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Career GPS

A weekly conversation about following your passions and your paycheck.

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Amy Wallace recently wrote about the minefield surrounding her reporting on vaccines for ReportingonHealth. Two months after her November 2009 Wired cover story "An Epidemic of Fear: One Man's Battle Against the Anti-vaccine Movement" was published, she was sued. Though the laws

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These days, when we talk about careers in journalism, the focus is often on the razzle dazzle, the tricks and technology and the ups and downs of the industry. This week at CareerGPS, I'm getting back to basics. A student asked me recently, how do I make a career as a writer? I thought a

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The annual convention of the Asian American Journalists Association (AAJA) early in August was filled from top to bottom with practical and career-oriented sessions. For me, one of the most useful was off the official books. By Twitter and email, AAJA Texas chapter president Iris Kuo organized a lunchtime get-together for freelancers in the hotel lobby.

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As always, you can find job, internship, awards and fellowship opportunities at the end of this post.

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You know you want take the long journey of writing a book, but how do you take the first step? Here are some top tips for getting published from three health writers who have been there.

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Think about the news in the last month. What sticks out? What connected with you?

It's much more likely that the dramatic image of a young girl in Afghanistan on the Aug. 9 cover of Time magazine is rising to the top than any text-heavy feature you marveled at this month. The power of images is clear -- they provoke, they tell stories, they resonate.

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Last week, Ed Yong over at the Discover blog Not Exactly Rocket Science wrote a brilliant post.

And when I say brilliant, I mean to say that it is brilliant because he didn't write much at all. The post is called "On the Origin of Science Writing" and it's a lovely example of the power of crowd-sourcing. At last look, 124 people have commented to explain how they became science writers.

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Sheri Fink won the Pulitzer Prize for investigative reporting this year for her compelling narrative about life-and-death choices made by health care providers in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. While the story ran in The New York Times Magazine, she did her reporting while enmeshed in the nonprofit journalism world, as a Kaiser Media Fellow and later as a reporter at the nonprofit newsroom ProPublica.

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One of the central ironies for beleaguered journalism job hunters today is that the demand for content is huge. If you are among those who regularly scour journalism job sites, you might have noticed that some of the most common listings are calls for writers to produce short articles at low piecemeal rates.

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Joanna Lin graduated from USC in 2008, just before the U.S. economy began to nosedive. Since then, she has worked for five different media outlets, grew a professional journalism career in a time of upheaval, and developed a philosophy and fortitude about doing the work she loves.



Medicare Advantage plans are surging in popularity. What’s at stake for seniors in your community as private companies increasingly administer Medicare? This webinar will help cover an essential story on a program that covers 60 million Americans across the country. Sign-up here!

In this season of giving, you can support journalism that saves lives by making a tax-deductible contribution to the Center for Health Journalism. For 15 years, the Center has made it possible for reporters to call attention to untold stories, highlight solutions and bring communities together around common aims. In today’s difficult news environment, the USC Annenberg Center for Health Journalism provides critical support so that reporters can produce ambitious, game-changing projects on health and well-being. You can text to donate. No amount is too small; just send a text to 41-444 and type the message CHJ for further instructions.

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