Enter for a chance to have your writing published on the Naturejobs blog and work with Nature Publishing Group editors.
Following the success of the Boston and London Naturejobs Career Expos journalism competitions (you can read all the articles from the competition in the #NJCEBoston and #NJCE14 categories on the blog), we are repeating the competition for both the 2015 Expos. Earlier this year we ran the Boston competition (see the NJCE15 category on the blog) but now it’s time for the London one!
The London Naturejobs Career Expo is our flagship event, so we are looking for five budding science writers to help us with our coverage of the Expo conference sessions, workshops and general ambience of the event for those who cannot make it. The conference will explore career paths in industry, academia and science communication, entrepreneurship, structuring a CV and transferable skills, amongst other things.
The five winners will have the opportunity to attend the Expo and write up at least two of the sessions or workshops for our readers, sharing the advice and expertise of the speakers with readers from around the world. Winners will also have the opportunity to work closely with Nature Publishing Group editors, and their articles will be published on the Naturejobs blog.
The competition is open to all unpublished*, currently enrolled undergraduate, graduate or postgraduate science students and post docs working in either the natural sciences, clinical sciences, physical sciences, life sciences or science communication (need a science background). You don’t have to be London-based, but do keep in mind that we cannot cover travel expenses (see below).
All you need to do to enter the competition and stand a chance of being a journalist with Naturejobs for the day is to send us the following:
1) A cover letter explaining why you want to be considered and what makes you a good journalist.
2) Your CV.
3) A 600 word answer to one of the following topics. Normally we set something quite specific but this time we’re leaving the topics open to your interpretation. We want to hear about your experiences:
- Science communication
- Career paths
The prizes are:
1) The 5 winning and 5 runner-up entries will be posted on the Naturejobs blog before the event.
2) The reports of the Expo will be published on the Naturejobs blog after the event.
3) Winners will work with, and meet, NPG editors.
4) The 5 winners will get a one year free subscription to Nature magazine.
5) The 5 winners will also get a £50/$100 Amazon voucher.
The things you need to know BEFORE entering the competition:
1) We cannot offer travel grants or cover travel expenses to the event of any kind. Instead we offer some great prizes, along with the opportunity of having your pieces published on the Naturejobs blog.
2) The competition entries and content created will be used on the Naturejobs blog and in marketing materials for the Naturejobs Career Expo.
3) The deadline for sending in your competition entries is 7 AUGUST 2015 at 9pm GMT/5PM EST.
4) You can send your competition entries to Julie, the Naturejobs editor, at naturejobseditor [at] nature.com.
The 5 winners from the 2014 Boston event (Scott Chimileski, Saheli Sadanand, Prital Patel, Lynn Kimlicka and Aliyah Weinstein) had a great time, and relished the opportunity to meet some of the speakers and act as a journalist for the day.
One of the exciting things about this competition is that the winners will work with an NPG editor to polish their articles prior to posting on the Naturejobs blog. Lynn found it an interesting insight into the editorial process, and learned a lot, “including my bad writing habits.” She intends to put these insights to good use in future writing assignments.
Aliyah particularly liked working with the editor, as “the editorial process taught me to cut a lot of my wordiness and focus on each word being important. I also learned that I need to keep better notes so that I can include even more details in my articles. The editor I worked with focused on ‘voice’ with me, and helped me transition my writing from being very technical to being more conversational.”
Prital gives some advice on entering the competitions: “Take the time out of your busy schedule to think about what you want to write about. Choose a couple of topics that you think you are most comfortable with and jot down your ideas. Come up with a couple of rough drafts and ask other members of your lab for their opinion. Start building up the piece that comes up trumps. When writing your story, keep your audience in mind. For Naturejobs, the audience is graduate students and postdocs looking for career advice — give them something useful to read.”
* A ‘published’ writer is a professional journalist or author already being paid for their work. Bloggers and student journalists are welcome to enter.