Tag Archives: freelancers

Encore! Are You Part of “The Great Vacationless Class”?

Are You Part of "The Great Vacationless Class"? Anne Morrow Lindbergh observed that,  for the most part,  mothers and housewives were the “great vacationless class”  because they had little time off. I would add the self-employed to her list. If you’re self-employed as I am, it’s often difficult to see your way to a holiday. You’re either too busy or too broke or both. Here are a few tips that you might find useful if you’re still struggling with the notion of taking a vacation. …Read More

Monday’s Link Roundup.

In this Monday’s Link Roundup you really owe it to yourself to take a look at “Welcome to Pine Point”. It’s a dazzling digital reconstruction of a place that no longer exists and a glimpse into the lives of some of the people who lived there. If you’re looking for a unique way to present personal histories, take a few minutes to read the interview with the creators and then head on over to Pine Point. It’s quite a trip!

  • “Welcome to Pine Point”: digital narrative chases memory and loss.“What if your hometown disappeared, literally vanished from the map? How would you hold onto it? Would the community of people who had lived there continue? “Welcome to Pine Point” is a website that explores the death of a town and the people whose memories and mementos tell its story today. The site lives online under the auspices of the National Film Board of Canada and came into the world via the creative duo of Michael Simons and Paul Shoebridge (also known as The Goggles).”
  • The Main Principle of Charging a Flat Rate. “…more entrepreneurs are turning to flat-rate pricing structures instead of hourly rates because of the advantages that this option offers. Here are the main arguments in favor of flat-rate pricing to assist in your decision of which option to choose.”
  • The Death of Book Design. “Book Design. (1452 – 2011). Born near Mainz, Germany, Book Design came of age in the heady atmosphere of Venice in the Italian Renaissance. He went through a rocky adolescence when he seemed to lose track of his roots, but matured into the confident and gracious Book Design of the twentieth-century’s Golden Age of Letterpress.” [Thanks to Sarah White for alerting me to this item.]
  • The Problem With Memoirs. “There was a time when you had to earn the right to draft a memoir, by accomplishing something noteworthy or having an extremely unusual experience or being such a brilliant writer that you could turn relatively ordinary occur­rences into a snapshot of a broader historical moment. Anyone who didn’t fit one of those categories was obliged to keep quiet. Unremarkable lives went unremarked upon, the way God intended. But then came our current age of oversharing, and all heck broke loose.”
  • Ultimate PhotoGuide. “Our goal is simple – provide the highest-quality photography instructional videos, tips and techniques and a place where photographers can come together– whether new hobbyists or seasoned professionals, to exchange ideas and experiences.”
  • Books as a Way to Grace a Room. “Thatcher Wine of Juniper Books creates custom libraries and decorative “book solutions” for designers, high-end builders and individuals. He can wrap books he’s collected — literary classics, for example, or German philosophy — in jackets of his own design.”
  • 26 Tips to Enhance Your Experience on LinkedIn. “With more than 85 million users and “a new member being added every second,” LinkedIn is often regarded as the premier social networking site for business professionals. Companies also see LinkedIn as a valuable place to promote their products and services.”

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Monday’s Link Roundup.

This Monday’s Link Roundup is an eclectic mix . One item I  found particularly useful was How Not To Embarrass Yourself When Doing Your Elevator Pitch. It’s bang on!  For an amazing story be sure to read I found a message in a bottle.

  • 14 Resources for Free Fonts and Premium Fonts.“You can’t deny that typography is important in design. You could have the most beautiful illustrations in the world, but if you use a font like Jokerman, your entire design will look iffy.”
  • I found a message in a bottle. “When a Frenchwoman wrote a love letter to her dead son, put it in a bottle and threw it into the sea, she never dreamed anyone would read it. But author Karen Liebreich did and, moved by the anonymous mother’s grief, set out to find her.”
  • Intersect. “Stories are a big way we share, connect and remember. On Intersect, like in memory, stories live at the times and places we experience them, where they can reach out to people who cross our path.” [Thanks to Stefani Twyford of Legacy Multimedia for alerting me to this site.]
  • 10 tips for great storytelling from a PowerPoint novelist. “People do astonishing things with PowerPoint, but author Jennifer Egan has brought PowerPoint into a whole new level: literature. She’s written a chapter of her latest novel, “A Visit From the Goon Squad,” (Knopf) entirely in PowerPoint.”
  • Seeking balance: The Rule of Thirds in storytelling. “The “Rule of Thirds” dates back as far as the 18th century, defined as a guideline to help artists compose esthetically pleasing art…The Rule of Thirds can apply to more than just visual composition, however. It’s also applicable as a guideline for effective storytelling.”

Are You Part of “The Great Vacationless Class”?

Anne Morrow Lindbergh observed that,  for the most part,  mothers and housewives were the “great vacationless class”  because they had little time off. I would add the self-employed to her list.

If you’re self-employed as I am, it’s often difficult to see your way to a holiday. You’re either too busy or too broke or both.

Here are a few tips that you might find useful if you’re still struggling with the notion of taking a vacation.

  • Silence the “Gremlins”. As soon as I think or say “vacation”,  my inner critics start whispering. That’s irresponsible.  People depend on you. Your business will fail. You’ll lose clients ! Gremlins want to keep the status quo. You need to recognize these voices for what they are  and politely tell them to “Get lost”. If  you don’t, you’ll end up chained to your desk.
  • Plan ahead and set  firm dates. Setting dates forces you to make a commitment. I’m closing up the office on August 20th and returning two weeks later on September 4th. It’s critical to allow yourself several weeks lead time. The more the better. This allows you to wrap up projects or stages of a project. Don’t cram everything into the final week before your vacation. You’ll end up exhausted and won’t  enjoy your time off. Make sure that you don’t plan any project work the week you return. This will allow you to settle in and catch up on e-mails and other administrative matters.
  • Inform your current clients. This post is a way of letting all of my loyal readers know that I’m not going to be writing any new material for the two weeks I’m on vacation. I’ll still be posting three times a week but these will be articles from my archives. Don’t try to pretend that you’re still at your desk. Letting clients know of your vacation avoids the embarrassment of their trying to reach you and not getting a reply for a couple of weeks. Trust that your clients understand that you’re human and like everyone else need some free time.
  • Set up an e-mail auto-responder. Even though I’m having a “staycation”, I’ll resist the temptation to peak at my e-mails. I’m going to leave an auto-responder message that goes something like, “Thank you for contacting me. I’m currently away from my desk and unavailable from August 21st until September 5th. I’ll answer your e-mail on my return. If this is an emergency, please call 250-514-****.”
  • Leave a vacation voice-message on your answering service. Even if you’re staying close to home on your vacation, you don’t want the interruption of business calls. That’s why I’ll be adding a telephone message that says something like, “Thanks for calling. I’m away from my desk until September 5th. Please leave a message and I’ll be happy to return your call when I’m back. If this is an emergency, please call 250-514-****.” A word of caution. It’s advisable in both your e-mail and telephone messages not to give the impression that you’ve left your home or office vacant. This information could fall into the wrong hands and lead to a robbery.
  • Relax. It sounds obvious. But if you’re like me, you probably have what I’d call the “Manager of the Universe” syndrome. It goes, “The world will stop spinning on its axis if I’m not at my desk 24/7.” Well I know and you know that’s ridiculous. It’s quite amazing how the world keeps turning even when we’re not involved. So, I’m giving myself permission not to worry and  just to relax.

Photo by The Hamster Factor

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Monday’s Link Roundup.

If you’re into gadgets, this Monday’s link will be of interest.  Carry a Scanner in Your Pocket describes an  iPhone application that allows you to scan documents. How cool is that? It almost make me want to put an iPhone on my Santa wish list.  For British history buffs there’s Cambridge University’s Raj collection goes online. And if you like contests, check out the Southern California Genealogical Society 10th Annual Writers Contest.

  • Announcing Freelance Forecast 2010.… it’s time for Freelance Forecast 2010, Boomvang Creative Group’s second annual survey of creative freelancers and the clients who hire them.  Topics include ways to improve relationships, avoid deal-killers and understand motivations, as well as some info on pricing.  Complete either or both of the surveys and you’ll receive a free copy of the final results, plus you’ll be entered into a drawing for a $100 iTunes or STAPLES gift card.” [Thanks to Pat McNees for alerting me to this item.]
  • Carry a Scanner in Your Pocket. “Scanner Pro 1.2 is the latest version of a popular iPhone application which transforms the device into portable scanner. You can snap a picture of a document or of an old picture, and Scanner Pro then converts the image to a PDF file in the same manner as a scanner.”
  • Project will give Sephardic Jews a voice. “The goal: 5,000 interviews. The deadline: Dec. 31, 2015. The objective: To record the stories of Sephardic Jews who immigrated to the United States or were born here. Called “Sephardic America Voices: A Jewish Oral History Project,” it’s sponsored by the New York-based American Sephardi Federation (ASF), in partnership with the University of Miami and Hebrew University.”
  • The Inflation Calculator. “The following form adjusts any given amount of money for inflation, according to the Consumer Price Index, from 1800 to 2007.” [Thanks to Brina Bolanz at Restored Stories for alerting me to this item.]

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