Freelance writers: your world is an up and down mixed bag of responses from pubs nationwide. There will be rejection, but as I’ve been told many, many times, “Don’t take it personally.” If you are producing quality work, have queried regularly, and followed all publication submission guidelines, your time WILL come. But editors, please do writers the courtesy of at least being upfront about things. I once queried an editor who was not interested in my story idea. He sent me a very nice email saying something to the effect of, “Thank you … not at this time … but please query again.”

And so for months, I continued to send story ideas his way. When one really great idea came across my desk, I immediately queried this editor, certain in my heart and soul that this story could not be turned down. His reply? “Thank you for the offer. Unfortunately, we don't have it in our budget to pay freelancers. That said, I'd welcome anything you'd like to submit but am unable to reimburse you for it.”

It was an unexpected speed bump. That’s the kind of information that should have been put forth upfront. And unfortunately, it’s not in my budget (or anyone else’s I know) to work for free.

But I didn’t take it personally. I pitched the same story idea to an online publication and they were thrilled. Being in the right place at the right time really does have its benefits. And in this business, perseverance is everything.


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