As you may know, I’m trying to make an honest living by freelancing these days. It’s not easy. In case you hadn’t heard, there’s a recession on, and everyone’s having to cut back. But I’m pressing forward and not giving up.
And I think that’s one of the keys to success in this line of work: persistence. You have to keep trying, even if you’ve sent out 50 query letters and haven’t gotten any promising results. You have to believe that you just haven’t gotten any promising results YET. It has to be about the YET, or else it becomes too easy to just give up.
I wouldn’t give up on a potential source for a story if I had only called or emailed him two or three times. So why give up on procuring new assignments after a few dead-ends? That doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t perhaps re-examine what you’re doing, of course. Maybe your cover letters are too dull, or maybe you’re emphasizing the wrong skills in your resume. Maybe you’re just applying for the wrong assignments. Maybe you’re not applying quickly enough. But if you aren’t afraid to monitor what you’re doing and make the necessary changes, it doesn’t make sense to concede defeat. At least, not yet.
So, dear readers, consider that your pep talk from me. Actually, it made me feel better, just giving a pep talk. So we’re all good now, right?
And speaking of finding some encouragement, I’ve been reading a lot of blogs about freelancing written by my fellow freelancers. I’ve learned some useful tips from some of them, but the most important thing I’ve gleaned so far is feeling a sense of solidarity with others. When you work out of your home office by yourself, sometimes you can get a little lonely (okay, I do, but then I’m an extrovert, which I realize may be an unusual characteristic for someone who bills herself as a writer). So it’s nice to know that there are others out there who sometimes feel the same way. It’s nice to think about someone else out there, sitting in her chair in her yoga pants and sweater, trying to craft a beautifully-written assignment that will make the client come crying back for more or hammer out a bang-up query letter that will hopefully generate immediate, high-paying job offers…before the kiddo wakes up from his nap and demands Spider-Man fruit treats. Um, not that it’s always like that at my house…
Here’s sample of some of the writing-related blogs I’ve discovered lately. Consider it a mini-blogroll and a shout-out to my fellow writers:
I know there are other blogs and resources out there, and I’d love to see them, if you let me know about them.