Let me begin by saying there are legitimate reasons to be wary of the ever expanding digital universe – a glut of junk information, loss of privacy, time wasting, and addiction. But there are also irrational fears at work based in part on our inherent resistance to change. Read more.
Posted in Business, Home Office, How to, Personal historian, Resources, Self-employed, Tips
Tagged Business, digital resources, digital universe, How to, Personal historian, small business, success, Tips
Are you looking for a reliable, quality, short run printer? These six all come highly recommended by my colleagues at the Association of Personal Historians…Read more.
Posted in Business, Personal historian, Publishing, Resources
Tagged best, book printers, Books and Publications, Business, list, Long run and short run, Printers, Printing, Products, Publishing and Printing, self-publishing, short-run printers
For many newcomers to the business of Personal Histories determining what to charge is a challenge. There are no set industry standards and fees range from next to nothing to $100+ an hour.
It doesn’t really matter what other personal historians charge for their work. We’re all different. One size does not fit all. So here’s what to do.
Start with your own expenses
- Make a detailed listing of all your expenses for a year. Include everything – personal as well as business. Include a “contingency” amount for such things as health emergencies, repairs, travel, etc.
- Don’t forget taxes and start-up equipment such as printers, scanners, cameras, recorders, etc.
- Divide your total expenses by 12 to arrive at a monthly estimate.
Let’s imagine your calculations point to monthly expenses of $4,000. If your only source of income is from your personal history work, you’ll need to generate at least $4,000 of income every month or about $1,000 a week just to meet your expenses.
Calculate your billable hours.
Use good time tracking software and determine how much of your time is spent on non-billable activities such as research, marketing, bookkeeping, file management, and so on. A good rule of thumb is 20% of your billable hours. So if you work a 40 hour week, you’ll be spending about 8 hours a week on non-billable items.
This means you need to charge a little more than $3o an hour for the remaining 32 billable hours in order to bring in a $1000 a week. (40 hr. work week minus 8 hr. non-billable items)
Determine your profit margin
Being self-employed means both flush and lean times. To ensure that you can bridge those downturns in your business, build in a profit margin. Consider anything from 10% to 30%.
Suppose you decide on 15%. That would mean adding an additional $4.50 (15% of $3o) to your hourly rate bringing it to $34.50.
Charging by the project
You may prefer to charge by the project. If so, estimate the number of hours to complete a project and multiply by your hourly rate.
And Don’t Forget
- Double the amount of time you think a project will take. It always takes longer than you anticipate.
- Avoid pricing yourself too low. Clients will assume you’re not good because you’re cheap.
- Don’t base your rate on what others are charging.
- You’re a professional and are worth every penny you charge.
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Posted in Business, How to, Personal historian, Resources, Self-employed
Tagged billable hours, Business, calculate, clients, Expense, fees, freelancer, Personal historian, Resources, self employed, small business, Time Tracking, Tips, Working time
I’ve a confession to make. I’ve never been great with grammar. Maybe that’s why I work primarily in video I’m sure some of you more keen- eyed grammarians have spotted the odd blunder or two in my posts. However, when I do write major pieces I always rely on a good editor to polish my work. For those of you who prefer to work on your own, here’s a great list…Read more.
Posted in Editing, How to, Personal historian, Resources, Tips
Tagged Editing, Elements of Style, English language, grammar, grammar resources, Grammatical aspect, life story, Linguistics, Style Guides, William Strunk, Writers Resources, Writing
If you’re like me, you’ve inherited old photo albums with the pictures held down on so called magnetic pages. The trouble with these albums is that the adhesive used and the plastic liners damage the photos over time. Removing the photos is a priority. I went looking for help and boiled my research down to these seven essential steps…Read more.
Posted in Ancestors, How to, Photos, Preservation, Resources, Restoration, Tips
Tagged Facebook, flickr, How to, old photos, Photograph, Photograph album, Photographic Activity Test, photography, Picasa, preserving, save, storing, Tips
As those of you who frequent my site know, I occasionally pull together free Internet resources. Previously I compiled a mega list of 100 Free Resources for Personal Historians. This was followed by 20 More Free Resources for Personal Historians and More Free Stuff! Well I’m back with more free resources to help you with your personal history work. Please note I don’t personally endorse any of these sites because I haven’t tested or used all of them. If you are familiar with some of these services or products and would like to leave a comment about your experience with them, I’d welcome such a review…Read more.
If I were able to go back to when I began as a personal historian, what’s the best advice I could give myself? Here’s what I’d say…Read more.
Posted in Business, How to, Marketing, Personal historian, Resources, Self-employed, Tips
Tagged advice, best, best advice, Business, Business plan, How to, humor, key, Marketing plan, Personal historian, personal history, self employed, small business, Tips
I’ve just finished Jennifer Campbell’s recent book Start and Run a Personal History Business published by Self-Counsel Press. If you’re thinking of making personal histories a business, you owe it to yourself to get this book. Jennifer knows her stuff. She’s been a professional personal historian since 2002 and prior to that had a 25 year career as an editor, writer, and interviewer… Read more.
Posted in Book reviews, Business, Home Office, How to, Life stories, Marketing, Memoirs, Personal historian, Promotion & Publicity, Resources, Self-employed, Tips, Writing
Tagged Business, Employment, family stories, free resources, Home Office, How to, Jennifer Campbell, memoir, Personal historian, personal histories, personal history, personal history business, self employed, small business, start and run, Tips, Writing
Are you looking for a dedicated photo scanner that’ll give you excellent results without breaking the bank? Here are three that deserve your attention – the Canon CanoScan 9000F and the Epson Perfection V500 and V600. All receive high ratings by users and reviewers.
But before you rush out the door to purchase one, keep this in mind. If you have a high volume of prints and slides to digitize, you’d be wise to consider using a local lab. It simply takes too long on a flatbed scanner to process a large collection. If you don’t have a local lab, check out ScanMyPhotos They’ve been around for 22 years and have impressive reviews.
If you’re still determined to buy a photo scanner, you might take a moment to read Guide to Desktop Scanners by Imaging Resource.
After some careful research here are my top three picks:
Canon CanoScan 9000F ( Amazon $213.33 , B&H $174.95
“While Canon’s CanoScan 8800F and Epson’s V600 battle it out in the sub-$200 flatbed film scanner sweepstakes, Canon has quietly trumped them both with its highest resolution film flatbed ever: the CanonScan 9000F…[it] delivered credible results. We were surprised by how well our slides were captured with detail in both the highlights and shadows.” Imaging Resource Complete review
Epson Perfection V500 (Amazon $139.99, B&H $139.95
“Epson has knocked one out of the park with this scanner. It offers high-quality scans for both prints and film and features an LED light source that eliminates warm-up time. Like almost any flatbed scanner, the V500 can handle all-purpose scanning, but it’s focused on photos. This makes it most appropriate for anyone (short of a professional photographer) who needs to scan a backlog of prints and film (including slides) to digital format.” PCMag.com Complete review
Epson Perfection V600 (Amazon $199.00, B&H $170.95
“The V600 fits in Epson’s line between the less expensive Editors’ Choice Epson Perfection V500 Photo, scanner and the more expensive Epson Perfection V700 Photo. Despite the evenly spaced model numbers, it’s much closer in price and capability to the V500, but it offers some important extras. In particular, it includes Digital ICE—the hardware-based approach for digitally removing dust and scratches—for both prints and film. The V500 includes Digital ICE for film only…[the V600]offers more than acceptable scan quality and speed, and compared to the V500, it offers additional flexibility for medium format film plus Digital ICE…” PCMag.com Complete review
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Posted in Home Office, Photos, Preservation, Resources, Tips
Tagged best, budget priced, Canon, Canon CanoScan 9000F, Digital ICE, Epson, Epson V500, Epson V600, excellent, film scanner, Image scanner, photo scanner, scanner, Tips, under $200