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So You Think You Can Freelance? Part 4: Q&A

4 Mar

In Part 1, we discussed the mindset. In Part 2, we explored the ground work, and in Part 3 we talked money.

Now let’s get down to specifics. Here are some questions I received from others taking the plunge. Both new and experienced freelancers (and their clients) should find good info in here. So let’s dig in …

Photo courtesy of Scott McLeod, Flickr Creative Commons

Photo courtesy of Scott McLeod, Flickr Creative Commons

Wishy-Washy About Payment

Q: A client approached me about a project, but ducked my questions about payment. What should I do?

A: It’s okay to gather details about the project without talking numbers. Certainly don’t let that stage drag on, and never confirm your participation or sign anything until that is a part of the discussion. Work, by definition, pays. This is your livelihood. Good clients will understand and respect that.

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So You Think You Can Freelance? Part 3: Money

25 Feb

Before you read this, did you read Part 1: Mindset and Part 2: Ground Work? Both are critical before you even think about the money. If you have…

Photo courtesy of Anna Magal, Flickr Creative Commons

Photo courtesy of Anna Magal, Flickr Creative Commons

What do you charge?

Be honest. It’s what you want to know, right? If you’re going to take this dive, you need some assurance there will be a little money waiting when you land.

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So You Think You Can Freelance? Part 2: Ground Work

18 Feb

Stop! Don’t go any further unless you’ve read So You Think You Can Freelance? Part I: Mindset. If you have (and still want to know more), please proceed …

Photo courtesy of Ryan Swift, Flickr Creative Commons

Photo courtesy of Ryan Swift, Flickr Creative Commons

Welcome to the land of freelancing! I have a feeling you’ll be very happy here.

The bad news: First you’ll have to do all the tax and business license stuff. The good news: You pretty much only have to do it once (or once in a blue moon).

So let’s get the housekeeping out of the way, shall we?

What’s in a name?

First, think of name for your enterprise. Try to keep it general enough that you can expand into other areas without pigeon holing yourself.

You’ll also want to do Google and USPTO trademark searches to pick a business name that’s not already taken and unique enough to register a Web domain, which we’ll get to shortly.

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So You Think You Can Freelance? Part I: Mindset

11 Feb
Photo courtesy of slworking2, Flickr Creative Commons

Photo courtesy of slworking2, Flickr Creative Commons

Have elaborate fantasies of spending your days in pajamas, checking Facebook, sipping lattes in coffee shops … and maybe jumping into the occasional Slayer match on your lunch break?

Sure. It’s a little of that sometimes.

But I can tell you from five years of experience, you better be able to hang with the following tough guys, or as the saying goes: Don’t quit your day job.

So you think you can freelance? Meet your new work force.

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15 Things I Learned From My First Year on Twitter

7 Jan
"Twitter Bird in Read Life" by Scott Hampson, Flickr Creative Commons

“Twitter Bird in Read Life” by Scott Hampson, Flickr Creative Commons

I recently reached 200+ followers after a year on Twitter. I’m not sure what grade I’d get for that. (Solid C, perhaps?) To be honest, there’s still a good deal I don’t understand about Twitter and how other people use it.

All I can tell you is how I’ve used it and what I’ve learned, in case you’re also interested in taking it for a test flight.

Have anything to add? Still thoroughly confused? Let me know, and I’ll re-tweak (not to be confused with retweet).

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Top 3: Blogs for Moms

29 Oct

Top ThreeWelcome to my new “Top 3” feature.

Today, I’m highlighting three of my favorite fun (and helpful) blogs for moms.

In the future I’ll cover books, video games, board games, TED Talks, crafts, and whatever else suits my (and your) fancy.

So let me know what you’d like to see!

Please note that I have not been approached by any of these sites, nor have I received compensation. I genuinely like them.

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Why I Want My Daughter to Be a Gamer

17 Sep
Dr. Suess

Just another day of work at Cranium.

For many of you, your knee-jerk reaction will be to disagree with that statement. To you, I say, “Let’s look at some facts first, shall we?” I’ll even go so far as to propose that you may change your tune after reading this (if you don’t support games already).

Let me back up a bit …

Professionally, I used to work at Cranium, and I still freelance as a games writer. Personally, I just love games. Both kinds: video and board. So does my husband. He’s a 12-year vet of the video game industry with an affinity for board games akin to Cookie Monster and cookies.

All of those reasons recently led me to PAX Prime, a big Seattle convention for people who make and enjoy games.

I was surprised to hear three themes keep coming up at PAX, and I’m happy to report they all bode well for families who game.

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