Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Success and Failure

If you find yourself in a newsagents this week, have a flick through this weeks copy of Look or the May issue of Company Magazine.  In Look you'll find an interview that I did with the Salad Club ladies Rosie & Ellie, who run a pop-up restaurant.  It was the second time I'd interviewed them, the first being for the blog initially, but then the South London Press liked it and subsequently ran it and then NFT picked it up for online.  I did pitch it to Look at the time and they passed...but then they thought of me later when they had an appropriate umbrella to put it under: pop-ups.  You know; restaurants, shops, bars.  Wish I'd thought of that as a group.  What I did think of was how crowdfunding is gaining pace.  It's a way of financing your project, whatever it is, by asking the online community to pay for it.  In return they might get shares in your company or a share of the profits but often they get nothing at all: they just want to see the project completed.  One of my case-studies, Kate Madison, tantalised Lord of the Rings junkies so much with the prospect of another film, they chipped in £17,000 so they could have another hit of the orcs and elves saga.

So I'm writing for a living (a small one).  How did I do this?  Jenny Wood, the Features Editor at Look let me work with them unpaid for a week.  It was easily worth it for what I learnt.  From the outside Look is all clothes and celebs but have a look at the real life stories and think about the research and persistence it takes to get them; that's what they taught me.   Crowdfunding came up the week I was there.  I got to know my subject and secured half a dozen case-studies.  As they were all women, I pitched it to women's mags after Look's Editor had passed on it.  Three more turned it down before Company picked it up. It's a good feeling when someone says yes to a pitch.

One little bit of me has failed though, a bit of my body to be exact.  I'd be pretty happy this week if I hadn't got myself a suspected torn anterior cruciate ligament whilst snowboarding in Chamonix last week. If my Doctor ever calls me back with an appointment for an MRI scan, tune in in next time to see if 'suspected' has become 'confirmed'.