When Jim Thomsen found out he was going to lose his position as a copy editor at the Kitsap Sun, a daily newspaper in Bremerton, Washington, he said that it was the blackest period of his life. “I couldn’t figure out what else I could do,” he said. He spent about a year looking for another job in the newspaper industry. Nothing.
That’s when he decided to start freelance editing manuscripts. Thomsen had been editing manuscripts on the side but never considered it as self-sustaining. Now, he said he’s making more money than he ever did at a newspaper and doesn’t regret the transition at all.
“I had to get past my psychological dependence on my identity as a newspaper person,” he said. “I had to shed myself of my tribal identity and find out what is forward thinking and lucrative, and I found that.”
Thomsen is hardly alone. He’s one of many editors who have opted to become freelancers after leaving a full-time job in the newspaper industry.