Based in Chicago, Illinois, The Freelance Beat is a blog exploring the triumphs and challenges that freelance journalists encounter in their early and mid-careers.

What to Do When You Have Too Many Edits

What to Do When You Have Too Many Edits

The past few weeks have been really busy for me. I’m working on several magazine stories that are in the editing stages right now.

At one point, it seemed like all these edits were piling on at the same time...

At a certain point, I had to take a step back and appreciate that my inbox was full of work rather than full of rejections. However, I still had to get the job done. And I had to make a mindset shift to get through it all.

So, have you ever had a day, or week, or month where it felt like you had sooooo much work to complete? Here’s how to get through it all and keep your sanity.

Go take a break.

Surf social media. Go for a quick walk. Watch something that makes you laugh or smile. Call someone who makes you happy. You can’t get anything done until you get the negativity out of your system.

Listen to music.

Who makes you feel powerful? Cardi B? Beyonce? Nicki Minaj? Put on music that makes you feel like a boss, and turn it up loud.

Look at your portfolio.

You’ve gotten through previous challenges in your life. Remember how you felt in those moments. Draw strength and confidence from the fact that you’ve gone from who you were to who you are today. You’ve accomplished a lot. And those things wouldn’t have come without a struggle.

Pick and implement a system.

You could do a snowball edit, meaning you start with the small changes and work your way up to the bigger edits. Or you could do a per-person edit, where you edit stuff pertaining to one source and then move on to materials for other sources. Knock the edits however you want, just find a system that makes the edits less intimidating or overwhelming.

Notice your patterns.

Do you have edits that editors bring up over and over in your stories? If so, write the edit on a sticky note or something and try to avoid the mistake in future stories.

How do you deal with a pile of edits in your inbox? Tell me in the comments or email me at Also, HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

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