Sabotage Times

This morning I sent a pitch to Sabotage Times. I say pitch but it wasn’t really, wasn’t really at all. More of a bio. I had been on the recently launched Sabotage Times website and wanted to be part of their impressive list of contributors. They all had bios. Here was my effort that I sent to the editor: 

“Pitching the World got thrown out of Truro School at 16 for handling stolen goods and selling drugs. Since then he’s worked as a door-to-door salesman, a croupier, an antiques restorer, a chainboy, a removals man, a barman, and an unemployed man. He’s now a writer man and has contributed to all the usual toss. Steven once made a film about a man who claimed to be both Clint Eastwood and the King of Spain but just as it was about to get commissioned, he fucked it up. In December 2009, aged 34, he had a trial for Colchester United but fucked it up. He did go on to write about his experience for the Guardian, but fucked that up as well. In June 2009 he worked as a political speechwriter in the Caribbean, and for a while didn’t fuck up at all, but in the end he did. He now runs the award winning Pitching the World ( – a blog about pitching all of the 642 magazines listed in the Writers’ & Artists’ Yearbook. He hasn’t fucked this up yet, but will do. He is married to a psychopharmacologist and lives in Stoke Newington. He claims to be ‘a regular guest’ on Radio 4, but research suggests that he has only been on there once.”

The Radio 4 stuff is true, I was a guest last Saturday. The other stuff is (mostly) true, too. 

Anyway, Sab Times is run by James Brown, founder of Loaded, contributor to just about everything and bearer of an uncanny resemblance to the anti hero in The Adventures of Pitching the World. He was once voted more influential than the Pope and Margaret Thatcher (and presumably, more influential than the other James Brown) by Channel 4 and The Observer. In short, a big deal. But not so big a deal that he didn’t respond to Grandmaster Pitchy almost immediately.

His response:

Two things: one I like your pitch, two we don’t pay. 

So if you fancy pitching some ideas on these terms go ahead.

cheers James  

What to do? Pitchy doesn’t like to work for free (and has never done), but does want to work for Sabotage Times. Here’s the next instalment of The Adventures of Pitching the World, which neatly sums up my dilemma. 

Alright Shoulders. I’ve had that James Brown emailing 

me all day. Bit persistent really. Wants me to write for them.

Might – might – not get paid for it though. You may have

to get a second – I mean third – job. 

Please don’t leave me. 


9 responses to “Sabotage Times

  1. Are you suggesting, Pitchy, that your life is a great fuck up? From where I’m standing (actually, lying, in my stinking bed, having promised I’d get up at 7, but only surfaced at 9.30, no one to love me, no food in the house, and no will to move) you seem to be okay kid: a lovely wife who supports you unendingly (even if her shoulders are a little broad), a fantastic way with words (even though you don’t write that many for us to see), a rich and varied diet, and the adulation of fans across the world. Okay, I understand, you’re broke, your wife hates you, and you can barely bring yourself to write another sentence, thus severly compromising your (sort of) livelihood. But, as Boz said, buck up man!

    I saw there were vacancies for rodent catchers at the Hackney job centre..there’s always something to fall back on. Doesn’t always have to be the wife.

  2. Did I see you in the Hackney job centre earlier Bingo? I overheard someone asking if “there were any positions open at Pitching the World.” Well there are. Lots of them. Come on in for an interview. Bring a bung.
    Thanks for your (mostly) kind words.

  3. Who’s this Steven in the pitch and why should I give a shit about him?

    Perhaps a pitch about a group of poor (terrible) footballers going to the projects of South Africa to play poor (poverty stricken) footballers would go down well with some. It would have to play on that poor v poor thing a lot.

    Plus this would add a global aspect to the thus far largely UK-based ‘world’ pitching.

  4. Like the look of Sabotage Times, but why don’t they pay? Would think James Brown could afford it. Seems to have a syndication service tacked on to it. Interested to hear how you get on with them.

  5. Sir Percy Earsludge

    veni vidi vici…………..or did i fuck that up?

  6. Sabotage Times ex-reader

    Sabotage Times – middle-aged men swearing a lot, trying to sound cool. (Oh please ST, just fuck off saying fuck or twat all the time, like you invented these words.) Most articles are about as deep as my dog’s piss on a windy day. One or two okay pieces but they expect people like you to write for FREE ? They should be paying. Give it 12 months. And who is this James Brown guy ? Never heard of him before. He looks like my old nerdish geography teacher.

  7. Fuck yeah! You’re absolutely right Sabotage Times ex-reader: how could they expect someone like me – LIKE ME – to write for free? Ho-hum, they seem to have plenty of willing contributors and although there is occasionally a nice piece on there most of the content is shabby as fuck. And replete with the word fuck.
    I’ve just realised that my comment is exactly the same as yours.

  8. I was under the impression articles could get picked up by another publication and syndicated, with the writer profiting of that. I myself having nothing published before see the site as a good practice and a possibility to get seen.

    Though I could be more wrong than a British history lession being taught by Mel Gibson.

  9. To be paid or not to be. Some poor souls believe that the production of Art is its own reward….and the world laughs at them. Since you obviously want to write for Sabotage Times and the amazing James then justify it like this: presumably you will write about your experiences for your blog, lucky Kindle owners will pay for the joy of receiving your words, so that’s some form of payment for the here and now. In future you will publish the contents of your award-winning blog in an award-winning book and live comfortably ever after….hopefully full of inspiration and not longing for something meaningful to write about!
    Good luck!

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