Back in September I wrote about how I was going to try and collect 100 rejections over the next 12 months. You can read the full article here. Today, I’m sharing my experience of the challenge two months in.
The main reason why I wanted to try it was to put myself outside of my comfort zone. Especially since I recently graduated university. After seeing someone on twitter doing a similar thing, I decided to challenge myself and try to collect 100 rejections too. This meant applying for more opportunities, sending off more stories and reaching out to brands for collaborations. To summarize it, it’s about creating opportunities rather than waiting for them. To learn from rejections and stop fearing them. This is what happened in the last two months!
Before setting myself this goal, all the blogging collaborations on this blog were because brands/companies contacted me. It was very exciting to see these people wanting to work with me. But I knew I couldn’t just sit and wait for other brands forever. Even though it’s scary, in the last two months I’ve emailed 16 companies asking for press passes, PR packages or other forms of collaborations.
The first rejection was for a press pass to an event I really wanted to write about. My following wasn’t big enough for them to give me a free pass, which is fair enough. It did upset me a bit, I won’t lie. But after a couple of days that turned around. I was very proud of having tried it!
I’ve learned that rejections are common, especially because my following isn’t that big yet. But I’ve learned from every email that I’ve gotten back that said they didn’t think my blog was a good match (yet). It’s a shame when brands don’t even bother to reply, but you can never know what might happen if they do reply.
From the 16 emails I’ve sent, three have agreed upon a collaboration! I was blown away when I got the first email saying they were very excited to work with me (especially because I really like the brand). It’s nice to see brands appreciating the work I’ve put into my blog!
After these short two months, I already feel a lot more confident about reaching out to companies and asking for what I want. Even if it leads nowhere, it’s a step in the right direction!
Creative Writing contests
I studied English and Creative Writing and after graduating I was so worried I wasn’t going to write much anymore. You hear it so often. People do creative courses at university and as soon as the deadlines and assignments are gone, they stop creating. I didn’t want that to happen to me.
So I decided to submit my stories to creative writing contests! I’ve submitted to three so far. While I’m waiting for two of them to end, one replied saying I didn’t make it unfortunately. But I still ended up writing three original short stories that I’m proud of, which is a huge win for me! (Plus, I’ve still got my fingers crossed for the other two!)
Full Time Job
The biggest thing that has changed since I started this challenge is that I’ve got a job! I’ve been offered (and I’ve accepted) a full time position as a digital marketing assistant / copywriter at a really cool and innotive company in Manchester!
Applying for a full time job scared me. So much. Most of my friends who graduated university are still working in the same jobs they’ve had during university. (Nothing wrong with that, I just didn’t want to go back to retail/hospitality after having worked so many hours in it over the last 7 years). It would’ve been a lot easier (and less scary) to ask for my job back at the coffee shop. It just wouldn’t be a step forward for me. It’s not the kind of career I want, so I had to step up and dive into the scary 9-5 working life.
But as part of this challenge, I started applying for social media and copywriter jobs as soon as I came back from my trip to Japan. I’ve never worked for a company in that way, but I know that my blog has taught me a ton of useful things. That doesn’t mean that applying for those kind of jobs wasn’t scary – it was!
After having sent my CV to about 18 job openings, I got a call only three days after I started looking for jobs. A company was interested in hiring me and invited me for an interview. The morning after I flew back to the UK, I went for my interview. Only a couple of hours later I was called back, saying they were very happy to offer me the full time position!
Obviously, it’s only been two months since I’ve started this challenge. I’m nowhere near getting 100 rejections. But I’m super excited to see that I’ve gotten a full time job and some awesome blogging collabs from it. I’m not stopping here, though! In the next few months, I will continue to put myself out there. Whilst doing so, I hope to keep you guys updated! If you’re doing something similar, let me know how it’s going for you!