Last week, after working for fashion and nightlife Web site Shecky’s for several months as interim senior editor, PJ Gach lost her steady gig.
Shecky’s brought the longtime freelancer and style maven on board in April to help relaunch the site and upgrade the content — a short-term contracted position she hoped would become full-time. But after three months Shecky’s decided to let her go, “due to budgetary concerns,” she said. And since she was working on a contract basis for the site, Gach was not offered severance and isn’t eligible for unemployment. It’s a story that’s told too often these days.
“PJ was a freelancer on temporary assignment,” Shecky’s CEO Chris Hoffman told FishbowlNY. “Her assignment was over and we reevaluated it and decided to end the relationship. We wish her the best of luck.”
Like many writers in her position, Gach considers herself “freelance by default.”
“Since I moved to New York in 2000, all I’ve wanted was to work on staff [at a publication],” she told FishbowlNY. “Working as a freelancer is exciting and fun and you get to meet amazing people, but you are still just working assignment to assignment. It’s not the same as being on a team.”
While at Shecky’s, Gach produced and edited content for the site, developing its voice and persona and creating features like the Style Guide. Over the years, Gach has written for AOL’s Lemondrop.com, The New York Post, New York Press and Rolling Stone, and she recently published a nonfiction book for tweens, “Crazy For Cody: An Unauthorized Biography,”
that she hopes to turn into a series and is working on a nonfiction book series for tweens. Here’s hoping she lands on her feet, but we know there are plenty of talented, unemployed journalists out there looking for a job.
(Photo by Caroline Torem Craig)