But don't take my word for it...
... here is a selection of what people for whom I have worked have been kind enough to say about me. No money exchanged hands. I promise. Well, I mean, apart from what they paid me to do the work about which they are being so kind. Because otherwise I wouldn't have done it. That's how this whole crazy freelance palaver works. So it's even nicer that they would pay me and still say such heartwarming things. Don't you think?
Mr Eugene Costello – an apology
(following a training session I gave at Headland House, NUJ headquarters)
Listeners to my asides and quips on the subject of the above may have formed the impression that I considered Mr Costello's efforts as a trainer to merit comparison with 'Eddie The Eagle's' endeavours in the field of ski jumping. Such a judgment would constitute a grave misapprehension. It has come to my attention that Mr Costello is, in fact, a didactic genius. What has become clear is that his appearance of shambling ill-preparedness belies a keen sense of informality providing the surest guidance on a valued learning journey. While giving the impression that he is rambling and 'spouting the first thing that comes into his head' Mr Costello is actually making split-second assessments of his audience's receptiveness to 'knowledge acquisition'. This judgment enables him to determine which of his apparently endless store of 'anecdotes' will best aid a critical conceptual pathway. In short, beneath his cloak of being 'just one drink short of belligerent' resides a pedagogic master at whose knee any who thirst for understanding should feel privileged to receive tutelage.
National Executive Committee, National Union of Journalists
We operate in a fairly rarefied environment – our clients are regulated, complex, juggling stakeholders or communicating with nuance.
Or, frankly, all of the above.
We therefore only work with writers who can offer a deftness of touch; and Eugene brings that in spades – along with the forthrightness to push a project forward and a tenacity you won't find anywhere else (he rang in from a hospital bed once...).
Oh, and the irrepressible charm of an old-school pork-pie-hatted journalist.
Founder and director, Wells Park Communications
Eugene is a well-rounded addition to any editorial desk. Adaptable to the jargon of particular beats, he has good nous in regards to putting forward ideas, reflecting his background in both national and b2b press.
I have worked with Eugene both in person on desk and in the ‘virtual’ world of emails across time zones, and always found his response exemplary.
Editorial director, Open Door Media
Sticky Content is a digital copywriting agency where we have won an enviable reputation within the industry and with our clients for writing that is clear, concise and crisp. Eugene proved invaluable to us on a number of projects for major clients.
One project required an enormous turnover of work in a three-month period that, nevertheless, required the same level of clear-headed writing and meticulous attention to detail that our clients expect.
His newspaper background means that he works terrifically well under pressure while maintaining the very highest standards both in his writing and editing.
Eugene is also very personable and affable, and slipped into the life of the office with ease.
I would have no hesitation in recommending him for writing or editing jobs; unusually, he excels at both.
Head of content and co-founder, Sticky Content Ltd
You want a reference? How about this: we're big fans of Eugene at The Writer. He's dug us out of more than one project mire. His professionalism belies the obvious signs of early onset dementia. And he always carries with him a bulging lunchbox of charm and sandwiches, both of which he's willing to dish out left right and centre. The sandwiches, quite frankly, leave a fair bit to be desired, but the charm – wowzer. This man can keep any editorial project on track.
In short, all I can say, is that if you're thinking of hiring this man. For the love of God run for the hills before it's too late.
I've got to admit it, Euge, I'm not entirely happy about giving you a quote for your site – I don't want you to get any other work. What would happen to The Writer then?
Founder, The Writer
Eugene was extremely accommodating when helping us with a large project recently. His ability to juggle responsibilities to ensure we met deadline was incredibly helpful. We wouldn't hesitate in using him again.
Project Services Director, JPC Creative
"The Che Guevara of journalism..." – freelance journalist
"Eugene Costello is a bloody hero..." – news editor, regional newspaper
A Few Good Hacks
Members of a Facebook group for journalists