The New Journalist’s Guide to Freelancing
Building Your Career in the New Media Landscape
  • Publication Date: October 24, 2022
  • ISBN: 9781554815135 / 1554815134
  • 204 pages; 5½" x 8½"

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The New Journalist’s Guide to Freelancing

Building Your Career in the New Media Landscape

  • Publication Date: October 24, 2022
  • ISBN: 9781554815135 / 1554815134
  • 204 pages; 5½" x 8½"

Freelancers make up one of the fastest-growing groups of workers in North America. But, in today’s fractured and quick-paced media industry, where do you start? This book is a guide for journalism students, recent graduates, and early-career journalists looking to better understand both the creative and business sides of freelance work in Canada and the US. Learn how to develop your personal brand, how to pitch to different types of publications and media outlets, and how to plan for your financial future as a freelancer (yes, it’s possible!).

Practical and easy to read, The New Journalist’s Guide combines more than a decade of the author’s personal experience as a freelance journalist with the perspectives of freelancers and experts across Canada and the US in a range of fields.


“Meg Wilcox has managed to take the complexity out of a career path that intimidates so many journalists. Packed with sharp advice on everything from pitching stories to protecting your rights, The New Journalist’s Guide to Freelancing should be on every freelancer’s shelf, right next to the thesaurus and stylebook. I wish I could go back in time and give it to my younger self to save me from lost time, money, and embarrassing mistakes.” — Omar Mouallem, multimedia journalist and bestselling author of Praying to the West: How Muslims Shaped the Americas

“Finally, a guide for freelancers that not only illuminates professional practices that can seem opaque yet also shines a light on issues of labour, power, and equity. Along with trade tips and engaging profiles, freelancers will gain the vital insight that, in today’s tumultuous journalism industry, you don’t have to go it alone.” — Nicole Cohen, Associate Professor, University of Toronto, author of Writers’ Rights: Freelance Journalism in a Digital Age

“I found that The New Journalist’s Guide functioned extremely well as a textbook. I especially enjoyed the way it highlighted so many different media professionals. The book showed us a wide variety of examples of freelance career paths through the people who are actually doing it, and that’s special advice. All too often we read textbooks written by, or sit in classes taught by, people who aren’t actively involved in the sphere they’re talking about… The New Journalist’s Guide gives readers current, genuine, and unique advice from practicing freelancers who figured it out along the way.” — Lily Dupuis, Communications student, Mount Royal University

The New Journalist’s Guide was more than a textbook to me […] the book is a useful resource that I will be referring to throughout my career. The book helped structure our course, setting us students up while slowly making our way toward the more challenging topics, like taxes and contracts—and these more challenging topics are ones that I can revisit and slowly digest the material to make these situations less stressful and easier to handle. It’s like having a personal professor on my bookshelf! The New Journalist’s Guide is written in a fun and engaging way, not like a typical stuffy university textbook that contains over-long passages with confusing words and examples. Rather, the book contains sections from real freelancers with advice that I am greatly thankful to have had at the beginning of my career.” — Cassie Hearn, Communications student, Mount Royal University


Chapter 1: What is freelance work?

  • MEET A FREELANCER: Anupa Mistry, writer and producer

Chapter 2: Building your brand … and your network

  • MEET A FREELANCER: Gabe Bergado, editor and writer

Chapter 3: Ready, set, pitch!

  • MEET A FREELANCER: Jeremy Klaszus, writer and founder of The Sprawl

Chapter 4: It’s Business Time

  • MEET A FREELANCER: Erin Lowry, financial writer and author of the Broke Millennial series

Chapter 5: Freelance Business Basics

  • MEET A FREELANCER: Trevor Solway, filmmaker

Chapter 6: Tax Time

  • MEET A FREELANCER: Kat Eschner, freelance science and business journalist

Chapter 7: Navigating the law as a freelancer

  • MEET A FREELANCER: Rebecca Collard, broadcast journalist and writer

Chapter 8: Contracts and negotiations

  • MEET A FREELANCER: Omar Mouallem, nonfiction writer and filmmaker

Chapter 9: Freelance work in the bigger picture

  • MEET A FREELANCER: Desmond Cole, independent journalist, activist, and author

Last Thoughts


Meg Wilcox is Assistant Professor of Journalism and Digital Media at Mount Royal University.

  • • Strong coverage of Canadian culture industries and contexts
  • • Friendly, humorous, informal tone throughout
  • • Author is an experienced freelance journalist and longtime teacher of future journalists