When I first quit journalism in 2007 and moved down to my current town to be closer to my then-boyfriend/would-be husband, I wrote the editor of one of the community’s niche magazines and offered my services as a freelance writer. I sent a couple decent articles that showed a glimmer of hope as a magazine writer (I am a former cops and courts reporter – I used to believe in two mantras: Don’t say something in 10 words that can be said in five and if your mom tells you that she loves you, double check the factual accuracy of said statement.).
I emailed back and forth with this editor a couple of times, I sent a follow up email to her in April 2008 and then I didn’t hear anything, so I figured that she either thought I was a hopeless case as a potential magazine writer or she just lost my email.
That editor wrote me a couple of weeks ago to find out if I was interested in freelancing an article for an upcoming issue. I just filed my first article in three years tonight, writing about an upcoming home show that will be hosted in my community in February.
I think I did a relatively decent job of writing … all of the parts are still in working order in the creative side of my brain. I’m trying not to dwell on the fact that my performance on this article might determine whether I get a steady stream of freelance work from this editor. She specified today as a deadline – sure, it’s 9 p.m. at night, but “today” goes until 11:59 p.m. (and I would have used every second of that time frame if I would have needed it.) I will follow up with a handwritten note to thank this editor for the opportunity and do any rewrites or edits if needed.
Stephen King said it best when he wrote (and I’m paraphrasing here) that getting paid to write is like getting paid to steal. This opportunity has knocked on a door in my mind that has been closed for the past three years. The pieces are dusty and some things are kind of rusty (my editor asked for a 600 word piece, my first draft was over 900 … old habits die hard), but it feels good to be back in the saddle again.
Working on Your Debt?
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