A few weeks ago you voted on our very first All Freelance Writing Virtual Book club pick-of-the-month -- Peter Bowerman's award-winning book, The Well-Fed Writer. Today we kick off that book club discussion. The comments will remain open on this post for a week, and extended for one additional week if they're still fairly active at that point.
Below are ten questions (some from me, and others submitted by Jessie Haynes - #s 6, 7, and 8) about the latest version of The Well-Fed Writer. Feel free to discuss any or all of them in the comments below the post. And don't forget to use the "subscribe to comments" feature so you don't miss out on any other comments in the discussion.
I hope you loved this book as much as I did, and found some valuable take-aways to help you improve your freelance writing business!
- Overall do you have a favorite piece of advice given in The Well-Fed Writer, and if so, what is it?
- Was there anything in the book that you disagreed strongly with?
- What did you think of the general style and tone of this book? Is it something you're likely to keep going back to as a reference?
- Peter Bowerman places a heavy emphasis on cold calling and other direct marketing efforts. What are your thoughts on this? Are you comfortable with it? Can you get comfortable with it? Would it apply as equally to other areas of freelance writing beyond commercial writing?
- Are you actually a commercial writer, like those the book targets? Do you want to become one? Or did you read the book to pick up more general advice you could adapt to another freelance writing area?
- Of the portfolio display options mentioned on page 67 of the book, which do you prefer and why?
- Of the types of clients discussed in chapter 5 (end users or middle men) which do you work with most often, or which do you prefer to work with? Why? And how do you personally overcome the disadvantages of each?
- Do you have any clients for which you are "waiting in the wings" a la page 124 and, if so, what is that situation like for you?
- The subtitle of The Well-Fed Writer is Financial Self-Sufficiency as a Commercial Freelancer in Six Months or Less. If you're a new freelancer, after reading the book do you think that six month goal is realistic for you? Why or why not? How will this book help you make it happen?
- What are your thoughts on "aggravation fees" as mentioned in the book by Devon Ellington on page 179? Do you charge them? In what kinds of circumstances?
You don't have to answer all of these questions. You can pick and choose if you prefer. Or, if you'd like to discuss something else specific from The Well-Fed Writer, please feel free to do that or pose your own questions for others to answer.
Tomorrow I'll post three book choices for the next discussion so everyone has time to get a copy and read it. Remember, next month we'll do a book on writing books, alternating each month between that and freelancing.