Photo: Pia Christensen/AHCJEditors met with more than 60 freelance journalists seeking assignments at the Freelance PitchFest at Health Journalism 2016.
AHCJ’s annual Freelance PitchFest is going virtual for 2020.
With our annual conference having been postponed, AHCJ has searched for a way to replicate the opportunity for independent journalists to connect with editors and pitch stories to them.
We are happy to announce that editors from some of the top magazines and newspapers have agreed to go virtual to meet you for the AHCJ Virtual PitchFest. This session has been created to give you an opportunity to pitch your ideas one-on-one with editors from selected publications. Continue reading
As many health care journalists have reported that they’re covering “all COVID, all the time” during the past two months, AHCJ freelancers offered their advice about the best ways to approach reporting and writing, as well as their own mental health while working on assignments.
Overall, the advice highlights many of the principles that reporters already hold dear — choose your sources carefully, review the science behind published studies, and find ways to carve out personal time from a 24/7 news cycle.
Related to news coverage at this moment, the freelancers also suggested doing background research with new webcasts and press briefings online, finding story ideas in new communications and newsletters created by trusted sources, and creating a routine to stay on top of the most recent research.
During the current coronavirus outbreak, freelancers have reported a mixed bag — some work is on pause, but other work is booming. Whatever your situation, several journalism organizations have stepped up to offer emergency relief and reporting grants.
While reviewing the list below, the most important factors to keep in mind are the eligibility requirements for each application. In some cases, the grant is meant only to support those who have contracted COVID-19 and lost work because they were sick. In other cases, the grant is designated for particular types of reporting work. Continue reading
Freelance writers and other independent contractors have faced obstacles in securing federal funds to help with lost income during the coronavirus pandemic. Yet, a second round of funding just approved may be worth a try.
Throughout April, the $350 billion Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act allowed banks to dole out funds to small businesses, with the application for independent contractors and sole proprietors opening on April 10. Within a week, however, the funds ran out. Continue reading
For more than a year, Atlanta-based freelance journalist and AHCJ member Max Blau investigated the troublesome health care delivery in jails across his state.
He filed records requests, conducted tough interviews and weaved together a series about his findings — all while reporting and writing other stories at the same time to pay his bills. Continue reading
In numerous groups, forums and discussion lists, freelance journalists are asking three big questions: Do I pitch right now? Can I pitch COVID-19 stories? Can I pitch non-coronavirus-related stories?
The answer to all three: Yes! A resounding “yes, absolutely.”
Some freelancers have reported a decline in work, and others seem booked around-the-clock. Those who have lined up work are reporting similar trends: Continue reading