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RunawayScribe
05-05-2009, 06:52 PM
How does one go about becoming a Senior Writer for a publication or newspaper? Is it a promotion/something to which you work your way up? That's what I assume, but I'd like to be sure. Can anyone help me understand how this works/how one gains higher status in such a job?

Thanks,
Runaway

The Lonely One
05-05-2009, 06:55 PM
We don't have one at our daily. It's a smaller paper. But we do joke about people who are particularly incompetent by calling them "senior writer."

EDIT: might be based on seniority. I'll ask around the news room, see what I can dig if no one comes up with a better answer.

RunawayScribe
05-06-2009, 07:33 AM
Thanks! I appreciate it.

mommyjo2
05-07-2009, 04:56 AM
I write for online media, and it's a combo of seniority and talent, there. Also dependability - picking up other's slack, always meeting deadlines, that sort of thing.

GirlWithPoisonPen
05-07-2009, 05:46 AM
Seniority, talent, meeting deadlines--and TALENT.

You also usually have the first pick of stories and are allowed to be more choosy about what you write. If you're smart, you propose the stories that you write.

RunawayScribe
05-07-2009, 06:17 AM
Hm...reading my OP, I don't think I asked the question well. Sorry about that. :D Let me try again.

My MC is competent and talented, and is being considered for a senior writer promotion. Would it be an official promotion in which her boss would approach her and inform her of her new title? Would she be chosen over someone else for the same position, maybe? Also, how many senior writers would a smallish newspaper typically have?

She's got the talent and character for the job, no doubt. I'm wondering about the actual promotion process.

Grazie :) Thanks to everyone who contributed so far!

CurranCR
05-09-2009, 09:53 PM
Neither of the daily newspapers I worked at (circulations of 15,000 and 65,000) had senior writers. Some of the better reporters were given columns, though, where they could editorialize. This was often seen as a way to get attention and possibly land a job at a bigger paper. Where I worked, the most talented people eventually went on to bigger and better-paying newspapers.
Caroline