Monday, 9 December 2013

My Year In Freelance Journalism: 2013


How fortunes shift and chance. Twelve months ago I was close to giving up journalism, yet here I sit today having miraculously contributed more pieces for more publications than in any similar period since I started doing this professionally in 1996. Against all odds 2013 has been something of a bumper year on that front.

Don't ask me how this has happened: I just know I'm very lucky. I love the fast pace of journalism, the commitment to work counts and deadlines. I've even grown to accept the inevitable abuse one receives when articles are published on websites with comments sections. It also buys me some time to work on novels, stories and poems.

The downside - the only real downside - is that I've probably still not made minimum wage. Last year it was way below this. Given that I often work nights, weekends and received no sick pay, holiday pay or pension you might see why a love of journalism (and in my case music / the arts) is necessary in this business. I say this not to gain sympathy but only as a warning of sorts for anyone entering into the profession. Anyway: I have more free apples and fire wood than I can use and no-one becomes a writer to get rich. You do it because you literally can't do anything else. I'm still enamoured.

So: a vintage year for scribbling down thoughts and opinions, and talking to interesting people with funny hair and wildly differing opinions, and avoiding getting an actual, real life job. Victory.

And, yes, I like making lists.

Publications / companies written for
BBC
The New Statesman
The Guardian
Mojo
Metal Hammer
Classic Rock
Classic Rock presents Prog
The Yorkshire Post
Hebden Bridge Times
The Big Issue
T In The Park Festival programme
V Festival programme
Download Festival programme
Hard Rock Calling Festival
Wireless Festival
Ilkley Literature Festival
Leaf Records
Rise Above Records
Division Promotions

Artists interviewed
Bullet for My Valentine
Order Of Voices
Hacktivist
Graham Duff
Kverlertak
Pete Molinari
Iceage
Melt Yourself Down
Baby Godzilla
Uncle Acid And The Deadbeats
Ghost
Wolf People
Falling Off Maps
Young Aviators
Biffy Clyro
Dave Mustaine (Megadeth)
Stealing Sheep
Slipknot
Enter Shikari
Age Of Taurus
Glenn Danzig
Purson
Integrity
Bosnian Rainbows
Chthonic
Stereophonics
Miles Kane
Karnivool
Anta
Two Door Cinema Club
Baroness
Linda Thompson
Black Spiders
Earthless
Zakk Wylde
Also Eden
IQ
Seb Rochford (Polar Bear)
Alcest
Slash

Artists reviewed
The Cribs
NOFX
New Model Army
Blodig Alvor
The Stranglers
Hellbastard
Switchblade
Fat Goth
Pure Love
Kvelertak
The Omega Experiment
Wardruna
Iceage
Ian Svenonius
Earthtone 9
Mudhoney
Clutch
At The Drive-In
Nikki Sixx
Ghost
Purson
The Phoenix Foundation
Sanguine Hum
Noah And The Whale
Frank Turner
Wolf People
AC4
The Dillinger Escape Plan
Uncle Acid And The Deadbeats
Haraball
Blood Ceremony
The Ralfe Band
Jex Thoth
Phil Anselmo
Master Musicians Of Bukkake
The Orange Man Theory
System 7 And Rovo
Stonecutters
Isis
Placebo
Lord Dying
Gogol Bordello
Funkadelic
Blackfield
Corrupt Leaders
Oaf
In Soltitude
Pelican
Bloody Hammer
Warbringer
Earls Of Mars
Motorhead
Kiran Leonard
Shearwater
The Oscillation
Moon Safari
Nick Harper
Spiralarms
We Are Knuckle Dragger
Pigs
Julian Cope
Ghost
Pink Floyd
Billie-Joe Armstrong And Norah Jones
Wet Nuns
Satan's Wrath
Black Rainbows
Dripback
Firebrand Super Rock
Full Of Hell / Calm The Fire
Behemoth
Let's Wrestle

(Plus various other commissioned features, blogs and/or contributions to pieces about pop music, the North of England, 'being a writer', favourite books etc.)

Thanks for reading.














With Della. Midnight, New Year's Eve 2012/2013.










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