Adam Westbrook // ideas on digital storytelling and publishing

Inside the Story: now on sale!

Posted in Entrepreneurial Journalism, Online Video by Adam Westbrook on April 26, 2012

And we’re off! It’s taken months of work, several hundred emails all over the world and lots of late nights, but Inside the Story: a masterclass in digital storytelling by the people who do it best is now on sale!

On the website you’ll find more about the book, more about Kiva, the charity receiving the proceeds from book sales, and the checkout button to get hold of a copy.

One small change of note: I announced yesterday the book would sell for US$5.00. After some more user testing, we’ve decided to sell the book in pound sterling instead, as it means sales are processed automatically and you won’t have to wait long for your copy to be available.

So it’s now priced at a sterling equivalent (give or take exchange rate fluctuations) of £3.50. You can buy with PayPal, your debit/credit card or Google Checkout.

And a final important note: Inside the Story is on sale for a limited time only: just four weeks. That’s when we’ll donate all the money to Kiva and the book will go off sale. If you want the book, it’s vital you get hold of it soon!

Click here to go straight to the book itself.


Inside the Story: a video update

Posted in Online Video by Adam Westbrook on April 16, 2012

For the last few months I’ve been working on an exciting project which is almost ready to launch. It’s called Inside the Story: a masterclass in digital storytelling from the people who do it best – an ebook, to raise money for Kiva, the developing world entrepreneurship charity.

The last few weeks has been a flurry of layout, web design and conversations with some of the best film makers, digital producers and  journalists out there, and the book is almost ready to go live.

What’s going to be in the book? Here’s a quick video update on the project – and a sneak preview of some of the pages. Later this week, I’ll be publishing snippets from the book so you can see some more and announcing the publication date.

If you’re not a fan of the Facebook page yet, why not? 

Announcement: a new storytelling project

Posted in Entrepreneurial Journalism, Online Video by Adam Westbrook on March 5, 2012

I don’t really do video blogs, but there are lots of cool projects I’ve started this year I want to keep you in touch about.

One I’m really excited about is this one here – you’re going to love it. It’s a new book which is unlike any other on digital storytelling out there and it’s going to help change lives around the world.

Curious? All is revealed in the video!

If you’re receiving this post in your inbox, click on the link at the top to view the video.

So there you go: a book which will help journalists, producers, students, directors, film makers and more tell better stories plus raise money for Kiva, a brilliant charity, who empower entrepreneurs the world over.

A brief warning: you’ll hear me bang on about this book loads over the next couple of months – apologies in advance!

Oh and you can follow my other works-in-progress over on my Tumblr blog – I’m trying to post something new there every day.

I’m also still looking for a good name for the book: if you’ve got any ideas, then please email me.

Video: Deborah Bonello on setting up

Posted in Journalism, Next Generation Journalist by Adam Westbrook on September 29, 2010

Deborah Bonello is the embodiment of the Next Generation Journalist. Faced with the declining journalism industry we all face today, she did what no-one else had done, and created her own ideal job – from scratch.

She flew to Mexico, set up a simple website using WordPress, and single-handedly created a news website for English-speaking expats there. became hugely popular in just a couple of years and got Deborah amazing offers of work.

Here, she talks about how she set up the challenges and the struggles.

In this video:

  • you will find out how Deborah founded
  • you’ll discover the equipment she used to do it
  • you’ll hear about the challenges of setting up your own online magazine
  • and you’ll find out why it’s a great way to launch a foreign reporting career.

There’s loads more examples of Next Generation Journalists in action, including a comprehensive plan for 10 different awesome career paths in journalism in Next Generation Journalist. Click here to find out how to get a copy.

Next Generation Journalist: what you’ve been saying

Posted in Adam, Next Generation Journalist by Adam Westbrook on June 21, 2010

My ebook Next Generation Journalist: 10 New Ways to Make Money in Journalism has been on the digital book shelves for about a month now, and I’ve been overwhelmed by the response.

There have been lots of lovely reviews from some of the biggest journalism bloggers, including Jon Slattery, Video Journalist, Solo VJ, Innovative Interactivity and

The best responses though have come from the readers themselves – to everyone who has got in touch to tell me what you think, thank you! The ebook is still available, via PayPal, Google Checkout & Lulu – just head this way.

From the inbox…

Thanks so much for 01 under “Five Things you should know.” I’ve been living the artisan life for the fast few years mostly out of necessity. I had to have several clients just to make my cash flow. And I’ve been doing lots of different things, so many I can’t give a single answer the question “What do you do?” Thanks for validating my experiences.


I’ve been reading this book and your other e-book and I find that both are very inspiring. While I continue to look for full-time work, I’ve decided to go into freelance multimedia journalism which is why I find your books motivating and useful.

Joyce, UK

Loving the book by the way, I’ve been thinking of doing a few things for a while now and your book has just given me the ‘nudge’ I needed…  You’ve confirmed many things that I have been thinking about but previously questioned my own thoughts, not any more!!

Nik, NT Media

Thank you very much for your help. I successfully downloaded the book and it looks terrific!

Dennis, United States

From the Twittersphere…

Next Generation Journalist is worth every penny. encourages me to branch oput from traditional journo career


decided to ditch the web design stuff – not really for me. getting some great ideas for next move from @adamwestbrook‘s new ebook!


Have you bought @adamwestbrook‘s entrepreneurial how-to ebook “Next Generation Journalists” yet? I highly recommend it!


Just bought @AdamWestbrook‘s book on Next Generation Journalism. Recommended.


@AdamWestbrook bought your book… and it is great for ideas. Starting an alumni website providing best of University of York’s journalism.


@AdamWestbrook I like that. The top points are basically what’s killing journalism. Entrepreneurial is the future. I shall be buying a copy.


From the blogs

Adam Westbrook has done it again. His first e-book, titled 6×6 Series was a great read for journalists wishing to learn what new skills they’ll need to face the challenges of a changing media landscape. Now Adam has added another e-book, Next Generation Journalist – 10 new ways to make money in journalism, and I am loving it.

As a budding entrepreneur myself, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this thought-provoking and highly optimistic ideas. In 68 pages, he moves seamlessly from one idea to the next, describing how you can make each work for your personally and what small steps can be taken immediately.

Tracy Boyer, Innovative Interactivity,

Guess what distinguishes each of Westbrook’s strategies for landing a gig? The recognition of the fact that there are scarcely any gigs left to pursue — and that you have to find and make your own opportunities.

Ken Kobre, KobreChannel

Filled with concise, to the point information on new trails to travel depending on the style of journalism you are working in, a rather unconventional approach compared to what’s being taught in journalism schools today.

As a solo video journalist, I realized to stay competitive, I had to find new avenues to pursue in order to keep myself earning an income.

Cliff Etzel, American Video Journalist

Next Generation Journalist: 10 New Ways to Make Money in Journalism is available to download now.

Why you SHOULDN’T buy my book

Posted in Journalism, Next Generation Journalist by Adam Westbrook on May 27, 2010

Yeah, you read the title right.

Hundreds of people have already downloaded my ebook Next Generation Journalist: 10 New Ways to Make Money in Journalism, in the US, Canada, New Zealand, the UK, Germany and France, and I’m saying maybe you shouldn’t.


Well, the ideas in the book aren’t for everyone. Some of them are pretty new and off the wall. They all require a new way of thinking and a fair bit of courage to make happen. Follow any of the innovative new ideas in Next Generation Journalist and you’re not in for an easy ride.

You’re in for an exciting ride and a fun ride…but not an easy one. Striking out on your own, launching your own enterprise, constantly swimming against the current of what the establishment perceives to be the ‘way things are done’ isn’t easy.

And let’s face it, not everyone wants that in their life right?

So, with that in mind, you SHOULDN’T buy Next Generation Journalist if:

  • you think the internet is a big threat and not a big opportunity (I’m looking at you, Rupert)
  • you don’t believe journalists should take control of their future and carve out their own careers
  • you only want to work for a big national newspaper or broadcaster and think online start-ups have no potential
  • you’re not ready for the risk and danger of striking out on your own and making your own mark
  • you’d quite like a nice, quiet life, sitting at a desk
  • you don’t want to embrace the unique, exciting and unpredictable digital revolution we are going through to see what might happen
  • you’re scared of failure
  • you can afford to wait for the industry to sort itself out and provide job security and good wages again

But, you SHOULD buy Next Generation Journalist if:

  • you know there’s a huge opportunity to make money and do exciting things in journalism, but you just can’t put your finger on it yet
  • you’re ready and willing to break some rules and challenge the conventional wisdoms in journalism
  • you’ve seen how others, like MediaStorm or are making it work, but don’t know the secrets
  • you dream of living an exciting life with all its ups and downs, in the name of changing the world
  • you’re prepared to mess things up a few times in order to create something amazing
  • you know there’s no point in being average, when you could be awesome instead

Now if that’s you, then you’ve got until midnight Friday (GMT) to get the book at a steal of £6.50/$9.50 – then it goes up to full price of £10/$15.

Next Generation Journalist: on sale now!

Posted in Next Generation Journalist, Uncategorized by Adam Westbrook on May 20, 2010

I’m very happy to announce Next Generation Journalist: 10 new ways to make money in journalism is now on sale!

At 68 pages, it’s a bit of a beast, but packed full of ideas, inspiration, advice and step-by-step guides on how to survive in the new world of journalism.

What’s inside?

  • 10 new & exciting ways of making money in journalism (you can get a sneak preview of them on
  • 7 bonus chapters covering the practical nuts & bolts
  • 12 interviews with the people who are already making it work for them
  • 30 things you can do right away to make the new career paths happen
  • 2 introductory chapters which guide you through how to decide what you really want

Click here to see the book’s contents!

Introductory offer

All this is yours for £6.50 for the UK & Europe edition and $9.50 for the North American edition.

This price won’t last long though – it goes up to full price in less than a week!


The first reviews are starting to come through. The Not On The Wires blog describes it as “a much needed breath of fresh air”. Video Journalism pioneer Michael Rosenblum calls it “Required reading for every journalism student in the world.”

Get your copy now!

Why don’t you set up a journalism collaborative?

Posted in Next Generation Journalist by Adam Westbrook on May 12, 2010

Every day until the 20th of May I’m featuring a creative new way for journalists to exploit the digital age to create new job & business opportunities for themselves. Full details are in Next Generation Journalist: 10 New Ways to Make Money in Journalism available for download on May 20th.

03. launch a journalism collaborative

The internet, and the digital age we live in, is great isn’t it? It means you can create content and publish it fast, cheap and without fear of failure. The same applies to business, which is why setting up your own journalism business is so easy it’s almost stupid not to give it a go yourself.

Launching a journalism collaborative is a really effective way of doing this because it keeps the costs – and the risks – to an absolute minimum. Think of it as your average start-up, except it has no employees, no red tape…it doesn’t even have an office.

Launching your own journalism collaborative…

  • gives you the opportunity to do the type of journalism you love most — for money
  • lets you start a business in a flexible and less-risky way
  • allows you to share the risk of launching a business with others and share the profits
  • is easy to bootstrap

Collaboratives aren’t anything new in one sense. In fact the collaboratives that already exist are known for setting the standard in their fields. Take the most famous one – Magnum Photos: a collaborative of young innovative photojournalists who re-wrote the rules of the game in the mid 20th century.

The industry is crying out for a new Magnum. An agency of talented journalists who are in it to rewrite the rules and produce epic shit. Could that be you and your collaborators?

Find out how to do it.

Journalism: what are you best at?

Posted in Next Generation Journalist by Adam Westbrook on May 10, 2010

Every day until the 20th of May I’m featuring a creative new way for journalists to exploit the digital age to create new job & business opportunities for themselves. Full details are in Next Generation Journalist: 10 New Ways to Make Money in Journalism available for download on May 20th.

02. specialise in a single journalistic skill

The news production machine is a complicated beast with dozens of cogs needed to turn a story around; as well as reporters, subs, producers and editors, there’s increasing demand for data experts, infographic designers, fact checkers, and investigators.

For the Next Generation Journalist, this isn’t about becoming a cog in a bigger machine, but exploiting one of those cogs by becoming really good at it, and then using that as a basis for a business.

It’s not even a new idea if you consider how companies like Reuters and the Press Association have specialised in the gathering of information for more than a century; court reporters can be viewed in the same way, building a speciality in covering legal cases.

But the digital age has led to the creation of new skills, all of which can be turned into businesses for the forward thinking journalist.

Specialising in a particular journalism process…

  • allows you to focus in on your real passion in news & eliminate the things you’re less interested in
  • means you can build yourself a reputation as an expert in a profitable part of the news machine
  • lets you work as a self-employed freelancer for a range of clients, letting you be your own boss

There are plenty of business models you can build around this idea – from being a data miner (think Michelle Minkoff), or a data artist (think Drawnalism and NewsInfographics) to an expert in Freedom of Information requests (think HelpMeInvestigate) and investigations (think the Investigative Journalism Bureau).

Don Foley went freelance as a news graphic designer in the 1990s and is now sought by editorial and corporate clients for his work.

“The biggest benefit is freedom” he says, “I walk on the beach every day I ride my bike to my boat and fit my work into my life. I once too my family cruising on our boat for a year, working the whole time and many clients didn’t know unless I told them.”

The difficult part here is burrowing down to what really gets you going in journalism. Is it writing? Filming? Editing? Subbing? You need to know this about yourself before you continue.

Interested? Find out how to do it!

Do multimedia journalism…and get paid!

Posted in Next Generation Journalist by Adam Westbrook on May 10, 2010

Here’s a great way to build a business telling powerful human stories for people who really need them.

01. make multimedia for non-profits and NGOs

The first featured career path for the Next Generation Journalist is not so new, but it is yet to reach it’s full potential. What it’s looking for is journalists with the innovation and vision to do something different. What’s this one all about? It’s about applying your research, storytelling, writing and multimedia production skills to produce powerful content for the third sector.

In the US and Europe a fresh crop of companies are making this work. In North America, companies like MediaStorm, Weyo and Story4 (which I have featured in articles like this one) are independent companies producing content for NGOs and non-profits as well as editorial clients. In Europe, the competition is smaller, with just a handful of businesses starting to establish themselves, including Duckrabbit, Not On The Wires, and the Bombay Flying Club.

This is a sector with huge potential and it’s a great opportunity for forward thinking journalists.

If you get it right, the money is there. Brian Storm, who founded MediaStorm, says 2009 was their best year ever – but when I spoke to him in February 2010 they had already booked in 65% of that for 2010. MediaStorm actually turn down 70% of work because they’re so busy! At this year’s Digital Storytelling Conference, Duckrabbit revealed they are making money too. Do you want a piece of that pie?

Setting up a multimedia production company…

  • gives you the chance to focus on telling compelling stories, often about unreported issues
  • lets you build a solid business and brand with a well defined market
  • markets to a sector with a lot of money, and minimal expertise in journalism

And it’s not too expensive or risky to do either. A website costs $50 and a weekend’s work to get looking great with a WordPress theme. The kit, if you don’t have it already, can be yours for around $1000 (see my articles here and here). Then you need the cracking content: building a portfolio of remarkable work, by offering to produce things for free.

Find out more…

10 new ways to make money in journalism

Posted in Next Generation Journalist by Adam Westbrook on May 7, 2010

The problem: there aren’t enough jobs for journalists

4,000 journalism jobs were lost in the UK last year; 20,000+ in the US. Meanwhile the number of young people applying for journalism courses went up, in the UK by nearly 16%.

The solution: journalists need to think differently about their career and come up with new ways to make a living

I’m very happy to announce details of a project I’ve been working on for several months now, which is almost ready to go live.

In all the blog posts I have written, Future of News meetups I have hosted, lectures and training sessions I have given since quitting my full-time job seven months ago one thing has become clear: journalists in the future need to think differently if they’re going to survive.

The maths just don’t add up for a start.

There are too many journalists and not enough jobs. How do we navigate that?

Emerging from this is the Next Generation Journalist: someone who isn’t threatened by talk of the supposed declining value of news, the slashing of budgets or lack of jobs. Instead of threats or problems, they see opportunities.

It might seem we live in the toughest of times as journalists, but in fact we are hugely privileged to live when we do. The internet has shaken journalism to the core, but it has also created three fantastic opportunities we can’t ignore:

  • the opportunity to create high quality content at a fraction of the price
  • the opportunity to publish that content for free
  • the opportunity to create new audiences, communities for that content, and then monetise it

The Next Generation Journalist seizes on these opportunities and does journalism in new and exciting ways – and makes money.

10 new ways to make money in journalism

I want more people to seize these opportunities and exploit the digital economy. It’s not easy though, and requires not just creativity, and a bit of business know-how…but guts and persistence, the drive to swim against the tide and do epic shit no-one has done before.

So I’ve spent the last few months working on a new e-book which I hope will help people along the way. It’s called the Next Generation Journalist and will be available to download on May 20th.

In the book I’ve compiled 10 new business ideas for journalists to pursue. It shows you what they are, but also how it’s done; and features interviews with people who’ve actually done it.

It’s got its own website and everything, and there’ll be discounts for anyone who signs up early – just click here to do that.

What are the 10 new ways?

The good news is you don’t have to buy the book to find out what the 10 new ways to make money are!

Every day from Monday I’ll be revealing a new career opportunity contained within the book, so you can see whether it fits you before parting with any cash.

You’ll get more info too, including exclusive video and audio interviews, if you get yourself on the mailing list…click here!

Presentation: 5 new career paths for journalists

Posted in Journalism by Adam Westbrook on February 23, 2010

I’m busy working on a new e-book, to be released in May 2010, which I hope will be a big help to journalists everywhere.

In it, I’m revealing ten new ways for journalists to do what they love and make money, in the face of the digital revolution and the economic downturn. With fewer traditional jobs, and more journalism graduates than ever before, the maths just don’t add up.

So what can the next generation of journalists do? Think laterally and outside the box– which is exactly what the new book will be all about. I’ve delved into entrepreneurship, life design and tech; looked at how other people are exploiting the internet for profit – then applied it all to journalism.

Earlier this month I shared some of my early ideas with journalism students at Kingston University in London. Here’s a shortened version of the presentation I delivered, with five (OK, six!) of the ten new career ideas briefly explained.

The book will be packed with practical step-by-step guides to fulfilling them – make sure you subscribe to the blog (in the right hand sidebar) for updates!

UPDATE: It’s having trouble with slide #2 but the rest of the presentation is fine!