How to Guarantee You'll Make It as a Writer

It’s Mindy McHorse again, back to share valuable lessons learned from Bootcamp on the first official day of the event!

Everybody’s already buzzing about the big talk by Bill Bonner, scheduled for tonight. Not only will he tell us all about the biggest challenges in copywriting, he’ll also share how to overcome them.

So be on the lookout for social media posts and quotes from his speech, coming your way tomorrow! (Tip: Use the hashtag #AWAIBootcamp13 to find these details on Twitter.)

You know, it’s kind of funny. I used to dread professional events. I hate trying to fit in. And small talk makes me squirm.

So when I went to my first Bootcamp, I was worried about a lot of silly stuff, like whether I’d picked the right clothes. Or whether people would think I was too young, or too inexperienced.

Fortunately, my fears were all needless.

You see, the cool thing about Bootcamp — and the freelance writing world in general — is that kindred spirits come in all shapes and sizes, with varying goals and a wide breadth of needs and hopes.

At the end of the day … and what I’ve realized at every live AWAI event I’ve attended since … is that none of that matters. There’s no such thing as “fitting in” when it comes to the writing world.

Why? Because this lifestyle is about individual choice and satisfaction. It’s about pursuing the kind of living you want, and using writing as your vehicle.

So it doesn’t matter what you look like, or where you come from, or whether you stagger to events in too-tight heels (been there) or accidentally wear your slippers down to the lobby (done that).

The secret is to just show up. That’s the number one, proven way to succeed as a writer.

That doesn’t just go for Bootcamp, you know. It’s true for all the teleconferences, webinars, forum chats, and social media groups you can access as part of AWAI.

Showing up makes all the difference between those who just want to do, and those who do.

By the way, once you show up, you might as well take it one step further. Ask a question about how to improve your self-marketing tactics. Request feedback on something you write. Get contact information from another writer willing to keep you motivated (you can reciprocate). Submit a Spec assignment to your dream client.

So now, think of the next thing you can “show up” for. Make a plan to attend and participate. Just put yourself out there. This is how great writing careers get made.

And then tell me about your plan in the comments section.

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Published: October 23, 2013

6 Responses to “How to Guarantee You'll Make It as a Writer”

  1. Yep. Sometimes we focus on the things that don't really matter - when all that matters is being there. Great reminder!

    JaxjacOctober 23, 2013 at 10:01 am

  2. Either the universe is conspiring to deliver messages of this sort to me all at once, or I'm finally paying attention. I'm making the transition from Wanting to Do to Doing. My plan for this week includes emailing a prospective client about my digital strategy services and attending a meeting with a local politician about neighborhood concerns. The latter will be practice in showing up. Thanks!

    lindapOctober 23, 2013 at 3:37 pm

  3. Oh, Mindy, you are singing my song! I, too, used to dread professional events and trying to fit in like I really belonged! Never a problem at Bootcamp - and I am not there with you due to family illness! Please keep posting so I can see what I am missing! I can't wait to hear more so don't leave me hanging when I can't be there!

    Starr DOctober 23, 2013 at 9:39 pm

  4. ...thanks for this. I had stopped reading some of the post because I had become soooo discouraged and depressed about not "getting out there" and just doing something, like getting my 1st client. It sounds sooo easy, but I had swore that by this time 2013 I would be in a much better place financially - same place and getting ready to closeout another year - just frustrating. I took the copywriting class earlier this year with Rebecca & Katie - AWESOME STUFF ...well that's enough - it has to be me .... just thanks for the article and encouragement. Sincerely

    Guest (cindy)October 24, 2013 at 11:40 am

  5. I have been trying out my skills as a persuasive writing in a very specialized niche. As a Mental Illness Blogger bipolarforlife dot me I interface with a wide variety of people with mental illness. Since I am an M.D., they often come to me with suicidality and self-harming issues. So I've been writing them persuasive letters stressing their good points, accomplishments, and talents, and encouraging them to use these as templates for finding solutions to their dangerous behaviors or feelings of worthlessness. So far I have been receiving very positive feedback, and one woman who was doing extreme self-harming behaviors checked herself into a hospital in order to stop doing this. I haven't made any money on this, but it has convinced me that I CAN write a persuasive letter, and that I can morph that over to writing for the health care or alternative health niches, using the professional skills I already have. Thanks, you guys, for being here and for encouraging me to find my sk

    moxadoxOctober 24, 2013 at 3:06 pm


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