“Subscribe to my newsletter” is basically the 2020 version of “subscribe to my channel” – and we’re not the first ones to call it. Tools like Substack and Mailchimp have given individuals the power to easily and efficiently mail a large group or people about literally anything.
While researching this piece I may or may not have signed up to newsletters about cats, tea, and chocolate – though this says a lot about me, I realise. Joyous content about cats and food aside, newsletters can also prove incredibly handy when searching for a job in journalism.
Whether you’re looking for an entry level journalism vacancy, a freelance gig or funding opportunities, email newsletters are fighting the mysticism and elusiveness that so often surrounds this industry.
As well as clearly detailing various openings, some newsletters also offer support, advice and tips. There’s a real sense of community, and a shared understanding of this darn complex industry. Over the last few weeks these newsletters have made me laugh, they’ve made me think and they’ve made me feel very grateful to those who have spent an unimaginable length of time putting them together.
Although this is by no means an exhaustive list of all the freelance mailers you could be getting, we’ve selected 13 that we think are a must for your 2020 inbox – and all subscriptions are free unless otherwise stated.
Hair Rollers in London
We love this very recent addition to the subscription scene from freelance journalist Jessica Evans. It’s honest, detailed, and entertaining, with 10/10 usage of GIFs.
Each newsletter begins with a short story about being a journalist, with one touching on her experiences of classism in the industry and the reaction to her Scouse accent. In short, it’s powerful stuff and also comes with the best midweek deals for freelancers, as well as call for pitches.
The Freelancer Feed
Definitely the most well-travelled newsletter on this list, The Freelancer Feed is an Australian-based newsletter, edited by Phoebe McRae. It promotes a variety of international freelance opportunities and social media gigs.
Recently we’ve spotted work in Prague, South Asia, Berlin and America and their Twitter Feed (@FreelancerFeed) is also an excellent stream of retweets from various editors and magazines. We’ll be right back, just looking at flights…
Freelance Writing Jobs
Appearing in your inbox every Thursday is this cheerful and GIF-filled newsletter written and compiled by Sian Meades, focused on UK opps.
Every week Sian puts together an email with links to paid freelance and part-time writing jobs, as well as details of editors who are actively seeking pitches, often with information about the kind of things they’re looking for.
The Freelance Beat
Chicago-based Tatiana Walk-Morris created The Freelance Beat back in 2016 and it’s been going from strength to strength ever since.
Her emails mix freelance work adverts with industry news, while her blog discusses issues most freelancers face at some point. We’re talking things like rate transparency, stability and general lessons to learn from freelancing.
Christina McDermott is the Managing Director and Co-Founder of Cattingdon, a company that specialises in all things social. And they’ve got the credential to prove it, having worked for clients such as Channel 4, Babybel, and Bill’s Restaurants.
Alongside this Christina writes the Social Lives newsletter for freelancers working in social media. It’s got a jobs board, social media news, podcast and article recommendations, and the iconic Cat of the Week Feature. Paul the Liverpool South Parkway Cat is my current fave, just FYI.
Opportunities of the Week
In July 2018, freelance journalist Sonia Weiser decided to share her phenomenal freelance job finding skills (try saying that three times fast) with the world via a newsletter. And when we say phenomenal, we mean phenomenal.
She scours the internet and all of the social media platforms to find the best opportunities. You do have to pay for this one, but it’s only $3 a month, and if you can’t afford that there are some ‘pay-what-you-can’ and sponsored slots. We’d also highly recommend a Twitter follow too.
The Professional Freelancer
A freelance favourite, The Professional Freelancer is part of FJ&Co, which was established by freelance culture and technology journalist Anna Codrea-Rado. FJ&Co is a platform which wants to help you make your freelance journalism sustainable by offering tools, resources, and community support.
Every Friday, The Professional Feature lands in your inbox with a beautiful illustration, short essay based around an area of freelancing you might struggle with as well a pitch callouts and job listings. Paid subscribers also get extra resources such as pitch challenges, interviews and detailed guides, as well as invites to panel events.
European Journalism Centre
This is an interesting one. The European Journalism Centre is an international non-profit based in the Netherlands. This is less about direct opportunities and more about trends, advice, and data.
They offer six (yes, six) different kinds of newsletter, some of which are monthly, and some bi-weekly. They include insights and trends on data journalism, insights on how to take your first steps into the industry, and news around engaged journalism.
Also, fun fact, the team who put these together hail from 12 different countries and speak combined total of 15 languages. How impressive is that?!
If you’re keen to brighten up your Monday, and who isn’t, get signed up to this carefully curated email newsletter from MediaBeans. It’s no longer than a five-minute read, and includes both job and internship opportunities.
The website is equally clear and helpful, with handy filters which allow you to narrow down both your job type and location. There is a plentiful list of jobs outside of London, which we wholeheartedly applaud.
The Audience Agency’s Kate Moffat puts together this digest every other week focused on all things social and digital. It’s focused on cool examples within the arts and cultural sector, but is very much relevant to a wider audience.
It’s basically a big of list of inspiration, with piles of cool stuff to wonder at, as well as industry news and gossip. It’s hard to stress how great it is until you actually read it.
Where To Pitch
WhereToPitch, run by Susan Shain, helps people find the right place to pitch their freelance stories in the first place, with an impressive search engine full of inspiration.
Her newsletter is equally as wonderful, with a short essay each time talking through a relatable freelance problem, most recently how she managed to double her income.
We’re not done travelling just yet, so here’s another fantastic global newsletter to offer you. IJNet is produced by the International Centre for Journalists and is particularly good at picking up on developments that could catalyse change in the media industry. Here’s their latest on TikTok, for example.
The newsletter is a pretty slick round-up of tips, training opportunities, grants and more – and it’s available in seven languages. We’re still looking at flights… Holiday, anyone?
We love this inbox offering from lifestyle journalist Jenny Stallard. Freelance Feels has been a long-running project promoting the wellbeing of those who work for themselves, initially as a website and then later as a podcast.
To our delight, she’s recently launched a newsletter which means we can include her in this lovely long list. Her first edition is called Freelance Dry January and she writes extensively about the loneliness and isolation that can accompany being freelance. It’s beautifully written and refreshing to read.
She also has an incredibly wholesome Instagram feed which has lots of pictures of cacti, because, as Jenny puts it: “For me a freelancer is like a cactus. We can survive tough conditions but we still need love and water.”
And, finally, let’s not forget our very own weekly newsletter, which appears in your inbox every Tuesday… If you’re not already subscribed you can do so here. It’s long but loveable with sections for new starter jobs, next steps jobs, and freelance gigs, as well as funding, awards and general advice.