Welcome to TJRSports.com. If you know anything about this site it's a spinoff of TJRWrestling.com. We started it last summer and here we are a year later saying we want your help to make it grow. Yes you. You can be a part of this.
What are we looking for? Anybody that has a passion, love and desire to write about anything that falls under the category of sports. That means NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, MMA, NCAA Basketball, NCAA Football, Tennis, Golf, NASCAR, Boxing, Rugby, Cricket and anything that any sane person would consider a sport. Wife carrying does not count!
A sports site is different than what we do at the wrestling site because there are so many things we can cover. Whether it's commenting on breaking news, previewing a game/match or simply offering a take on something that is on your mind the wide world of sports is vast. There's a lot you can write about.
I realize that a lot of sports are in the offseason right now. When you send in your sample you can also mention what you might write about during the season of that particular sport so it gives me a good idea of what you're thinking about.
I have no idea how many writers we will pick. It might be 10. It could be less. It could be more. I'm not sure.
I have some guidelines below that I'd like you to follow. It's similar to what I did at TJRWrestling in March because I feel like it worked, so some stuff is exactly the same. Even the banner used for this post is the same. Let's get to it.
Rules To Follow
I'll be listing a bunch of rules for you to follow. Please read carefully. If you don't follow the rules guess what? You're probably not getting hired. Rules are important. They're there for a reason.
- There is a limit on the length of the columns. That limit is 2,500 words. If it's way more than 2500 words I'm not going to read it all. For minimum I think 700 words is a good number. If it's shorter than that it better be amazing because otherwise you'll have a tough time making it through. It's not the number words that matter. It's the content.
Keep those numbers in mind. Send something in that's between 700 to 2,500 words. I would say 1,200 words are ideal.
- The column should be about sports. That's the name of the site, so that's what we want you to write about. Again, you can pick a particular sport or write about a few. Talk about a sports movie if you like. Go for whatever is on your mind as long as it's sports related.
I don't really want something like "this is why I'm a sports fan" or "this is why this is my favorite team" because those things are too common. If you really want to do something like that you can. I'm fine with it as long as you're unique about it.
- You have SEVEN DAYS to submit a column. The deadline is Friday July 26 at 11:59pmET to send me your column.
It does not matter when you send it to me as long as it's here by the end of Friday next week. A column that is sent on Saturday at 9pm is not going to get preferential treatment over the one that is sent Sunday at 10pm.
You have one week, so there is plenty of time to get your submission in. Take your time. Edit as much as you need. Give the best effort you can.
- We want writers who are going to cover a particular sport. If you like more than one that's great and perhaps once you get settled you can write about more than one, but when you get looked at it will be based on your column that focuses on one subject.
- We don't need people to pick NFL games. We already have a few of those on the site including my own and I don't want to have 4 or 5 of the same things going up all the time. If you want to write about the NFL that's great, but go for something other than a NFL picks column.
- Use good grammar. Edit your column. Is my grammar perfect? Hell no. I know that. It's above average, though. Bad grammar sticks out. Don't be bad. After you write your column edit it once or twice. It's better for you to send me a column with proper grammar on the last day then to rush it to me on the first day.
Things to Avoid
- List columns are popular, but they aren't the best in terms of evaluating a writer's work, so unless you have a really unique idea for a list you should avoid them. If you make it to the site and you want to do a list column at some that's fine. To get me to hire you it's not the best idea.
- Excessive swearing would be a bad idea. I'm okay with it in moderation, but don't overdo it. If you have to ask if a word is a swear word then it probably is.
Don't swear in the title. Don't use any words that cross the line. Again, if you have to ask then it probably is. I swear once in a while when I write. I don't think I'm ever excessive. It's a common sense thing. My preference is to see a column with no swearing although if there's a little of it that's okay too.
The Evaluation Process
My plan is to read every column. When I read a column I try to judge what's entertaining. I've been at this for over a decade, so I'd like to think I know what works and what doesn't. For organizational purposes I put a letter grade on the columns.
I may consult with some friends to help me decide, but it depends on how many submissions we get.
I will make brief notes on every column I read on a Word file most likely. Perhaps when the whole thing is done I will email you back with those thoughts. I'm not sure if I will have the time.
If You Get a Spot
My request is that you try to write on a weekly basis if you're doing a weekly column. However, it's sports so we would love breaking news and/or opinions on a news item. For example if there's a big signing or trade then we would like to see some content about it.
Obviously things happen and you may miss a week or two. That's fine as long as you try to let me know.
I understand that life issues always interfere. It's happened to me many times through the years. Don't apply if you think you'd be unable to put up with a schedule that asks you to write at least once a week.
On the wrestling site we assigned days to the new writers. We can't really do that here.
How to Apply
This is important. Read carefully!
Email me at email@example.com and put "TJRSports Writer Search" in the subject.
You can send it to me directly in the email or as a .txt, .rtf or .doc (Microsoft Word) file. My preference is you paste it directly into the email. That's easiest for me.
Do not send me a link to your blog or some other site where your column is. If you write at another site that's fine and you can tell me what it is, but I'd prefer it if you email me the column.
- I want you to copy and paste the following into your column submission.
Twitter: (if you have one - not necessary)
That's it. Below that goes the body of the column or you can send it with an attachment as I mentioned.
Name - It doesn't have to be your real name. It's your writing name. John Canton (NFL Hall of Fame) is a pen name for me. It's better that you have a first name and last name. Don't do John C. like I used to have. Make up a last name if that's the case. If you get hired and I don't like the name you pick we can change it. It's not set in stone.
Email - I realize that your email address will be in the email you send. I want it written in the email you send for organizational purposes.
Column Title - What are you writing about? Put it in the title. Example: "Why the NFL is the best run sports league in the world" is a title. Another example: "The New York Yankees Are the Biggest Villains in Sports." That's what you put as the column title.
You don't need a name for your column like I have "The John Report" on the wresting site for example. This is more for the specific column title. For example "Why Michael Jordan is the best NBA player ever" is a column title.
Three Things to Remember
- There is ABSOLUTELY NO PAY for this. I put it in caps and bolded it to make that clear. What you're getting is the opportunity to write on a growing sports website that is very opinionated. If you think you can handle it give it a try. You have nothing to lose.
- There is no preferential treatment. The reason I mention this is because I've been doing this a LONG time and have met so many people along the way. Guess what? If somebody I know applies that doesn't matter. I'm not biased towards my friends. When we hired 7 people to write on the wrestling site in April I knew none of them. Others I knew got passed over. I'm trying for the best here.
If you talk to me on Facebook or you interact with me on Twitter that's great. I may know a bit about you. But that doesn't give you any advantage.
- If you don't get hired please do not take it personal. It's unrealistic to expect me to hire 30 people at once. That wouldn't work.
When will we make announcements? Since the search is open for 7 days it will be a few days after that most likely. It's July 19 right now. I'll say by July 31 it should be announced. Check me out on Twitter for updates and I may post one on the site too.
Thank you very much for supporting TJRSports.
TJR Sports Founder & Editor-in-Chief