Tag: Freelancing

New tools for timesheets and blogs – @TimeCamp and @NewsBlur

I have new tools to play with.

Timesheets

I’m a writer and I work, almost exclusively, on a value basis: we agree a price and I deliver.

Charging by the hour/day or, worse, per word is a killer for both quality and trust.

However, I’ve always kept timesheets for my own analysis, so that I can see how much those value-based projects actually cost me in bloody, sweaty, teary hours. They used to be simple Excel spreadsheets, one for every project, so I could work out the actual cost per hour arising from either my poor estimating or delightful rat-holing. But, I always knew that created hidden gaps.

Continue reading “New tools for timesheets and blogs – @TimeCamp and @NewsBlur”

Too scared to sell yourself? – @SPressfield

An excellent post from author Steven Pressfield about the painful, self-marketing aspect of being a writer. It’s relevant for all independent professionals.

For the past few months I’ve been working full-time promoting my just-published novel, A Man at Arms, and I have to tell you … I am waaaay out of my comfort zone. 

But, Steven offers an alternative mindset to the usual reluctance we feel.

Here’s how I feel about it. I don’t see it as selfish (though no doubt there are self-interested elements in there.) For me, it’s about fidelity to the book and, especially, to the characters.

It’s about fidelity to the work.

If you do good work, it deserves to be shared.

Read the rest, here.

Steven, of course, wrote The War of Art, an essential guide to getting things done. I’ve just replaced my copy. He also coined the mantra,

Put your ass where your heart wants to be.

Photo by Andreas Rønningen on Unsplash

Take time to think big – @DanielPink

Harried by the relentless, depthless demands of email, social media, Zoom, phone and Slack?

Here’s a great idea from author Daniel Pink, originating with statesman George Schultz – the Schultz Hour.

Pinkcast 4.07. This is how to carve out an hour a week to think big. | Daniel H. Pink

Image: Claudine Gossett Photography (via UChicago News)

On Indies and little breaks – @ThisIsSeth

Seth Godin is always worth reading.

Here he is on the importance of recognising what type of indie (independent, i.e. sovereign professional) you really are

Independent workers, founders, creators and organizers are often lumped together with a simple term, but that one-size-fits-all model fits no one.

Read, and select, here.

Continue reading “On Indies and little breaks – @ThisIsSeth”

Craftspeople, paths and time – @thisisseth

Seth Godin posts a couple of considerations for independents.

Firstly, on time and deadlines

It’s amazing how much slack people will give you if you’re proactive about what you see and what you know. No need to make promises you can’t keep, and no need to hide from the promises you’ve made.

Secondly on the different strategies available, along with the consequences…

1. Honor the noise in your head.

2. Embrace your market.

3. Stay busy.

Two pithy posts worth a deep ponder. Read them here and here.

Photo by Nicolas Hoizey on Unsplash

Echoes through time: Give your heart to your trade

Give your heart to the trade you have learnt, and draw refreshment from it. Let the rest of your days be spent as one who has wholeheartedly committed his all to the gods, and is thenceforth no man’s master or slave.

Marcus Aurelius (AD 120 – 180), Meditations (4.31)

What’s your métier?

This from chef Rick Stein’s Secret France.

In passing Stein remarks that in France, rather than asking “What do you do?”, people ask “What’s your métier?”—literally, what are you master of?

We should all aspire to be masters of our chosen profession.

I’m pretty sure it was episode 2: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000b8sb .

The book’s here, but I suspect, it won’t help. Great recipes, though.

Image: BBC