I know, I know—valid questions. It seems like everyone I know in the freelance writing world (aside from a small handful) started the year with a deluge of updates and fresh content for their websites.
Me? Well, that was something I would have LOVED to have done three weeks ago. We can’t turn back time, though. It’s been incredibly busy in my little corner of the writing world. I’ve been working with some new clients and maintaining relationships that are carrying into 2020.
2020: New Year, New Vision
Instead of making resolutions every year, I set goals and examine lifestyle changes I need to make. I feel like resolutions set me up for failure. So, I refrain from spending any time on them. I’m looking at 2020 differently than I have previous years—2020, to me, is about refocusing and having 20/20 vision.
What Does That Mean?
Sometimes we move from day to day without any specific focus. Yes, we’re checking things off on our to-do list. Yes, we’re working hard to meet our clients’ expectations. However, that can also mean losing focus of our overall goal.
- Do you want to secure new clients this year?
- Are there clients you need to “let go” because they won’t negotiate rates?
- Where do you see yourself career-wise six months from now?
- How often are you marketing your business?
Re-examining it ALL
This past November, I celebrated twenty years as a professional writer. TWO decades! Things have changed considerably in the writing industry throughout that time. As a result, none of use can move forward while thinking, “this is the same way I’ve always done things.”
That’s what’s happening and why I haven’t been updating. Aside from maintaining my client base, I’ve been re-examining everything. When looking at the questions above, I take to pen and paper to brainstorm what I want to achieve and where I want to be this year.
Personal and Professional Vision
I can’t discount how my personal and professional lives intertwine with each other. Even though my office is outside of our home in our backyard, the separation isn’t enough to call it an “out-of-the-home” profession. So, many of my professional goals stem from those I’m making for my personal life.
What Does That Mean?
I know my health contributes to how well I can work throughout the day. I’ve taken some steps to achieve better health, but those steps started last October. I was tired of feeling like garbage all the time, so things had to change.
- Stop taking two medications that were causing adverse side effects
- Drink a gallon of water daily throughout that detox period
- Eat more fresh and home-cooked food (we started suing HelloFresh and Misfits Market—wish we had done this sooner)
- Increase activity—while BIC writing is an essential part of any writing career, it’s also detrimental to your health if you don’t get up and move frequently
I suffer from a condition referred to as Hpersominia. That condition sounds like Insomnia, but it’s the exact opposite. The best way I can describe what I’m going through is it’s a lot like Narcolepsy. Few understand what Hypersomnia is, but I have difficulty staying away. This condition is something I’ve struggled with my entire life, but I didn’t receive a formal diagnosis until 2015.
Following that diagnosis, I was also being treated for fibromyalgia and chronic migraine (the two medications I recently detoxed from). I couldn’t maintain my fatigue well at all—unless I was always on the move. So, I researched the side effects of the medications. I learned that one of them causes Hypersomnia. I started taking it after my diagnosis for Hpersomnia—so you can imagine my frustration.
There were a host of other side effects I was experiencing, too, including hand tremors, losing words, and extreme thirst. Since going through this detox, I can’t believe how much better I feel. That results in a more productive day personally and professionally—I don’t want to stay in bed all day from exhaustion.
What Are My Plans?
Artist Writer’s Outlet Shop
For a couple of years, I worked on building up products available on Zazzle, CafePress, RedBubble, and the like. At this point, Zazzle is the only one I receive sales from regularly. When I promote, sales occur. That’s a habit I need to get back into this year. I also need to get some fresh content on those sites, as well. My goal is to make that happen between now and the end of March.
A project I’ve been cooking up behind the scenes is re-launching Maine-ly Motherhood. I initially launched this site in 2013 (2012?), I couldn’t keep it running because life became “too much.” I got the site back in early 2019 and I’ve been drafting content and brainstorming ideas ever since. My goal is to have it ready for re-launching by the first week of June.
I’m not happy with my site’s design and layout at all. I switched things around a little bit during the first week of 2020. However, I’m not happy with it at all. I’m picking away at things and hope to have everything the way I want it by the end of March.
Working Freelance Writer
It’s been too long since I’ve updated Working Freelance Writer, also. I look at Medium as another blogging platform and, unfortunately, I’ve been neglecting it for months in favor of working on other projects (mostly for clients). I know if I manage my time better, I can keep that publication consistent again. My goal is to have my editorial calendar set and content rolling out consistently again by the end of February.
Thank You for Sticking Around!
I know I don’t have many loyal followers on this site and that it’s my fault. (Lack of updates—why would anyone want to return if there isn’t anything new?) Those of you who are sticking around, though, I appreciate your loyalty and continued support. You can also keep up with me on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Until next time, Happy New Year!