Successful freelance journalism
Credit: Image from Thinkstock
Being a freelance journalist is one of the best jobs in the world. But with high numbers of staff journalists going freelance, along with many well-established freelancers pitching to the same titles, the field is more crowded and competitive than ever.

And yet, editors can often count the number of freelancers they trust with commissions on one hand. There is always room for more brilliant and reliable freelance journalists – this course will help you to become one of them.

From pitching into the void to handling rejection, this course, led by experienced freelancer and commissioning editor Johanna Payton, exposes the realities and challenges that freelancing presents and teaches you how to handle them.

With a background in editorial and commercial writing, as well as university lecturing and broadcasting, Johanna will also offer pointers for increasing your income by considering new and diverse freelance opportunities.

Course description

With a focus on pitching and writing freelance features for print and online media, the course is designed to bolster your confidence and provide all the information you need to make it – from developing your specialisms and starting a blog to building relationships with a range of publications and diversifying your skills to make a good living as a freelancer.

It is open to all abilities – previous delegates have included everyone from complete beginners to experienced staffers.

The course will cover:
  • An overview of the day-to-day challenges and skills required for life as a freelance journalist
  • How to get started and adjust to running your own business from home
  • Building contacts, starting your portfolio and networking in the industry
  • How to pitch to publications
  • Dealing with story sources like PRs and charities
  • Interviewing and writing skills (including blogging) when you are working from home
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For more details, please contact us. See terms and conditions here.

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About Johanna Payton

A published author, broadcaster and commercial copywriter, Johanna has been a successful freelancer for the last 12 years.

Her fashion, opinion and lifestyle pieces have since appeared in national newspapers, magazines and websites including Grazia, Essentials, the Guardian and the Observer and The Times and Sunday Times Style.

Johanna works for the Guardian two days a week as a commissioning editor, is features editor for and blogs at and


"With my previous experience as a freelancer I came to the course with a lot of doubts about journalism as a career choice. I left totally re-energised and equipped with a whole new bag of tricks at my disposal which I had been previously blissfully unaware of." David Middleton

"The course was excellent and I found it both enjoyable and extremely informative. I would now feel much more confident about going freelance." Emma Innes

"Very useful! I've learned so much today - practical tips on how to develop an idea and effectively pitch." Sarah Blinco