I started writing for Suite101.com a couple of months ago. While I had to apply to become a contributor, the site already has over 8000 writers worldwide. I'm guessing the criteria wasn't too stringent. The site promises income for articles, based on a share of the ad revenue. From what I gather in the forums, contributors are making $10 a month on average (roughly $3 per article). I haven't made a cent yet, on the two articles I've posted. But I'm not doing it for the money. The practice, and the chance to have an editor review your work, is extremely valuable. I had hoped it would lead to more lucrative gigs.
And, it looks like it did.
While my contact at blogTO has not officially welcomed me to the team, I'm making a hunch that I've passed their test: my "sample" article was published on their site today!
I'm absolutely thrilled. blogTO has been really the only consistent news I've read in the past year. It's pretty editorial, sure, and Toronto-centric, but I think they have great writers and interesting stories often overlooked by major news outlets (which tend to be crime-focused, I find). I get a blogTO email in my inbox every day. I love reading about new coffee shops and Canadian artists and little known facts about the city. Alex summarizes the "real" news for me - he reads The Star online - so that I don't have to depress myself with stories of how the world is falling apart. Yep, it's sure nice here in my little bubble.
This morning, just after we returned from walking the dogs, I opened up my email to a new blogTO message. Suddenly, Archie's face appeared. My article, "The Best Dog Parks in Toronto" has been posted! Does this mean that I'm officially a contributor? Maybe reader comments will be the true test; I've already been called out for omitting Cherry Beach. Learning to take criticism will also be valuable.
If it's true, and this is a new permanent gig for me, it means I'll be drawing a meager income. Not enough to pay bills, of course. But anything helps while I put off full-time work a little longer.