A few colleagues have asked if I’d share the strategy I use for logging and tracking pitches.
I’m happy to do so here and you’re welcome to share this widely.
The sample you’ll see below is a cut and paste demo from part of my 2015 pitch list. I’ve removed editor names and contact information and rates, but otherwise, you’re getting the straight dope.
It’s pretty, simple, really: I set up a spreadsheet on Google Drive, adding the categories you see below. Every single time I sit down to pitch, I log the information. I update it when I receive an assignment or rejection. I make notes about other possible outlets in the “Other” field, as well a notation if a friend or colleague tipped me to an outlet or editor. If I get the assignment based on their introduction or recommendation, I always send a thank you note. And I have a weekly alert on my gmail calendar that reminds me to follow up on quiet pitches.
Here’s the color code scheme (obviously, do whatever works for you):
RED: Rejected (preferably with a note about why)
BLUE: No response (colored after at least one follow-up attempt)
YELLOW: In some sort of limbo
That’s really all there is to it.
If you have questions, please leave them in the comments and I’ll reply.