Philadelphia Inquirer critic Carrie Rickey wasn’t elbowed out of her job like so many film critics have been over the past few years. She opted out, she’s saying, because the 60-hour-per-week pace had become so demanding that she could barely keep up , and because she couldn’t find a way to write book pitches on the side. She wants to write long-form.
Rickey will continue to tap out reviews on the side but only six per month, she says, or roughly 1.5 reviews per week.
A Philadelphia Daily News guy told me this morning that many, many people have been offered buyouts by the Inquirer. Not just editorial but people who work in the printing and distribution end. “There just aren’t a lot of resources over there any more,” he said.
The grind of reviewing so many films was “hard”, Rickey says. Well, yeah…it sure is. I imagine that many, many film writers feel the same way about their jobs. I work 10 to 14 hours a day, seven days a week. What Rickey is really saying, I think, is that she sort of doesn’t mind the idea of being semi-retired and not having to work as hard as she once did.
“It’s a great gig you have,” I told Rickey this morning, “and if I were you I wouldn’t give it up for anything, no matter how tired I might be.”