Written by Nicole O’Meara

Who were the first people you told after you got engaged? Your parents? Who did you first tell about your new job? Your spouse? And when you discovered you and your spouse would be parents, who did you share your joy with first?

Like the shepherds in Bethlehem who ran to share the good news of Christ’s birth, the first people you share good news with are usually those most likely to share your joy. They are the people who know you best and are in the best position to spread your good news to others.

In the TPI course, Establishing Your Freelance Business, instructor Jeanne Marie Leach had me list everyone I could think of who might like to know that I’d started an editing business.  She gave me ideas like publishers I’ve worked with, writing groups I’m a member of, conferences I could attend (where I could hand out business cards), and

job boards I could post on. From there, I made a list of thirty people who would be the first to hear my good news.

I’m not a salesperson. The last thing I sold was a chocolate bar for a band fundraiser in high school.  So, it took some courage for this introvert to send thirty emails “selling” my editorial business. But I told myself I had to do it to truly “pass” the class. I wrote personal emails which made it easier because it felt less sales-y. The results were shocking. Not only were these people happy for me as I started a new adventure, but they also wanted to share my joy by telling others!

My first three jobs came from:

  • A job board in a marketing group for writers;
  • A referral from a friend closing her freelance editing business; and
  • A friend from the first writer’s group I joined six years ago.

Jeanne Marie Leach’s instruction was so fruitful that I plan to do it again annually, making a fresh list of people who can share my joy.  Of course, I’ll also follow up with personal notes as Burton Laine suggested in his PenCon 2024 workshop, Promoting Editing: A Marathon, Not a Sprint.

Who’s on your list? Take a few minutes to write your list. Then give yourself a deadline (soon) to share your good news and see what God does with it.

Nicole O’Meara has been writing for over ten years and editing for one. Her favorite way to work is facing the sunshine in her Northern California backyard with a hot latte in hand and her fluffy aussiedoodle at her feet. Learn more about Nicole at nicoleomeara.blog.