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The Writing Coach Podcast with Rebecca L. Weber

Dec 28, 2021

When it comes to making lasting changes in your freelance life, I’m more a fan of experiments than of resolutions. The latter tend not to work so well, often relying on willpower or self-shame as fuel to get things done. Some industries have business models based on these negative, dysfunctional cycles, and you don’t want to rope your own freelancing in with them.

Alternatively, setting up a framework of experimentation conjures curiosity and exploration. For decisions to stick long-term, this is much more pleasant and productive.

Following up is something that many freelance writers don’t do on a regular basis. It’s neither sexy nor exciting, but it is super effective as a simple method to boost your query acceptance rate, streamline planning by getting people to commit to dates and times, and it replaces doubt with confidence when it comes to decision-making about next steps.

You can follow up on pitches sent to editors, requests to sources for interviews, late payments, letters of introduction, filing stories, and pretty much any other time when you need to hear back from a person to take your next step, or generally want to remind them that you exist.

Two distinct and extremely supportive patterns emerge with regular, systematic followups:

1 - People tend to respond quickly to the follow up, even if they ignore the initial contact.

2 - Scheduling the follow-ups minimizes emotions and taking things personally. 

Listen to this week’s episode on the protocol of how to follow up (that’s the external business skill), and the mindset adjustments necessary to get yourself to do it with ease all year long (that’s the internal thought work).


WCP 1: What’s your (writing) problem?

WCP 123: Why you don’t follow up

WCP 153 Archives: Pay me now!

Free guide on how to pitch


Apply for my small group coaching program, Freelance Writer Bootcamp. Break into your dream publications and get paid well while covering stories that matter. 

We cover all the external skills to improve your pitch acceptance rate, and the internal mindset work to keep you from getting in your own way.

Bootcamp alumni have used these proven pitching processes to break into the New York Times, the Guardian, Bustle, Fodor’s, Condé Nast Traveler, Al Jazeera, the BBC, and many more.

Click here to apply to work with me in 2022:

Follow me on Instagram: @FreelanceWriterBootcamp

More info and complete show notes: