Getting Paid: How They Do it In New York

by Paddy Johnson on March 15, 2011 Opinion

Roger White, watercolor on paper

I’ve spent the last two years listening to my father (and accountant) tell me I needed to “diversify my revenue sources”. That’s always sounded a little too close to “get another job” for my liking, but in truth that’s what I’ve been doing for the last two years. I write the same amount, but I speak at more schools, I run more fundraisers, and sell more advertising than I have before.

This all came up when I spoke to Ania Szremski at Fmagazine this month, a writer who wants to know what publishing models could be reproduced in Chicago. I don’t recommend anyone try to do what I do — it isn’t easy financially, and the work load can be intense — but according the article only Bad at Sports is so foolish anyway. For what it’s worth though both of us are making progress. McKenzie says members of the podcast and blogging collective, may not get paid, but at least now make enough money to cover their expenses and although it was not mentioned in the article, ad revenues at AFC have increased by 187 percent this year. This is largely due to the work of Veken Gueyikian at Nectar Ads who in my opinion, has an absolutely brillant grasp of online marketing and advertising. He’s created a sponsorship program that works, and that’s good for everyone.

As for the interview with Szremski, my thoughts in addition to those of  Walter Robinson at Artnet, Steve Ruiz of Chicago Art Review and Duncan MacKenzie of Bad At Sports, can be read at Fnewsmagazine.  I’m not sure any conclusions were reached about portability of New York models to Chicago, but the conversation was robust regardless.

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