Monday, September 17, 2012

Review of Freelance Writing Guide: What to Expect in Your First Year as a Freelance Writer”

Many people are tempted by the lure of “easy money” to become freelance writers. There is no such thing as “easy money,” at least not where freelance writing is concerned and the “Freelance Writing Guide: What to Expect in Your First Year as a Freelance Writer” attempts to prepare the wannabe writer for the triumphs and travails they can expect during the first year of a freelance writing career.

Author Christine Rice is upfront and personal about her own experiences but not in a gossipy kind of way. From her own experiences, she has gleaned a wealth of knowledge that she shares with readers in a straight-forward, informative way. If you or someone you know is considering a career in freelance writing, this is the guide book you need.

Because the business of freelance writing is so vast, Rice does a good job of touching on all the important aspects of the career. How to build a portfolio, how to market your writing and places to publish your writing are just a few of the topics she covers in sufficient detail. Are you thinking about blogging? She discusses not only blogging but ways to earn additional income by monetizing your blog. 

As any seasoned freelance writer knows, there is more to the business of writing then just laying down words on the screen (or paper). Finding writing jobs and clients is as much a part of the process as the actual writing is. Once you begin to earn a little money, it becomes necessary to track income and expenses for tax purposes. You will need to manage collecting your fees from clients, too. All of this is covered in “Freelance Writing Guide: What to Expect in Your First Year as a Freelance Writer” in enough detail to give the novice a feel for what lies ahead.

If the quick road to riches is what you are after, you won’t find it here. What you will find is sound advice, realistic expectations and practical procedures for achieving the heights of your own ambition with freelance writing. Anyone with a love of the written word can shape a career in freelance writing from the guidepost in this how-to manual.

Disclaimer: This book was provided by the author at no charge. I received no compensation of any kind for this review. This review expresses my own opinion of the material covered in the book.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Missing Self-Imposed Goals – A Clue from Your Subconscious?

August has drawn to a close and I did not finish the rough draft of my novel but I am undaunted. My characters are yelling loudly at me even now as I type this to come finish their story and I shall heed their call in a precious few minutes. 

I am a goal-oriented person and I guess to some degree, I always have been. I can look back over the chapters of my life and see the things that I thought were important, that I was working toward. By and large, working towards those goals has made me a better, stronger person even when I didn’t achieve what I set out to do.

I know so many people who bully themselves for not achieving goals and at times, I fall prey to this as well. It’s easy to see it as failure. When faced with failure, human beings often need to lay blame and quite often there is nowhere to lay it but on ourselves.  ‘If only I’d made more time,’ or I could have worked harder’ are common refrains I hear in my own head. But with age comes wisdom. 

Sometimes we do not achieve the goals we set out for ourselves because they are, well, not quite right for us. For example, at 16, I thought I wanted to be an actress and a singer. I studied a little, took voice and dance lessons, acted in community theater, belonged to the chorus in high school, etc. By the time I was 18, I realized I didn’t really have the drive to make it in that industry. I didn’t enjoy being away from friends and family – yes, I’d even gone to California briefly to pursue my dream. I came home, humbled and ready to find a new dream.

I have gone through many dreams in my life and I have learned that missing a goal or deadline that I set for myself is not the end of the world. I am not giving myself or anyone else permission to blow off goals. I think if you set one, you should work as hard as you can toward achieving it. But if you don’t make it, stop and consider why. Perhaps the goal wasn’t right for you at this point in our life.

As for finishing my rough draft by the end of August, I know why I didn’t. The plot line for the final chapters was skewed and didn’t bring out the ending I (or my characters) wanted. I could have pressed forward and I tried several times but it didn’t feel right. Holding back and letting things gel for a bit gave me the chance to rethink where the story needed to go and now, I believe, I have a powerful finale.

I’d love to stay and chat more but Maddie and Jack are quire insistent that I come write the rest of their story. Perhaps September will be my month to finish. I certainly hope so because other characters are beginning to clamor more loudly, too.