Rainy Day Mish-mash

raining sheets

raining sheets (Photo credit: mytimemachine)

It’s raining outside and it’s wonderful!  I love hearing it as it falls on the roof and pitter patters against the sunlight.  Fortunately I am appreciating the rain, which we’ve greatly needed.  I’m not usually so appreciative as the rain often makes me sad for some reason.  One of those great mysteries of me.  I’m also glad that though it’s raining outside and continually seems to keep raining more in my life, somehow I’m still looking out for rainbows.

Just thought I would share some about several random things, hence the rainy day mish-mash.  One is something just for fun, because everyone can do with something to put a little smile on their face.  I know I can.  I ran across a comic for writers yesterday during my surfing the net time and got such a kick out of it.  The strip was called Will Write for Chocolate by Debbie Ridpath Ohi.  I loved the title and think it’s brilliant, but go check it out.  Chocolate?  I am so there.  🙂

I’m still working on the freelance writing, but it seems to be taking a bit to get going.  Baby steps one at a time.  I’ve worked on an idea list for articles this week.  There are submissions still out that I’m waiting to hear back on.  Yesterday I finally ordered some business cards through Vistaprint.  I’ve been considering the thought of making a website, which seems everyone in the writing world recommends having, but so far have decided against it.

This week has gone by in a blur as I’ve been working a little more.  I am no where near being one of those people blessed to be able to write full time.  I would love to be and will continue plodding away on writing projects as I enjoy it so much.  I have spent a bit of time working on my main WIP, a memoir, and now have a whopping 24,100 words!  It’s my pet project right now just because I feel I’ve got to finish writing it while things are still reasonably fresh in my memory.  Time can make things a little less painful, but it seems to make memories a bit fuzzy.

Another big accomplishment for this week was I finished my submission to Memoir Journal.  They have a contest for memoirs in prose or poetry and there is no entry fee, which works for my minimal budget at the time.  The deadline is August 16th.  The downside is winners will not be announced until March 1st of next year, so a very long wait and I thought a few months was a long time.  I had been working on a memoir in prose for a while and was glad to get it done in time.

There are a few other projects on my to do list in the next couple of weeks.  One thing I think will help to keep me focused a bit is to put up a dry erase board near my computer and write a list of potential writing contests as well as other writing projects to work on with the deadline dates if they have one.  The other thing I need to do is find a writing group and/or an editor or something as I feel I desperately need some feed back on some of my writing.  The writing group I had gone to for a few times fizzled and is no longer in existence.  Any ideas?

Best wishes and happy writing… 🙂

 

Weeding Through Freelance Writing Resources

MSI laptop computer

MSI laptop computer (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’m still working on one day being able to earn more money through my writing, but it hasn’t happened yet.  I’m not giving up and it is a work in progress, but at least I’m learning along the way and I’m enjoying writing.  This week my plan is to go at submitting some more of my work with renewed vigor as well as continue working on my memoir.

I thought I’d share some of my experiences so far with certain freelance writing resources.  Time is valuable and I like to make the most of it.  I spend enough time keeping up with email and social media(facebook and pinterest), so I don’t want to spend more of my valuable time uselessly searching for freelance jobs in difficult to find places.  I’d rather spend my time writing.

Please keep in mind these are just my opinions based on my personal experiences.  Without further adieu,here are the lists :

Favorites

  • Yahoo! Contributor Network – This is one of the first places I started submitting my writing to and is still one of my favorites.  You can choose assignments from the site, but I’ve had more success writing about my own topics.  I’ve earned between $3 to a little over $4 per article.
  • www.newpages.com – I love this site.  It has listings for literary magagzines, calls for submissions, and writing contests.
  • www.freelancewritinggigs.com – I check this site every weekday.  It has listings for freelance writing and blogging jobs.  I like the fact that if it’s available, it will have listed beside the job if can telecommute.
  • www.pw.org – Much information is available on the website, however, I receive Poets & Writers magazine monthly on my kindle.  It’s very affordable at only $1.25 per monthly issue.  It has helpful articles, calls for manuscripts, writing contests, and more.
  • www.fundsforwriters.com – I receive two of the free newsletters, Funds for Writers and FFA Small Markets, weekly in my email box.  The newsletters have articles, paying markets, and contest information.
  • www.writersweekly.com – I receive this weekly free newsletter on Wednesdays in my email box.  This newsletter has articles, paying markets, and freelance job listings.

Not Worth My Time

  • www.freelancer.com – I signed up and created a profile.  This site has a 30 day free trial and afterwards it is $4.95 per month.  I canceled before my trial period was up.
  • www.craigslist.com – I’ve used this site to successfully find furniture and farm animals in my area, but have not had any luck finding writing jobs.  Some of the other freelance resources above already list freelance jobs found on craigslist, so it’s also a case of why duplicate work.
  • www.textbroker.com – I found a suggestion for this site in an eBook a freelancer wrote, but have been sorely disappointed.  It took a bit of doing to get started with the site including submitting a copy of my driver’s license.  I’ve also been checking the jobs daily and have found nothing of interest in the writing assignments.  Most of the available topics would bore me out of my skull and I’d rather take my chances elsewhere.

Reassessing Goals

Goal setting: creates a future

Goal setting: creates a future (Photo credit: lululemon athletica)

Every now and then it can be a good thing to reassess goals.  See if the original goals you have set are being met, if the goals need changed, or if the goals need totally removed from your list.  I have decided since things have changed in my life it is time for me to reassess the goals I set regarding my writing.

Originally when I first started this blog I was completely unemployed and attempting to begin freelance writing.  Recently I have been able to find a job, which is nice as I feel some of the pressure is removed from writing to make sure it earns money.  This is a two edged sword per se and may also be a bad point.  Either way, I guess the main point is at least I am still motivated to write and still working on freelance writing.  Temporarily I also have another side freelance job I am working on from home.  It is not writing, however, but is internet research.

I love to read, so the goal I set of reading two books a month is one I think I’ll keep.  Though I haven’t kept up with the goal of two blog posts a week, I still think it is a goal that can be met, life has just kind of got in the way.  Another goal I want to add is to start submitting my writing, which I still have yet to do and I have several things ready.  Just need to try to find homes for them.  The article writing goal is one I am deleting from my list as my priorities have changed and two articles per day was too much with the other projects.  I’m still writing articles, but have also expanded to working on other things.  Poetry, personal essays, and a few books are the writing projects topping my list these days.

Any good tips for reassessing your goals or helping to meet the goals you have set?

Inspirational Book for Freelance Writers

English: Amberg - Paperblanks ® books on displ...

Image via Wikipedia

Last week I found a book in a used bookstore I have really been enjoying. The book is Achieving Financial Independence as a Freelance Writer by Ray Dreyfack. The author says he has been a writer for over 30 years so he speaks from the viewpoint of experience. There is good information shared about specializing and using your experience to write. I have found, it is much easier to write about things I am passionate about and have some knowledge or experience regarding the subject matter.

One repeating phrase in the book is “think small grow big”, which simply put means to start small and build from there. This is good advice for beginning freelance writers like me and I think it will become one of my favorite mottos for future reference. This seems to fall in line with a lot of advice I have read for beginners. Advice which recommends beginning freelance writers with limited experience may want to write free for non-profit sources or articles for websites allowing submissions meeting their guidelines.  This provides an opportunity to gain experience and help build your writing portfolio.

The book shares the importance of making contacts, networking, and writing groups. There are numerous groups and associations for writers with membership fees ranging from free to about $100. I have found a local writers’ group through the website www.meetup.com and am looking forward to my first meeting next week.

 This book has been a good source of inspiration and I hope to finish reading it this week. Besides finding a great book, I also had some good news last week. I called to follow-up on an article I wrote for a magazine and later during the day received an email saying the article will be published!

Writing Resources

The World Digital Library.

Image via Wikipedia

It has been a slow writing week for me.  I definitely need to work on my time management skills and atleast write a little everyday.  Some days I spend hours writing and other days I do not seem to find the time.  It is easy to also get lost in time, researching information online, rather than spend time actually writing.  Maybe I need to start setting a time limit for reading blogs and researching information online.

I do find some very helpful information, so at least I am not wasting time.  I have found two books which are on my wish list as writing resources : The Yahoo Style Guide :  The Ultimate Sourcebook for Writing, Editing, and Creating Content for the Digital World by Yahoo and the Associated Press Stylebook.  Another of my favorite freelance writing websites, www.freelancewritinggigs.com , has a link to several free writing resources : www.freelancewritinggigs.com/2009/10/4-free-stuff-for-writers/ .  A dictionary, thesaurus, and encyclopedia are among some of the resources you can find there. 

I have been saving useful links I find as favorites on my computer, so I can find them easily when I need to refer to them again.  Some of the favorite folders I have on my computer are writing jobs, reference resources, nurse freelance writers, and writing contests.  I may have to go through and reorganize them again, but atleast it’s a beginning and you have to start somewhere.  Same thing with writing.

I did finish writing a short article today and submitted it on www.firehow.com .  Here is the link to it : http://firehow.com/2012020530040/how-to-make-the-most-of-your-healthcare-provider-visit.html .  Well, maybe this will be a more productive week and I will get more writing done.

Beginning the Journey in Freelance Writing

WritingIn the abundance of time I have as I am currently unemployed,  I decided I needed to let my creativity flow loose or go crazy.  Hence the title of my blog.  Well, as I started researching jobs which can be done from home, I stumbled across freelance writing and have been reading quite a bit on it.  I was very intrigued and have discovered I have a passion for writing.  The writing just seems to flow freely.  I have been writing using traditional pen and paper as well as frequently typing on the laptop.    

One lesson I have learned from reading a lot of information about freelance writing is there seems to be mixed reviews regarding the merit of blog writing among writers.  In light of this information and out of curiosity as I have never blogged before,  I thought I would give blogging a try.  I hope to share my discoveries along my journey to become a freelance writer. 

Even though I am just beginning, I feel as if I have accomplished quite a bit already this week.  I just finished writing and submitting an article to a magazine last night.  Also, I have two books I have begun writing and have spent time developing a list of possible topics for future articles.  There is so much to learn about freelance writing and I’d like to share a good resource I found recently, which has a lot of good articles about writing, is www.wow-womenonwriting.com .