A FREELANCE WRITER'S TOP TEN LISTS
The Top 10 Tools of the Writing Trade
10. Paper clips
9. A thesaurus
8. A postal scale (for weighing your submissions)
7. Blank mailing labels
6. A subscription to a writing magazine
5. File folders
4. Plenty of paper
3. The latest edition of Writer's Market
2. A few good writing friends
1. Your choice of writing materials: pens, pencils, a computer
The Top 10 Things an Editor Can Say to You
10. "You're on the right track, but we just used that
9. "I'm sorry we can't take it right now, but it was really well done."
8. "Even though I can't use it right now, I'd like to see some more of
7. "I'm holding on to your piece, hoping we can use it soon."
6. "Yes, I want your piece. But you'll have to make some changes."
5. "I'm buying your piece, but you won't get paid until it's published."
4. "I'm buying your piece. Can I pay you $300 for it right now?"
3. "Your piece will be our cover story (or our lead-off book for the season."
2. "You did such a great job, I'd like to give you a few assignments."
1. "That's the best piece I've seen in a long time."
The Top 10 Places to Get Sources
10. Professional directories
9. An on-line bulletin board
8. A reference guide that lists resources
7. A friend
6. From a quote in a book
5. From a quote in a magazine
4. The grapevine
3. A college directory
2. Your own connections
1. The yellow pages
The Top 10 Professional Courtesies to an Editor
10. Not calling him/her about an unanswered proposal
9. Not complaining about how a published piece of writing turned out
8. Sending him or her material he can use
7. Not sending him multiple ideas
6. Sending an SASE for his reply
5. Getting his title right
4. Getting his address right
3. Responding to a question as soon as possible
2. Spelling his name right
1. Helping the progression of your piece in any way possible
The Top 10 Biggest Writing Fears
10. I might be wasting my time.
9. I might hate writing.
8. I don't know how to say what I want to say.
7. I'll never be as good as ________.
6. What I write might turn out to be awful.
5. People might say critical or nasty things about my writing.
4. Nobody will want to publish my writing.
3. I don't know where to start.
2. I get started, but then I get stuck.
1. Maybe I don't have any (or enough) ability or talent.
The Top 10 Solutions to Writing Fears