No matter what the question is, there is a recurring refrain that I hear from freelance travel writers struggling to earn their desired income.
Whether the question is:
- how often are you sending pitches?
- why aren’t you sending more pitches?
- how long does it take you to write a pitch?
- what is keeping you income low if you already have a full load of clients they have?
- what is keeping you from writing for bigger and better outlets
It always comes back to time.
I’ve written on our blog before that your hourly rate is the single most important thing to track in order to have a successful freelance travel writing business.
But I also have seen, again and again, that taking too long on your work has nothing to do with your abilities, whether skill-based in terms of typing speed or research acumen, or of the more mental variety, such as formatting pitch ideas and creating article structure.
In conversations, query critiques, and out-of-the-blue questions that come in over email, it’s become a leit motif that a lot of you are spending a lot of time on things that don’t actually contribute to the actual deliverable of your paid work.
Am I saying you are procrastinating? No!
There is just a lot of “work” going on that doesn’t need to happen. Time that doesn’t need to be spent.
On the one hand, you can cut down on this in some ways simply by tracking your time and being conscious of how long tasks take you, but there are some very powerful reasons why these situations persist:
- someone along the way told you to do what you’re doing in this roundabout way
- you’re just really interested in the topic and overresearching because you’re enjoying it
- you really don’t know what the point of what you’re writing is and you are trying to find that point or some piece of information that will suddenly make everything clear
In today’s webinar, Secrets to Successful Interviews for Your Travel Articles, we are going to talk about a solution to all of these problems that might surprise you: doing interviews rather than researching online.
Before the internet, this was how most reporting or article research got done! But this type of background digging, content creation, and purpose-honing through asking relevant sources if the topic matters, has gone by the wayside in many circles, particularly with a lot of online content.
But the funny thing is, interviews—lively quotes that paint a picture or introduce emotion, anecdotes that tell another side of the story that you couldn’t on your own, and morsels of insider information about things that are opening soon—are the antidote not only to what many decry as the banality of recycled online content, but also many of the issues you may be struggling with.
- Not sure what is the point of a place to a certain audience or whether your story is really novel or on the right track? Ask an expert and let their opinion guide you to the real story.
- Frequently struggle with taking too long to research and write your pieces? Stick to interviews and use online research to fact check and fill in the blanks; you’ll cut your writing time to 25% of what it is now…and have a better piece!
- Feel like your writing just isn’t “good” enough? Don’t create verbose descriptions and spend time tailoring your sentiments; get facts, figures, and specific details from those that know them best and let them show your point rather than you telling it.
Join us ….
So in today’s webinar, this afternoon at 3:30 pm EST / 12:30 pm PST on Secrets to Successful Interviews for Your Travel Articles , we’ll cut past the anxiety of how to do interviews without a “journalism” background and unpack exactly what you do and don’t need to know about doing interviews to flesh out your articles–and how learning to rock them can make your writing process much faster and more effective.
Even if you can’t make the call live, you can catch it in the replay. Just remember to register in advance to get the video replay automatically sent to you via email after the call. The replay is available to registrants for one week, at which point, it is available to members of our coaching programs or for purchase on demand in our webinar library!
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