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Important Breakfast Meetings and reclaiming lost wells of ideas August 25, 2011

Posted by mattfarmer in Copy writing, writing.
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One week of being consciously without full-time employment has been quite busy, to be honest. I seem to be catching up on those big writing tasks that you never seem to get time to do. These tasks include a business lunch with a graphic designer to discuss my website, and subsequent web copy I have to create; copy editing 30 000 words of a novella soon to go into e-publishing; making my resume shinier and applying for jobs; and work for my Copy Writing Dream Team.

This included writing some small articles about copy writing, some top 10 lists, and attending a networking breakfast. I am doing this tomorrow morning, 7am. I do hope the cups of coffee are bottomless.

I have heard many good things about these meetings, a chance to network (obviously) and meet people who are trying the same scary thing you are – being a freelancer. The venue is walking distance from my house, so a nice invigorating walk before the meeting will perk me up, surely. I will write about the meeting later. I have surprised people by saying I am going to a 7am meeting. They remind me that I’m not working and I don’t need to get up that early. I remind them that I am not working and I do need to get up that early. I need to meet people, to meet potential clients, or people who need an awesome copy writer.

I am also now introducing myself as a copy writer. I changed my occupation on Facebook as a ‘Freelance Copy Writer’ and many people liked this. I will be chasing them down and seeing if they need work, let me tell you. But I am also putting together an introductory email. Well, two really. I know people who are creative and in creative industries – friends and family alike. So I am now going to go out and introduce myself to them as a Copy Writer. Not all of them know they are about to get an email from me. It will be a pleasant surprise! And not a link to a funny cat video!

The second email introducing myself will be for people whom I meet, at network meetings, or out elsewhere, and whose business cards I collect. I will get to go through that nervous joy of- how soon after I meet them do I email! It’s just like dating!

Another thing I have been doing this week is reconnecting with my sources of ideas. As has been previously blogged here, new computer = lost all my links from the old computer. I swear they are on the hard drive somewhere, I am just not brainy enough to find them. On the other hand, if I have lost them, and I’m not really going looking for them, were they just junk to begin with?

No, not all of them were junk. I am sure I have mentioned before how fantastic role-playing games, and RPG forums and players are for imaginations and ideas. And I had linked to a load of these great forum threads before the great FALL! No, I need to think of something dramatic for the computer  event, but that is not it. I will work on it.

Anyway, during the week I went searching and I found many of the threads I lost. Solid threads including 101 Urban Artifacts, 101 Ads you may find in a Fantasy Newspaper, through to some fantastic ones – cool places to have sword fights and 100 places to have an all out gun fight. I am still trying to find others. There was a great thread about different places to have a crime scene and what you might find there. And there was a Warehouse 23 ‘whats in the box’ thread, which was always fun for a laugh.

So, I may not be on the clock but I am working. Which is good. Working towards something bigger and inevitable.

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The outside voices are beginning to beat the inside voices August 16, 2011

Posted by mattfarmer in writing.
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I am about to take a massive leap of faith. I am about to leave 3 years of employment, a steady job, and venture forth into the unknown. Scary? You betcha! But necessary? Sadly, yes. They say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result each time. If this is the case, then my job has made me insane. 3 years of pretty much doing the same thing, and getting no where.

I cannot poo-poo my current employer too much. They did employ me, and they did pay me. And the job is what it is. And if I didn’t like it I had the choice to leave. Which is what I am doing. And to be honest, it was the encouragement from other people which gave me the strength to do this. The outside voices provided a stronger argument to this decision than the inside voices which were saying- stay, it is a job, it helps you pay the bills. What are you going to do when you leave?

To be honest, while i have a plan – find a job, it is pretty much as vague as that. I was head hunted for a technical writing role. During the interview when they asked about my salary expectations, the interviewer paused in that way that means- oh, that’s too much. A few days later he came back to me with a lower offer. Again, the outside voices had convinced me that no, I am actually worth more than they are willing to pay me. I have educated myself. I have had years of writing experience behind me, writing creatively and writing non-fictionally, that what I was asking for was in fact very reasonable.

I have found a measure of self-worth! I have found a place where I can say – no, you will pay me what I am asking because I am worth it. I have the experience and the skills.

This is a significant moment for me. This is a fantastic shift in my mental process. I now believe in me more. Other people believe in me. OH SO MANY other people believe in me and my skills and talent and creativity and all that. They are the outside voices. And their support has put my inside voices in to the corner and shut them up. And it feels good.

Believing in one’s self is something you need to do your self. You have the power do to it. Or so the theory goes. In reality it is a lot harder than that. And, not to be a downer, more a realist, I know that the pendulum will swing back again. The inner voices will find a new weakness to exploit and drag me down again. But right now? I feel awesome. Right now I have planned the start of my Steam Punk novel, better. Right now I am almost finished the sci fi novel. Right now I am having a business meeting to design and build my website. Right now I am applying for jobs KNOWING I am the best candidate for the role, and not just saying it, but believing it.

And this is not even including the copy writing stuff I am doing, the sense of something about to happen that I am getting.

I did a tarot reading regarding this a few months back. The current circumstances was ‘The Fool’, and the next step was ‘The Magician’. These were the cards given to me, and I do believe this is what is happening.

And in other news, I have Open Office now, so I can write. This has very much eased my mind.