episodic television) can help “green-light” a worthy but otherwise anonymous project.

These associations are usually mutually profitable. They can be the beginning of lifelong associations that eventually benefit all parties. Sometimes they fizzle out despite everyone’s best efforts. And, on occasion, they can be problematic.

In creative collaborations of all kinds, safeguards should be introduced early in the process so as not to jeopardize the health of a project, not to mention its creator.
Read the rest of this post »

Posted on November 21, 2019 at 9:43 pm by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , , ,

Off the Wire: News for the Canadian media freelancer Nov 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 around the web:

Recently on Story Board:

  • Balancing freelance work with creative projects: No matter how amazing the gig, over time everything becomes a job. At some point in my work life I had set aside my personal projects, not realizing it was those creative exercises that gave me drive and passion. I was relying on work to energize me but it was doing the opposite…

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 November 17, 2019 at 9:24 pm by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: ,

Balancing freelance work with creative projects

by Robyn Roste 

One damp, dreary winter’s night I sat in bed staring at my phone. I felt the same as usual—bored and listless. On paper everything was great, my days were filled with work, friends and activities. The problem? I fell into bed each night drained rather than energized.

I did a quick review of my average day and realized I was stuck in a passive routine. Each morning I dragged myself out of bed and got ready for work. I spent my day pouring myself into my job before going to the gym or out with friends, followed by watching television until I couldn’t keep my eyes open.

Even though I loved my work, I was in a rut. I needed something that would fuel my creative spark and refill my energy.

The problem with work

No matter how amazing the gig, over time everything becomes a job. At some point in my work life I had set aside my personal projects, not realizing it was those creative exercises that gave me drive and passion. I was relying on work to energize me but it was doing the opposite.

Read the rest of this post »

Posted on November 12, 2019 at 8:38 pm by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: