So you want to work as a writer/reporter/pundit in Toronto? Ha ha ha ha ha! May God have mercy on your soul, abandon hope all ye who enter here, etc. I'm not saying it's impossible; quite a few freelancers have worked their way up to the masthead. And if you think you can do it before the journalism industry inevitably collapses in on itself like a dying, bloated star, more power to you! Just don't quit your day job, because you're gonna be busting your ass for free. If you're lucky, it will merely be disgustingly exploitative rather than flagrantly illegal. So, in the spirit of Manjula Martin’s Who Pays Writers, here's a list of local outlets, who owns them (if applicable), and their rates, all as far as I know. The original list was compiled in March/April 2014 and I'll update it as new information comes in.
A few notes:
- Publications are listed alphabetically.
- All rates are per piece unless otherwise specified.
- For some publications, I only have print rates so far; assume rates for online work will be a bit less.
- Publications at the same "level" (e. g. waiting-room magazine, lifestyle site, etc.) owned by the same giant media conglomerate can be expected to have similar rates.
- Some publications rely on their own staff more than others. If you plan on pitching, check how many recent pieces are by staff writers vs. freelancers.
- See the changelog for a history of updates.
Current "most wanted": up-to-date pay for Daily Hive, Canadaland, BuzzFeed, CBC Opinion. Gotta keep the new kids on their toes.
Magazines and Websites
- AmongMen (Maple Media): $25
- BlogTO (Freshdaily): no set freelance rate, but about $50-150 per piece
- BuzzFeed Canada: $90-150 (short piece), $200-250 if it's more work; much more, plus expenses, for longform/investigative pieces
Canada.com (Postmedia): $0(defunct)
- Canadaland: $200
- Canadian Business (Rogers Media): ___
- Canadian Immigrant (Metroland): ___
- CBC Opinion (CBC): ___
- Chatelaine (Rogers Media): $1 per word (print)
- Daily Hive (Buzz Connected Media): ___
- Dandyhorse: ___
- The Ethnic Aisle: $100 per piece
- Exclaim: $20 for reviews, $50 for stories
The Grid (Torstar): $0.40-0.50 per word (print), about $100 per piece (online)(defunct)
- Hazlitt (Random House): $250 for a 500–1000-word piece, $550 for a 2000-word feature
- The Hyphen: $50 and up
- Inside Toronto (Metroland): ___
- iPolitics.ca: ___
- iVillage (Corus): $80
- The Kit (Torstar): about $75
- The Local (UHN OpenLab: about $750 for a 1000-word feature (source)
- The Loop (Bell Media): $100-200
- The Luxe Life (eLuxe): $0 per piece
- Macleans (Rogers Media): $1 per word
- Maisonneuve (based in Montreal, but we'll allow it): $0.10 per word
- Narcity (Narcity Media): ___
- NOW: up to $300-400
OpenFile: about -$100-200 (600-800 word piece)(defunct)
- PostCity.com: $50 online only, $75 online & print, $125 per feature, $200 per cover feature
- Quill & Quire (St. Joseph): ___
- Shameless: $0
- Slice.ca (Shaw Media): $25-75
- Spacing: about $0.10 per word (print)
- This Magazine: $0.10 per word (feature), $50-75 per column (800-1200 words).
- Today's Parent (Rogers Media): $1 per word (print)
Torontoist (St. Joseph): $0 for freelance, $15 for staff contributors, more for video(acquired by Daily Hive in February 2019)
- Toronto Life (St. Joseph): at least $1 per word (print), $25-250 (online)
- Toronto Standard:
$100 (800-1000 word feature)(not accepting freelance contributions)
- Vice Canada: $0 to $75; pay is not prompt
- The Walrus: $1 per word (print), $300 for ~1000-word online piece
- Xtra (Pink Triangle Press): $0.25 per word
Yonge Street: $75-$200 (feature)(defunct)
Note: for op-eds, expect a small honorarium, about $50-100.
- The Globe and Mail: at least $150-350 (print)
- The National Post (Postmedia): $0.40 per word
- The Toronto Star (Torstar): at least $150-350
- The Toronto Sun (Postmedia): $300 (feature)