On June 24, 2020, the New York Times published one of my essays on their website for the first time.
Soon after “All We Can Do Is Sudoku” appeared online, an executive editor from Riverhead Books, an imprint of Penguin Random House, followed me on Twitter. As a writer of nonfiction seeking representation, I was thrilled. I’d written the memoir To Have and to Hoard: How I Found Treasure in My Husband’s Trash and planned to query agents soon.
Publishing in a goal publication is a confidence-booster. But even reaching for your goal pub can increase your confidence and improve your writing—whether or not your piece is accepted. I didn’t know that when I dove in, so I want to help other memoirists and novelists use their time wisely.Continue reading
Do you know what vanity metrics and analytics are?
Have you ever opened up a tracking program (like Google Analytics or Fathom or Clicky) and stared at all the data – unsure what is the most important?
If your answer is anything even vaguely related to “Hell to the frickin’ yes!”, then you are not alone.
These days, you can find metrics and statistics to validate or invalidate anything.Continue reading
If you’ll pardon the cliche, an influential man once said: “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”
While I presume Wayne Gretzky had little to no experience with freelance writing, his historic quote applies perfectly to this article. How does a writer go about landing a guest post on a site with a high domain authority—that is, a website Google deems hyper-relevant for its subject area or industry, thus ranks high for related search terms? Well, if your philosophy is that there’s no point in even trying, it’s simply never going to happen.
Thanks, Mr. Gretzky.
Intimidation factor aside, these sites often don’t have an open call for submissions. Their editorial standards are very high, and finding a relevant topic that they haven’t covered already isn’t easy. These are only some of the challenges you’ll face when trying to get your work out there.
Still, guest posting on high-authority sites has enormous benefits. You gain authority by proxy and position yourself as an expert. And it can bring additional traffic to your website, both directly from clicks to your site and via the boost in Google rankings you get from getting backlinks.
Here are the most effective strategies you can apply to get your writing published on high-quality blogs.Continue reading
When I began writing freelance, I’d already been writing for my blog for a few years. I knew there would be a learning curve because writing for yourself is completely different from writing for another publication.
To prepare myself, I participated in a few workshops and was mostly interested in the lessons about the best ways to pitch, since I’d never done it before. After gaining as much insight as I thought was necessary, I set out on my endeavor as a freelance writer.
I quickly realized trial and error were better teachers than any class.
There were so many things I learned from actively pitching. In this post, I’ll share with you the five major mistakes I made, and how the experience helped me hone my skills. If you want to perfect your own pitching strategy, feel free to use my tips as a “cheat code” so you don’t make the same mistakes I did!Continue reading