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How do I Become an Online Journalist?

Article Details
  • Written By: Sheri Cyprus
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 21 May 2018
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2018
    Conjecture Corporation
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If you want to become an online journalist, the first thing you should realize is that although no one is likely to offer you a full-time job as one, you can certainly still create the career you desire. Online journalism is freelance work and you'll get to work from your own home office. You'll also be able to work within the hours you choose to meet client deadlines. In order to maintain enough work to become an online journalist, you'll have to write as well as promote your services on a daily basis.

It may take time to earn enough income to maintain your living expenses, so it's a good idea to save at least six months of income before trying to become an online journalist. Another option would be to start writing online part-time while holding down another job. Most people are open to having new writers be a guest blogger on their website as long as it doesn't cost them anything. While you shouldn't make writing for free a habit, having two or three pieces that you can use as clips, or samples of your work, to get paying clients can be worth it.

You should spend time searching for online publications that suit the subjects you write about. While you may be open to writing on many different topic areas, if you specialize in two or three, it can make you stand out from other online journalists and get you noticed by editors. The stronger your experience in a certain area, whether it's politics, fashion or something else, the more likely you'll be to get better writing assignments.

Looking for online publications that relate to your specialty topics by using search engines can provide you with many possible markets. Online magazines, newspapers and trade journals can all be found by searching the Internet. For instance, if you want to become an online journalist who specializes in alternative health subjects, you could type something like "wellness magazines" into a search engine.

From the different publications and directories that result from your search, you can choose the ones that seem to match your writing. Read these online publications and try to pinpoint how your journalistic pieces will fit in; pay careful attention to following the writer's guidelines before querying the editor.

Querying the editor means contacting him or her about writing a story. The publication's guidelines will usually state exactly what type of stories the magazine, newspaper or trade journal wants. Starting your own blog in which you write regularly on topics you hope to be paid to cover can help get your name out to the public as well as to editors.

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