I know many writers laboring away at the various drafts of their first book who don't want to take time away for short pieces. More power to them--it probably means they'll finish their projects! But for me, working for so long on something nobody sees can get really discouraging. During the five (or however many) years it might take to get a book published, how will I know people love my writing? Where's the ego boost?
That's why it's always nice to take a break and write something for a magazine. While the acceptance letters might still be slow to come, at least you have better chances hearing back from an editor who has to publish dozens of pieces a year instead of just five volumes. And it doesn't always take months to get accepted--I just wrote a piece for the Dollar Stretcher which was accepted in two days. Mailbox, prepare for paycheck.
Money aside, since writing my way doesn't bring in much, it's good to know that there's an editor out there who thinks you do quality work. It's even better to know that the idea you're so excited to share is going to reach an audience someday, maybe even someday soon. Because if I weren't excited about the idea, I would never have bothered to write the article.
For anybody wondering about the new article, I'll give you a sneak preview. It's how even a timid, self-conscious shopper afraid of bargaining--like me--can sometimes get the price down, just by presenting the right information and waiting for an offer. To learn more, check the Dollar Stretcher. Someday.