As one of the co-founders of the website Hockey Prospectus, Rob Vollman would know what it’s like to write for them. Though he now writes for ESPN, Vollman posted an article on HP to help recruit new talent to the site before he left. In it, he detailed some of the positive publishing experiences he had with the site.
Writing for Hockey Prospectus means being bookmarked by everyone in the hockey analytics community. People know what they’re getting when they come here, which is why it also attracts those outside our community who want to stay up to speed on so-called fancy stats without having to visit dozens of blogs and/or having to search through pages of more standard coverage.
Having your work featured here will lead to many more opportunities, too. For example, I made my radio debut in the summer of 2011 with Nashville 104.5 the Zone (now known as 102.5 the Game). Host Willy Daunic, now the Preds’ play-by-play man, enjoyed something I wrote, and wanted to share it with his listeners. Since then I’ve appeared as a radio or podcast guest in most NHL cities, and it’s definitely among my favorite stat-related activities.
Writing for Hockey Prospectus gets you instant access to a network of valuable contacts, including HP alumni who currently work in front offices or mainstream media, prominent analysts writing for virtually every media outlet that covers hockey, and the current staff of writers – including the next generation of big names in analytics, like Arik Parnass, Ryan Stimson, Sam Hitchcock, and Micah Blake McCurdy.
There are a lot of great websites from which to choose, but none of them offer the same package in terms of reputation, credibility, exposure, radio, podcasts, mainstream promotion (ESPN), an annual hockey year book, and access to a huge network of established names.
Writing exclusively online is much different than writing in print, but clearly the publishing experience outlined above is a pleasant one. As Vollman states, there are tons of websites to choose from, and it’s important for writers to ensure that they themselves pick good websites to write for. Though the sites have to try and recruit good writers, it’s a two way connection; if a good writer can get his work featured on the right website, he should pursue that opportunity, even if it means not having the site recruit him.