Marianne Post: December 2013 Writing Challenge Winner


Note to Self: The Wine and Tough Love Edition

Hi Marianne,

It’s me, your future self — from a year from now.

Don’t believe me? Lift up the couch. See your ring? Chouli‐girl must have gotten bored toying with her stuffed‐mice. I didn’t find it until April, so you’re welcome.

Grab yourself a glass of wine. It will make what you’re about to read go down easier. Ready?

You like it straight, so here goes. If you keep doing what you’re doing, you won’t be able to move your writing business to San Diego until 2015 … maybe. Yep, that means at least two more Siberian winters in Chicago. It was 15 degrees when I wrote this.

WAIT! Before you reach for that refill …

We get a do‐over of sorts. If you take what I’ve learned over the past year and do what I say, you’ll earn the sabbatical from winter I didn’t make happen.

First, email a prospect tomorrow. I know. It’s scary. I managed to talk myself out of doing this until Halloween. Guess what? No one’s going to leap out of your laptop and accuse you of being a stalker or the worst writer ever.

Worried about the holidays? One of the leads I reached out to the week of Thanksgiving expressed interest in our services. Whoever started the rumor about businesses not hiring over the holidays is wrong, and likely a procrastinator like us.

Go for it. You’ve got this.

Next, stop fiddling with your website. It’s fine. I hung out there designing and wordsmithing almost every day in 2013. Next thing I knew, it was October and I had no new clients to show for my efforts. I get it. WordPress is that safe place that can make you feel like you’re moving your business forward. You’re not, if that’s your only hangout.

By the way, I finally sent several leads over there. Not ONE person came back saying they lost interest in our services because of it.

Step out of WordPress and reach out to some leads. You can do this.

Finally — yep, you only need to do three things to get back on track — in March, you’ll have an idea for a blog. Run with it.

If everyone agonized over the viability of her idea like I did, there’d be no Buzz Feed or Huffington Post — or any blog for that matter. Besides, as much as I tried, I couldn’t shake the idea. I caved a week ago. Of course, I’m kicking myself for not starting it sooner.

You’re passionate about this topic. You can write about it forever. And it’s the perfect place to hone your craft.

You CAN commit to this.

There you go. Do as I say, not as I did, and you’ll be writing beachside by March of 2014.


Your Future Self

P.S. Super fun‐looking strappy‐sandals will call to you in May. Ignore them. They’re not worth the blisters and Band‐Aids.


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