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Are you ready for your whoopin’?


That’s what the message box read and I KNEW I was gonna get it. All I needed was my little brother on the side lines hissing ,”OOOoooooo, you in TROOOUUBLE!”

A very good friend of mine works for a magazine in Dallas, TX. She got the editor to agree to let me write stories from time to time. AND they are going to pay me!!! HOORAAAY!

This homie, who will remain un-named, is my creative ROCK. She is a free lancer of sorts and deals with alot of the same issues. How do I GET PAID to do what I love? Am I even GOOD ENOUGH?  Hell, last week we talked about how much we both procratinate. I gave my long standing allergy to dead lines as the reason why I don’t pursue writing more frevently. She admitted that procratination was also a problem for her…We joked about it..I said I’d try and do better.

Well, on Sunday night, homegurl calls me like…”I need you to do this piece but I need it in like two days.” I agree to have it to her by Tuesday. And then begins the procrastination. I listened to the interview several times but never opened up my WORD program to start writing. I KNEW I had things to do on Tuesday. I KNEW that I should have gotten it done…but because it’s my homegurl…I shot her an email and said I’d have it done Tuesday evening. I KNEW it wasn’t right. I KNEW I was just procrastinating.

THIS is what she sent back:

Don’t trip cause I’m just being honest…

I know you have another job and things to do but when it comes to Dead 
Line you must meet it…  Any major publication will not tolerate 
articles or photographs being late…  So please don’t be late sending 
me stuff just because it’s me… If your not feeling an article or you 
think you are going to be too busy to write it… Just let me know so 
I can give the assignment to someone else… I have to send your 
article to the proofer and she has to get it back to me in enough time 
to put it in the Mag… and the complete mag is due on Friday… I 
know you like, “Damn today is just Tuesday chill out”… Last time we 
talked you said you need to step up your game and get serious about 
what you really want to do… well here’s your chance… Use this 
publication as a template for what you will do for VIBE or ESSENCE… 
and do the best you can do… K Lady…

So Deadline is the morning of the day I tell you turn it in…


I was stunned. First, because I very RARELY get checked about ANYTHING! Writing that I submit is never looked at critically. They take it whenever I submitt it…(blogs, online publications, other smaller magazines). No one EVER calls me on my shyt. And THEN I was shocked because SHE WAS SO RIGHT!!!! And I’m so thankful to her for bossing up on me! She’s completely right! I can’t just keep using “I”m a procratinator” as an excuse. I have to STOP being a procrastinator.

After reading the email…I punched the 600 word article out in like …forty  minutes. I spent another twenty minutes or so editing and re-writing and I sent it to her within the hour. Now what was SO DAMNED hard about that?

Hell, I talk big, and dream big about wanting to be a contributer to a major publications…but I haven’t had the work ethic of a MAJOR freelance writer. Hopefully this wake up call will make all the difference.
THANK YOU SO MUCH homie, for checkin’ me on my shyt!

3 Comments leave one →
  1. 10/15/2008 12:21 pm

    Good for you Crys. It is not good enough to know something about yourself, you have to ALWAYS do something better. I am proud that you see and will work on that, make sure you are always in a steady progression toward being better, because when shyt hits the fan the blowback is murder.

  2. 10/15/2008 1:32 pm

    I’m so glad that you wrote this.

    I’m trying to jumpstart a freelance career myself, and the main thing that has prevented me from pursuing it full blast in a) my procrastination and b) not wanting my words to be touched when I’m done with them.

    I needed to see that I can’t write around these issues. I’ve got to write through them.

    Thanks for this.

  3. 10/16/2008 12:38 am

    Ha! This was a good post. I can admit that I procrastinate sometimes too but, I honestly work so much better under pressure when I’m writing. That’s also what I do love about journalism is “deadlines”. I feel good when I belt out a good piece in the matter of an hour or so. I guess it kind of feeds my ego lol . Real talk you and I both need to quit playin and get on our jobs. IT IS OUR TIME TO SHINE!!!!!!!!

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