Not good enough

I like to stay, pretty positive on this blog, but I hope you’ll excuse me a little pity party today. Because sometimes, right now, today, this week I feel Not Good Enough.

I’m a freelance writer and work has been pretty thin on the ground lately. It’s a summer thing, I think (I hope). My regular clients have had less work for me than usual and I’ve lost count of the number of potential clients that have come and gone over the last year or so. I don’t think I’ve secured a single job off a single one of these people, who come in all enthusiastic about what they need and what I can do for them. And I CAN do it for them. So I don’t know why it comes to nothing all the time. Maybe they realise they don’t actually want anyone after all, that they can do it themselves. Maybe I don’t sell myself well enough. Maybe I’m just not good enough.

One potential client had me travel out to their headquarters, showed me round the whole place, told me I could do their social media and asked me to write an intro for their web page homepage. I wrote the intro and sent it off and didn’t get so much as a thank you. I chased it up, still nothing. After me travelling out to their business, not so much as a ‘thank you, but it’s not quite what we were looking for’.

I’ll be honest, I know I’m not great at selling myself. When people ask me what I do, I say ‘I just write stuff’. Because, at its most basic form, that is what I do. Sometimes I even say ‘I sit on my arse and I write stuff’ (although I don’t say that to potential clients). Writing stuff isn’t rocket science. But it’s not easy either. It’s remarkable how few people can do it.

But I can do it. I can write about any subject in any tone of voice. My grammar is good. I always meet a deadline.

If I get the chance to talk to someone or respond to an email, I will tell them this. In the right tone of voice, of course. But I still don’t think I’m really selling myself. Because I won’t bullshit. I won’t make myself out to be better than I am. I’m just me, sat at home in my scruffy jeans in my cold house, tapping away on my computer at the breakfast bar.

Unlike a lot of bloggers, I’m not a professional blogger. Blogging is my hobby, albeit a rather time consuming one. But blogging pays way better than freelance writing. Sometimes a commercial opportunity will come up and I will take it, because I would be stupid not to. I charge less than a lot of bloggers, but a single sponsored post still covers nearly two days’ worth of earnings from freelance writing for me.

There aren’t many blogging opportunities for people like me and blogs like mine. Nobody wants to throw money or stuff at bloggers with teenagers. Recently an opportunity came up that was right up my street – a perfect fit with my blog and local to me too. Surely I could get this one?

But I didn’t. It turns out they were only looking for one blogger and, understandably, they opted for a blogger with a bigger social reach. But I don’t mind telling you that it made me feel a bit crap about myself. Not good enough. Like the times I’ve been turned down for blogging opportunities to do with ballet. My ballet posts are my most read posts by a considerable distance. There is one post which is my second most popular post EVERY SINGLE DAY. But do PR companies look at a blog and decide it’s a good fit for a post about ballet or a ballet product, or do they just look for the blog with the biggest numbers?

I know exactly what they do.

And right now, today, this week I feel a bit crap about that. Right now, today, this week I feel Not Good Enough.

Not good enough, Fed up, Selfie

 

Author: Sarah Mummy

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22 Comments

  1. I’m sorry you’re feeling this way it must suck so much! Wish I could help but I’m sure something will come up soon! Be yourself that’s all you can do x

    hannahblogsmh.com

    Post a Reply
    • Thanks very much, I really appreciate that! There is always a lull in work in August and it can take a while to get back to normal in September, so I’m hoping it will get there soon!

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  2. Sorry to hear that. Yours is one of my favourite blogs and I’m sure you’re an incredible freelancer too. It’s demoralising when you don’t get jobs that you really should isn’t it? I hope things turn around for you soon, I’ll let you know if I hear of anything.
    Nat.x

    Post a Reply
    • Thanks very much, I really appreciate that! It’s always lovely to hear that my blog is a favourite, thank you! You know I love your blog too. X

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  3. I’m so sorry to read this. I’ve been reading your blog for years … and pretty much every single post. You’re one of my favourite writers so I really do hope this is just a blip for you.

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    • Thank you for one of the nicest comments ever! I really appreciate that. Work does always slow down in August and can take a while to pick up afterwards, so I’m hoping it’s a blip too.

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  4. Sorry to hear all this Sarah. All I can say is that I think at the end of the day you just need to be true to yourself and work in a way that makes you happy and feels right for you. You are clearly gifted and I believe quality really does matter. Keep doing what you’re doing as you do it so well and the right work will come from the people that value your talent.

    Post a Reply
    • Thanks very much, I really appreciate that. I know my regular clients do value my talent as they’ve been coming back to me for years. I’m just not very good at persuading others that I have a talent!

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  5. I am so sorry that you are feeling like this….Sending hugs!
    I hope things are better soon because you are good enough!

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    • Thanks very much, that’s a lovely thing to say!

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  6. Hi Sarah, I’m sorry you’re feeling so down, but it’s good to wallow and be honest about it, every now and again. I, too am hopeless at selling myself. I’m ‘just’ me. Luckily that tone got me the job I do today, but for most of my life I’ve missed out to other people who could sell ice to Eskimos. But you know what? Be happy with the way you are as I bet that if you even tried to be somebody you aren’t, you wouldn’t be happy and that would reflect in your work.

    xx

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    • Thanks very much! Good to hear from someone who is ‘just’ themselves. My work comes from word of mouth through people who know me, I can’t pretend to be more than I am. Luckily I’m enough for the people who do know me.

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  7. Hey don’t feel like this. You do fantastic work both in your writing job and on your blog. It is hard to get work when the kids aren’t little cuties anymore and are suddenly this alien form known as teenagers. But people do read your blog and are inspired by it. As you say your ballet posts are so popular and you and your super talented daughter give so much inspiration to others. We all get these days, you aren’t alone but just look at what you’ve achieved

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    • Thanks very much for such a lovely comment, I really appreciate it. It’s lovely to hear that people are inspired by my blog. It’s definitely much harder to get work when the kids aren’t little and cute!

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  8. It becomes a vicious circle because Mr/Mrs Popular Blogger gets a fab opportunity because they have the numbers then they keep the numbers and get their posts read by more so that leads to another opportunity, their figures then become self sustaining.
    I ran a series of blog giveaways to celebrate my blog birthday back in April and supplied most of the prizes myself but had a company offered me a prize worth a goodly amount I could have promoted the comp just the same as a high profile blogger and I could get my numbers up but do feel nobody gives us the chance.
    That is not meant to sound petty and I do not begrudge other people the opportunities.

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    • You’re totally right and I don’t begrudge other people the opportunities either, but I do think it’s a shame that companies don’t see where a blog would be a really good fit – even if the numbers are slightly lower. I’ve applied for two ballet opportunities and been turned down by both of them. One of them I saw appear on the blog of a person who has one tween boy, who doesn’t do ballet!

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  9. \Well they are missing out quite frankly! I imagine you are reliable, honest, hard-working and good value for money. What’s not to like? I feel about this quite regularly too with regard to blogging opps so please know that you’re not alone. You also need to know however, that it’s nothing to do with not being good enough! Other people definitely over-sell themselves. I think perhaps you need to know your worth and shout it from the rooftops!

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    • Thanks very much! I am definitely all of those things! Good to hear I’m not alone feeling like this with the blogging opportunities. I do feel like some people oversell themselves, but I don’t have it in me to do the same, it’s just not me!

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  10. Shout louder! Joking because I know I don’t. And because I don’t have the pressure to make my blog my job I don’t need to. But I feel your pain on the dance thing – I have the same with camping and anything outdoor related where they choose people who’ve never stepped foot outside, or doesn’t write about that kind of stuff. I suppose yes it’s the numbers that count, plus widening an audience, but sometimes it’d be nice to actually work with businesses who are a great match). I did get offered a dance opportunity but it wasn’t relevant to my dance blog and wasn’t really suitable for my main blog even though I can write withauthority on the topic. It’s worth writing to people to get on their lists anyway for future ops.

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    • Thanks very much, glad it’s not just me! It is a shame you don’t get picked for camping opportunities. I’m so crap that I don’t even know who the right people are to write to! I’ve got in touch with dancewear companies directly in the past and managed to get stuff for review, but never get picked for the opportunities that are offered out to bloggers in general.

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  11. If it’s any consolation yours is my go-to blog – the one I come to first when I have time. It is a problem that brands still aren’t really seeing the true reach – empty follower numbers rather than targeted engagement on where they want it to go. I hope things have picked up since last week. And remember you have won awards – not everyone can say that.

    Post a Reply
    • Thanks very much, that is lovely to hear! I know I’ve got a few dedicated regular readers and I do really appreciate them. (I haven’t actually won awards, I’ve just made it to the finals!)

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