I Want to Offer You Paid Writing Work
My fifth Bootcamp was both my worst and best ever.
I was not in good form when I got there. I’d been on a family trip to middle-of-nowhere Texas just the week before where Internet service was slow to none and cell service was zilch, putting me behind on projects.
Then my plane to Florida got in five hours late, so I missed the grand “puts you in the mood” Bootcamp kickoff.
To top it all off, I arrived in Delray Beach with a fever of 101 and a horrible headache.
All my favorite people – peers, colleagues, marketers, and speakers – were gathered in this one magical place, and I didn’t want to see anybody. I wanted to go to bed and stay there.
If I hadn’t had my family in tow, I probably would have done exactly that. But as I watched them watch me sulk, I felt guilty and trudged out of our hotel room.
But even though I missed a few presentations due to being sick and had to leave early to catch a plane, the entire experience made for a MASSIVE adrenaline boost to my outlook on freelancing.
And winning $10,000 didn’t hurt.
At Bootcamp 2011, I was named AWAI’s $10K Challenge Winner. Remember that spec challenge I told you about yesterday? Well, that turned into a sales letter. And that sales letter turned out to be AWAI’s highest-converting control that year.
I’ll never forget how I felt walking up to the stage. I stifled my cough, resisted the urge to blow my nose, and looked out over the crowd of fellow writers. Friends. I remember feeling a swell of satisfaction.
But it wasn’t the promise of my award money that most pleased me.
Rather, it was the fact that I’d set a goal and stuck to it. You see, years ago – before my first Bootcamp in 2007 even – I made the goal to be a $10K Challenge Winner. I even used some graphics software to create a fake check made out to me for $10,000. I put Katie Yeakle’s signature at the bottom.
That check – which I printed and laminated – hung on the vision board in my office for five years. It reminded me every day I’d committed to a goal and that I had to keep pushing forward.
I supplied the determination. But Bootcamp was absolutely the vehicle that got me there.
You’ll notice it took me five years to achieve my big goal. It might take you three. Or even one. I mean, hey, I stopped to have two kids along the way.
But that’s another important point. Freelance writing is a career that bends to fit your life. You don’t bend to fit the career. That’s not how it works.
You don’t have to fit any specific mold to go to Bootcamp and get huge dividends from it. Whether you’re in the middle of building your family, or you’ve long since emptied your nest, it doesn’t matter.
All that matters is that you want to have control over your life and career, and you’d like the craft of writing to get you there.
On that note, you’re guaranteed to get a lot out of Bootcamp this year.
Bootcamp serves a different role for everybody. For you, it might be the chance to prove to yourself this opportunity is real. Or it might be a way to connect with kindred writers. Or meet paying clients. Maybe you’re looking for a launch point, or you want to build more momentum as a freelancer. Or add to your current skills.
Maybe you want to do all of the above. You absolutely can. You just have to show up.
I’ll be back for the sixth time this year. And this year marks another major turning point for me.
This year, instead of going to Job Fair to scope out clients, I’ll be the one behind the table. I’ll be offering paying projects to new writers for The Barefoot Writer magazine.
So I hope you’ll show up. I can’t offer you a project if you’re not there.
And that’s my Bootcamp story. From starry-eyed, wannabe writer to paying client. Bootcamp was absolutely the driving force that made it happen.
If I were you, I’d sign up right now.
Will I get to meet you at this year’s Bootcamp? Tell me here whether or not you’ll be there.
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