Saturday, August 29, 2009

Kreativ Blogger Award

I am honored to have been selected for the Kreativ Blogger Award by two of my peers,
Kristine Meldrum Denholm and Jennifer Roland. I am happy to know that people are reading my blog and I am even more excited to learn about more blogs that are being written about writing.

I am working on my list of seven and will publish soon.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Encourage One Another

Isn't that the name of a song? It goes something like this, "Encourage one another and lift each other up."

So often in this country, we do just the opposite. We get inside information and hide it away for our own personal use. Is this human nature, survival of the fittest or greed?

If all of the writers out there decided to keep their knowledge to themselves, I wouldn't be a freelance writer today. I wouldn't even be blogging. I wouldn't know how. I had to learn from others who were more experienced and more successful.

I have an incredible group of online writing friends. They are another secret in my continued perseverance. It is an amazing experience to connect with other writers who rejoice when I rejoice, console and encourage when I am rejected and "get it" when I am ready to give up.

Please, please, encourage your fellow writers and seek others like you. Share the secrets of your trade and reap the rewards of your generosity. Writing is lonely enough...there is no need to go it alone.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Slow and Steady

I was told if I worked hard and practiced patience the assignments would come.

I am so relieved that it is starting to happen. Like a steam engine pulling out of the station, I am slowly building speed.

Are national magazines clamoring to fill my inbox with job offers? Not yet. But I do have steady assignments from two publications through the first of the year. This suits me well as I have a preschooler around the house most days of the week. I have no doubt that I will continue to gain assignments as I produce quality work that is submitted and formatted properly.

Steady assignments = steady paychecks, steady clips and most importantly, steady practice. I believe that writing is a craft that must be practiced repeatedly, regardless of your level of expertise. Each blog post, each article, each book chapter is an opportunity to raise the bar and write better than you did last time.

Keep up the good work, keep the faith and keep chugging along!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Save Time, Organize Your Space. NOW.

This is it folks, school starts here on Monday. Are you ready? Included for your reading pleasure is a list of my office pet peeves--and how I am going to squish them right out of my writing space.

1-Mailing labels. I HATE taking time out of the submission process to print address and return address labels. The printer usually eats something or the labels are out of alignment and suddenly, it's time to go pick up the kids. I am printing return address labels and SASEs now. I will have a stash available and only need to print out the mailing label when I am ready to submit.

2-Postage. Did you know you can purchase $1 stamps? How about 5 cent stamps? Those yellow envelopes that hold your clips and queries cost (currently) $1.05 to mail...unless you go over 2 ounces. Save trips to the Post Office and buy your stamps before you need them. Also, consider a scale so that your postage is correct every time. (USPS online has current rates for postage).

3-Supplies. Did the kids use your stapler for summer crafts? Where is that red pen and did I take my essay journal to the beach or to my parent's house? Check printer ink, your paper supply and batteries in your recording devices, etc. Get your supplies in place so that everything is within arms reach.

Go to the office supply store today. Don't wait. Can you be ready on the first day of school?

Thursday, August 6, 2009

On Your Mark, Get Set, GOALS!

It's almost here! The start of the school year is more of a "new year" for my business than January 1 ever is. The IRS mandates my fiscal year be January 1 to December 31, but my personal career calendar is from the first day of school to the last. 

How about you?

It is time to consider goals for the year. 

1--What do you plan to achieve with your writing? Be specific!

2--What do you plan to achieve with your income? Numbers people!

3--How much can you do each day, each week, each month?

4--Ideas, please! List them, line up interviews, get ready to write queries.

5--Go, go, go!

I challenge you to get your office, your goals, your career in order BEFORE the kids head back to school. Hit the ground running; otherwise, you might lose valuable time trying to organize your thoughts and your space. 

Your kids aren't the only ones who need to be prepared for a new school year.

Do it! I dare you.