Saying ‘no’ to any paying gig seems like a dumb idea, especially if you’re a strapped-for-cash freelancer. But there’s a method to this madness.
Veteran freelancers agree that in order to cultivate your career, you need to be choosy — to an extent. Obviously try not to turn down every opportunity you get. But do weed out what works and what doesn’t for your schedule and your career:
If the pay is too low, the amount of work too demanding or the subject is outside of your area of interest, don’t be afraid to say no. A former client connected me with a man who needed help getting his mystery novel published, and when I read his email it seemed that what he really needed was a literary agent. I could have given him advice, working as a sort of consultant. But he seemed a little too proud and inflexible, and I wasn’t sure I would enjoy working with someone like that. Additionally, this type of work wasn’t in line with the direction I wanted my career to follow, so I politely declined.
To hear more tips on how to enhance your writing career by narrowing your focus, read: Growing Your Writing Career By Becoming A Specialist.
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