Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Watch Out for Mistakes....

I recently queried an editor for an ad I saw seeking writers for articles on their site.

I thought I had created a pretty good query email and hit send. A few days later, I received an email from the editor herself, quite a lengthy email I might add, saying she couldn't feel the passion or direction from my email... that I had not been very clear in my email...but that she had read my clips and heard my voice and saw my talent... and she asked me some specific questions. She felt like the answers to those questions were statements I should have included in my initial query.

Basically, I feel like she asked me to step up to the plate. I'm so shy in a lot of ways--most writers are, aren't we?--and sometimes, well, a lot of the time, I don't speak up or step up to the plate when I should.

This editor told me one thing she clearly saw was my talent (hurray! Isn't that what we want as writers?) and I feel like she challenged me to prove myself and bring my talent to surface in a more relevant manner, relevant to her website, to the topics she requires--which I thought I had, but looking back realized I was far from it--and so I tried again (thankful for the second chance).

There is a point to my rambling... watch out for mistakes... what I thought was a great query was a flop. My only hope in this writing gig is that the editor read my clips, realized I do have talent, and she liked my style (I think) or she wouldn't have emailed in such depth and taken time away from her busy schedule (which I sincerely appreciate!)....

If you don't have clips (samples of your writing) that are on the subject of the magazine, e-zine, newspaper, etc., that you are trying to get a writing job with, write some... Just sit down and write one or two or three samples of articles on a topic relevant to that publication. That way, the editor can at least have something to compare to, to judge a decision on.

That's what I did. I stepped up to the plate and focused. I wrote an article that could easily fit on the particular website I am trying to write for and replied to her email, answering her questions, and when I felt at peace with it all, I hit send.

Watch out for mistakes as you write this cyber highway!

Until next time....