Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Do You Ever Reconnect With Sources?

Forgive me for my erratic posting schedule this week—I’ve had a lot of non-writing related issues to tend to and the days have been getting away on me!

I just sent a link of a recent article to a gentleman who was a tremendously helpful and gracious source. The article was two-fold—the longer piece was about a farmer who grows some niche crops; the source in question was the main focus of the longer piece’s sidebar. But all the same, this gentleman sent me literally hundreds of photos (and I basically forwarded them all to the editor and said, “Here you go! Pick your favorites!”) and he and the farmer gave up an entire afternoon to speak with me and show me the farming operation.

So I figured the least I could do was send the finished piece.

I do try to send my finished articles to my sources as much as possible. Surprisingly, I haven’t spoken with too many folks who want to see the rough draft ahead of time, although I do get those requests from time to time and I respond by politely dodging the question. Sources are taking time out of their day to speak with us writers, so the least we can do is send them a link so they can use the article for their own publicity kits or what have you. I like to stay on my sources’ good side—after all, I never know when I may need to speak with them again, whether it’s to clarify a point they made over the course of our conversation, or for an entirely different article. It’s a quick but meaningful way to thank them for their time.

And—while this is never my intention—I’ve actually had a source for an article become a writing client. No harm in hoping lightning will strike twice, right?

What about you? Do you reconnect with your sources? Have you ever landed a source as a client?

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