What is the easiest and fastest way to make money as a writer or journalist? Many will tell you it’s taking on freelance copywriting work at advertising agencies or pivoting to film and television. But actually, there’s one simple trick to get you more money, or at the very least more recognition, than most middling writers could possibly imagine: very publicly quitting your legacy journalism job because it’s too “woke” and starting a Substack newsletter.
Leaving a writing job in a huff to join the truth warriors of the newsletteratti has worked incredibly well for well-known journalists like former New York Times editor and columnist Bari Weiss, Intercept co-founder Glenn Greenwald, former New York Magazine writer Andrew Sullivan and Vox co-founder Matthew Yglesias.
Usually, this approach only works well for people with name recognition, but one fellow Canadian has proved you don’t even need that to be hoisted up as a free speech warrior as long as you type the correct words in the correct order.
On January 3, journalist Tara Henley, who says she worked at the CBC as a “TV and radio producer” over the last decade, published a letter to her new Substack, titled Lean Out with Tara Henley (Lean Out is also the name of a book she published in March 2020). The post was titled “Speaking Freely,” with the subtitle, “Why I resigned from the Canadian Broadcasting Company.”
The letter went viral, and in parts of Canada she trended on Twitter for two days along with the slogan “defund the CBC.” Within hours, she became the free speech anti-woke it-girl du jour, with her follower count tripling over the last few days. The piece got retweeted by Greenwald, who praised her description of the “repressive environment where liberal-left ideology and woke pieties dictate ‘reporting.’” Weiss also retweeted her, saying, “Welcome to the wilderness.” The leader of Canada’s Conservative Party Erin O’Toole said he would love to “sit down” with her and hear her thoughts on how to fix the CBC.” But what did she actually have to say?
The highly praised piece details how “for months” she had been getting complaints from readers and viewers about the CBC, where she’s allegedly worked since 2013, the growing number of which eventually led her to resign. Importantly, it appears she didn’t “…….