TESTIMONIALS et al

*** ADAPT OR DIE  ***  – Charles Darwin

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The following testimonials are ‘real’ and may be viewed at all my seminars…or copies of emails can be provided. So far, I haven’t paid a cent for them  …  :)  Many are from ‘first time’ published writers
I had one complaint – pasted it on my toilet door as a reminder to lift my game…


Dear Mr Orr
Thank you for your article on perfume, but I’m afraid we can’t use it. It is a bit too academic for my lowbrow readers.
Yours faithfully
Brad Boxall   Editor   Playgirl Magazine   9/4/1984

(Graeme note : some editors know their readers quite well…)


Dear Graeme
Another publication to report! First overseas publication – an article of about 1,500 words in the New Zealand Herald. So, your system is working. I’m enjoying it, making some money + having fun.
Regards
David Mason-Jones  Singleton NSW  28/10/1996


“Journalist Graeme Orr knows how to get his words into a newspaper…”
Ann Stutchberry   Editor      Sunday Press Newspaper      24/6/1984


November 1986
A huge advertising billboard in Melbourne’s South Yarra carried the following message: MY WIFE’S RUN OFF WITH MY BEST FRIEND…AND I MISS HIM!

(Graeme sold – with photo – in 17 countries for an average of $80 – about $1,400)


Dear Graeme
Your piece on Roy Coulston’s illiteracy is a touching read. However, The West Australian too recently ran several articles on the same subject (although not as good)
Yours sincerely
David Hummerston
Features Editor                   The West Australian         18/8/1990


Dear Graeme
I am just writing to let you know that I have just send my very first article off to New Woman. It was very exciting getting my article together and I think that already I have found my pace or schedule for working, adopting your “Sale, Research& Development, Writing & Marketing” theory.
Thank you for your inspiration
Jo Chumas                          Edinburgh, Scotland                      13/7/1991


Dear Graeme
I very much enjoyed your weekend at ‘The Grange’ and I thought it was very generous of you to invite us to write to you afterwards…
With kind regards
Dr Trevor C Beard      Senior Research Fellow, World Health Organisation, Menzies Centre


(Letter to Carmel Bird, Co-ordinator, Victorian Writers Centre)

I was disappointed there was no evaluation form to complete at the end of his workshop. Perhaps you don’t need to know, but I felt the need to tell you.
…Then along came Graeme’s workshop. Now what could entice a writer more than, “Sell More Writing”. Doesn’t every writer want to sell more work? No wonder the workshop was so well attended. I wondered if it would be worthwhile for me. Was I in for a pleasant surprise.
The workshop was fantastic. It was entertaining, informative and inspiring. Whan is the next one? I’m going to recommend it to every writer I know…I’d tell you it was invaluable but then Graeme would start charging accordingly! So tell everyone else that – but not Graeme!
Sincerely
Di Inchley                                       Bayswater Vic                      26/9/1991


Dear Graeme
I attended your seminar ‘Sell Your Writing for All It’s Worth” in Hobart. I learnt more practical information about being published in those two daytsthan in the last 30 yearsand your positivce approach is infectious…
Many thanks
Jeremy Hasenkam                        Dodges Ferry, Tas              8/11/1991


Dear Graeme
I have been meaning to write to you from the moment I arrived home from your Holmesglen TAFE seminar on November 16 and to thank you for a most enjoyable and thoroughly stimulating day. I found the whole experience tremendously useful and great fun, too.
Yours sincerely
Ros McMillan                                Kew, Vic                                19/12/1991
PS I was about to run this letter off when, lo and behold, the Herald-Sun came good. Thank you so muich for the advice you gave me concerning this. It was a terrific thrill to get a cheque…


Dear Graeme
It’s great to be able to begin by saying that the workshop at VWC (Victorian Writers Centre) was every bit as good as promised. How often one comes away from a creative writing course feeling like a widow with a double bed – I know what to do, but not what to do next. To introduce myself – recidivist freelance journalist, former columnist with Home Beautiful and PR writer; inexperienced and, up until now, uninformed in the get-yourself-published department…
Regards
Judy Johnson                                 Elwood, Vic                     14/4/1992


Graeme
Attached is a copy of my first paid article…
I thoroughly enjoyed your course at the weekend. It helped me see where I had gone wrong with selling my article nationally…
Dr Peter Greenwood                    Hobart, Tas                   12/5/1992


Dear Graeme
I did not realise I had work to get back, thank you for your comments, here and on other assignements you have the skill to say and write positive comments, yet still get the constructive message across. Thank you for a very valuable learning experience.
Regards
Bob Martin      BA(Melbourne) BEd (Monash) DipEd (Latrobe) GrDip Arts (Deakin)           27/7/1992


Dear Graeme
I arrived home after this afternoon’s Writing for Profit seminare at Box Hill TAFE with my brain buzzing with activity and my fingers itching to jump across a keyboard. A sincere thank you for sharing, not only, your time but your anecdotes, humour, truicks of the trade and insight intothe freelance market…
Again. Thank you
Marianne Bell                               Heidelberg, Vic                        12/9/1992
(trained journalist, 2 months later joined New Idea)


Dear Graeme
I attended your seminar in Bairnsdale…and now I am writing articles. I have sold a shoirt one…and think I have sold one to Prevention….it has opened up a new market for my writing.
Yours sincerely
Fay Henham                                 Buchan, Vic                               7/10/1992


Dear Graeme
I attended one of your one-day seminars earlier this year and it was fantastic. I’d had work published before I did your class, but now I’m working smarter – selling the same article more than once, and re-working ideas to sell to different publications. Exactly what you suggested….
Yours sincerely
Michelle Neal                               Mitcham, Vic                            23/10/1992


Dear Graeme
Firstly I would like to congratulate you on the excellent freelance course at Prahran TAFE…I have attended a number of night classes on various subjects and yours certainly rates the highest…I have sold my first article – Mode magazine foolishly offered me three hundred bananas for the quiz ‘How to survive your wedding day’…
Yours sincerely
Paul Fleischer                              Newport, Vic                           16/12/1993
(Paul was a plumber, and was first in class to sell an article. I like his work!)


Dear Graeme

I am now a published poet!!! and I was accepted into Holmesglen TAFE….
I met Rosemary from our (Holmesglen) class in the city once and she’s doing a part-time course in writing and editing at TAFE too. See what an inspiration you are (!!!).  So thank you Graeme for all of the help you have given us, and especially the faith you made us see in our own writing. There’s nothing better for us insecure writers.
Best regards
Niqi Thomas                                 Elsternwick, Vic                          25/1/1993


HEARTY
He has hearty hands.  He is hearty to listen to.   His voice resonates from the hollows of his solid trunk.   Its expression melodic, using careful textures, volumes, speeds and every corner of the pitch chamber. Tremendous depth.   Natural, easy, enjoyed.   He likes to be Graeme Orr.
Perfect companion for a blind person

Emily                                            Prahran TAFE                                  9/3/1993

(Graeme note: Thank you, Emily)


Dear Graeme
Just a short note…to let you know I’ve had some journalistic success post your Freelance Journalism short course. I found your course very valuable in forcing me to look at my writing in a much more professional and mercenary manner…
Best wishes and regards
Margaret Safran                         Nth Balwyn, Vic                             15/4/1993


Dear Graeme
Thank you for the note and phone call, having being published has been a great motivator…
Thank you again for the course.
With very best wishes
Richard Mains                              Research, Vic                                  23/6/1993


Dear Graeme
I know you like to get feedback on how your past students have fared…This morning I received a letter from ITA Magazine (Ita Buttrose) saying she wanted to buy the 1600 word article for $300. Not a bad start….
Sincerely
Gary McMullen                              Newcomb, Vic                              28/7/1993


Dear Graeme
To put it bluntly, I am knackered. My husband is due home at any moment, no doubt expecting a dinner which does not exist. You invited comment from past ‘students’. This is it!  In the two days since we all left your seminar inspired beyond our wildest dreams and (dare I suggest) in some cases, possibly our ability, I have….been published!
I am certain that I am making plenty of mistakes but am determined to press on.
With kindest regards and thanks
Gillean L Willson                   Freelance Writer, East Launceston, Tas           17/8/1993


Dear Graeme
Yes, this is a genuine, from-the-heart letter of appreciation! Thank you for last Sunday’s seminar; it was great. Such a broad and dynamic session must surely have been of tremendous benefit to everyone there. You dispelled the myth that good writing sells itself. You are forgiven, not only for shattering complacency, but also for sentencing aspirants to a lot of bloody hard work…
I’ve had articles published.
Best regards
Merle Stewart                                     Micham, Vic                                   29/8/1993


Dear Graeme
Putting all boring formalities aside, let me just say (type?) “Thank-you, thank-you, a thousand times…etcetera…etcetera…”.  The day after attending your Horsham writing workshop last month I bought – a desk, a chair, and opened a post office box. Within a fortnight, I also had my own business cards and matching letterhead, and absolutely masses of story ideas….
Thank you
Sue A Hobbs                                         Horsham, Vic                              26/101993


Dear Graeme
This is just a note to thank you for your inspirational writing weekend. Now my writing career is out of control, quite literally…
Again many thanks
Stephanie Watson                               West Hobart, Tas                       12/12/1993
(Steph became an ABC reporter, freelance journo and later advisor to Tasmanian MP)


Graeme
We finally made it! (Published assignment from Deakin!) Also, I have a couple of other pieces ‘on appro’ with The Age and Australian Gourmet Traveller
All the best
John Davidson                                     Richmond, Vic                                1993


Dear Graeme
I attended the recent WEA seminar in Adelaide. I enjoyed it immensely and I learnt a great deal. You have opened my eyes to a new world of opportunity….
Once again, thanks for a mind-expanding experiencing
Yours sincerely
David Kilner                                          Nailsworth, SA                         24/11/1993


Dear Graeme
When I first saw the film Dead Poet’s Society I felt envious that I never had a teacher like John Keating. Little did I know when I enrolled in your course at Holmesglen that I would find my mentor, my inspiration, my Mr Keating in you.  I shall never forget how excited I was after the first class.  I hardly slept for my mind was a maelstrom, whipped up by your enthusiasm, passion and encouragement. In just three hours you opened up the floodgates of my mind and I began to see myself as a genuine writer…
Best wishes
Peter Korfiatis                                   Freelancelot, Barker Vic             17/1/1994


 

TIRED OF WADING THROUGH ALL THIS ? …ENTHUSIASM AND FREELANCE JOURNALISM ARE NOT AN OXYMORON.  BUT WAIT, THERE’S EVEN MORE…  :)

 


Dear Graeme
Just a note the say thank you for the course you ran at WEA (Adelaide). I am very happy to enclose proof of my first sale!!!!!
The article was the quiz (you happened to mention that magazines will ‘kill for quizzes’!) entitled “How superstitious are you?”
Keep up the good work
Regards
Barbara Mandrell                  Freelance Writer Sth Brighton, SA            17/2/94


Dear Graeme
It never cease to be amazed at your capacity to motivate students; they seem to gain self-esteem and the courage to make an attempt. The advantage of freelancing is that all things are possible and anyone can compete for the market./ Well – you show them where the market is and that is vital.
Thank you for the very real learning you offer to our students.
Sincerely
Isabel Gabriel,  Head Department, Professional Writing Box Hill College of TAFE      18/3/1994


Dear Graeme
I am still flying after your wonderful course. More than opening just a single door it seems to have given me the missing link connecting many facets of my life. Thank you for sharing your secrets.
Wendy Ward                                     Belmont, Vic                          4/4/1994


Dear Graeme
Thanks very much for the excellent course you gave on freelance writing at Box Hill TAFE. Your positive attitude to getting paid and published encouraged me to start writing straight away. My first article was accepted by Monash University Public Affairs newsletter for schools – the article was a hoot to write – and they paid! I can’t believe how much fun I’m having with feature writing…
Yours sincerely
Christine Godfrey                            Forest Hill, Vic                       3/4/1994


Dear Graeme
Thank you for an informative, constructive, inspirational and entertaining day at the Outer Eastern College recently. I told ‘the bride’ as I left that morning, to expect me around lunchtime (your reputation had not yet reached me!), as I was plainly not in the mood for a lecture of any sort. Well, as you know, I stayed the distance – and wanted more!
My thanks again Graeme, and my best wishes four YOUR – “putting it in writing”.
Kind regards’
Ray Stewart                                     Fountain Gate, Vic                6/6/1994


Dear Graham
Enclosed is a copy of my article published last weekend in the Adelaide Advertiser.
Thank you for my intro to Journalism – I’m really enjoying it. All I have to do now is extricate myself from this accounting practice and lock myself in a turret somewhere and write…
Kind regards
Joy Dabasy                                      Forest Hill, Vic                      10/8/1994


Dear Graeme
Thank you for the brilliant seminar – as entertaining as it was inspiring. I’m madly churning out letters to editors…
All the very best
Alex Suslin                               WEA Course, Adelaide                 Nov 1994


Dear Graeme
In 1993 I attended one of your Freelance Journalism seminars in Hobart. I found it an exciting and motivating weekend;
Thank you for your help, and for the inspiration to set off into the bizarre adventure of freelancing.
Yours faithfully
Aaron Clode                            Sandy Bay, Tas                            25/5/1995


Dear Graeme
Greetings!
The bars are imaginary.
Your weekend course threw the key into my 8.30am-5.30pm cage.
Since then I have done many things, including changing my name, leaving my job to start my own business and getting the lead article in the may issue of Family Circle on the subject of “Keeping the Magic in your Marriage”
I want to learn even more…I’ll bring the biscuits.
Wendy Daniel                         Geelong, Vic                                30/5/1994


Dear Graeme
….I must say I became very inspired after the course and have set out to change my future, for the better.
Thank you
Cathy Atkins                            Salisbury, SA                              17/71995


Dear Graeme
Firstly thank you very much for the prompt answers to the barrage of questions I hit you with…
Amazingly, I suddenly found myself the father of no less than four published articles. I must say that I still can’t believe that anybody wants to pay me for something I had fun doing. Go figure.
Thanks again,. Graeme
Yours faithfully
Stephen M Vivanti                  Chapel Hill, Qld                         15/8/1995


THE PEDESTAL AWARD
Dictionary definition: A position of eminence or supposed superiority

We have definitely named you the ‘The Best Actor – FREELANCE JOURNALIST LECTURER EXTROADINAIRE’..
The Pedestal Award
Thank you for your inspiration.
Yours truly
CLASS OF ’94

(Box Hill TAFE  class ‘Certificate’ …clearly off their medicines…)


Dear Graeme
Thank you for not wasting my time! Too many of the seminars and conferences I attend, whether on writingor not, are all too full of hot air. But not yours! I found every word – well, maybe not all of the jokes – either useful or inspiring. In a few weeks I am giving up my permanent part-time job to become a freelancer.
With kind regards and many thanks for the inspiration
Kimberley Ivory                           Moorland, NSW                       12/9/1995


Dear Graeme
This letter is my first as a fledgling freelance writer (just try saying that quickly) and I’m pleased it is a letter of thanks to you for your stimulating and enlightening presentation this weekend for the SA WEA. I was so excited by your presentation on Saturday that awoke at 4 a.m and started preparing and formatting the style files on my computer….
Many thanks
David Mullin                                North Adelaide, SA                    26/11/1995


Dear Graeme’
I attended your seminar….
Nine months later, I am happy to enclose my first published article which was published in the Adelaide Advertiser…
I found your seminar interesting and informative. I particularly found such tips as the query letter to be invaluable. I was initially amazed at how such a simple step actually worked AND brought about results. I must however add one final point about the content of the seminar in my own defence – not all lawyers are single minded mercenary bastards!
Thanks again for your help
Yours sincerely
Lynda Applebee                       Lawyer, Kensington, SA                    8/4/1996

(Graeme note: Sorry Linda, I have toned down a touch my view of lawyers… :)  )


Dear Graeme
I know how you like to have new stock for that thick (past student) file of yours, so I felt it my duty to tell you I GOT PUBLISHED and paid for it, more importantly.  Thanks very much for your words of wisdom (and the occasional corny joke thrown in for good measure)
Yours in writing
Jacqui O’Leary                         Prahran                         21/11/1996


Dear Graeme
I was a student in your weekend seminar in August. Thank you for talking to me afterwards about how to approach getting an interview with a well known writer. I got the interview and have sold that piece – my first effort – to both a state newspaper and 24 hours
Every good wish
Gillian Fulcher              Mt Eliza Vic            4/12/1996


Graeme
I valued your entertaining, informative and sharing seminar in Perth last weekend. It is always a good feeling to listen and learn from a top professional. Thank you.
Regards
David Mead      The David Mead Partnership   WA   27/3/1997


Dear Graeme
Since the Box Hill TAFE course my freelance writing work has been going well, and I realise why you placed such emphasis on how to sell the material. Your hints certainly flattened my learn curve.
Thanks
John Clucas             Mitcham    30/4/1997


Dear Graeme
I do hope the QWC bring you back to Brisbane for other courses. You do give of yourself and have a very rare gift. Without meaning to be patronising in any way – you are a great writer, but Graeme, you are a born teacher.
Yours sincerely
Pauline Reckintin       Freelance Writer    Petrie, Qld      30/6/1997


Dear Graeme Orr
Thanks for magical moments at your recent Brisbane workshop. I found it ‘Orr’-some – inspiring, encouraging, uplifting, dynamic
Best wishes
Ann Palmer                      Brisbane Qld    August 1997


Dear Graeme
At the start of the course you said it would change our lives.
You were right. I have become a cross dressing transvestite. The wife is not pleased.
BUT, I am published…
Yours sincerely
Peter Wood                    Box Hill  Vic    23/10/1997


Dear Graeme
Just a short note to thank you for the Freelance Journalism course. It certainly helped me change my ‘mindset’. And I am a teacher. Your first lecture was fantastic and inspirational. I went home every night week not being able to sleep that night because my mind was a buzz of ideas…
I have enclosed my latest piece – it got published in the Sunday Age (9th November)
Kind regards and thank you
Pino Saccaro                         Donvale Vic      12/11/1997


Dear Graeme
It was great to get your letter the other day – the postman handed me two cheques and a letter from you so that constitutes a good day indeed.
Jacqui O’Leary                        Clifton Springs Vic           12/2/1998


Dear Graeme
My name is Jackie Dent & I did your fabulous course atr UTS (Sydney) a couple of weekends ago. I’m writing to find out one question. I’ve sold the Australian Rights to one article and now have interest from The Age & The Wwest Australian…
Your course has rea;lly inspoired me. I’ve been trundlingalong for a while as a freelance but now feel proud of the trade, sword in hand slaying editors with my confidence.
Thanks again
Jackie  Dent                              Northbridge NSW        26/3/1998


Dear Graeme
I participated in the freelance writing workshop you gave at the University of Technology (NSW) earlier this year. Recently, I had a travel article published in the Australian Magazine (see attached)
Yours sincerely
Phil Voysey                             Ashfield NSW               16/12/1998


Dear Graeme
Thanks for the seminar on 17th and 18th July, all feedback was positive and the participants are bubbling with enthusiasm and ready to take on the world (of freelance journalism!)
Now – brag time!!!
I’ve had two articles published…each one said ‘Send an invoice, we pay promptly. Are they sweet words or what? I’m enjoying this freelance business.
All the best for now
Phil Heang                          Townsville Qld                     16/8/1999


Hi Graeme
I found your seminar so inspirational and informative that I practically flew out of the room brimming with confidence, determined to make it all happen. And it did. The Australian bought a 900 word article this week….
Regards
Lesley Neale                                Bayswater WA          3/9/1999


Dear Graeme
This is not a threatening legal letter – resulting from your merciless bagging of my profession last weekernd. Just a friendly follow-up
I have been published – and, more than once…
Kind regards
Tim O’Dwyer                             Logan City, Qld                      20/6/2000


Dear Graeme
Thanks very much for an extraordinary weekend!
Yours sincerely
Tanya Andrea                       Sydney NSW                 29/10/2002

(Graeme note: Stop grinning smugly – this WAS from the Freelance Journalism seminar !!!)


(Email)
Dear Graham
A gentleman who has experienced great success with Media Writing since attending one of your courses would like to personally thank you and perhaps give testimony of his successes to any future students of yours. His name is Tim O’Dwyer who can be contacted….
Many thanks
Pauline Calderon               The University of Queensland   Brisbane Qld            21/11/2002

(Graeme note: Tim is a great guy, great writer  – even if he is also a lawyer…)


Dear Graeme
What a motivating weekend. Your inspiring words have really encouraged me to start writing again (I studied journalism in South Africa and worked as full-time feature writer). You really opened up my horizons and thanks again for being so generous with your knowledge. I thoroughly enjoyed your humour too.
Kind regards
Lois Nicholls                  Freelance Journalist, Brisbane Qld             May 2003


Dear Graeme
Thanks so much for just a superb seminar over the weekend. Like many at the workshop, I hung on every word because it came from the ‘grass roots’. In my field of education and I suspect in yours at tertiary level there are so many ‘pontificators’. It was wonderful to receive such grounded and well informed knowledge. Please find enclosed my two recent articles from ‘Education Age’…
Regards
Ian Whitelaw                           Melbourne Vic                  19/3/2007


Dear Graeme Orr
I took your course last year and thrust upon you a short story I had jkust written called “A View to a Death” about an old lady in a retirement village sometime ion the future. It is with dreat glee that I report I won second prize at the 41st Science fiction conference ‘Convergence’ in Me;lbourne last month.
Thanks for your encouragement
Crisetta MacLeod                    Ashfield NSW                   9/7/2007


Dear Graeme
You won’t remember me but I was a student in one of your UQ (University ofg Queenbsland) groups.
I am writing to thank you for everythiung you taught me. I have had my fiest ever article published today and I am over the moon…
Best regards
Angela Lai                               Brisbane Qld            2007


MELBOURNE WRITERS FESTIVAL 2007   (sponsored by The Age)
Dear Graeme
Thank you for opening this year’s Melbourne Writers’ Festival. It was the most successful MWF yet in terms of audience numbers and book sales. It was also a festival that was very successful in attracting those elusive younger generations…
If the festival can boast of any success it is entirely due to the brilliance of our guests and, for that, I thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Kind regards
Rosemary Cameron & the MWF team


(Email)

My studies with Graeme Orr transformed the course of my career. Based on the methods Graeme taught, I was able to pitch and publish a story in the Canberra Times while still a student in his freelance journalism unit. I went on to have a 20-year writing and journalism career in print and online publications, including Business Review Weekly, the Australian Financial Review, Crikey, Smart Company and Boss.

Graeme’s freelance writing unit was clear and practical and is as relevant today as it ever was. Graeme showed me that a career in journalism was possible, and how to achieve it. I feel incredibly lucky to have realised that dream.

I heartily recommend Graeme as a warm and engaging teacher with ideas that work. For students to really want to become writers in any field, Graeme’s approach will show them what to do.
In the attached video, which is also published on my LinkedIn profile, you can see me talk about the moment I got my first story published. It was very exciting.
I’d like others to be able to have that kind of experience.
Best wishes,
Kath Walters   Melbourne


(Email)

I wanted to be a journalist after I read James Fenton’s piece, The Fall of Saigon. To do that I had to be able to write and get published. I knew I could write when I became one of the first students to complete the RMIT Professional Writing & Editing Course. And I knew I could get published after attending one of Graeme Orr’s seminars at RMIT.

I credit Graeme’s seminar as the key to my success as a freelance journalist. What I learned from Graeme saw me get thousands of pieces published between 1991 and 1996. He taught me how to pitch and sell when so few freelancers knew these skills. He also taught me how to syndicate when next to no freelancers knew how to do this well. Armed with knowledge from Graeme, I spent 1995 in South East Asia and Italy.
In that time, I lived off the pen.

My work appeared in The South China Morning Post, The Herald Sun, The Courier Mail, The Canberra Times, The Advertiser and a number of regional English-language publications in Europe and the rest of South East Asia. When I came back from overseas, I took a feature writing and film reviewing gig at The Herald Sun. And for a brief period, I was the most widely read entertainment writer in the country, with these features and reviews from the paper appearing all over Australia.
I could not have got published and paid so well if I had not attended Graeme’s seminar.
I could not have fostered the relationships I did with editors if I had not attended Graeme’s seminar. And I could not have had the extraordinary adventures I had if I had not attended Graeme’s seminars.

Graeme is a great teacher and motivator. He has a love of young journalists.
And he is very generous with his intellectual property. He will show your students how and where to get published. And in 20 years time, you will almost certainly have people like me telling you how he changed their lives.
Your students would be blessed to have him.
kind regards,
david bongiorno | solicitor & migration agent  Melbourne


 

I am writing these comments to vouch for the professional way in which Graeme Orr conducts his short courses on freelance journalism. The information he presents is excellent.

I am happy to recommend Graeme because I have benefitted greatly from the course material he presents. Some years ago, when I was a member of the NSW Writers’ Centre in Sydney, I attended a weekend course conducted by the Center. The subject was Freelance Journalism and Graeme was the person presenting the information. By way of background, at the time I was definitely ‘between jobs’ having recently gone bust in a business. I was motivated to become a freelance journalist.

I had some initial trepidation about attending the course. I thought there might be a danger that it would turn into a navel-gazing exercise where we all sat around and compared our creating writing pieces – the ‘beauty of a butterfly’ and that sort of thing. This did not happen. I immediately realised that Graeme was all about presenting practical techniques for success in what can be a hard professional field.

The most stimulating exercise he gave us right at the start was to ask ourselves, ‘Who is our client?’ ‘Is it the reader or is it the editor of the publication we are approaching?’ Although the answer to this question is startlingly obvious to me now, it is a question the answer to which many aspiring freelance journalists never come to grips. The editor is our client and this is the rock of freelance journalism. I thank Graeme enormously for presenting me with this fundamental insight into freelance journalism.

Graeme then developed the themes of, ‘How to we make contact with these editors?’ … and … ‘What type of story would interest them?’ A further question, ‘Where does the story lie? … is it in reporting the news itself or is it in presenting some interesting aspect of the back-story.  Graeme  stimulated our thoughts and guided our insights in a motivating and humorous way. He gave plenty of examples of successful approaches to editors and cases of the articles that resulted from this.

When I left the Writers’ Centre at the end of the weekend, I was confident that I could ‘do this’. And I did. I applied the techniques Graeme taught me and gradually built a business and a lifestyle I enjoy immensely. Freelance journalism has been my main source of income for many years. Through Graeme’s input I have built a career where I have met thought leaders in all sorts of fields and become aware of innovative ideas in a number of different industries. I have contributed to numerous magazines and even crossed over to the ‘dark side’ and become an editor myself. I edited a Human Resources magazine in Hong Kong and a farming magazine in Australia.

The encouragement Graeme gave me enabled me to take my writing career further and I have now published several books which are selling well. This, in turn, has led to a number of professional speakers engagements and further contracts for ‘Ghost Written’ books, one of which is nearing completion at the moment.

So, as you can see, I am a big fan of the freelance writing course that Graeme Orr runs. I am sure your students will benefit from the course Graeme runs.
Please phone me if you have any further questions.
Regards,
David Mason-Jones
www.journalist.com.au
david@journalist.com.au

 


THANK YOU FOR READING THESE SAMPLES  OF COMMENT

The above testimonials are ‘real’ and may be viewed at all my seminars…or copies of emails can be provided. So far, I haven’t paid a cent for them :)  Many are from ‘first time’ published writers
I had one complaint – pasted it on my toilet door as a reminder to lift my game…