Daily Archives: September 29, 2009

I’m just like George Orwell

I’ve already gone off this blog. You probably have too. But don’t worry, we can go off it together.

There are plenty of reasons why I (and you, probably) have gone off it, the most obvious being that I haven’t really had the opportunity to offer any decent advice so far. I haven’t been able to offer any decent advice so far because I drink too much, am lazy, and have been distracted by a couple of commissions that have come in since the tail end of last week. 

These commissions haven’t come off the back of my so-called experiment. In fact, out of the 21 magazines I’ve pitched so far (Accountancy; Accountancy Age; Accounting & Business; Aeroplane Monthly; Ambit; Art Monthly – you get the idea: I’m working my way through the A’s) only a handful have responded. The responses have been favourable but follow a disconcerting pattern: I’m afraid, they say, that we don’t have a budget for freelancers at the moment.

Of course that’s not the whole story. It could be that my pitches are weak and I’m pitching on subjects that I know little about. Still, I will not be deterred. When I started freelancing in January 2007 I wrote for property magazines (I was borderline homeless) and occasionally about financial issues (I didn’t even have a bank account) and so I reckon I can have a stab at writing about most things. Things were different then though: around eight out of ten pitches would elicit a response and about half of all my pitches would eventually get commissioned. 

Still, I will not be deterred. Out of the 642 magazines I plan to pitch between now and the end of the year, I’m aiming at a 5% success rate. That will work out at 32 features in just over three months, a manageable figure, even with my regular assignments thrown in and with keeping this blog going, a blog that (especially after this dull post) you and I are really going off.