Abra Goes

on theatre, running, writing, and looking up

Querying in 2008 – a numbers game

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After freelancing for 3 1/2 years, I took a temporary position for six months in order to build up my freelance business to be exactly what I want it to be. This may sound backward, to go back to working in an office when I should be out marketing myself, but this is the right choice for me. You see, I have no financial cushion.

I began freelancing almost right out of college out of necessity. Because I couldn’t get a job. With a BFA in playwrighting from NYU plenty of theatres were happy to have me work and write for free, and those were my most appealing offers. I couldn’t get temp work because I hated office work and did really bad in interviews – though I did master the art of writing funny cover letters. Eventually, I figured out that if I was going to stay in the city, I’d have to convince someone to pay me for my time by pretending to have a skill. So I faked it and eventually figured out how to do a few things.

I promoted shows, artists, and did event planning for an arts consultant. I realized I was self-employed about 6 months into my freelance life, long before I even heard of the term ‘freelance’. But without journalism training, I never had enough confidence in my writing to pitch stories to magazines. So I did business writing and a lot of PR. Over time, my freelance income became 100% the kind of work I did not enjoy and left me with no energy for my plays.

I stopped doing pr and business writing cold turkey in July 2007. Though I still enjoy doing research and may write an occasional PR kit, I am now determined to build my career as a magazine writer – from scratch. I’m up for the challenge.

I’ve learned a lot in the past year about writing articles and got a few profiles published. For 2008, I intend to pitch incessantly. My goal for the year is 501 queries.

How will I get there? The Renegade Writing course is providing a lot of structure, and I’ve signed up for Inkthinker’s Query Challenge 2008.

At the moment, my goal is to be freelance full time again in June 2008. As far as how many assignments I expect out of the 501 queries I’ll submit I really don’t know. But I do know that the more I get out there the more success I’ll have.

I’ve always admired those writers with huge piles of rejection letters. Without fail these people are more successful than I am.

And a quick Abra Miles update –

24.1 / 500

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Written by abragoes

January 19, 2008 at 10:12 pm

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