When I graduated from college more than 20 years ago, I made a beeline from Vermont to San Francisco with a dream of becoming a writer. I was an English major, with a head full of Chaucer, Milton, and Shakespeare (chocolate milkshake, we called it), but very little sense about what working for a newspaper or writing on deadline was all about.
I quickly set up an internship at San Francisco Weekly (from an ad I found in the classifieds, as people actually did back then) and over eight months received a baptism by fire, with the coolest music editor ever (Ann Powers, who went on to the New York Times), Bill Goggins (who went on to help launch WIRED) and a semi-abusive, old-school news editor (whose name I will withhold).
I was hooked. I wrote a cover story about illegal shark fishing, got backstage passes to favorite bands, and interviewed authors and politicians. Every day was a ticket to see the machination of a city.
Since then, I have done my tour of duty through alt-weeklies, writing a series of cover stories for Eugene Weekly while a law student at the University of Oregon, and subsequently serving as the first Managing Editor for the Portland Mercury, watching the paper grow from an idea into an institution. Of all of those, the past two-and-half years as the Editor for the Source has been my favorite. But, that said, it is time for someone else to take the helm.
We are looking for a new Editor. It is a tough job, but immensely rewarding; a chance to watchdog City Hall and to champion local organizations (not to mention the beer tasting and reviewing restaurants). There may be a lot of talk about how newspapers are fading, but I have watched the opposite trend as weekly newspapers like the Source become increasingly important and necessary as reliable platforms for civic and entertainment information. Know someone (yourself?) who should be the new editor at the Source? Check out our complete job description below.
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Are you smart enough to be a Fortune 500 CEO, but care more about community than profit margin? Are you calm enough to be an air traffic controller, but would rather spend your time figuring out what bands are coming to town? Do you know the difference between a film and a movie? Indie music and Americana? And declared, at least once, that print media is not dead?
We need you to be the Editor for the Source Weekly in Bend, Oregon. Entering its 20th year in publication, the Source has an established and important presence in Central Oregon, and a loyal readership.
Primary duties included:
• Oversee content for each issue, manage story assignments, edit and provide a smart, engaging voice for the paper;
• Write feature and news stories, as well as film, food and music reviews;
• Maintain an active and exciting annual editorial schedule, including guiding feature stories and special issues, such as annual “Best Of,” dining guides, adventure issues, film festival guide, etc.;
• Maintain editorial flow and brisk schedule of story deadlines;
• Manage bullpen of freelance writers;
• Work with Production Manager, arrange photography and art work to accompany stories;
• Manage monthly writers’ pay. Part organizational leader, part writer, the Editor position demands both left and right-brain skills. Our ideal candidate will have the following general skills and professional talents:
• Interest in and understanding about the formation of public policy (in particular, local ordinances, policies and programs);
• Proven track record as a team leader, and positive motivator and coach;
• Hands-on background in and interest in public-interest journalism;
• Strong writing skills and patient, but firm, abilities as an editor in a fast-paced environment;
• Writing. Talented and versatile, as able to cover City Hall as the annual Film Festival and write restaurant reviews.
The Source Weekly is a small staff, and this position requires extensive reporting and writing, with a primary focus on filling the feature and news sections each issue. This is a writing, as well as, editing job, overseeing story assignments, maintaining deadlines and shepherding the editorial flow. Should have a minimum five years of writing and editing experience in alt-weeklies. This is a full-time job. Please submit a resume, a one-page cover letter, and whatever clips you believe best represent the breadth of your writing skills and style to email@example.com. Interviews will be scheduled on a rolling basis.