As a Writer, I Used to Sell Myself Short…Until THIS Happened – By Aysha Chaudhry

As a Writer, I Used to Sell Myself Short…Until THIS Happened – By Aysha Chaudhry

A few months ago, I decided to get serious about building my writing business…but I didn’t know where to start looking for work. I would apply on job boards but I wasn’t even getting responses. I was discouraged.

I turned to the writing section on Craigslist because a close friend had success there. I saw a post in search of a freelance writer for a women’s lifestyle blogger who no longer had time to dedicate to her personal blog.

I responded to the ad with the few samples that I had and, lo and behold, she responded that she liked my work! I was thrilled and she walked me through her expectations. I was expected to pitch and write a few pieces a month. She didn’t even ask for my rate, and just offered double what I was making with my other client (though she didn’t know that, and I certainly wasn’t about to divulge that information). This was the first moment where I learned that my value as a writer was a lot higher than I had been selling myself for.

I worked with her over the next couple months, sending her stories here and there. It was a lot slower than I liked. I had to constantly follow up in order to get a response on any pitch or submission. She was pleasant but I was definitely looking for more consistent and timely work.

I didn’t hear from her for a month and then she emailed me. She was hired at a growing food company, and wanted me to be a writer for its new blog. Then, she offered me double the rate I was being paid for her personal blog! I was now making four times more per article than I had previously earned and I hadn’t even negotiated or mentioned a rate! The food/baking industry was new for me but I saw this as the opportunity I had been waiting for, and quickly accepted.

After three short weeks, and only two submissions, she reached out, saying she was leaving the company. I started panicking. Would the company even want to keep working with me? I figured the only way forward was to prove myself to the other company employees. I didn’t know them but I had their contact information from a couple of email chains. I introduced myself, expressed my interest in continuing to work for them, and included some sample pitches to make it easy for them to say yes.

Thankfully, they were happy to have me on board and now this national company is my biggest, most consistent client. What I learned was that, sometimes, you have to roll with the punches, and step outside of your comfort zone.

I also learned that I had been selling myself short and that I was worth a lot more than I had given myself credit for.

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Aysha is a full-time marketer and freelance writer living in Atlanta, Georgia. She handles the marketing strategy for MEFeater Magazine and is a contributing writer for VEU Magazine and Sweet Loren’s. She enjoys writing about culture, style, entertainment and food! You can contact her at avchaudhry@gmail.com or on Twitter @ayshanotayesha.

 



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