It’s Work

So I have my first job, working for Xavier Studios, writing sales brochures to see if there are any potential leads in the Arlington area.

I have been looking at the ideas Daniel gave me.  It is very difficult for me to write the concepts out clearly.  I am putting all my effort into it.  I’m hoping if I just relax maybe I can memorize, absorb and digest it not word by word, but point by point.

Looking forward nervously to my first feedback.  We are going over my work next week.  Should be interesting.


Day 5 of Writer Job Hunting 2012

Freelancing is a little like making a baby.  It is challenging, you have to time it right and you never know if it came out right until you see that strip that says blue.  You have to test and test again to get it just right.

I have been freelance writing on and off from 2006, when I started when I was staying at my grandmother’s house.  I just started applying for jobs online and enjoyed the tiny bit of cash it provided. Mostly, I did copy and SEO. I learned some of the tricks of the trade.

Actually at one point, I decided it wasn’t for me, probably when I got a job and then went back to school. Then this year, 2012, I changed my mind again and decided I’d give it another go. I wasn’t going to school and I didn’t have a job. I decided to consider it and looked at some writing jobs and wanted to go ahead with it. The past couple of days, I’ve been talking to several clients and it’s been a whirlwind, fun, up-and-down roller coaster. I also applied online at several websites, but no. It isn’t the right time and I can tell.  There is this feeling of emptiness, like I have nothing to bring to the table.

I do like writing. It is a good experience to have a finished piece and to feel like you have accomplished making something coherent and, in all possibility, wonderful.  I like working independently with clients to get their needs fulfilled.  People are a mystery and that is what is so attractive about them.  I’m definitely interested in working more with clients in the future, but just not at this time.

Day 1 of Writing Job Hunting 2012

Yo got a text from a potential client.  Usually I feel like texts should be regulated to the family or friends, pero el fue muy classy.

Nosotros are meeting manana a doce, al Tomato Dulce.

He wants me to do some training material writing, to which I said “I’m up for the challenge!”

Business lunches are pretty common in the freelancing circles.   That or skype brainstorming sessions.   When he asked me I wasn’t surprised.

I think it’s a better way to have communication back and forth over a good meal. I am hoping that todo will go bueno. He says el looks like your average joe, with brown pelo, a brown beard and gafas.  Steve Jobs, anyone?  Kind of glad I didn’t get a Mark Zuckerburg.

This is Steve Jobs, my guy looks like him but not as lost in thought.

Day 4 of Writing Job Hunting 2012

I am not cut out for freelance writing. It’s an unusual pattern, one laced with secrecy and disappointment.  No one I know really is except Paul E., a successful freelance writer friend. There is this mystery and strength that I think writers must have that I don’t have. A balance between the seen and the unseen, which I don’t understand. A combination of labor of the head, heart, and hand, which may not be my forte. I feel like controlling my work. I haven’t yet gotten to my work controlling me. Maybe I haven’t gotten used to the feeling of rejection, which is entwined with every aspect of writing.

I haven’t gotten an acceptance note yet from my proposal, meaning something about me and about the people I have proposed to on Elance. I am green, inexperienced and just a plain newb. This could also be because I just put up my proposal a couple of seconds ago. Meaning I’m a little over-anxious about my proposals (ha ha) and also that I expect instant results. Expecting instant results is a classic newb mistake. But really this is their fault for not responding right way, not mine at all.

This is for the resume writing jobs on that haven’t written me yet. I don’t have a lot of experience and I said as much.  I can’t wait until I know whether they are going to accept my proposal or not. I had the idea that I should message the other proposing writers to see if I could join their companies. They are very wary of choosing writers who are inexperienced. This proves that I’m competent enough for the job since I’m always looking for the best opportunity to take which translates into the best writing which I could take.

I’ll just wait until one of them emails me before applying to more jobs.  I give it a weekend before I start moving on to looking at other jobs in other places.  That is all that I can give.

Day 3 of Writing Job Hunting 2012

I had off-handedly applied to some craigslist jobs before deciding that I didn’t really think  they had any leads for me. Craigslist is great but a lot of people there are looking for a little more than just writing hint, hint, nudge, nudge.

However, one gal, Lisa, called me and wanted to chat it up about her resume. I left a message over the weekend, telling her I was interested, and she was busy all weekend, but called me later in the week. She seemed like a cool person, she called me at the perfect time, when I was at home, when I was chilling. She’s probably going to completely redo her resume. This means I have a job. She’s going to text me tomorrow.

What do I think of the job? It’s probably short term. It’s about $50 an resume, with two resumes. About 5 hours a week. My money mind turns on.  Two resumes each $50, that’d pay for buying a bunch of writing books. That’ll pay for my books and a little to pay student loans, gas, etc. I have that face like a boss.

If it lasts that long, and my weirdness doesn’t prevent me from getting fired. Plus it’s getting warmer and I don’t worry about how to store my helmet when I’m parked.

So is this the end? It could be. Writing jobs, that is as an end in itself, if I continue in this career path.

Update:  We got half way through the project then she stopped calling me and didn’t answer my calls.  How rude.  I was pretty disappointed.  Some people want other people do the work and then forget to pay them.

Day 2 of Writing Job Hunting 2012

It is day 2 of Writing Job Hunting. However, sleeping in, I didn’t get any work done.

I don’t intend changing that problem. What?  The thing is there are some things I can’t control. I can only write and search with the time allotted to me. The problem itself is the psychologically weakening aspect, not the actual sleeping in. I have time to write at night, I simply feel guilty because I’ve have the concept that staying up and sleeping in til 4 or 5 in the afternoon is wrong. I have to get up in the morning or I am not complete.

I don’t know how to convey my disappointment that I had not much of the day left as I woke  up at 4. This is part of writing life, too, disappointment and rejection, managing your feelings and your time.

April 28 Biological clock day

I need to say to myself, if it doesn’t affect my writing, then staying up late and sleeping in late is okay.

When you are a freelancer, you are free to write whenever, wherever, whatever, but there are some times when you will need to be up at a certain time to call and have conversations with clients about work. My disappointment is based mainly on a subjective standard which has been plowed into me and a little bit on practical basis of fact. The day is for working and living and and the night is for sleeping and the zombies is the general idea on which this is based. You will have to drop this concept ad write when you have time. Clients are usually flexible so schedule your phone calls for late in the afternoon and use a couple of alarm clocks.  This is a practical solution to time problem which can affect anyone.

Tomorrow, I have a dentist appointment at 9, so I will be up for that. Somehow morning rising seems easier for scheduled events.  I can’t wait to start Day 3 and check out those job postings, since there has been a plethora of technical writing jobs this month, so don’t forget to search along with me!

Update:  Met with Mr.” Jobs” who wasn’t quite as hot as his doppleganger, but was very charged about his project.  Wonderful.  We had a great lunch and I found out he was a vegetarian, too!   We talked about that a while, and I even got to discuss my Wild Animal Domestication Theory in length.  It makes sense, would cut down on wildlife expenses and would open up a whole new world for pet owners.  I left with the training project in my hands and I really think this is going to be a great project for me as a writer.

Freelance Writing Job Market Research

Research. Research is what I do because I am a college-educated person and when it comes to writing I have to research before embarking on a particular venture.

I am not above trawling the Internet in search of jobs for which I’m not qualified, because knowing the enemy is half the battle. This is how you can improve your skills by finding out what skills are in demand and how you want to grow.

There are three reasons doing research on the type of jobs out there is worth it.   You get to see if you are ready, how you are ready, and if you are skilled enough.  You can see what skills you need to acquire to be competitive in the field and what  topics you need experience in. Boring and thankless work, at first, maybe, but it is exciting to find out how well you are qualified so you can consider what your options are.  You might want to head in the direction of resume building if you find that you have a natural ability in formatting documents and in drawing out hidden skills in your client, or public relations, if you are good at selling and putting the client in the best light.  Here is a sample spreadsheet entry from Freelance Writing Jobs: look and see what information is collected.

Referring Website Website Job Title Subject of Job Paperwork Required Website Address
FWJ Craigslist New Jersey Content Writer Technology
Resume, Work Samples  

The Referring Website field can help you decide where to go for the maximum number of and the most relevant jobs.  You can sort according to Job Title and find out which job boards have the most of the type of jobs you want.

The Website field where a particular job is found helps you find niche potential job markets which you would not otherwise find.

The Job Title field shows you what jobs are in demand and displays what type of jobs you can focus in on.

The Subject of a Job field keeps you to date on the trending topics to brush up on.

The Paperwork field can help you when you actually want to pursue the job you found.   You can go back to the job and see what you need to work on to land the job, for example resumes or writing samples on a certain topic.

The Website Address field is essential because if you want to find the job again and if you fit the specifications, then that job is a potential client and you want her contact email and the skill specifications.  These help when you want to tweak your resume and write a cover letter.

The Writing Job Market Research Spreadsheet is an invaluable tool to help you research online writing jobs, find what jobs are out there, to determine what your prospects are.

I Want to Make a Confession

I have these great ideas for blogs and end up not following through on them. For example, when I thought I was going to Kyrgyzstan for a month, I created the blog, Woman in Kyrgyzstan, and when I was knitting for a while as a hobby, I put up a blog called Knitting Knavess. I still have those blogs, waiting for me to get off the medication I can’t find in Kyrgyzstan, and for me to take up knitting again (both of which I doubt will ever happen). I’m glad these blogs never made it off the ground. For one, I was never going to be able to compete with the Yarn Harlot, and secondly, it quickly turns out I’m pretty happy in Arlington, Texas.

Woman WordPress another one of those blogs in that it was spurred by my hobbies and career ideas. I am a woman and I write like I am beating out a sword on an anvil with a hammer.  However, this online journal will be different from the others. Firstly, I am going to change the narrow focus. Writing is something we all do in our lives, even if it’s to write a high school paper or write a grocery list.  There are not many resources for freelance writers, not to mention writers in general.  We are a secretive bunch.  However, this blog will be other-centered and update people on all things writing. It’s something to which I’m dedicated, can do anywhere I have a pen and paper or laptop, and has many topics to explore, for example grammar or resume writing.

love blogging

This blog is for other people to read and so they can learn from my experiences and insight.  Attention, time and patience I will ask from my readers and in return give invaluable tips and wisdom.  I want you, my readers, to trust me to provide accurate and relevant information and insights.  Please feel free to comment on posts, as this is a free discussion forum.

I don’t want to do it alone. Maybe if there are others reading along with me, I can bear to face the hum-drummity and boring business bit of the ho-hum work of writing life.   If I get to share my story, maybe not all is lost.   Don’t we all want comradeship on our respective journeys?  I want your company and just maybe, you want mine.