Freelance Blog + Tips & Tricks

Of Mice and Mentors

The mouse has returned to Apartment 2. Lovely... Anyway, last night I had dinner with Rachel, my writing buddy and mentor. We traded tips about our blogs (read hers here), chatted about editors, and discussed the potential merits of the being the female dating expert for a men's magazine (one word: research).

She also took a look at an essay I've been querying around for the last few months. So far, I have tons of great ideas (in my opinion) for personal essays but none of them have sold. It could be for any number of reasons (maybe the editor prefers excerpts from books instead of up-and-coming writers, I'm targeting the wrong publication, or they don't think my youthful voice will appeal to high-end advertisers). Instead of giving me an encouraging "this is really cute! keep sending it out!" as many people do, she had some good insights on where it veers off on a tangent (my specialty) and where it needs bulking up.
Another thing I love about her is her ability to find a story in virtually everything. I'll share an anecdote about a bad date or a recent trip and she'll jump in with "that's great! start with that and write about how men do X" Brilliant! Now if I could only find the time to flesh out all these essay ideas floating around in my head... How do you, my fellow writers, juggle paid writing assignments with your personal ones?UPDATE: I just sold a personal essay!! Details to follow...

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Of Mice and Mentors + Tips & Tricks