Sunday, September 6, 2009

By gosh, I'm a writer!

I regret that I have not posted a single update to this site in more than a month. My life is getting back to normal. I am pretty much completely over my mental health crisis. Working at the Canyon View branch has proved much slower paced and less stressful. AND, I am more than making up for the 5 hours of Sunday overtime I no longer have to work each week on free-lance writing jobs.

I posted a small classified ad on a web site and soon after heard from a gentleman in Leicester UK who is himself a free-lance writer who outsourced about ten travel articles to me. I found the work of researching and writing these pieces very easy to do. And while I only earned a penny per word on these assignments, the extra $50 was a big help. A much greater help was my client's suggestion that I look into a web site ( And boy I'm glad I did. While many of the jobs on that site are indeed for software coders and other IT professionals there are a huge number of writing and website marketing jobs available. I sent out a couple of dozen queries and then picked up a $45 job which consisted of writing one travel article (about roller coasters believe it or not) and analyzing the site's social networking efforts and making a report with recommendations on how best to market the site through social networking.

The client seemed very pleased with my work and had tentatively agreed to hire me to work 5 hours a week (@ $15/hour) on the web site. Then two days later he sent me a message telling me that he has decided to suspend publication of his travel site but will "definitely" use me again for the two new sites he is launching. I am not holding my breath for that. BUT. Just yesterday I won a $50 job to rewrite a three page marketing white paper for a software company in Israel. Ron and I both worked on it for a bit less than an hour total between both of us. The client was very pleased with my work and I am now in discussions with him on a possible $200 project to re-write two pages of his web site.

In the old days it was so expensive to try to break into free lance writing because the only way to break end was to spend a lot of money of paper, typewriter ribbons and postage to send work off on spec to editors who most likely would only reply three months later with a thanks but no thanks postcard. By contrast I currently have 15 active bids on the RAC site and I have a feeling that a company that produces study guides for the SAT college admissions test is going to hire me for a $500 project to write 100 practice test questions for the Reading and Writing portions of the exam.

So I have been very busy with getting bids out there and corresponding via e-mail with editors and other people who need good writing done and I think it is realistic to hope that in the coming months. I have as always been reading books but have not had the time or energy to post reviews on the books blog. I am also having a little technical glitch in that I no longer seem to be able to upload pictures into my blog posts. Ron and I believe the reason for that problem is that our newish Compaq lappy remains out of service (Ron found a replacement power cord online and ordered it and we hope it will be here by Thursday) so I am struggling along on the 10 year old Toshiba lappy. Like a Timex watch this baby has taken any number of lickings and kept on ticking. (I have firmly decided the next lappy we buy will be another Toshiba; I had been reasonably pleased with the two Compaq desktops I've owned but a less than a year old lappy that goes out from a two foot drop is garbage, in my not so humble opinion.)

The other issue with updating the books blog is that I am overdue with my hosting fee and I have not wanted to IM my tech guru for help until I pay his bill, which will have to wait until around the 20th of the month when my next Rentacoder payment comes in. (Your earnings aggregate and are paid semi-monthly.) So things in the Libdrone household are back to about as normal as we ever get and I believe I will change the name of this blog back to Libdrone's Journal or some such.

So how has the past month been for you?