Welcome to THE WELL-FED E-PUB!

The companion monthly ezine to the quadruple-award-winning how-to
guide, “The Well-Fed Writer”.
Serving up food for thought and tasty tips
for the prospering FLCW*. Come on in, sit anywhere and bring your appetite!

*FLCW, peppered throughout the ezine, stands for “Freelance Commercial
Writer”—anyone who freelances for businesses (vs. writing magazine
articles, short stories, poetry, etc.), typically earns $50-125+ an
hour, and is the sole focus of this e-newsletter.  

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VOLUME 12, ISSUE 11 – NOVEMBER 2013
Publishing the first Tuesday of every month since May 2002  
Read it online HERE!

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2014 UPDATED EDITION OF “THE WELL-FED SELF-PUBLISHER” NOW AVAILABLE!
Check out various book AND ebook (multiple formats!) products/bundles HERE!

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PARTNER WITH DESIGNERS FOR A LOW-EFFORT FLOW OF WRITING JOBS!
Details HERE!

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NEW 1-ON-1 COACHING PROGRAMS: SAMPLE/SITE REVIEW & “SIDECAR”!
Low-cost peace of mind and guidance; Details HERE.
 
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WANT TO BUY “THE WELL-FED WRITER” IN BULK (AND SAVE BIG)?
Have a writer’s group, class or workshop? Buy TWFW at a discount, add
a profit center to your group! Buy more, save more. Details HERE!

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Check out The WELL-FED WRITER BLOG! Weigh in on “Do You React Like
This When You See Something You Wrote Years Ago?”; “How Do You Deal
with the Unimaginative Client?”; “Why Aren’t You B2B Writers Doing
More of these Lucrative Projects?”; & More!

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THIS MONTH’S MENU:

I. APPETIZER: WHY WE EARN MORE MONEY THAN “FREELANCE WRITERS”
Yours Truly Tells Client to Trash Piece, and WHY; Client Agrees & Pays More!

II. “FIELD” GREENS: WHAT ELSE COULD YOU USE THAT COPY FOR?
GA FLCW Helps Client Reuse Existing Content, Creates More Work For Himself!

III. MAIN “MEAT” COURSE: FROM ONE SHY COLD-CALLER TO ANOTHER
IA FLCW Shares How She Authentically Connects with Prospects by Phone

IV. DESSERT: Sweet Success Stories and Tips
MO FLCW Lands First Gig, Has a Panic Moment, &…See What Happened Next!
TIP: PA FLCW Shares “Pro-Mindset” Tips for Going from 9-5 to Home Office!  
 
V. COFFEE, MINTS AND TOOTHPICKS
- MORE WORK WITH LESS EFFORT? New Ebook Serves Up the “How-To”!  
- GOT ANY SUCCESS STORIES YOU'D LIKE TO SHARE? Email ME!
- The WELL-FED WRITER BLOG is Rockin!
- AWAI Copywriting (& Other) Courses: Register Here, Get Bonus CD!
- How Can My Multiple Mentoring Services Serve You?

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I. APPETIZER: WHY WE EARN MORE MONEY THAN “FREELANCE WRITERS”
Yours Truly Tells Client to Trash Piece, and WHY; Client Agrees & Pays More!

Got an email from a client of mine a few weeks back, needing a little
editing work on a project her designer was working on for her (i.e.,
combo brochure/direct mail piece she’d be giving away at trade shows
as well as mailing out to prospects).  

While I can’t make blanket statements, I’d wager good money that had
she simply contacted a “freelance writer”—someone charging quite a bit
less than I do—with the same request, she’d have likely gotten just
what she’d asked for: edited copy.

However, I took a look at it, and gave her my thoughts: she didn’t
need the thing edited. She needed to trash what she had, and start all
over again both with the copy and design. The existing design was
quite creative: a main panel with all sorts of other panels that fold
in on it. But, of course, I looked at it through a far different lens.

I listened to what she said she was going to do with it. I looked at
what she was selling—a service that needed to have a “case built” for
it, and in a logical, sequential fashion. Her existing copy didn’t
begin to build that case (and given the design, the requested editing
wouldn’t have allowed me to expand it to do so), nor did the existing
design framework even remotely facilitate the proper persuasive
unfolding of that “story.”

Doing good work for her for several years has her trust that I know
what I’m doing, so when I suggested a totally different layout (still
quite creative), expanded copy and a far higher fee than originally
envisioned, she didn’t hesitate to give the green light. She’s the
kind of client we all want: someone who understands that the ultimate
effectiveness of a marketing piece always trumps cost (within reason
of course).

So, I’m being paid far more, largely because I’m providing a level of
expertise that straight “freelance writers” wouldn’t. If all you can
do is put a good sentence together, you’ll only be able to command a
certain fee, but if you can tell a story of a product/service in a
logical way, watch your income rise. On that happy note, let’s eat!  

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II. “FIELD” GREENS: WHAT ELSE COULD YOU USE THAT COPY FOR?
GA FLCW Helps Client Reuse Existing Content, Creates More Work For Himself!

Got this cool thought-starter about re-purposing existing client content
into other forms from fellow Atlanta FLCW Steve Higgins. May not apply
in all cases, but I liked the way Steve is thinking here. What new uses could
you come up with for existing materials that would create more paying
work for you? Enjoy!

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One way to boost your freelance writing income is to re-purpose
material you’ve already produced. This can be tricky, since the text
has served its original purpose and now lies in a computer file
gathering digital dust.

For one client, I took the word “re-purpose” literally and transformed
text that was originally produced for informational purposes into a
marketing tool.

For several years, I’ve helped a financial advisor produce a newspaper
column offering financial advice. After compiling about 80 columns, we
realized we had enough material for a book. He loved the idea of
having a professional-looking book to display at speaking engagements
and to send to prospective clients. These days it’s a snap to self-publish,
through sites such as Amazon’s CreateSpace and many others.

My task was to figure out a structure for the book, organize the
columns into sections and chapters, edit the content for timeliness
and other factors, come up with a title, write the back cover text,
and oversee the proofing and publishing process. (Of course we
credited the newspaper the columns originally appeared in.) My client
paid for this work on an hourly basis.

You may not write articles, but you can look for opportunities to help
clients repackage your marketing copy into new forms. For instance,
maybe you created a social media campaign to spread the word about a
small business. Could you re-purpose the text to create a new
brochure? Or look at that situation in reverse. Did you create a
brochure for a client that could serve as the basis of a new social
media campaign?

Do you have a client who could benefit from starting a blog but
worries about coming up with fresh topics? Take some past marketing
materials and rewrite them in blog form, then present the work to your
client as a head start on a blog series.

Take a look through your files with an eye toward resurrecting some
old friends. Some of them may come through for you all over again!

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III. MAIN “MEAT” COURSE: FROM ONE SHY COLD-CALLER TO ANOTHER
IA FLCW Shares How She Authentically Connects with Prospects by Phone

Love useful stuff like the following from admitted introverted FLCW
from Okoboji, IA, Amy Hillgren Peterson. I know MANY introverted writers
“shy” away from cold calling, since it feels so daunting, but as Amy points
out, there are ways to make it work for you. Thanks Amy!

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I admit it. I have yet to hit “the zone” with my cold-calling efforts.
I conducted my last cold-calling campaign while displaced from our
home, and I seriously needed to drum up business. I called locally and
had some great conversations.

The most memorable: I caught the development director of a local
children's charity on her fourth day of work. She was very happy to
hear from me, but had a lot on her desk and it's all new. I didn’t let
much time elapse after our phone call—a few days—before  sending her a
warm email congratulating her on her new job, reiterating how I might
help make her job easier, and sending her my new brochure and
newsletter.
 
In a rural area (like where I live), the personal connection counts.
That's not always what I'm great at; I want people to be in awe of my
fabulous work before they know the woman behind the words. But clients
want it the other way.

I splash through the alphabet soup of my INFP Myers—-Briggs type,
bipolar disorder, and ADHD—to reach out. Here are three steps to break
through the shell. These come from my current cold-calling efforts,
but they apply to other marketing initiatives, too.
 
1. While momentum and the numbers game are key in a cold-calling
effort, if there are some big deals on tap—the dream clients you'd
love to land—do some research first. Google and LinkedIn are a start.

Don’t create a fake connection where none exists, or do the cloying
thing of asking about the hockey game if you're not an enthusiast. If
you're a geek like me, it just won't slip out naturally. Find something
you actually have in common, and keep it in your pocket for that terrifying
moment when the conversation wanes, but you can’t hang up yet.
 
2. Be joyful. Introspective deep thinkers are some of the most (quietly)
joyful people in the populace. Your joy and passion will come through,
and you don't have to be the “hey-how-ya-doin” extrovert to connect.
 
3. Have a concise script ready so you can avoid awkward silences on
the phone, but you don't have to cling to it. I found by having the
script from TWFW at the ready (p. 127 of the updated book), I was more
vibrant, extemporaneous and confident.
 
Don't let your abject geek-dom keep you off the phone. If you're
introverted, you can market yourself just like the jock and
cheerleader writers who make it look easy.

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IV. DESSERT: Sweet Success Stories and Tips
MO FLCW Lands First Gig, Has a Panic Moment, &…See What Happened Next!
TIP: PA FLCW Shares “Pro-Mindset” Tips for Going from 9-5 to Home Office!  

A wonderful “first-freelance-gig” story from MO FLCW Jeff Van Leuvan. We SO
often sell ourselves short on pay. Remember: our industry pays far more than
so much other “freelance writing” precisely because good writing is crucial to
a business’s bottom line, and worth paying well for.

Following that, Pittsburgh, PA FLCW Jeff Durosko shares a great tip about
developing the right mindset and habits when transitioning from a 9-5 to
the home office. Staying disciplined is an ongoing challenge in our field,
but establishing the proper structures upfront will go a long way to keeping
us on track. Thanks, Jeff!

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My first FLCW success was writing web copy for a truck-crane-service
company. The marketing director found my name on the roster of the
Kansas City Freelance Exchange web site and contacted me because of my
experience in transportation. We met at her office and she explained
what they wanted for their web site.

At that point, given this was my first real project, I became a little
panicky, thinking, “I can’t do this, I don’t have enough experience!”
In fact, on the drive home, I decided to quote an inflated price she
wouldn’t accept just to get out of doing the job!

After quoting the higher rate, she called me within 24 hours and said
she’d like to go ahead with the project and the deposit would be in
the mail the next morning. Stunned, I had a pep talk with myself,
deciding to forge ahead and do the best I could.

As the project proceeded, it became obvious that I was doing the job
to their satisfaction and my confidence increased. The job resulted in
a glowing testimonial with the possibility of more assignments. Now
that the ice is broken and the first-time jitters are behind me, I
feel as though I could handle nearly any project that comes my way.

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So many people talk about not being disciplined enough to work from
home. So, when I started my strategic communications consulting
business, I did a lot of little things to ensure it wouldn’t be a
problem for me.

I get up and get ready just as I did when I worked in the corporate
world. I get dressed, not dressed up, but not in sweats or pajamas
either. I go to Starbucks after dropping off my daughter at school and
head straight back home to my dedicated office where I work through
the morning.

I try to schedule lunches with colleagues, clients and friends to get
me out of the house and socially involved. Other at-home workers also
talk about hard it is to separate work from home life. I think having
a dedicated office with a door that closes is key to keeping one’s
routine. While I may “reopen” that door late at night when the kids
are in bed, I don’t let it consume my life.

Just like working in a corporate environment, balance remains the key
to a happy life and successful business. The best part of working from
home is having the flexibility to, say, go to the gym for a recharging
break, drop off and pick up your kids at school (and make it to all of
their important milestone events), while still working hard for your clients.

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V. COFFEE, MINTS AND TOOTHPICKS
- MORE WORK WITH LESS EFFORT? New Ebook Serves Up the “How-To”!  
- GOT ANY SUCCESS STORIES YOU'D LIKE TO SHARE? Email ME!
- The WELL-FED WRITER BLOG is Rockin!
- AWAI Copywriting (& Other) Courses: Register Here, Get Bonus CD!
- How Can My Multiple Mentoring Services Serve You?

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MORE WORK WITH LESS EFFORT? New Ebook Serves Up the “How-To”!
That’s not hype. It’s how my business has worked for the better part
of 18 years, thanks to some juicy partnerships with graphic designers.
The result? 1-2 jobs virtually every month with little or no effort on
my part. And I put all the how-to details down on paper. Check it out HERE!

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GOT ANY SUCCESS STORIES YOU’D LIKE TO SHARE?
While my call for submissions netted a TON of stuff a few months back,
I’m still a bit lean on success stories. Whether starting out or
experienced, if you recently had a noteworthy success (i.e., landed a
new client—perhaps in an unusual way—a new gig, new work from an old
client, or anything else that has a good lesson for your fellow
FLCW’s), send it on to me HERE! 100-300 words is great.     

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The WELL-FED WRITER BLOG is Rockin!

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AWAI COPYWRITING (& OTHER) COURSES: Register Here, Get Your Choice of
Bonus CD Program! Six-Figure Copywriting, Graphic Design, Internet
Writing, Fundraising, Health Market and more!

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HOW CAN MY MULTIPLE MENTORING PROGRAMS SERVE YOU?
For details and testimonials, visit HERE.

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