Looking for Contributors to the Site April 13, 2012

Looking for Contributors to the Site

I tried this a while ago and I learned quite a bit about what works and what doesn’t. Now, I’m ready to do it again. Consider this an open call for contributors to the site.

I’m looking for readers who have a lot to say about religion/atheism/babies/etc. and who know how to write about it effectively.

What’s in it for you?

The chance to write for a large readership of awesome people.

Also, you’d get paid. Nothing crazy, but you wouldn’t be doing it for free.

Who am I looking for?

I’d like to hear from writers who can “specialize” in the following areas:

YouTube (finding videos or making them specifically for this site)
Law (writing about lawsuits and their implications)
Pop Culture
Books (reviews, interviews with authors, etc.)
Politics (believe it or not, religion and politics sometimes intersect.)
Interviews (with atheist newsmakers, scientists, etc.)
LGBT issues
non-American atheism (Canada, Britain, Australia, elsewhere)
Women’s issues (at least as they pertain to our movement)
Science (ditto)
Something I’m forgetting

I’m looking for people who can contribute on a regular basis. What “regular” means is debatable. We can play it by ear.

If you have HTML skills, more power to you.

If you’re young (pre-college), I’m especially interested.

What should you do if you’re interested?

Send me an email letting me know why you’d like to be a contributor. Please include the following:

  • Your real name. (I prefer people who use their real names online.)
  • Samples of your writing. Feel free to be creative. (If you have a blog already, terrific! If you’re sending me your 4-page philosophical essay on the Cosmological argument, then you don’t read this site, do you…?)
  • A list of the topic(s) you’d enjoy writing about. Let me know why you’re the best person to write about it.
  • Anything else that would be helpful to know about you.

I don’t need a resume. I just need to feel comfortable with you and feel like we’d probably work well together.

If I don’t get back in touch with you, please don’t take it the wrong way! (Last time, it took me about a month before I could respond to anyone.) If you were interested before and didn’t hear from me, please consider sending another email this time around.

Thanks for helping make this site better!

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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Maat Agnostic

    Under “What’s in it for you?”,you misspelled the word “chance” and wrote it as “change.”

  • snicketmom

    Maybe he has some editor positions open as well!

  • Fixed! Thanks 🙂

  • AntonioPeYangIII

    Hemant, with regard to the non-American atheism segment, how do you feel about cross-posts of articles from another skeptic’s blog, in this case the Filipino Freethinkers?

  • Don’t want cross posts. And I’m mostly interested in non-American stories that are relevant to Americans, so if it applies, great.

  • Kit

    I am a Canadian law student and would be pretty happy to write about how the Charter and Canadian constitutional law treats religion! However, that couldn’t be more than a few guest posts, really … 

  • I cannot get your e-mail for some reason Hemant. I’d love to send you some stuff I have done but I can’t without your e-mail. I have written for SupportAtheism.com, and I have had one article published for the Arizona Freethoughtblogs on atheists in foxholes. I did a short stint with WashingtonTimes.com, but the communities editorial staff’s professionalism was a joke and they constantly tried to limit what I could use for my personal experience to explain my opinions and all the others from the religion section could just say whatever they wanted willy nilly so the editorial manager and I agreed “mutually” we should part ways.  

    If you head over to SupportAtheism.com and just search my name you should be able to find one of my articles. I’m not the greatest as grammar, but I have been told by many many people that I am definitely entertaining to read. 

    Shane Jones. 

  • It’s great that there are more writers…although I could end up spending all day reading blogs and not getting anything done.

    One small request…even though it has the name of the author at the top and more details at the bottom…could the authors picture by at the top too?  To many times I’ve started reading thinking this is Hemant’s blog, this must be Hemant writing so I skipped looking at the byline…and as I was reading I was hearing Hemant’s voice in my head…only to read a few paragraphs in something like “…when I gave birth to my kid…” WHAT!  Hemant! Is there something we don’t know about you…oh…I see it’s someone else writing.

  • french engineer

    When I saw your post, I thought I would very much like to comment and offer my cheese-eating perspective on atheism.

    But then I thought better.  You see, the only way I could describe it would be by talking about what atheists face in the US, and saying “nope, not here”. And I can do that in a single comment.

    I am an atheist. I became one on my second week of my second year of sunday school. You see, the week before, my mum had convinced me to go to sunday school by saying “it’s only one hour”. The week after that, she tried the same trick, but my under-ten self was smart enough to recognize it and say “hey, no, I’ve already done that hour”. Since my mum was, after all, the adult, the argument went on as we went to the church. I threw a tantrum, grabbed the fence and refused to let go. The poor priest still remembers me and the embarrassment he felt that day, according to my mom.

    That anecdote apart, I was raised according to a strict bargain between my catholic mother and my agnostic dad. The bargain went like this : I was to attend enough religious education, as chosen by mom, to know enough to take a decision, and then the decision would be mine.

    After the fence incident, my mother sneakily enrolled me into the church choir (I liked to sing) but to no avail. Religion was not important to me, and as I grew older and reflected on it, the lack of credibility of the whole thing was naturally apparent to me.

    The religious climate is quite different her than in the US. Our government has been officially and resolutely “laïc”, religion-less, ever since it was a republic. I believe it is because we associate “state religion” with “rule by divine right”, and as a country we rejected that concept en masse in 1792. So are all our public schools, maybe to the point of excess : there has been a controversy on a proposed ban on the hijab (the islamic veil) for girls in public schools, and I personnaly remember a time in middle school when my best friend was asked to wear a smaller, less ostentatious crucifix.

    Religion is not taught in public school, except as a theme in history (hard to study the crusades without a few pointers on religion). It is also not discussed in the public square, or very little. To be honest, I do not even know what religion, if any, Nicolas Sarkozy follows, nor any of the other presidential candidates . It just does not come up.(I’ll make an exception for our far-right loons, who tend to be a little less discreet)

    On the other hand, priests are paid by the state. So are Imams and I believe other religious leaders, as long as they perform mass or an analog. The way it is officially seen, they perform a service for the people as a group, so they get paid by the people as a group (but then our whole outlook on taxation is a little different from yours, we tend to see taxes as buying services, not as an unfair form of theft, but that is a different story)

    Another example: In the eyes of French law, a church marriage has zero legal meaning. Churches do perform marriage masses, but they do not, may not, and can not declare two people married in the eyes of the law. That usually means religious people get married twice, once at the church and once at the town hall. That makes for long wedding days. Some, like my aunt, only get married by the mayor and do not bother to see a priest.

    Likewise, the “gay marriage” question was more or less sidestepped here, with the creation of the “PACS”, a kind of marriage-lite, easier to break than a full marriage, opening fewer legal rights, and open to same-sex couples. The debate about opening “full” marriage to same-sex couples goes on, but it is not complicated by the “you are infringing on my religious freedom” nonsense, because the marriage talked about here is the town hall one, not the church one.

    Creationism and evolution-denial are, frankly, laughed at. Changing science curriculum to accommodate religion is so far from our collective mentality that I honestly had to explain the whole idea to my friends when I wanted to share the most amusing (from here) news on the subject.

    There is no discernible discrimination against atheists here. We might have a few problem with discrimination against Islam in some places, and racism in general scores too high in elections for my comfort, but atheists are not a discriminated-against minority, at all. But then, according to wikipedia, “Today, according to estimates, at least 22% of the country’s population
    identifies as atheist, while another 22% identifies as agnostic”, and church attendance is really low even amongst religious folks (in some studies, as many as half “catholics” identify as “agnostic catholic” or “atheistic catholic”), so we might simply not be a minority at all.

    So here it is, a little view of atheism as seen from this side of the Atlantic. Hope it did not bore you.

  • Scott Maddox, CPA

    Get Leo Igwe to contribute.

  • Working on that. Patheos is redesigning the sites here, so maybe after that, I can look into specifics.

  • Not holding out much hope, but it would really be nice if they could tone down the ads a bit.  I know it pays the bills, but a) popups are rude, and b) auto video ads are bandwidth hogs.   I know in the grand scheme of thing one ad streaming a small video isn’t a lot, but they add up.  So maybe bandwidth piglets.

    (and yes everyone, I know how to use ad-blockers)

  • Tim

    Interesting and you write well.

    it is facinating that the French Republic and the USA were founded out of revolution at about the same time, on similar principals and actually by an overlapping set of people (Tom Paine for example) .  And yet turned out so differently.

  • Annie

    Hey Hemant-

    What every happened to Mary de Jesus (was that her name)?  She wrote an introductory post a while back but I never saw anything from her after that.

  • Just got busy. Hopefully, we’ll hear from her again soon!

  • What about one-offs, or only looking for somewhat regular contributors?

  • If anyone has a one-off, they’re welcome to send it to me 🙂

  • Daniel Krull

    Would contributors be expected to be as friendly as you are, Hemant? ;D

  • Nope 🙂 But hopefully, it’s interesting.

  • Daniel Krull

     That wasn’t meant to be a negative comment, btw. My point was just that I lean toward the angrier type of atheist (although I’m not sure I’d be that great as a blogger). You’re fantastic. 🙂

  • Je te rejoint complètement, expériences similaires sur mon rejet de la religion. Mon père est un catholique pratiquant mais accepte mon athéisme sans soucis. Et Sarkozy est catholique (et Grand Chanoine de je sais plus où, ordonné par le pape) 🙂

    I totally agree with you, same experience for my rejection of religion. My father is a practicing catholic but  accepts my atheism without problems. And Sarkozy is catholic (and Grand Chanoine of I don’t remember where, ordained by the pope) 🙂

  • If you need something about the Metal Community (a cultural minority that often brushes with religion for various reasons and comprises a lot of atheists/agnostics), I can make casual dispatches, such as covering some problems met by certain festival organizers like the Hellfest, which was threatened by a small yet powerful christian group.

    Won’t be frequent news though, since as said above by French Engineer, we don’t really have the same problems with religion in France as you have in the States… 

  • Jojolibrarian74

    I sent off an email to you yesterday.  I am insanely interested!

  • Not boring at all!  Thanks for sharing that.  Makes me wish I lived in France.

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