Right Place, Right Time, and a Big Mouth? Knock, Knock…
Great news, folks! I queried a local women’s magazine and they assigned me an article! This is a pretty popular magazine here in Kansas City and they publish in other metro areas such Denver, Miami, Denver, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Central Valley, CA, and the Capital/Adirondack area in New York. They also publish another magazine which is a geared toward the 50+ age bracket.
This is huge for me and I am soooo excited that I have the opportunity to show my stuff to a whole new audience. Funny thing is that this opportunity came from a chance meeting at our neighborhood pool. I was in the right place, at the right time, and I finally put my gift of gab to work.
A mother came to the pool with her daughter one day last week and the little girl had been in DB’s (my youngest) class at school. I knew exactly who the mom was because I had sent her a query letter a while back. Back in December, I found out this same mom-I’ll call her Missy-was the publisher of a local women’s magazine. I found out because she had sent an email about the class holiday party to the rest of the parents from her work email. I had thought BINGO! I’m in! Not so fast, my friend.
I waited a couple of days before I sent her a very nice email introducing myself and mentioned that our children were in class together. After a bit of small talk, I asked for the opportunity to write for the magazine and gave her some of the article ideas I had. To my dismay, I didn’t hear back from her for weeks. When she did, she had responded with a “Thanks but we don’t take submissions. Please send clips of your writing to our editor” blah, blah, blah. Well, I had no clips yet because my inaugural “Why Kids Should Be In The Kitchen” wasn’t to be published until February. I sighed and moved on. No fast forward to last week.
I was at the pool with my kids and this little girl saw my son and chose a lounge chair near ours. Internally I was squealing. I had been dipping my toes in the pool when they walked in so I nonchalantly stroll back to my chair. Missy smiled at me and I said, “You must be P’s mom. I’m [DB's] mom.” And the door opened.
We chatted about the past school year, the kids’ teacher, and about summer activities. She mentioned that she didn’t come to the pool usually until after three o’clock because of her job. Then she asked me if I stayed home or worked. I shot out my usual “I stay home with the kids.” But then I quickly added, “But I also do some freelance writing,” trying to sound nonchalant. She paused for a moment before she asked,”Were you the one that sent me a letter a while back?” I nonchalantly asked “Now what magazine are you with again?” Like I didn’t know. It was totally lame but it was either act aloof or get down on my knees and beg. I went with aloof.
She told me and I nodded, “Yes, that was me.” She apologized because of her untimely response and she told me about some personal info that was going on at that time in her life. We chatted more and I gave her a quick highlight of my recent articles with KC Parent. And we talked about her magazine and how she started in the publishing business. We talked about the type of articles they usually published and by the end of our conversation, she told me to email the editor with her endorsement and my newly published clips. Again, more internal squealing.
I spent three hours perfecting my email on Monday morning, gulped, took a deep breath and hit send. I couldn’t believe it when I saw the editor’s name in my in box on Wednesday afternoon. She said she really enjoyed my writing style and would like to assign me an article due in October for their January issue. BOOYAH! [did the Happy Writer dance]
So that is my good news for the week! The lesson I keep learning is that you never know where you’ll be when an opportunity arises. I’ve had to learn to respond with “freelance writer” along with “stay-home mom”. Even though I do both jobs, I only get paid for one. Guess which one I’m saying first from now on?
Now it’s your turn. Share your good news for the week! Since the news is usually overloaded with negativity, I say we give it a run for its money. It can be anything: a new baby niece, a promotion, a book deal, or maybe a friend recently declared cancer-free.
- Where is the craziest place you have made a networking connection?
- Do you believe in fate, coincidence, or just opportunity knocking?
Have a great weekend!!