Week 15 (23/11): The light at the end of the tunnel

“The Light at the End of the Tunnel” by C.P.Storm is licensed under CC BY 2.0

BY RUTH BERAN

It’s nearly end of term, hopefully you can see the light glimmering at the end of the tunnel.

Your final assessments for both Writing and Research; and Newsroom classes are due this week.

Some of you have already received written and verbal feedback on your drafts, I will be giving more feedback but remember that term ends in the next couple of weeks. If your Final Assessment 2 for Writing and Research is ready and you’ve incorporated feedback, please let me know.

Once you’ve received feedback on your final Assessments, they need to be uploaded to your WordPress site. Both Assessment 1 and Assessment 2 for Writing and Research and your portfolio for Newsroom needs to be uploaded. Take a screenshot and save it to Google Drive.

For Newsroom, if you have audio that was broadcast on the Diploma radio show, please upload it to Soundcloud and then link it on your WordPress site, and take a screenshot.

Also take screenshots of social media if you are submitting promotional tweets and posts for the radio show for your portfolio for Newsroom

Take a look at the Subject Guides for more information about what is needed in your assessments, there is a checklist in Part 3.

Also note that any files submitted via the Student Drive must include your name, class and assessment number in the file name and/or folder name.

TASK: Finish Assessment 2 for Writing and Research and for Newsroom and once you’ve received feedback on your final versions upload to WordPress and take screenshots. Also do this for your story from Assessment 1 for Writing and Research.

Pitching your story out into the world

Once you have finalised Assessment 2 think about pitching your stories to get them published elsewhere.

This could be a specialised online magazine, website or a more general newspaper or broadcaster.

My advice to you is if you ever write an article or create content, make sure to get it published somewhere other than just your own WordPress site. Sure, you can publish your work for free, but why not get paid for your work?

TASK

Research an outlet that you think might publish your article.

Find contact details for the Editor.

Then write a pitch.

Here is a database on pitches to editors and final stories called The Open Notebook. It’s a great way to see how successful pitches are created. You will see that most of these pitches are beautifully written, and include characters, plots, and are really just shortened versions of the final story.

Read Michael Thomas’ article where he gives a good description on how to write a pitch, and the process it took him to get to the stage where he felt comfortable pitching to editors every day.

Make sure to research the publication you are pitching to. Have they done a similar story in the recent past? If so, do not pitch your idea to that publication, find another one.

Is your article aimed at that publication’s audience? If not, do not pitch to them, find a publication with an audience that wants to read your article.

Then send your pitch to the Editor.

If your pitch is accepted, congratulations! If not, ask for feedback. Also, don’t see it as rejection, see it as a learning experience. And if your pitch is good, the Editor will remember you the next time you pitch.

Incorporate what you’ve learnt into the pitch, and try another publication. The more you publish, the better your portfolio, and the more likely it will be to get a paid gig or ongoing freelance work.

Author: veritychambers

Journalist and teacher

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