One of the toughest things to deal with in any business is rejection. By definition, running your own freelance writing business means that there will be times your work is rejected, or even worse, when you are rejected before ever getting to show what you can do. The former happens when you submit freelance articles, the latter when you submit resumes or query letters.
As a professional freelance writer, you get used to the rejection, especially when it comes from lofty places. There is no shame in having an article for Time Magazine, for example, returned for edits or even as unpublishable.
However, there are times when the rejection doesn’t sting so much as baffle.
Rejected Demand Studios Articles
As regular readers of this freelance writing blog are aware, I use Demand Studios as a source of “filler income” in my freelance writing business. They are open 24/7 to accept and assign new articles. That means when I can’t sleep at 3:30 a.m. at least I can be earning some money from my insomnia.
For the most part, submitting articles for publication at eHow.com via Demand Studios is pretty straightforward. You fill out the submission form, fill in some keywords, through in a couple of references and hit submit.
Check out my review of the 2011 Citibank rewards catalog.
Most of the time, my submissions are published without needing any edits. Around a quarter or so of them come back with some sort of request. I can always tell how long the editor has been working at Demand Studios by what their requests look like. New Demand Studios editors are always cranking out edit requests that ask for the moon and the stars.
When I was in college I worked delivering pizzas for Pizza Hut during the summers back home. In the fall, I’d get a job at one of the local no-name pizza delivery places that had low-prices and catered to the university community. Each time, while being trained on how to make the pizzas, someone who knew that I had worked at Pizza Hut would make the comment that, “We aren’t making $10 pizzas here.” In other words, it was important to realize that these were cheap pizzas, not lots of toppings pizzas.
New editors at Demand Studios apparently don’t get this lesson. They use the same copy editing standard that they had at their last job (or current day job). There is nothing wrong with high standards, it’s just that when you are buying $15 400-word articles about (mostly) inane topics, you can’t expect pulitizer prize winning work. We aren’t writing $100 articles here.
I do the minimum to fulfill their requests and move on. They’ll learn eventually.
Every once and a while, an editor will ask for too much or not find my efforts to fulfill their over the top requests unsatisfactory and they’ll reject my article. You can click here to find out how Demand Studios works.
At first it made me bitter. Then I rolled my eyes. Now, I post it somewhere else, usually HubPages, where, ironically, my article ends up doing better on Google than the article that eventually gets published on eHow (without all of that extra stuff because a new writer wrote something that a more experienced editor accepted) about half the time.
Sometimes there is nothing you can do about rejection. Other times, there are lessons to be learned. And some times, you can take that rejection and just pivot around it to see what happens.
I don’t make a fortune writing for HubPages, especially after Google’s Panda update slapped them down, but I do make some cash and I get plenty of backlinks for my real articles that I always am sure to include.
I guess when it comes from Demand Studios, “rejected” actually means please go publish this on your own someplace else. It will probably do just as well.
And then I claim my next article and hope that I get one of the better editors until the new guy figures it out.