My weekdays typically look something like this: wake up to the screams – joyful or hostile – of the kiddos, and help get them ready for the day. Start working at about 7am ET, take a lunch break of sorts around noon, resume working at 12:30pm or so. Work until 4:30pm or 5, break for dinner/family time. Try to not to do any work until 8pm, unless something breaks and absolutely has to interrupt family time, and then resume working (though much much leisurely) for a few hours, or until the Cubs game ends if it’s a game day. The busy times of the year involve much more.
I offer you that context not to try and impress you (does it impress you? (please like me)), but to show you two things: (1) the volume of work here can be fairly significant, and (2) even still, there’s regularly a sizable gap in the coverage on weekdays in the evenings.
Because I’m trying to be realistic about what I can do on Number 1, and because I’ve never been comfortable with the reality of Number 2 (lots of stuff happens in that evening window that I simply cannot get to), I’ve accepted that I need to hire some help.
This is an intimate place. Whatever the size of the readership, the feel for many of you is a close-knit place where the Cubs coverage you’re reading here is just “Brett writing about the Cubs, and Luke writing about Cubs prospects.” I recognize that the addition of another regular writer on the Cubs side of things is a major shift for the site, and that’s why I’m presenting it to you in this delicate way. I’d love to be the voice behind everything (except Luke’s prospect items) on the site and give you 16 hours of coverage a day, but as the hellacious pace of this offseason has reminded me, it’s not something I can do and still keep the appropriate balance in my life.
So I’d like to hire a part-time writer to help. If I conduct the process well and get the right person in here, then I think you’ll be happy about the addition.
- Cover breaking news, events, rumors, game activity, etc. here at BN four days per week (Monday through Thursday) for 2.5 hours per day in the evenings/night. We can discuss the particular shift hours that work best for our respective schedules. (10 hours total per week.)
- Generate ideas for new articles, completing them as the flow of breaking activity permits.
- Participate in the comments and on social media during your window of coverage, again, as the flow of breaking activity permits.
- Work with me to complete other articles as assigned, again, as the flow of breaking activity permits.
- Strong writing ability. This requirement is listed first intentionally, and it includes not only writing style, but also grammar, spelling, syntax, etc.
- Passionate interest in baseball, MLB and the Chicago Cubs.
- Expansive knowledge of Cubs history, current team construction, Cubs prospects, organizational philosophies, etc.
- Knowledge of MLB transaction, roster, draft, and game rules.
- … and the ability to know what you don’t know, and locate appropriate sources for the information you need.
- Knowledge of baseball Xs & Os, and the ability to analyze both game action and the business of baseball. Ability to engage in moderately sophisticated (but not glib) statistical analysis. Readers are looking not only for the news and rumors – they are looking for insight and analysis.
- Ability to responsibly curate, share, and comment upon outside content. This is not a place for merely regurgitating the work of others. Again: readers are looking not only for the news and rumors – they are looking for insight and analysis.
- Knowledge of, and willingness to regularly use, social media, particularly Twitter.
- Ability to commit to regular coverage of the Cubs and MLB year-round during your shift. The intent here is to create a long-term relationship, not only between you and me, but also between you and the readers.
- Regular reader of BN for long enough to have a sense of how I do things.
- Background knowledge of web site operation and maintenance.
- Experience in online sports communities.
- Experience writing professionally, which need not necessarily have had anything to do with sports.
- Hourly rate, to be negotiated based on qualifications.
- At a minimum, send a statement of interest to brett AT bleachernation DOT com, with the subject line: “Cubs Writer Application.” Please include a sample of writing clips (links to online work is sufficient).
- Also include within the body of the email a short blog post you might write at BN about the following hypothetical transaction, which you should imagine just popped up on the Cubs’ transactions page (300 words max): Chicago Cubs claim Tyler Ladendorf off of waivers from Oakland A’s.
- Feel free to include a resume or any other relevant materials, if you would believe it would help me to make an informed decision.
- After reviewing applications, I will contact certain candidates for follow-up. I may not be able to respond to every application.
- Friday, January 30 at 5pm CT.