How many posts are there about fear on this blog?
How many about confidence? To most people, confidence implies an absence of fear, so it’s pretty much the same topic.
And, oh, you’ve felt the fear. You feel it and hurt under it and let it drag you down into this swamp of self-doubt so you don’t get as much done as you know you could. When you do take action, you take it so nervously it hardly makes any impact.
That’s why there are a bazillion self-help books and blog posts about courage and bravery and confidence and self-esteem and assertiveness and “fake it til you make it” and it goes on. I’m stopping there.
Listen, I get it. It’s kinda scary when you’re not 100% sure what you’re doing, or if it’ll work. In blogger mentoring sessions, I often spend time reassuring my students that yes, they’re doing this right, they’re doing fine, they should keep doing it and aim a bit higher next time, nobody’s going to mind, the universe will not implode…
I get it.
But here’s what YOU might not be getting:
It doesn’t matter. Your fear is irrelevant.
Freelance bloggers, it’s time to get over it and get freelance blogging.
If you have a genuine phobia that makes it extremely unpleasant for you to even think about writing a blog post or sending an email to a potential client, you’re excused. [And you should probably get professional treatment to make your phobia easier to manage.] I know if my laptop were swarming with spiders, Arachnophobia-style, I wouldn’t get any work done because I’d be too busy hyperventilating.
But if you’re just a bit scared… then you need to get past, through or over that feeling.
Past, through, or over fear?
Pick whichever metaphorical direction works best for you.
To go past your fear, you don’t necessarily have to touch it. This is a drive-by approach to your doubts – you just say, “OK doubts, I see you there waiting for me and I am not stopping to pick you up because I’m not that stupid.” Then you ignore the fear and do what you need to do.
To go through your fear, you gotta make full contact with it. Like swimming through mud – you have to be inside the fear and continue moving despite it. It’s unpleasant, but afterwards you get to wash and, more important, you get to be on the other side of that mud barrier and reap the rewards of your new position.
To go over your fear, you have to stop fearing it. Let go of it and rise above it on a cloud of not-scared-anymore. Not in a “nothing to fear but fear itself” way – I’m not expecting you to simply banish all fear from your life with one wave of a magic wand – but in an “I no longer fear this particular fear” way. Decide that the risk is one you’re willing to accept, and then accept it.
Question your fear, analyse it, ask yourself if it’s really necessary to your survival…
…and if it isn’t, deal with it now before it takes up any more of your valuable life.
Now, whatever your freelance blogging fear is, I’d like you to pitch me a blog post idea. It can be about your fear, or about something else, and I’m paying up to $100 – keep reading for all the details.
Enter the Pitchfest
In case you’re not familiar, Pitchfest is a blog post pitching contest we run here on Be a Freelance Blogger every 3 months. You tell us your blog post idea and we choose our favorites, with prizes of up to $100 for the winners.
The contest starts today.
Your theme for this Pitchfest
This time we’re letting you choose the topic and theme of your pitch. You don’t have to pitch us an idea about fear, but you can if you want to.
Here’s the important part: Your pitch MUST be focused on freelance blogging (because that’s what we do here!). Whatever idea you present to us has to benefit freelance bloggers or their clients in some way, and you need to make that connection clear.
- Anybody can enter the contest by typing (or pasting) their pitch into the comments box at the bottom of this page.
- Only ONE PITCH per person, please.
- Follow the pitch format I’ll tell you in a moment.
- After you submit your pitch, Lauren and/or Sophie will offer feedback to help you optimize your idea for this blog’s audience and improve your pitching skills. You may also get feedback from other entrants, BAFB team members, and innocent bystanders — pay attention, because they represent your readers here.
- After you get our feedback, you can revise your pitch if you like and re-submit it by pasting it into a follow-up comment. Yes, you can offer us a completely different idea if we’ve told you your first idea definitely won’t work for this blog. And yes, you can submit a revised pitch even after we stop accepting new entries.
- If you win, we’ll ask you to send us a draft of at least 1000 words, so bear that minimum word count in mind when you pitch.
- First prize: $100 for your guest post, paid on publication.
- Second prize: $50 for your guest post, paid on publication.
- Third prize: A 3-question mentoring package with Sophie via email.
- Submit your pitch before the end of Saturday, June 10th, 2017.
- We’ll announce the winners on June 17th.
- If we choose your pitch, we expect you to deliver your first draft to Lauren by July 1st. (But if you need a little longer, let us know and we’ll work around it.)
How to pitch
- Read our general guest blogging guidelines first, then come back here to submit your pitch.
- Suggest at least one headline designed to make freelance bloggers want to read your post.
- Follow the headline with the opening lines you’d use in the post. No less than 30 words, no more than 60. You DON’T need to write a whole post (or even a whole introduction) before you pitch — we’d like to give you feedback on your idea before you write a draft.
- After the opening lines, give us no more than 6 points you’ll make in your post, and provide a one or two sentence summary of each point. (If you plan to make more than 6 points in your post, only tell us the most important 6 in your pitch.)
- Then explain in no more than 3 sentences why this is a great post for Be a Freelance Blogger and why you’re the right person to write it.
- Put your pitch in the comment box at the bottom of this page.
- Check the little box that says “Notify me of follow-up comments” so you’ll know when we’ve given you feedback.
- Submit your comment and if you followed all the steps above, you’re entered into the contest.
- Remember to tell us why you think your blog idea will interest the people who read Be a Freelance Blogger.
- To get a better idea of what we’re looking for in your pitch, study the pitches and responses in previous Pitchfests.
- Save a copy of your pitch somewhere before you post it here — if your comment gets lost in the internet, you don’t wanna have to re-write it from scratch.
- Your comment may get held in a moderation queue, especially if it contains hyperlinks. Don’t worry if that happens; we’ll get to it and reply!
OK, it’s time.
Let the Pitchfest begin!