Success Story

Success Story For Writers Weekly By Alden Tan

I went "all in" a couple of years ago when I quit my job back in 2011. I love to write. And, I wanted to make it my dream to be a writer on my own terms... …

Freelance Success Story By Sarah Kolb-Williams

Early this year, I quit my job to edit books full time. In October, I built a website. In December, I printed business cards. And by mid-February, I was free... …

Keep On Moving On By Diana Burns

I was a closet writer for years. I read dozens of books on the subject of writing, kept a journal, and attended writer's conferences, workshops and writer's groups. But, until I moved to a rural community in cottage country, I had never submitted a thing. I was afraid I was not good enough to get published. The community we moved to had quite the reputation. It was considered the place to live if you had any aspirations as an artist. There were dozens of studios and even a few well known authors. I felt I could not be in a better spot than this to be motivated... …

Know Your Market, and Play Well With Others! By Alice J. Wisler

As many of us know, deciding to independently publish a book takes lots of thought and planning. You might get a brilliant idea in the shower about a book but, often, by the time you get to your desk, some of the zeal has faded. Many ideas lose their fizzle because they are... …

A Wild Three Years By Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy

Three years ago this month, I had almost given up on ever seeing one of my novels find publication. I'd spent the last five years writing one novel after another, one version after another, until I believed I had a few marketable works. I'd sent out query after query to publishers and literary agents. I had a few near misses, agents who said they loved my query and sample chapters but they were closing the office and retiring, publishers who liked my work but didn't love it enough to offer a contract. One of my much rewritten, refined and reworked manuscripts, Kinfolk, had been rejected about eighty times. Several of my other novels had been as well. I shared my disappointment and despair with a writer friend I'd met online and he suggested I might try the growing ebook market... …

Internationally Yours By Nadia Ali

In a bid to grab the attention of an editor with a hook that would knock her socks off, I pitched an idea involving an international story about cat cafes in Tokyo. I researched it, gathered my information, was sure I had enough to reach the required word count, and sent it her way. "This is just what we were looking for," she said. I felt a sense of accomplishment until she added, "But, only if you can get photos to complement the piece." …

Get Over the Hype! – Megan Shannon

When I first entered the world of online freelance writing, I was a bit worried. Would I be able to do it? Would I make enough money? Well, luckily, I was able to answer both of those with a resounding yes! …

The Changing Faces of Success – Deryn Warren

Success kept raising the bar for me. First, it was finishing a book. Then, it was getting a publisher. After that, it was getting the book into the bookstores, and keeping the book there for more than a year. Finally, it was about making even a few cents. Success did not come easily... …

Mining Your Local News for Story Ideas – Diane Stark

A few years back, I was watching my local evening news and the reporter interviewed a family who had adopted nine siblings out of the foster care system. It was the largest special needs adoption in my state's history. As I watched the interview, my writer's radar went on high alert. These people were amazing! I wrote down their names and a brief synopsis of their story... …

In Four Years, I Have Earned $30K in Writing Grants! – Elizabeth Creith

My first grant application was terrifying. I read and re-read the rules, afraid I'd miss something and be disqualified. In the post office, preparing to mail my application, I suddenly wondered if I'd left my name on the title sheets. The jurors weren't to see any identifying information. I ripped open the package and found - horrors! - that I had. Fifteen minutes later, I mailed the application with new, anonymous title sheets. My hands shook for hours... …

I Owe My Success To My Writing Group – Pauline Clark

I've been a writer for most of my life. It's a solitary profession sometimes. It certainly had been for me. Growing up in a small town meant there weren't a lot of us "writer-types" around. People would nod and just smile when I told them what I wanted to do. Eventually, I quit saying it out loud. Instead, I devoured writing magazines and dreamed of the day when my writing would make me rich and famous. That day still hasn't come but my writing life has become much less solitary - and more successful - since some writers came to town... …

If You Can’t Write a Journal – Ann Goldberg

Writing experts always tell newbie-writers to write a journal. "You'll be thankful you did. It will give you endless material for your writing." Well, I just can't... …

Worried About Something? Get Writing! – Connie Jeske Crane

We often think our fears and neuroses hold us back as writers. We talk in terms of worries weighing us down, and fears needing to be wrestled with. Yet in the last few years, I've started to see that stuff that keeps you up at night as something else too: great subject matter... …

Write More Using Your Kitchen Timer! By Doris J. Niemann

Write More Using Your Kitchen Timer! By Doris J. Niemann

As a published writer, I am not getting out the word (so to speak) on a steady lucrative basis like I should. I still have difficulty making time to sit down each day and write. I found that concentrating on writing without losing interest in content, clarity and descriptive phrases was not as easy as I thought... …

The Surprising and Near-Instant Benefits of (Finally) Creating My Own Website – Connie Jeske Crane

I hear writers making confessions like this all the time. "Ugh. I really should have a website." Or they've established an online presence, but there's this twist, "I haven't updated my blog since 2004!" The underlying reasons vary. I know hardworking writers who are mired in the trenches. But also, at the edge of the pool, you'll find the technophobes, and social media snobs (yes, some people out there still think Facebook and Twitter are fads). And finally, lots of us writers fall into the awe-shucks humble category, protesting... …

I Love Being a Workshop Presenter! – Alice J. Wisler

I've presented workshops at other people's events for over ten years now. You know, where you get invited to teach on a topic for an hour or so at a conference or seminar because someone sees you as having something important to say. My topic has been writing through heartache. Ever since my son Daniel died at the age of four, I found writing to be a healthy respite for my sorrow and became an advocate for sharing the value of writing for healing, hope and healing... …

From Blogger to Travel Writer – Ryan James, MSW, LCSW, Ed.D.

When living and working in California as a social worker, therapist, and college instructor my dream was to break into travel writing. Each college winter recess, my partner and I would spend a month in various countries. Our friends and co-workers traveled vicariously through our adventures; they demanded detailed reports of our daily undertakings... …

You Never Know Who’s Reading… – C.M. Saunders

Like most writers, I love what I do. I love the creative process, the research, the meeting and dealing with various people. If I didn't enjoy it so much, I'd do something else. Over the past decade or so I have been moderately successful in terms of my output and published material, having contributed both fiction and non-fiction to over forty publications worldwide. However, my problem was that I didn't make enough money from writing to actually support myself. This led to me taking a succession of manual jobs I didn't really like, which I endured just to enable myself to make ends meet. I was a factory worker, a barman, and later an English teacher in China. All the time I dreamed of being a professional writer. I looked at writing as more of a hobby. A hobby which, if I was lucky, sometimes allowed me the opportunity to supplement my income... …

Success is a Bunch of Clips – Gail Kavanagh

I had nothing to offer retail or business. My qualifications for anything were so old they pre-dated the Vic 20. Even the local greengrocer, looking for a check out person, had a state of the art LED cash register that I couldn't begin to understand. But I was starting again after a failed marriage and desperately needed a job. All I had was a folder full of clips from my years of freelance writing. Could that get me a job on a newspaper or magazine? My job counselor thought so..." …

Don’t Forget about Your Day Job – Diane Stark

Five years ago, I resigned from my job as a kindergarten teacher. While I loved teaching, I longed to be a stay-at-home mom and try my hand at freelance writing. I'd been writing in my spare time for a few years, and I wanted to pursue the craft more seriously. Although I'm not currently teaching in the classroom, I still use my teaching experience all the time in my writing career... …

Dedication and Determination Go a Long Way By Victoria Heckstall

Being seven months pregnant and in a new city without a job is not a good combination. I went about learning this the hard way when I was pregnant with my second son. I had applied for numerous jobs, then one day while searching for a job online I ran across a work at home mom forum and the light bulb in my head immediately went off... …

Changing the World with Your Writing – Lisa Evans

When I started in my freelance writing career, I was excited to do reviews of beauty products, write articles about how to organize your kitchen, the cheapest diet plans and foods to brighten your skin. While I felt a sense of pride seeing my byline on the somewhat superficial pages of slick magazines, I never imagined the power my words could have. After my father was diagnosed with cancer in 2007 and survived chemotherapy, a stem cell transplant and drug cocktail that left him depleted of energy and sullen - he was unable to walk down the street without falling short of breath. He decided to cycle 200 km in the Ride to Conquer Cancer - a fundraiser for the hospital that saved his life. He joined a local group of cyclists who trained together all summer and he crossed the finish line as the leader of the pack, pumping his fist in the air as only a survivor can. I wrote an article for a national cycling magazine on his team and relished in their excited faces as they poured over my words. I realized my words held power, not only to inform women how to properly apply makeup to make their faces appear thinner, but to impact the lives of individuals like my father who struggle to defeat cancer... …

Accidentally Finding Your Writing Niche By Sara Hodon

As a former program manager for career awareness initiatives aimed at school-age students, sometime Career Advisor at a technical college, and frequent job seeker/interviewee who has also made nice extra income as a freelance writer, it seemed like only a matter of time before my two "worlds" merged. Although I've written for a number of consumer magazines, once I discovered the lucrative opportunities that exist with industry-specific trade publications, I decided to try to break into those markets... …

Serendipity – Rosemary McKinley

At a book presentation at the local Historical Society, a man who works as an entertainer suggested that I contact a local farm owner who was always interested in local history. I did a book signing there at Harbes Family Farms in Mattituck, Long Island. The owner read my book and offered me a job as a Long Island historian working with school children during field trips! …

Food Writing’s Almost Always on the Menu – Phyllis Ring

Back when I didn't know where my first magazine sale would come from, a friend who was an established writer offered me a story assignment that a personal crisis was going to prevent her from completing. Her generosity opened the door to the nearly endless publication possibilities of food writing... …

Success Comes in Pieces – Andrew Handley

"Get a job that involves writing." That was the advice my English professor gave me on the day I dropped out of college. Like any good teenager, I immediately forgot her words and took on a warehouse job at a staffing agency, and now, looking back, I can see what that professor saw in me years ago: A passion for writing... …

Developing a Plan for Your Book – Dan Heaton

Developing a Plan for Your Book – Dan Heaton

My first grade teacher just bought my book. She's hardly my target audience and I hadn't seen her at least since I left elementary school more than 30 years ago, but I was happy to make the sale. I even charged her full price, rather than the insider's "friends and family rate." A few simple Internet searches and a plan - developed in large part through guidance from fellow WritersWeekly writers - helped me make the sale. …

A Serendipitous Path to Writing Success – Barbara Woodworth

Perhaps one of the most interesting aspects about my now long-time writing career is that I never set out to write. The fact that I, somewhat serendipitously, spent the past two decades writing and publishing well over 1,500 articles in more than 50 local, regional, national and international publications, still amazes me. As a student writing was never my forte. In middle school I dreaded the annual back-to-school assignment requiring a treatise on how I spent my summer vacation. …

Accountability – The Key to Success – Diane Stark

Every Sunday evening for the last year, I've spent a few minutes planning my writing week. I look at the deadlines I need to meet, my never-ending writing To Do list, and my non-writing related responsibilities for the week. Then I make a list of what I think I can realistically accomplish that week. I set daily writing goals, which are designed to help me meet my weekly goal. Plan your work and work your plan. It's good advice. The only problem was that I wasn't exactly following it... …

Humor Sells – Jeanette Levellie

I woke up one day and said, "I want to write humor." When I sat down at the keyboard, the one-liners and witticisms flew from my fingers like lightning flashes. Now I make tons of money with my laugh-a-second writing. And if you believe that, I have a boat I'd like to sell you... …

1 5 6 7 8 9 23