Journalism can be a super hard world to break into sometimes; often, it seems like it comes down to who you know and how many internships you’ve done. At Global Hobo, in addition to building a diverse community around storytelling, we’re passionate about dismantling the hierarchies that exist within the media industry. As such, we pour immense energy into helping new and emerging writers develop their writing. We also firmly believe that not only is institutionalised education not for everyone – it’s not always necessary if you want to be a writer.

In 2015, after being continually asked by hopeful writers how to get started as a travel writer or a freelance journalist, we started running freelance writing programs in Indonesia. We designed a course that covered what we deemed the essentials: feature writing, editorial writing, creative non-fiction writing, how to pitch, how to start a publication and how to navigate the business side of freelancing.

With the goal of making writing more accessible, we asked writers who were relatively established but still in the process of figuring it out to help us teach and facilitate the courses. Fast-forward to the present day, and we have workshops running in Canggu, Tokyo, Barcelona and Cairns. In addition to learning about writing and pitching, students study the language of the place they’re residing in and learn about sustainable travel practices, dismantling neo-colonialism and the importance of having more than one narrative about a place. Many universities in Australia have accredited the workshops as going towards journalism or communications degrees, and with the profits, we are able to pay our writers, self-fund the publication (which allows us to remain strictly independent) and fund projects like After Asylum.

Hobos in Tokyo learning Japanese.

Journalists Jed Smith, Shaun Fisher and Gemma Clarke teaching a class in Bali.

Hailing from Australia to Nepal to the Netherlands, our teachers have edited publications like the triple j Annual, Tone Deaf and Monster Children, written for The Guardian, the ABC and VICE, and produced national and regional radio shows. All of us now work for ourselves and as freelancers, which has gifted us with a considerable degree of freedom. This means we’re on the road for a lot of the year, travelling and writing as we go.

In light of COVID-19 and the need to stay home, we’ve finally bitten the bullet and moved the most popular component of our course online — Freelance Writing: How to Pitch, Get Published and Get Paid.

Pitching to an editor can be a daunting process when you’re starting out, and it’s not actually a skill any of us at Global Hobo were ever explicitly taught when we studied journalism. The good news is, though, that you don’t even need to have studied writing to be a freelance writer — you just need to be able to write and format your articles well, pitch to an editor, make invoices and manage and showcase your writing.

What You Get

For a one-off payment of $99AUD, you’ll get lifetime access to three lessons incorporating interactive written and video content that will teach you everything about getting started as a freelance writer. You’ll also get personal editing and feedback on a pitch email from Global Hobo editor Gemma Clarke.

Pitching to an Editor

Get an introduction into what pitching entails, find out how to word a pitch email (with multiple examples of actual pitches we’ve sent), learn where to find editors’ contact details and have a crack at writing your own pitch, which will be read and edited by us, then sent back to you within two working days.

Building a Writer’s Portfolio

Discover how to showcase your published work, see what to include in a writer’s portfolio, access a comparison between different platforms and have a squiz at examples of Global Hobo staff portfolios.

Invoicing and Getting Paid

We talk you through when and how to have that awkward conversation with an editor about being paid, explain how to get set up as a sole trader in Australia, teach you how to write an invoice and discuss the ethics of working for free and how much it’s possible to make.


  • I’m still not convinced — what makes Global Hobo different from everyone else?
    • Read about our commitments to diversity, accessibility, sustainability and more.
  • This looks kind of scammy — I’d like to read some reviews of the course from previous hobos!
  • I want to know some more information about your overseas programs!
    • They’re currently on hold until 2021, but in the meantime, you can give our Program FAQ a read.

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