Do You Have What It Takes To Be America's Next Great Car Columnist?

Graphic credit Jason Torchinsky

Do you love cars? Do you love putting stories on the internet that enthrall, excite and infuriate people? Have you been itching for a chance to try your hand at the great long con that is automotive journalism? Then if you think you’re up for it, I’m about to give you a shot at writing for Jalopnik.


Our dear friend and freelance columnist Doug DeMuro has left us for a full-time gig at Autotrader, which is fine because he outlived his usefulness to me anyway—uh, I mean, this gives us a chance to add a new voice around here.

We are looking to hire a paid, part-time freelance columnist who can do two to three stories a week; stories written by someone who is passionate about cars and eager to share that passion in ways that can bring even non-believers into the flock.

In short, we need a new Doug. That person could be you, if you have what it takes. Let me anticipate a few of your questions:

What do I get to write about? Anything you want! As long as it’s funny, compelling, thoughtful, original and can help bring new people into the Jalopnik cult. (We’re expecting that comet any day now!)

Here’s a suggestion: find a way to do something we’re not currently doing.

What’s the output? Two opinion columns a week. Three if you can. Their length is up to you but if you can’t get a great idea across in fewer than 1000 words, this blog may not be for you.


Do I have to have prior writing experience? Not necessarily, but it’s a plus. When you apply, please send links or copies of your prior published work.

What we’re looking for is a strong, distinctive writing voice and original ideas. Jack Baruth once said that “Everyone in Oppo has five good stories.” We’re looking for someone with 100 good stories.


What kind of writing skills do I need? Your copy needs to be clean, concise, engaging and ideally hilarious. You should be able to meet your deadlines reliably.

The perfect columnist should be a disciplined self-starter with a wide range of interests and insane, unorthodox beliefs.


Does it matter where I’m located? No, not at all. Unlike our last round of staff hiring, you do not have to be in New York for this gig (and be thankful for that.) Write from wherever you want.

Can I keep my day job? This is a part-time freelance gig, so yes. As long as you don’t work for someone that could create a conflict of interest with us, like an automaker (or Raytheon) you’re in the clear.


I don’t have a weird car, like a Ferrari or a Skyline! That is okay. But you should love cars and evangelize for them anyway.

Do I get press cars? We can talk about that. It depends on where you live, and if you have a story idea in mind we can figure it out. But any bloodbag can “review” the latest Ford Fusion or whatever. I’m more interested in truly good stories.


I can shoot photos and/or videos too! Hey, even better. God knows Doug couldn’t take a decent photograph to save his life.

Okay, I want this. I CAN DO THIS. What do I do next? Apply on our recruiting website Greenhouse.


What we want from you are two sample columns that could run on Jalopnik. Do not tell us how much you love cars or how much you want the gig; bring us a good story that shows the world who you are and what you have to say!

We’ll go through them all, pick the best, and go from there. Maybe we’ll even post the best ones here to get a sense of how you readers feel about things. And if you have questions, email me.


UPDATE: A few of you asked when the deadline is; it’s the end of August.

Good luck. This will be fun.

Editor-in-Chief @ Jalopnik, 2015-2019.


Spiegel - ʕ•ᴥ•ʔ - Hopes to post on oppos!

I can meme at 2000 doge per minute.

You’re god damn right I do.