Ep 253 From Breakout Article to Book: Writing about #Nothing and Everything with Olga Mecking

Ep 253 From Breakout Article to Book: Writing about #Nothing and Everything with Olga Mecking

Today's guest, Olga Mecking, is a freelance journalist who’s enjoyed exactly the version of success many freelancers dream about. She went from publishing her own work on her blog to pitching outside publications, gradually reaching bigger and bigger audiences until her article The Case for Doing Nothing in the New York Times became a breakout success and led to a book contract for her new book Niksen: Embracing the Dutch Art of Doing Nothing.

I know you’ll enjoy this interview—we go deep into building a freelance career and the nuts and bolts of making that happen. We’re shaking things up a little this week, and I interviewed Olga solo, which made a nice break for me from the novel revisions I’m working on, or at least staring at, this week. One thing Olga and I talk about is what it was like to go from writing articles to writing an entire book—and part of the answer was, painful! But it’s still the dream for many writers. If you’ve got a book in you and you’re struggling to bring it out, you should absolutely check in with our sponsor, Author Accelerator, where they can match you up with a book coach who suits your work no matter where you are in the process. And if it’s the book coaching part of that that intrigues you, Author Accelerator also trains its book coaches in everything that goes into working with writers and running a book coaching business. You can find out more about that at bookcoaches.com/amwriting.

Links from the Podcast

Olga’s freelance portfolio

Olga’s original piece in Woolly Magazine is no longer available online.

Susan Maccarelli’s Beyond Your Blog podcast is also no longer available.

Olga’s original article in the NYT: The Case for Doing Nothing

Olga’s piece in Well Family: In the Country of Motherhood, Finding My Own Path

Some great advice from Olga on freelancing at Forbes.com.

Olga’s grandfather’s memoir of surviving the Holocaust, translated by Olga.


Olga:The Confession by Jessie Burton

Oxford Key Mysteries by Lynn Morrison

KJ:The Cuban Girl’s Guide to Tea and Tomorrow by Laura Taylor Namey

Follow Olga on Facebook, by joining her Facebook Group The Nikseneers or at her website: www.olgamecking.com

And—love us, love our sponsors! If you’ve been dreaming of a book coaching career, you know you want the guidance of Jennie Nash and the crew at AuthorAccelerator. You’ll find everything you need at bookcoaches.com/amwriting.

We hope you’ve heard Jess waxing rhapsodic about learning all the things over at The Great Courses Plus. Goodness knows what she’s learning about today….small business accountingThe Pacific Theater in WWII? Anything’s possible, because…Jess. If you’d like to learn something new today, you can get a free month of The Great Courses Plus at thegreatcoursesplus.com/amwriting.

Entertaining, actionable advice on craft, productivity and creativity for writers and journalists in all genres, with hosts Jessica Lahey, KJ Dell'Antonia and Sarina Bowen.