Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Until the answer is "no," consider the answer "yes"

I liken writing to sales. I think this is especially true when you are a freelance writer. As a freelancer, it is your responsibility to beat the bushes for those gigs.

I've had two experiences recently that drive home the point that until you are told "no" by a potential client, you ought to assume that the answer is going to be "yes."

My pitch to a national magazine that wound up with me getting the gig is a perfect example. I played email tag with the editor for two weeks before we finally sealed the deal. It would have been easy to get discouraged and to think that if he hadn't responded by now with a "yes," he must not be interested. I decided to keep pursuing the issue until the man flat-out told me, "No, I'm not interested."

I had a similar occurrence last week. I see a help wanted ad and submit a resume and clips. Couple days pass and poster responds with what he needs done, but doesn't come right out and say he wants me to do it. I write back with a question. He writes back with a response. Finally, I ask him if he wants me to take a stab at this project. He says yes.

I share all of this to tell you not to give up. If you see a prospect you want, latch on like a pitbull. Be persistent. And keep at it until you hear the answer you want to hear, or until the door is firmly closed.

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