written by: Zanne Lamb-Hunt
Gabrielle Pastorek, a passionate writer and editor, earned Bachelor degrees in English and French from Ohio University. She went on to attain her Master’s of Fine Arts degree from the University of Pittsburgh.
Currently living in Pittsburgh, Gabrielle has been a full-time freelancer for about four years. When she’s not busy with words, she enjoys spending time with another great passion — her horse, Tuff.
There are several ways that Gabrielle’s writing and editorial expertise can be put to work to benefit both your personal and business endeavors.
– Discover your voice.
“Everyone has a voice. Everyone has a story. Sometimes, it’s hard to capture the essence of your story, get it on paper and get it out to the world. That’s where someone like me might come in.”
– Move your story forward.
“If you’re having a hard time organizing your thoughts, brainstorming where to go from here…anything that can help to get your story out…I will help someone to tell their story to their fullest!”
– Create your story.
“I can write something from scratch for someone and get their message out that way.”
– Editing services for fiction and nonfiction authors.
“The editing side is making sure it’s correct grammar, correct format — the things that don’t matter so much when you’re writing them but just matter so that you can get it out to the world and share it.”
In addition to assisting anyone with preparing their stories for publication, Gabrielle lends highly-effective creative support to both personal and business promotional strategies, through…
– Business and content writing
Traffic is increased through informative, entertaining content.
– Creating a unique company voice.
Brands are built and strengthened by establishing a strong identity and increasing awareness.
– Web content & Marketing.
Creative content is crucial for all stages of online marketing including online site launches, regularly updating content or creating effective promotional campaigns.
– Blog and article writing to increase your online presence.
When your site’s content stops, the traffic stops right along with it. Keep the visitors coming by regularly uploading fresh content.
Gabrielle is from Mars, Pennsylvania, a very small town where she grew up with her brother, her sister and an Australian Shepherd named Grizzly. At eighteen, she had the mindset that she believes is typical of many others at that age.
“Let me get out of my town! I hate it here! I want to get as far away as possible!” She escaped to attend Ohio University in Athens, Ohio. “Then, after being gone for four years, you sort of realize that you miss home and want to come back.” She returned to Pennsylvania for her Master’s degree.
Her passion for horses was fired up at a young age. She tended horses and did barn chores to help pay for riding lessons. Today, she’s still cleaning stalls to help pay for her lease on Tuff, a thoroughbred. “I try to get out to see him every day.”
Passion Vs Paycheck
Gabrielle has experienced the disheartening scenario that confronts many creative writers. “If you don’t end up teaching creative writing, there’s not much out there for you.”
She continues, “Obviously, it’s hard to sustain a writing career that’s able to pay the bills. It’s a ‘passion vs paycheck’ sort of problem that I’m constantly hearing about. When you’re immersed in that, it can be overwhelming!”
She had been “picking up little freelancing gigs here and there” but didn’t see it as anything she could take seriously and pour her efforts into. And, then, something happened that changed her whole mindset.
Gabrielle’s Mission Critical
A mentor from Pitt, a former professor, dropped some pearls of wisdom. “You have to have a Mission Critical,” he said. “Everyone has a Mission Critical.”
He continued, “If yours is writing, then you have to do it. You have to show up for yourself and everything else will fall into place. Make your passion your Mission Critical and it will work out for you.”
That did it! “That sort of gave me permission, so to speak, to make a career out of freelance writing and editing.”
A Freelancer’s Greatest Challenge
Gabrielle astutely points out that freelancers have an uphill path. “It’s not a valid career to be a freelance anything, especially in the writing field.” So, what has been her own greatest challenge on this journey?
“It really has been just to get over that fear that it’s not going to be good enough.” She goes on, “It’s said that you have to wait for inspiration. You have to wait for a muse.”
Now, she knows otherwise. “There are always going to be people saying that you can’t do something or it isn’t going to be worth your while. When you buckle down and just get the work done, great things can happen. You really can make a career out of it.”
The Power of The Written Word: Making A Difference
Gabrielle recalls working with a woman she hadn’t met previously. Aside from knowing that the work was a memoir, she didn’t know much about it. “I started to read it and she just had this incredible, overwhelming, tear-jerking, heart-breaking, joyful story! She’s been through so much hardship!”
“She was born into hardship and she came out — she has her own business now — she just came out of every single hurdle she had! She struggled with getting her words on paper because of uncertainties about grammar, her own quality of writing and her ability to get her story across.”
This is the time that Gabrielle calls her ‘lightbulb’ moment. “She has a really important story to tell that can help a lot of other people who may be going through the same struggles that she did. Hearing how she got through it could help a lot of people!”
“Even in just a small way of editing her work and making sure she got her words how she wanted them, it really made me feel like I was making a difference in just that little way.”
What Words of Wisdom Would Gabrielle Give Her Former Self?
“Take myself seriously. I think that applies to anything anyone wants to do. It really does start with taking yourself seriously and then other people sort of see that projecting off you and they’ll take you seriously in turn.”
“A lot of writers are introverts. They don’t want to promote themselves. I was definitely like that and still am to a degree. If I could go back and tell my timid self five years ago ‘you need to be assertive and you need to let people know you’re serious’…I think that would have helped.”
When she isn’t writing or riding Tuff, Gabrielle is apt to be curled up with a book. She’s an avid reader who admits to being influenced when she read Childhood and Other Neighborhoods, a collection of short stories by Stuart Dybek. When Gabrielle picked it up, she said to herself, “I want to do this, too. This is what I want to do.”
“I think it’s an amazing thing that you can pick up something and you’re in someone else’s head. You have someone else’s voice. I love the thought that I can help other people write that kind of stuff that anyone can pick up and read.”
Reach out to Gabrielle right now for help with all of your writing needs. Find out how to put this talented wordsmith and editor to work creating, polishing and/or promoting the written word for you!
Content Provided by Frederick Advice Givers Podcast #032