Off the Wire: News for the Canadian media freelancer Sept 17-23

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:

  • CBC Doc Mentorship Program deadline October 7: The program pairs up documentary makers with experienced CBC producers who will provide guidance and mentorship through the process of making a radio documentary…
  • Freelancer organization tips: For me, the benefits of being and staying organized have been remarkable. I am less stressed out, I get my work in on deadline, I’m in sync with my clients and I am able to do my best work…

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 September 23, 2019 at 6:00 am by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: ,

CBC Doc Mentorship program deadline October 7

Audio freelancers, if you’re interested in making a documentary for CBC Radio, it’s time to get ready for another Doc Mentorship program deadline.

Experienced audio freelancers are invited to submit a pitch to the program by October 7, 2019. The mentorship program is also open to all CBC employees – staff, contract and temps.

The program pairs up documentary makers with experienced CBC producers who will provide guidance and mentorship through the process of making a radio documentary. Mentors are happy to provide feedback on pitches before the formal application process, so applicants are advised to contact the mentor they wish to work with before they apply.

“The mentorship program is a great way to have your work heard on CBC Radio,” says CMG Freelance president Don Genova. He advises winning applicants to make sure they negotiate a contract up front before they start working on their project.

“There are typically two types of contracts used when the CBC commissions a documentary,” says Genova. “A Freelance Contributor contract pays at least the minimum rate based on number of minutes in the doc based on rates in the CBC-Canadian Media Guild collective agreement. For example, a 20 to 30 minute doc pays a minimum of $2817.03. The freelancer retains copyright in the documentary.”

With the other contract, Freelance Specific Services, the pay rate is supposed to be based on the same amount an employee would make if they were doing similar work.

“That amount takes a bit more figuring out, and the contract also calls for the freelancer to give up their copyright and all other rights in the documentary,” says Genova.

For more information on rates and contracts, go to this page on the CMG Freelance website. If you have any questions you can also contact CMG Freelance Branch president Don Genova at freelance@cmg.ca.

You can find more details about the Doc Mentorship Program and how to apply, on the Doc Makers website. And if you have any questions about applying to the program, you can contact CBC producer Joan Melanson.

 

Posted on September 19, 2019 at 8:25 pm by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , , , , , ,

Freelancer Organization Tips

by Robyn Roste

When I began freelancing things were straightforward. Someone would ask me for an article and I would write it. I’d write whenever I felt like it and I’d invoice when I remembered.

It sort of worked.

But when I decided I wanted to make a real go of freelancing, I realized I needed a more professional approach. The first step was getting organized.

For me, the benefits of being and staying organized have been remarkable. I am less stressed out, I get my work in on deadline, I’m in sync with my clients and I am able to do my best work.

It took a while to develop the systems and habits I needed to build the business I wanted, one I was proud of and felt good about, but it was worth the effort.

Here are six areas I’ve found key to being organized as a freelancer.

Look at how you use your time

If you’re in a constant state of panic, racing from one deadline to the next and feeling like you’re failing at everything, consider conducting a time audit. You don’t need to get into the minutiae (unless you want to), but do take an honest look at how your days are spent.
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Posted on September 18, 2019 at 6:00 am by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , ,

Off the Wire: News for the Canadian media freelancer Sept 10-16

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:

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 September 15, 2019 at 7:48 pm by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: ,

Excitement builds with advances in campaign for factual TV workers

Factual TV workers Otto Chung and Denise O’Connell give a campaign update at an industry social in Toronto. (Photo: Marta Iwanek)

A new website is giving a public face to the hundreds of professionals who are determined to secure better pay, benefits and working conditions in the unscripted TV industry.

The Fairness in Factual TV campaign that was launched six years ago by CWA Canada and its biggest local, the Canadian Media Guild, has gained both momentum and supporters in recent months.

While a $35-million class action filed in the fall against major production company Cineflix shone a spotlight on the issues, the campaign got a major boost in January when North America’s largest entertainment union came on board.
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Posted on September 11, 2019 at 9:00 pm by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , , ,

Off the Wire: News for the Canadian media freelancer Sept 4-9

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 Canada:

From The U.S. and beyond:

Recently on Story Board:

  • 2019-2020 Travers Fellowship applications open: Freelancers and students (as well as staff journalists) are welcome to apply for the fellowship, which provides an annual $25,000 award to cover travel, reporting and research expenses, and a stipend for a journalist…

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 September 9, 2019 at 6:00 am by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: ,

2019-2020 Travers Fellowship applications open

Applications are now open for the Travers Fellowship, an international reporting bursary that helps finance foreign reporting projects by Canadian journalists working in any medium.

Freelancers and students (as well as staff journalists) are welcome to apply for the fellowship, which provides an annual $25,000 award to cover travel, reporting and research expenses, and a stipend for a journalist.

The fellowship is named after Jim Travers, a reporter, foreign correspondent, and former editor of The Ottawa Citizen who spent six years reporting from Africa and the Middle East. After Travers died in 2011, his friends and colleagues created the fellowship to commemorate his contribution to Canadian journalism.

The application deadline is Monday, October 28 at noon EDTMore information and application instructions are available on the Travers Fellowship website.

 

Posted on September 4, 2019 at 8:07 pm by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , , ,

Off the Wire: News for the Canadian media freelancer August 27-Sept 3

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:

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 September 2, 2019 at 6:54 pm by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT

The Born Freelancer Remembers Freelancing Legend Ken Nordine (1920-2019)

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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When asked about the most successful route to freelancing, the sage pundits’ advice often seems to fall into two distinct categories: either learn all the essential skill sets that will enable you to fit in seamlessly anywhere, or develop a unique and memorable brand identity that will set you apart from all other competitors.

Both are solid, time-tested approaches that could bring positive career results depending upon your individual goals, needs and personality type.

Today, I want to share with you the story of an extraordinary freelancer who managed to combine these two seemingly mutually exclusive approaches resulting in a financially and creatively successful career.

Ken Nordine’s ability to excel in two mutually exclusive career threads is a reminder that all conventional freelancing wisdom can on occasion be circumnavigated and that successful freelancing careers can arise from the most unexpected of inspirations.

In the beginning…

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Posted on August 28, 2019 at 9:23 pm by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: , , ,

Off the Wire: News for the Canadian media freelancer August 20-26

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:

  • Tools for freelancers: The right tools can make your freelance business run more smoothly and allow you to spend more time on the creative work that earns you money. Here are a few of the best tools for freelancers we’ve run across lately…

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 August 25, 2019 at 5:54 pm by editor · LEAVE A COMMENT · Tagged with: ,