Nathan Bransford, Author


Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Will Write for Food

Now that we are going through some economic turmoil, the new query vogue is for authors to mention their financial troubles and their hopes that they will be able to make money by writing.

I have a few thoughts.

1) This is hugely depressing
2) Step awaaaaaay from the computer

Yes, we've all heard the story of authors who were dressed in rags and eating cans of beans before they wrote a hit novel and became richer than oil barons.

But honestly, this is kind of like trying to resolve your financial problems by attempting to win the lottery. Only a lottery ticket costs a dollar and doesn't take hundreds of hours to buy.

There is no such thing as getting rich quick in publishing. It takes forever! Let's say you DO write a book that becomes a big hit. First you have to spend hours and hours and hours writing it, then you have to find an agent, then you have to find a publisher, then you get maybe half the advance, then you have to wait a long time until it's published, then you have to wait for it to take off, then you have to wait for the royalty period to end and maybe four months after that the publisher will pay you. By the time your money actually comes in we could all be using some currency of the future and novels could be BEAMED DIRECTLY TO OUR HEADS.

But. At the very least, if you are trying to escape penury through publication, do not mention it in your query. I get enough bad news every time I open Publishers Lunch.

Wait. That was a depressing post. PUPPIES!!






85 comments:

Diana said...

Hmm. That sounds like a fad that was going on during my days working in university admissions, when high school kids realized they had a better shot at scholarship money if they showed how they overcame hardships to succeed. Suddenly, everyone had a parent die tragically and thus had to raise three younger siblings, was a quadriplegic basketball player and saved up aluminum cans to build schools for poor children in India.

abc said...

People are strange. And desperate, I guess. I'm a little goofy, but not desperate. Which is why I never wear high heels or fake eyelashes.

I don't know what that means either. KITTENS!

Welcome back, Nathan B. Thanks for the substitutes. It was informative reading.

Crimogenic said...

Did someone say Puppies? where, I want one!

Yes we are in financially hard times and yes we want to be famous, rich writers, but gosh, what's the purpose of putting that in a query letter. Add that in the pile of useless information in a query letter.

Word Verification: Mister! I was hoping for Puppies.

Mark Terry said...

It's about DAMN TIME somebody in the publishing industry said this. I harp on it on my blog all the time. If you want to make money writing, work for magazines or online publications or whatever (try ransom notes), but to put all your financial eggs in the novel-writing basket is insane. Hey, believe me, I know because I did. I learned from experience.

Here's my latest comparison for people. Frankly, I don't expect anyone to listen.

According to most studies, there are about 500 writers in the U.S. (I think that's optimistic) who make a living writing solely off their novels.

There are, in the U.S., 500 CEOs of Fortune 500 companies (by definition).

Do you think it would be easier for you to become a Fortune 500 CEO?

Merry Monteleone said...

Puppies? Did you say puppies? Add in rainbows and unicorns and I'm there...

Okay, a martini might do it, too...

Anonymous said...

yes, it's possible. Let's not crush any hopes here. There's nothing wrong with being realistic and hopeful at the same time. No feelings hurt if one doesn't survive off writing alone.

MzMannerz said...

Newish to your blog, and continue to be amazed at what people think will happen to them once they write a novel. It's at times like these that I wonder if my NOT believing things like this make me really smart, or really a nerd because everyone else seems to be on a different page....

Adaora A. said...

No worries Nathan! They do say that the truth hurts. It may be a bit of a sobering thought for some people, but sometimes that kind of a thing needs to be said. People have to work for a living while they wait to get a return on their 'baby.'

shilohwalker said...

I don't really see it as depressing-it's just realistic.

If people think writing a book is a sure-fire way to get rich quick, then they need a reality check, I think.

ORION said...

I'm so glad you said this. I write because I love to write and want people to read my stories. As successful as LOTTERY has been it still does not enable me to stop working...and the more I say this the less people believe me...
Thanks!

Madame Lefty said...

What if it was a certain Secretary of Treasury telling you the hard financial times he was running into? Or someone part of the big three? Ah, kidding, kidding.

Though in honor of your last sentence:

http://www.labrador.retriever-gifts.com/yellow_lab_art/yellow_labrador_puppies.jpg

Can't do html here, but you can at least look at the real thing. :p

Other Lisa said...

Dang...well, I guess it's back to Publisher's Clearinghouse for me. Say, isn't that Ed McMahon?! He's got something in his hand...

Ponies!!!

Corked Wine and Cigarettes said...

Get people proactive in buying books! Check out Moonrat's blog: http://editorialass.blogspot.com/2008/11/book-buying-world-savers-unite.html . The Facebook page is closing in on 1000 members!

Maybe it will help.

Zoe Winters said...

LMAO! You crack me up! So very true. It's the old publishing joke: "The secret to making a small fortune in publishing? Start out with a large fortune."

David Russell Mosley said...

Personally, (this will in part my response to the earlier post on money versus notoriety) I write because I love it and because I have a message that I think needs to be heard. If I didn't think that way I would not be working as hard as I am on my novel. Money will not help me reach more people, writing a fantastic book that's cheap will help me reach more people.
I have had, for some time, hopes of publishing my work. I have never had hopes of making a living for my family off of my writing. People who want that and only that need to reevaluate why they write. I really have no time for people who just want money.

Melissa said...

Yeah... um, no. If you're going to write, write because you love it, because you have something important to say. Don't write for the money, because there just isn't that much.

Now the important stuff. Puppies! Like mine... the cutest ever:

http://blackseadogs.blogspot.com/2008/11/im-lousy-photographer.html

Ulysses said...

Novels beamed directly into our heads? Thank-you, no.

Now, if they could come up with a way to beam a novel directly OUT of my head, without all that tedious writing and revising, then they'd really have something!

Puppies? Why is it always puppies or kitties? Why don't geckos ever get any love?

Anonymous said...

Is that a reference to the Amero? I've heard about that...

Lady Glamis said...

Yes, I'm sure it takes forever. Patience is the key, as you've said before. Thank you for sharing, Nathan. The reminder that things don't happen right away is appreciated.

Marilyn Peake said...

Thank you for such a blunt post on the real difficulties inherent in trying to succeed as a writer. I’ve recently found some kind of peace in both the current financial market and the current publishing world...well, except when I watch the news and hear how things could get soooo much worse in the next few years. PUPPIES!! KITTENS!! UNICORNS!! In regard to writing, a part of me is happy that it’s so hard to get published right now (that’s only part of me, not all of me). It allows me to really concentrate on writing my next novel, to concentrate on the writing itself, rather than rushing to submit it. It’s allowed me to slow down, research, polish as I go along, to find the joy in writing once again. Of course, I’m writing this on a good day. On a bad day, I think I should give up writing completely. PUPPIES!! KITTENS!! UNICORNS!!

By the way, I saw on the news this morning that Joe the Plumber’s book was released yesterday. He said that he turned down lots of lucrative deals in order to spread the wealth by publishing with a small press. Is this true?

Margaret Yang said...

Dear dog, people actually do that?

Puppies, indeed.

Kristan said...

PHEW, thank goodness you threw that last line in there!

lotusloq said...

Desperate times, I reckon! I can't believe they'd tell you about their poverty/starvation/falling apart in a query. The things you must have to read!

Where's the professionalism, people? Of course, those of us reading your blog would hopefully not be the culprits.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for saying this, Nathan.

Ditto on what Mark Terry said. I have these kinds of questions, and I give this kind of answer, when I do public speaking to writer's groups. I'm only one-time published, but at least I've made it that far. Some of these newbies think "Gee, you must have it made!" NOT.

Thanks for your whole, great informative blog, Nathan.

And thanks for that last thought about PUPPIES!!

J.F.

Justus M. Bowman said...

You have to accept my query...my best suit is made of baked beans!

Robert A Meacham said...

I am lucky in that I work in management with a retail grocer in Texas. I get 12 hours a day talking to unhappy customers, chasing bad checks, fraud, and on and on.But in reality I have a job to be thankful for. I am a realist, knowing that I will never be picked up by a mainstream publisher, and that does not bother me. I have the time to work on my writing, send in queries, and paste them on my wall as if to say to myself; "At least I'm trying."
I do not have the podium like news folks, pompous politicians, or any other fashionable author, yet I will plug on. I am not desperate or live life in desperation. I just write about it.

Stephanie said...

Wow. I can't imagine someone actually mentioning that in a query letter. "I lost my job so I thought I'd try writing a novel." It smacks of the whole, "Anyone can write a novel" line of thinking that far too many people have. As we've all heard a million times, "If you CAN do something else, by all means do." We write because we can't NOT write...and it has to become something that means everything to you. But it's just unprofessional to put that in a query. If these people lose their jobs, do they also put on their cover letters, "I lost my job and I was really hoping you could give me one so I can pay my bills?" NO!

elesa said...

If you have any more information regarding novels being beamed directly into our brains, please let me know. That sounds like something right up my alley.

pseudosu said...

So the message is-- "build a time machine!" -uh, right?

Hmm, since I'm so broke, I guess I will have to fashion from twigs ala Gilligan's Island. Then all my getting rich via publishing problems will be solved!

Kay Bratt said...

Because the story I promised to tell involved the plight of children, I didn't want to wait months or years; so I self-published in July. My book hit #266on Amazon ranking three weeks after going public and I have now--five months later--sold several thousand copies. And...even though my ranking has gone way up, I now have an agent. I hope to republish the book with a traditional publisher. Even if it doesn't ever sell, the hundreds of letters from readers have made me feel the project was successful, at least to me.

I just want to say "Keep reaching for your dreams...sometimes you just might get there!"

Deirdre Mundy said...

Dear Mr. Big-shot-Agent-Fellow,

Please accept my true-life-nonfiction-novel about puppies, in particular my puppy Pete.

I've just lost my job, and if you don't acquire this and get it a 6 figure deal within a week, I'm going to have to serve Pete to the children and tell them that he's really just an overcooked tuna casserole.

Sincerely Yours,
A Desperate Writer...
---

(Actually, my family's finances are stable, even if tight. And we've always assumed ANY of my writing money counts as lottery winnings.... nice to buy a few things we're saving for, but unneeded. So I guess we're in a good place. Oh, and there is no Pete the puppy... thought the kids have been begging for one...)

Just_Me said...

SHARKS!!!

What? Elasmobranchs deserve love too people...

This is just my two cents on the matter, for what little it's worth, but I think at the end of the day you have to be happy with yourself and what you do. Money can buy electricity and groceries (which are great) but it doesn't buy happiness.

dernjg said...

These puppies?
http://www.ustream.tv/channel/shiba-inu-puppy-cam

Ryan Field said...

I'm still waiting for a check from a well known magazine that came out weeks ago. And one editor actually e-mailed me last year about a piece, wondering if I would be okay taking a five dollar cut. I'm serious about this, too.

"By the time your money actually comes in we could all be using some currency of the future..."

Like Paypal?...I recently had an editor suggest I open a paypal account. So that's what I did. I want my money.

And, when I was an associate editor just out of college, I used to screen calls from writers who were always looking for their money. That was fifteen years ago and things haven't changed much.

a cat of impossible colour said...

Hi Nathan :). I know you're crazy-busy with your 650 emails, but I wanted to pick your agent-y brains, if you have time.

I have been waiting three months for an agent to respond to me (he requested my full manuscript, and confirmed receipt). How on earth does one phrase a follow-up letter to an agent? Other than "Hi, remember me, have you read it yet?" I'm not sure what to say. Is there a good, pithy, polite stock phrase I could use that doesn't sound a) stalker-like or b) desperate?

Thanks so much

Andrea

Miriam S.Forster said...

Oy. That's like the people who find out I want to write for children and say. "Well, that's where the money is. Look at JK Rowlings/Stephanie Myer. You just need to write a book like that."

Yeah, I'll get right on that... (grimace) In the meantime, I have to agree with Melissa. Most Adorable Puppy Ever. But I have a big fat soft spot for Newfies, so I may be biased.

Haste yee back ;-) said...

I write to practice my spelling.

And I'll work for DEPENDS... (Wide end - cup shaped please)!


Haste yee back ;-)

beckylevine said...

KITTENS! With big heart balloons tied over their heads! :)

Become rich by writing? Huh? What planet is THAT on! Any realistic English major can tell you, well, never mind...

Moanerplicity said...

When I want to write a sob-sad story, I tend to reserve it for my fiction. And trust me, I can and have made readers cry (sometimes even with a touch of autobiography).

Like many writers, artists and other creatives, my finances are often unpredictable, depressing and/or downright laughable. Adversity makes us stronger, if it doesn't kill us. I certainly don't announce in a query letter or to anyone that 'my money's funny and my change is strange.' Why make this the problem, the business or a plea for sympathy to people who obviously don't care or who don't understand, much less reveal it to a potential agent or publisher?

I just wish the suits, those people in power positions such as agents, editors, publishers didn't have such bouts of memory failure that so often they forget what it's like to BE a writer. As one who places heart, soul, blood, sweat, tears, time, energy, years, memories and yes, money into their craft, the Bigger Depression is not financial but spiritual, when one is coldly rejected countless times without ever given the courtesy of a personal reply or an ounce of encouragement, let alone a reason why the writer's work was deemed unacceptable.

Should even leaner and sadder times come, perhaps I'm be one of those displaced people who indeed 'will write for food.' There's no disgrace in pursuing one's passion honestly and steadfastly. But for me, personally, there's a horribly sour taste that comes when one is force-fed the cold food of rejection from a distance, like a strange and bitter after-dinner mint.

Lisa said...

The Quarterly Conversation has a great essay on writing and work:

http://quarterlyconversation.com/on-writing-and-work

Grow up people.

Janiss said...

Money is a good thing and important for anyone's well being, but I really hate when novelists equate their efforts with the hope of financial gain. Whatever happened to the joy of storytelling? That exhilarating rush of sitting in front of the computer when you're on a creative roll? If that isn't WAY more important than the piddly advance you'll most likely get if you're writing fiction (IF you're lucky), then you are SO in the wrong business.

Oh, and - KITTIES!!!! Lots and lots of 'em!

kumhianoa said...

I quite agree with Janiss's view that monetary gain should have very little to do with getting a novel published. Personally, i think everyone should seperate make a living from their creative pursuits. I know that's very hard to do, but seriously i'd rather be working odd jobs for money, and writing a good novel on the side, that way whatever comes out is quality because it is not tied to any timeline based on money.

Lisa McMann said...

You totally reminded me that I haven't looked at the puppy cam today! Check it out: http://www.ustream.tv/channel/shiba-inu-puppy-cam

Lisa

bloggingexperiments said...

Thanks for the PUPPIES, Nathan...they are always cheerful! Are you seriously getting money woes in queries? Wow.

What if I mentioned that we had to put our dog to sleep, and the cat was eaten by a coyote? Would that get me anywhere???

Deirdre Mundy said...

While I don't write primarily for money, I have to say:

Getting paid for writing is an incredible high. And once it happens, you're always looking for the fix again....

Not that I plan my future around my incredibly meager writing income, but there's nothing wrong with liking storytelling AND money.

Plus, I had to work really hard to break into some of those paying markets, so it improved my craft, too!

Writing is like marriage that way... you do it for love, but that doesn't mean you'll turn your nose up at roses and chocolate, when your spouse offers!

Kristin Laughtin said...

The logic of including that in a query letter puzzles me a bit, although my first thought was similar to Diana's in the first comment. (Although, really, a sob story is not what you need to get published. You need a good book. Publishers don't just pick the books that "deserve" it.)

Your last sentence, though, demonstrates again how I like the way you think!

Heather Kennedy said...

That totally makes me want to send you a spoof query just so I could end it with PUPPIES! My tac is to futz around the internet until someone approaches me to write something for $. I figure I have better odds that way and I can't exactly quite my day job. ;-)

Chris said...

People who don't write don't get how it works. They traipse around Barnes & Noble and think, "Hey, I could write stuff better than this. It'll be easy."

To that I say, "Hahahahahahaha, that's what you think."

Wanda B. Ontheshelves said...

That's a pretty good hook, I think.

Meaning: Person stands by side of road with cardboard sign that reads "Will Write For Food." Who stops? Do they have stories they want to have written, and for how many bags of groceries?

Just spend a year, you and your sign, traveling. Offer yourself up to advertising agencies (I'm thinking of BBDO). Stand in their parking lot. First, call local news media. Get some attention.

Also, start a website www.willwriteforfood.com - you know, they pay you by ordering Harry & David Fruit of the Month memberships for you online, Godiva chocolate, etc. Delivered to your doorstep.

Offer to write anything - greeting cards, apologies, novellas, novels, poems, songs.

Or if a purely fictionalized account, you could have a scene where other people are selling Girl Scout cookies, so all the bewildered girl scouts are asking their mothers - what does that mean, write for food? And mom, can I trade a box of thin mints for a poem about my cat?

Or, you can make it a romance novel, and this is the way someone meets their true love.

Splendiferous possibilities.

Wanda B., reporting from Michigan, automotive ground zero

sally apokedak said...

--By the time your money actually comes in we could all be using some currency of the future and novels could be BEAMED DIRECTLY TO OUR HEADS.--

That was not depressing. It was hysterical. Thanks!

Linda Lou said...

Want to make great money by writing? Become a technical writer. I get paid well and although I don't give a crap about the stuff I'm writing about, every day I am practicing my craft. Technical writing teaches you to "write tight," which is essential to creative writing as well.

Nathan's depiction of the publishing process is a reality that, for me, puts more weight on the self-publishing side of the scales.

Liz said...

Funny, I get encouraged by the deal reports every time I look at Publishers Lunch. People are still selling books! There's still hope!

Kim Lionetti said...

Hmmmm... Nathan's away for weeks and when he returns there's talk of a wedding... Spencer and Heidi announce their union while he's gone... Coincidence? I think not.

Could it be there was a double ceremony in Cabo?

Betty Atkins Dominguez said...

You should hear my woes, you'd all send money and I'd get rich that way alone.... oh, XC#@!& With this lot, I'd have a better chance with publishing!

Caitlin said...

No mention of Speidi getting married, Nathan? No Mention of Nana on the Hills list night? I am so disappointed.

Stephen Moegling said...

As a new novelist who just landed an agent, I can say honestly that my brain did strange things when it came time to write my first queries. It didn't matter how many books and articles I read on the subject, or even the great seminars I went to conducted by agents --when I sat to write the Immortal Query––I made the same novice errors I suspect most newbie novelists make, which tend to involve wearing your heart on your sleeve. Writing a one-page letter that sells yourself and your beloved work felt to me as hard as writing my novel. With that said, I never told an agent that I was flat broke and needed a miracle. Ouch.

BJ said...

Confucius say, "Choose a job you love and you will never have to work a day in your life."

My ultimate dream is to be able to live off my fiction writing. I don't expect it to be easy or to happen quickly. But if I could make even a lower middle class living by writing fiction, I'd be able to write all day, every day, without a day job getting in the way. Which, for me, would be heaven.

For now, I'll struggle through on tech writing and copywriting contracts, just happy I'm making something of a life writing. But the dream will always be there.

Oh, and give me a grown dog any day. Mine may be getting old, but he's still damned cute.

Anonymous said...

Nathan,

You're so good at answering questions, I have one that piqued my curiosity.

In a recent Publisher's Lunch e-newsletter, there's an abbreviation (I think) after the notice of sales, e.g., "Booker Prize winner Penelope Lively's FAMILY ALBUM, to Carole de Santi at Viking, for publication in fall 2009, by Emma Sweeney (NA)."

What does the "(NA)" mean?

Thanks, and sorry for this off-topic post. :-D

Nathan Bransford said...

anon-

North America. So, the rights sold are for the US and Canada.

Wanda B. Ontheshelves said...

It's pitiful, I suppose...but I feel exactly the same way:

"But if I could make even a lower middle class living by writing fiction, I'd be able to write all day, every day, without a day job getting in the way. Which, for me, would be heaven."

Vancouver Dame said...

Welcome back, Nathan, hope you had a great time. The guest bloggers were interesting, but it's your humor, and your honesty about publishing that keeps me coming back to read your blog.

Mentioning the state of one's finances in relation to writing is overstepping the bounds of professionalism. What is the purpose - to gain your pity, rather than your respect as an author? I'm amazed at what people will say to get one-up on the other guy. I'm sure we could all think of reasons why our book should be the next breakout novel. Thanks for telling us what NOT to put in a query. That list keeps getting longer or is it my imagination?

Gay said...

I figure if I write a successful novel and I win the lottery, I will have fame and fortune. And if follow the rules my mother taught me, I'll have a few friends left, too.

Probably need to do all three.

Maybe I'll pet my cat the rest of today.

Aubrey said...

I suppose I understand authors wanting to hit it big with their book so they can not only quit their day job, but so they can actually have money, but I am surprised they are mentioning it in a query. I guess I just look at getting published as a way to have your story told, not just to make money. If money is your main motivation, chances are your book is not going to be very good.

Whirlochre said...

It's a sad fact of our warped logic, here in the UK as in the US, that we pride ourselves on our recognition of reading as a Wonderful Thing while doing as little as possible to reward the people whose skills provide us with words to read.

Maybe there's a parallel universe where people choose plumbing and astrophysics for their Very Costly Hobby...

whoissecretdubai said...

Hello,

A humble request...

Do you, by any chance, happen to know who Secret Dubai (the blogger: secretdubai.blogspot.com) is?

http://whoissecretdubai.blogspot.com/

Grrr.... said...

My will to write is sloughing off like... like... I can't even come up with a frikkin' simile here! That's it; I'm going back to my day job as an assassin for hire. At least it pays well, and the flexible hours make it possible for me to be with my kids when the come home from school.

Heidi the Hick said...

Yeah, I write because I love it and because I have a strong need to tell stories blah blah blah

I wanna get paid for it!

It's worth it. We need to put a value on creativity and imagination.

jnantz said...

Be careful, Mr. Bransford. I'm a recovering rasslin' fan. After listening to Jerry Lawler for years, an exclamation like "Puppies!" can have an entirely different meaning.



Though, if you were just trying to lighten the mood, I guess that could still work for some people...

Avily Jerome said...

People actually mention their financial woes in queries?!? How tacky!

"Dear Mr. Bransford, please pick my book to represent, because, even though I haven't done my homework and it isn't well written and it doesn't have a great plot, I need it more than anyone else because I'm poor."

MEWriter said...

Hi Nathan, I did a double take when I saw this post. I have a blog
http://willwriteformoney.wordpress.com/
(note to self: update blog).
I'm a freelance journalist and in that capacity I think people should put their writing on a business footing and regard their name as a brand. Good publications will always need good writers. However, if $$$$$ are your main focus in life then writing is the WRONG career.
It's summer where I live, and the work slows until late January so rather than sitting about feeling broke I save a little bit through the year to tide me over each summer so I can throw myself into my fiction. This may pay off later or not. But I love it now.

Lupina said...

Something for those who throw pity parties for themselves in their queries to consider;
If agents actually saw low financial status as a quality worth consideration in their choice of new representees, most writers would have agents!

Dara said...

I would never even THINK of mentioning financial woes in my query letter.

I mean, anyone can make up a sob story--they have to realize agents won't fall for it.

Then again, perhaps they've become desperate...or just weren't all that wise to begin with. :P

Scobberlotcher said...

Well, said.

I predict this economy will produce more writers. It's harder to write when everything is peachy, isn't it?

Anonymous said...

I'm wondering...do you think it pays to mention your a trust fund brat with so much money you could fly your agent to Paris every day?

Hmmm...

I might just do that when I get around to writing query letters. Nathan, your such an inspiration.

jo said...

There goes all my hopes and dreams. Crushed. Thanks a lot. ;)

Anonymous said...

I dunno, Nate-dawg. I think a lot of people are experiencing layoffs right now and I'll bet some of 'em just wanna signal how much free time they have, in theory making them a better client. I say: ignore it, remember you agents are filters as well as a salesmen. Our freaky writer personalities keep you guys in the biz.

Jeff Carlson said...

Dude, sign me up for the novels BEAMED DIRECTLY TO MY HEAD!!! ;)

Erik said...

"But honestly, this is kind of like trying to resolve your financial problems by attempting to win the lottery. Only a lottery ticket costs a dollar and doesn't take hundreds of hours to buy."

That is soooo my line. Imitation is indeed the sincerest form of flattery. Thanks!

Nathan Bransford said...

erik-

Whoops! Did I steal that one from you?

Erik said...

Nathan:

Things that involve lottery tickets, check cashing stores, and other features of life on the bad sign of town are often registered trademarks of mine. Not because I alone live with them, but because I'm the only one in the 'hood who would think to make them into marketable phrases. Even rap usually avoids stuff like that.

Just so you know. :-)

Mira said...

I appreciate this post, because I think people need to be reminded that writing is not a fast way to make money. Especially those who are new to the 'business,' but are in trouble, and are looking for a 'way out.'

But I think we can also be compassionate here. Some people are in serious trouble, and are feeling desparate. When that happens, people don't always think clearly, and they may include phrases in their queries or cover letters that are too personal (like, I need money.) Survival fears are the worst - it can be truly terrifying if you don't know how you're going to survive financial.

I think the gift of this post, is that Nathan is encouraging people to be realistic. That's important in an economic downturn like this. Put your eggs financially in a basket that is likely to pay off, not a lottery ticket.

Anonymous said...

For myself and my friends that work for various newspapers and magazines in Colorado(Vail Daily, Aspen Times, Glenwood Post/Independent, to name a few), food is overrated! (Colorado was listed as one of the leanest states in the union according to an obesity poll done nationwide w/in last year or so, if not the leanest state ... don't remember) PC in CO would read: will write for ski pass. S. Susan VanLeeuwen

Newbee said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Newbee said...

Sorry...computer issues.

People can be very odd. Sadly some people try to play a sad song to get their way. I heard a story in the news of a mother who told a bunch of lies to get some Hannah Montana tickets for her daughter.(It is beyond me why you would do anything like this anyways...but for... Hannah Montana? ...Why?) She was caught in the lie and she had the tickets taken from her after she won a contest for her sad story.(Maybe she could have written a book...? She might have been convincing...?) Anyways my point is this, if you want to deceive people it shouldn't be to someone who you are trying to establish a relationship with; Bad, bad, choice of opener. It's like telling a first date you have a sexually transmitted disease. (Yuck...) I don't think they will want a kiss goodnight, or that second date. NEXT!

Anonymous said...

Holy crud, what was I thinking? My mother owns a catering company, I was her assistant until I was 23, now am mere consultant. I own a designer spice company ... very popular with chefs and waitstaff in the Vail resorts (Saucy Wentch Spice Co (please note misspelling of Wench.) I've got resumes and testimonials. PROPOSAL: I'LL FEED YOU IF YOU WRITE MY QUERY LETTER!!! How 'bout it?

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