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A $100-a-Day Marketing Plan
by Kathryn Lay
Every January and February I find that my
writing income decreases drastically. Generally, its because in November and
December, I am busy with holiday plans and preparations and do little marketing
with my writing. The time that I have, I generally spend writing instead. This
is a good thing, but, at a time when I need more income, I am desperately
searching the mailbox for acceptances and checks.
In March, I began a new plan. A $100-a-day plan.
If you really desire to make your freelancing a
business that helps you supplement your families income or reach that goal of
quitting and freelancing full-time, you will need to make a commitment to
Look through the yellow pages. Every business
imaginable finds a way to advertise to their potential buyers of their product
or services. Your queries and manuscripts are your way to advertise your work
and yourself as a writer.
I decided it was time to seriously consider my
writing a business. And like any business owner, I know I must take time to
advertise and promote my product.
Now, every day during the week (and if you work
full time at another job, this may be more feasible on the weekends), I commit
to marketing at least a $100 (or more) worth of writing a day. This may mean
four pieces that would bring in $25 each if sold, or one for $100. It may be a
contest entry that would be $75 if I won first place, as well as a reprint worth
$25 or more.
I certainly dont limit myself to $100 -- that
is just my minimum goal. I may submit a manuscript to a Chicken Soup
book, worth $200. Or a query to a major magazine that would bring in $500 or
$1000 or more if accepted.
How do I find all these market possibilities? I
join online writing lists, I buy writers magazines and market books and
subscribe to online magazines such as Writing for DOLLARS! I print out
guidelines and contest information. I take newsletters such as the SCBWI
Bulletin and Childrens Book Insider and Childrens
Writer that list markets. Then, I put all this information as it comes in
each day into a file folder next to my computer.
When my time to market comes, perhaps early in
the morning or after Ive done my creative writing for the day, or late at night
when everyone else is asleep - I pull out the folder and begin looking for one
or more places to send my reprints, new articles or stories, queries, and
What have been the results?
In 5 weeks I have sent out 37 manuscripts,
queries, and contest entries. I have had 8 acceptances, 6 rejections, 3
publications holding manuscripts or query ideas, and waiting to hear from the
rest. So there are still 20 possibilities out there.
Ive also begun sending out brochures to writing
organizations on my speaking topics and publicity to schools and libraries about
my upcoming childrens books and my talks I can provide to them.
Im excited about the possibilities of
acceptances and checks and requests to see manuscripts and contest wins and
speaking engagements. It sounds like a difficult commitment to find the markets
to do this every day. But once you begin watching for and collecting markets,
looking over your written work that hasnt been sent out lately or pieces
available for reprint, youll soon find that your marketing sessions take up
less time and bring great rewards.
© Copyright 2004, Kathryn Lay
Kathryn Lay is the author of 26 books for children, over 2000 articles, essays and stories for children and adults and the book from AWOC.COM Publishing, The Organized Writer is a Selling Writer. Check out her website at www.kathrynlay.com and email through firstname.lastname@example.org
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