Totally frustrated!! What should I do? When you send a “writing sample . . .”?

When applying for a job, to, say, write articles or blogs for a web publication and they ask for “writing samples” along with your resume, what should I send them? Only samples that have been published? Can I send unpublished samples? If I do send a short story should I only send the first few paragraphs or the whole thing? I don’t think MySpace blogs are appropriate to send, but members of my family have been arguing with me that I should send MySpace blogs, as well as completed assignments, such as essays, from my master’s program / college career.

I want to handle my career as professionally as possible, hoping to stand out by how serious I am, since many writers try to stand out by being quite unprofessional end up cutting their own throats. Please help if you can, I am very frustrated!!

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  1. Do I still need to send in my detailed resume for this job?
  2. What type of writing sample?

2 Responses to “Totally frustrated!! What should I do? When you send a “writing sample . . .”?”

  1. wsjulz says:

    I would send a short article in full, so they can see the quality of your writing from beginning to end. People don’t like to be overloaded when they are looking for initial impact. Then I would comment in the covering letter, saying you are happy to send longer articles should they like to see more. You can ask them to request what type of writing they would like to see if they request more.

  2. Debbapoo says:

    I am a professional freelance writer and when sending samples, i generally send something that covers topics they are interested in. If you are applying for a blog, send a blog sample. If you are applying for article writing, send an article etc.. Try to check out the stuff they currently publish and send something that follows the right genre. Don’t send a short story unless they are looking for them as most companies will not take the time to read that much.

    If there is not samples or specified genre mentioned on their company website, read the about us section and our company section and send a sample that is geared toward what they do. Also, offer with your resume and sample to do a test or sample item for FREE that would allow you to adhere to their specs and ensure that you are a good fit.

    It always works for me and lets them know that I am talented as a writer with my sample and that I am flexible to adapting to their style. I prefer to send samples that are specific to each company instead of something I have on file already. One page articles or 500 wrds is good enough.

    I hope this helps. if you have any other questions let me know