perhaps never been a more lonely and uncertain time to work as a freelance journalist,
social media groups, websites with useful resources and online communities are
available for connecting with fellow freelancers dealing with the same challenges.
Here are a
few resources and community groups worth checking out and joining if you’re
freelancing through lockdown and looking for support, advice or a good place to vent.
Welcomes: Both aspiring writers and already
Journalist Jessica Hope Evans founded the service in January 2019.
the benefits of joining: ‘Stripped back and uncomplicated journalism sessions’ to help writers
get their work published – bookable power hours, multi-session masterclasses, pitch
polishing and tips for experienced freelance journalists looking for more
commissions for their content.
Welcomes: ‘Anyone who wants to be happy and
successful working for themselves’.
was founded: Anna
Codrea-Rado started the newsletter and community when going freelance in 2017.
the benefits of joining: Subscribing gets you the weekly email featuring advice, carefully-curated
links and calls for pitches, as well as work opportunities, in-depth guides,
invites to the virtual events, regular AMAs with Anna and access to the Slack
group and member directory.
Welcomes: ‘Humans who work for themselves’.
When it was founded: Jenny Stallard started Freelance Feels in 2019 after facing some of her own mental health challenges as a freelancer.
What are the benefits of joining: Sharing freelance feels with others who’ll understand and will be feeling the same – as Jenny puts it ‘talking to other freelancers about the reality of this life and best of all, how we navigate it and keep our mental health above water. And, when we can’t, how we cope. Or try to!’
Welcomes: Current and aspiring freelance journalists.
When it was founded: Dr Lily Canter
and Emma Wilkinson have been ‘lifting the lid on freelance life’ since
the launch of the Freelancing for Journalists podcast in March of this year.
The team started delivering training in July, and their Freelancing
for Journalists book was also published in the same month.
What are the benefits: The podcast provides advice on common challenges like ‘pitching and providing the goods’ and ‘finances and getting paid’ and you can join in on community discussion over on the Facebook group and on Twitter.
of Freelance Journalists
Welcomes: ‘Freelance journalists working through
the coronavirus pandemic’ across the globe.
was founded: March
2020 by freelance journalists Laura Oliver, Abigail Edge, John Crowley and
Caroline Harrap, first as a weekly video chat, and now a Slack channel.
the benefits of joining: Mutual support, a dedicated place for discussion, as well as venting
Welcomes: Those living ‘the freelance life’.
was founded: Emma
Cossey launched the blog in 2011 to provide fellow freelancers with ‘down-to-earth
support and practical advice’.
the benefits of joining: As well as the community provided on the blog, freelancers can join the Facebook group and listen in to The Freelance Lifestyle podcast
for more tips on ‘living a great freelance life’.
Welcomes: Freelancers looking for new
When it was founded: 2018 – read our interview with founder Sian Meades-Williams on her career and her book The Pyjama Myth: The Freelance Writer’s Survival Guide.
What are the benefits of joining: This weekly media industry newsletter rounds up the latest freelance jobs from magazine editors, brands, publishing companies and more. Jobs that can be done remotely (particularly important now) or in hours that fit around the school day are prioritised.
Freelance Media Women
Welcomes: Freelancers working across the
media – designers, photographers, copywriters as well as PRs. Staffers with
work to offer are also welcome.
was founded: This
Facebook group was created in September 2008 as ‘a place for female freelance
journalists to help each other and offer support’.
the benefits of joining: Along with the opportunity to connect with a supportive community, each
Friday at 11am there is a pitching hour and a PR Hour at 11am on Mondays.
Welcomes: Freelancers and the self-employed.
When it was founded: Established over three years ago, the community has 3500 members across 22 time zones.
What are the benefits of joining: A free supportive slack channel, regular articles on the modern work self-employment and mental health, and conversations without the need for watercooler hangouts. Join the Slack channel for #askanything questions, #brainfood for inspiration or #littlewins for celebrating, and download ebooks for techniques on how to look after yourself while working for yourself.
Welcomes: ‘No-collar professionals,
including creators, entrepreneurs, freelancers and teams’.
was founded: 2013,
by Pip Jamieson.
the benefits of joining: Free profiles for posting your work, crediting teammates, finding
inspiration, as well as its jobs board. The Dots also seeks to use its platform
to spotlight groups underrepresented in the media industry.
If there are associations, unions, or support groups you’ve
found particularly useful during your career in the media that we can
highlight, please do get in touch and
let us know.
Send a request for what you need to finish features, review
round-ups and more with the Journalist Enquiry Service, a complimentary
resource for UK media professionals: try it here.