Freelance Resources of a Spoiled Generation

The Internet makes life so much easier, doesn’t it? I’ve come across various online resources for my freelance business, and it makes me wonder what people did before the Internet. We are so spoiled. HaHa! One resource I really like, though I haven’t used it all that much yet, is Elance.com. I use it to search for writing and editing gigs, and it seems like there are tons of options. So far I just haven’t really cracked down, but as I mentioned in my previous post I am working on changing that! I would definitely suggest checking it out if you are a freelancer yourself. There are posts from all over the globe, really. For all kinds of projects–personal, corporate, educational, etc. They were pretty thorough in the whole profile verification process, too. You have to schedule a Skype call where an Elance employee takes a photo of you to verify your identity, based on your display photo, I believe. I hope everyone is having a fabulously productive Tuesday! It’s gloomy & rainy here in normally sunny Phoenix. Makes for a nice change of pace, but I must admit that I miss the sunshine!

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Creativity & Business Collide

Fact: I need to learn more about marketing myself as a freelance editor.

I am not naturally a “business-savvy” type of person. Some people are born for business dealings and the like, but that is not me. My brother is that type. His mind is that of an entrepreneur. Business, finances, marketing, etc… that is where he excels.

My mind is (clearly) that of a creative type. Thinking about the nuts & bolts of business just… ugh… makes me cringe. What I’ve recently realized, though, is that it makes me cringe because I’m not familiar with it. I’m not confident in that realm. And what is life if not a never-ending opportunity for personal growth?!

So, I am taking it upon myself to get a little bit uncomfortable, and learn something new. I mean, I need to anyway, if I want to be successful as a freelance editor. I’ve had some clients and created a website (possibly switching to a new site in the near future), but I’m lacking the necessary marketing tools/knowledge to grow it further.

To Amazon I went. Two used books are on their way to me, and I’ve carved out a bit of time every morning to do some online searching for gigs. It’s a start, right?

As always, wish me luck! HaHa.

Pitch Wars – Second Attempt!

I will be having another go at Pitch Wars this year… yikes!

If you aren’t sure what that is and you are interested… go see one Miss Brenda Drake for more details! She’s the woman in charge of it all. 🙂

Basically, I will pitch my book to various mentors in the hopes of one of them choosing me. If so, they will help me get my manuscript in top condition, and then in a few months I will pitch it to the agents who are partaking in hopes of actually getting an agent. Woo hoo!

Last time I had good feedback, but it seemed that I miscategorized my novel. Magical realism and urban fantasy can have many similar characteristics and I couldn’t decide! Wikipedia’s description of magical realism is: “a genre where magic elements are a natural part in an otherwise mundane, realistic environment.” Urban fantasy is described as: “a sub-genre of fantasy defined by place; the fantastic narrative has an urban setting.” My novel is set in the modern day world, in a standard, realistic American city, and has some mythological elements in the form of special powers that the main character has. Do you see my confusion?!

I ended up choosing magical realism, and two mentors told me that they had to pass because they weren’t interested in urban fantasy, and that’s what my novel seemed like to them. #fail

HaHa! Nah, not a fail… just a learning experience!

I’ve obviously worked on my query further, so hopefully it will be even better! And hopefully my urban fantasy choice will be largely agreed upon. 🙂

The Year of Change, Apparently!

2014 has been full of big changes so far! I got a new car… finished my book and sent out query letters (yikes! More of those to be sent out soon!)… and now I just found my new apartment. ALSO, I’m looking for a new full-time job (in my field of writing & editing)! Ahh!

I almost feel like an actual adult. Almost.

Seriously though. I’ll be 28 this year and this will be my first time living with no roommates… what is my life?! HaHa. I joke. 🙂 I’m perfectly happy with my life and where it has taken me. And I’m SUPER excited for this next chapter.

Cross your fingers for me that I can find a great job soon! Seeing as how I have to be out of my current one basically by the middle/end of May. HaHa! I like to live on the edge. I’ve been contacted by two companies to complete writing tests… hopefully they lead to interviews. Then I’d be overly jazzed! Yay!

The Furry Worry Monster

I’m such a slacker! Two weeks in a row that I’ve posted on Wednesday instead of Tuesday. To be fair, my mom was visiting from Michigan and stayed with me last night. 🙂 Now, to get on with it…

 

I sometimes want to worry about whether or not I will be successful in making my lifelong dreams come true.

However, worry is allowed very little space in my life.

There are countless things for us to worry about on a daily basis. Money, health, safety, love, global issues, etc. I suppose we all have moments where we worry… but something I’ve been working toward over the past few years is to lessen my time and energy spent worrying.

I’ve really never been one for excessive worry in most areas of life. Where relationships are  concerned though, it would be more of a problem for me. All of the “what ifs” would get to me sometimes–what if he cheats? What if he falls out of love with me? What if, what if, what if.

Sitting around freaking out over these possibilities does nothing. It doesn’t stop anything from happening or not happening. It is an enormous waste of time, energy and emotion.

I try to always keep in mind the Law of Attraction and keep a positive outlook on things. Plus, I severely dislike being stressed. So letting go of the “what ifs” also releases stress from my life. As much as I would love to be in control of everything that happens to me (who wouldn’t?!), I simply can’t do that.

Being finished with my book and putting the final little touches on it could easily turn into a stressful, worrisome situation. If I let it. Who knows what will happen? I have NO idea! All I can do is put in the work necessary, and hope that it pays off. I can’t stress my book into success, after all. Oh if only I could… haha!

So basically, I believe it is in everyone’s best interest to just let the worry free. Free the Worry Monster from your mind… if you let it fester in there it will only hurt you. Just breathe, and let the cards fall into place. 🙂

But Why Can’t I Just Be Perfect at This?

Practice really does make perfect. Or at least, it makes progress. :)

Over the last few months I’ve been helping a family member work on the sequel to their already published novel. I have no problem openly admitting that at first I was a bit nervous. I’m naturally inclined toward editing, but there are still SO many things that I’m just not quite sure on. I read through grammar and punctuation guides like crazy, but until I have to actually do the work it’s difficult for me to retain the information.

So working on this book is helping me grow so much, and I’m so grateful for the experience!

Same goes for my internship position with Underneath the Juniper Tree. Sometimes I’ll come across something that doesn’t seem right but maybe I’m not quite sure… so I have to go look it up. And at first I felt like a total fraud any time I had to look something up–I had this idea that since I wanted to be an editor I should just know everything–but I feel much better since throwing that idea out the window! I certainly don’t know everything (as much as I wish I did…!), and it feels GOOD to learn! At least, for me.

Here’s to constantly learning new things! What is something new you’ve learned recently, or learned more about? Share below in the comments! :D

Thinking About Goals for 2014

New Year’s Resolutions are well and good, but I just don’t know how I feel about them. I think that a lot of people make them out of habit, or to further the social media facade they have going. “Look! I make emotionally healthy life goals!” Perhaps I’m just being too cynical/judgmental. 🙂 It’s great to have goals for yourself, obviously! Maybe I just like to have a little disclaimer on it. General goals for the year, with a disclaimer of continuing your personal growth every day. And being aware of it!

I guess it’s kind of reminiscent of Valentine’s Day for me. It’s great to celebrate your love, but so often people put more importance on that one single day than all the other days of the year. Just like it’s great to make resolutions that will help you grow as a person and better yourself, but why not do that throughout the entire year?

So all of that being said, here are my “New Year’s Resolutions” for 2014:

  1. Get an agent
  2. Get my book published
  3. Meditate regularly
  4. Judge less

And my disclaimer: Every day will be a step toward all of these goals, and every day I will be aware of them and aware of myself. 🙂

As a writer every year I always want to write more, of course. 🙂 I finished my book last year, which was on my list of things to accomplish for 2013! So yay to that!