>Where we have the advantage

>Last week we were talking about how many staff writers who have lost their jobs are now posing stiff competition to freelancers whose resumes aren’t as impressive. There’s certainly truth to this. An example close to home: The former editor of our local paper, who has gotten herself a totally unrelated full-time job, is now writing for the News-Times as the “North Country correspondent.” Ironically, that’s the job she started with, except now she’s doing it without a regular salary and benefits. If you’re an editor and the person who used to cover the beat is interested in doing it for less, it’s a no-brainer.

BUT, don’t despair, my freelance friends. The competition is much more level among newspapers that have always relied on freelancers for most of their copy. For example, the alternative weeklies, like Metro in San Jose or Willamette Week in Portland, and many specialized papers, such as the various parenting newspapers, hobby publications, and environmental rags, always have and always will be primarily freelance-written. Ditto for most of the city magazines. There is work to be had. Study the markets and go for it.

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