Recently, I've been getting back into doing more freelance journalism. That means you pitch stuff to editors, and they either a) say yes, b) say no, c) ignore you.
Here are the three most common responses I get from editors.
1. Who Are You? Send me links for what you have written recently that pertains to the subject of my site. I will pay you $25.
2. I Know Who You Are. You're a great writer. I can only pay you $50. I am embarrassed. Forgive me.
3. The Form Letter. We are a big publication, and we do not have time to acknowledge/comprehend/ascertain what your deal is. The answer is: No. Go away.
Actually, the most common answer is radio silence.
What I Do. To decrease the chances of dying by my own hand, I am doing some of all of the above. (In the case of #3, I repeat as many times as I can stand slamming my head into a brick wall multiplied by 641.)
Hold the Cheddar. There are a few stories I'm doing for "non-monetary reasons." These are more "do what I want to do." Experiences have been mixed. Over-editing may have occurred in one instance. In another instance, the guy was like, not this but like this, "Yeah, fine, whatever," when I filed. That was the response I preferred.
Don't Forget, I'm Doing You a Favor. It's hard for me to pick on editors, because I am an editor, and we all know how that can be. (Secret: it ain't easy.)
A long time ago, I had a '72 Cutlass Supreme. It had a massive engine, was made of real American steel, and by the time I was done with it, it had bullet holes in it. (That is not a lie.) That car was a bad ass motherfucker. One time, some rotten kids threw some rocks at the Cutty, so I flipped a bitch and made like I was going to run them over, and they all scattered like geese. Sometimes, I wonder what happened to that person. Some days, I miss her.