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Successful Freelancing: How’s Your Timing?

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Successful Freelancing: How’s Your Timing?

Timing seems to play such an important role in any kind of success. Whether you’re a writer, business owner, or even a struggling actor, ultimately, you’ve got to get the timing right.

It’s easy to see how important timing is for actors. They’re usually on stage, or in a scene, with another actor or group of actors and every bit of dialogue and every action from each actor is designed to mesh with the dialogue and actions of the other actors. If even one actor in the group gets the timing wrong, it throws off the timing for the entire bunch and the story falls flat.

It’s also easy to see how timing is important for business owners. They must deliver their products and services in a timely manner – not too early nor too late – to meet the specific needs of each and every customer.

Timing is also crucial for success as a writer. It plays such an important role in a number of ways.

First, writers have to know how to pick up on current trends and events and turn them into interesting articles and/or stories that will appeal not only to readers, but first to editors who will buy these types of pieces.

Secondly, writers have to be very quick at responding to ads for writing assignments or writing jobs. The writing world is very competitive. And, to quote a popular saying, “he who hesitates is lost.” The writer who doesn’t immediately fire off a cover letter or query in response to a current job ad usually loses that job to a writer who did.

Writers must also develop a sense of “timing” by keeping up with various markets they hope to write for and then learning to “anticipate” the needs of the editor for that publication. That’s why various articles about writing encourage writers to read several issues of any publication they wish to write for before submitting or querying. Reviewing past issues helps the writer see what kinds of topics have been covered recently and which ones would likely interest the editor. It’s such fun to have an editor respond to your query with, “Yes, I’d been thinking about an article on that topic for ages, but I just hadn’t gotten around to assigning it. I’d be glad to have you write it. Your timing for this piece is perfect!”

If you’re trying to succeed as a freelance writer, then ask yourself this question, “How’s My Timing?”

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