After a very busy period in my day job (involving not one but two overseas trips!) I’ve recently returned to the world of freelance writing in my spare time. And, as this is one of the first times I’ve had multiple writing projects on the go at once, I’ve just created my own tracking spreadsheet.
Those who are brave enough to do freelance writing as a full-time gig will likely already have a trusty spreadsheet that keeps track of all the places they’ve sent off pitches to. I’ve included a screenshot of the one I created below:
The spreadsheet tracks information about the publication you’ve sent a pitch to and the submission itself. There’s a column to show when you sent the pitch, as well as a reasonable date to follow up on it, and it’s colour coded to show the different stages. If you were wanting to freelance full-time as a living, you could easily add a column to show if and how much each publication pays its freelancers. Most information for this is very easily found on the submission guidelines for the publication you’re pitching to (I’ve just input some dummy data for the screenshot).
If you’re interested in downloading a copy for your own use, you can find it here: Freelance Writing Pitch Spreadsheet (EmmaMichelle)
And finally, if spreadsheets aren’t your thing I’ve also heard of some other ways that writers track their pitches:
- Via tags in Gmail: create a ‘Pitch’ folder and tag e-mails with this when you send pitches out so they are all collected in the one spot
- Trello – a free online “spreadsheet” (that looks much more dynamic than Microsoft Excel) where you can add cards and columns to track your pitches
- The Submission Grinder – both a tracker and market database for fiction and poetry writers
- Bcc’ing yourself in the pitch e-mail. That way you’ll have a copy sitting in your Inbox to follow up on later