Certified SEO copywriter and content writer

Orlando freelance writer and word slinger

Great to meet you. I’m a freelance writer based out of Orlando, Florida.

Do you have a sparkling website that’s only seen by your employees, your spouse, or your mother? Does your business struggle to keep up with content marketing demands?

I’ve been writing professionally for five years. I love working with language. Every business has a story. Does your content communicate your story in a way that inspires action?

I can help. Check out my Need Copy? page for my services or view my recent clips on my Portfolio page.

 “Please be patient with your life, it’s only morning and you’ve still to live your day.”

In the Morning (Barry Gibb) As recorded by Nina Simone on the Saga of the Good Life and Hard Times

Nina Simone/The Jazz SingerCreative Commons License Compose4U via Compfight

In 1954, a young woman named Eunice stepped into the Midtown Bar & Grill in Atlantic City. She was looking for a survival job to get through college and the bar was looking for a singer. She landed the job and transformed into the legendary Nina Simone.

Her survival job changed the course of her life and her career.

 Nina was a pursuing a career as a classical pianist; singing was her side job to pay for classes at Julliard School of Music. She soon began attracting big crowds to the Jersey club because of her eclectic mix of musical styles.

Combining blues, classical, folk, jazz, pop, and show tunes by Cole Porter, and Richard Rodgers, she stamped her personal style across each genre. Her songbook was uniquely Nina.

Please Be Patient With Your Life

Your creative journey will take you to some unexpected places. During this journey you will go through a lot of pitfalls. You may have to work a plethora of survival jobs to pay the bills. If Nina hadn’t been forced to take a survival singing job, the world might have missed out on her vocal mastery.

Creative careers are a rugged path. You may land your dream job only to be laid off or fired. During her career Nina went through many record labels due to creative differences, bad record deals, or poor management, but she made over 40 original albums and was nominated for many Grammy awards.

You’ll have plenty of setbacks. Consider these experiences opportunities to build upon your creative arsenal. The setbacks are your badge of courage. The sobering fact is that any creative career takes time and dogged perseverance.

 So be patient with your creative journey and learn to embrace the pitfalls they will teach you the beauty and discipline of honest perseverance.

It’s Only Morning You’ve Still to Live Your Day

“Critics started to talk about what sort of music I was playing, and tried to find a neat slot to file it away in.” Nina Simone from her 1991 biography I Put a Spell on You

Critics are the weeds in your creative garden and they will show up in full force whenever you push your creative projects.

In her book The Artist’s Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity, Julia Cameron defines such critics as crazy makers calling them “persons who create storm centers” and are always  “long on problems and short on solutions.” Dig them out of your creative garden and throw them in the rubbish pile.

Seek out an honest and supportive creative team and connect with them regularly for feedback.

Throughout her career, Nina did not allow herself to be categorized into a single genre. Her musical talent busted through boundaries.

If you’re starting a business, writing an album, creating a new piece of software, pounding out a book, or whatever your creative path, give yourself plenty of grace for false starts, crappy drafts, total failures and lots of gut-wrenching doubt. But don’t give up on the process.

Remember, it’s the morning of your life – how do you want to live your day?

Action Tip: Do one thing today to embrace your creativity. The act of making the decision to commit to a creative project and following through boosts you from an amateur to a professional. Sign-up for a free business class, start a writing group, take guitar lessons, make the plan to open your bakery.

For further inspiration: Nina Simone website

Nina Simone Biography: I Put a Spell on You

Julia Cameron: The Artist’s Way

 

 


 

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images

image courtesy of ishelby.com

“Writers become working writers not because they literally cannot do anything else or are better writers than anyone else. They simply cannot stand the idea of doing anything else.” Writer, Brad Schreiber

If you’re a full-time freelance writer, you’ve probably discovered that diversity is golden. Whether you’ve been pounding out prose for years or you’re just getting started, here are a few ideas to diversity your offerings and find more clients.

Freelance copy editor

What you do:

Edit fiction and non-fiction manuscripts, e-books, corporate communications, magazines, and copy for trade books. Check for correct spelling, grammar, punctuation and catch inconsistencies throughout the document. Your job is to make the writing shine and be free of errors.

How to break in:

Start by contacting local ad agencies (you can do a quick search on LinkedIn) often they bring in freelancers to help during busy campaigns. If you see an ad agency that is hiring for a full-time copyeditor ask if you can help them out with a few assignments why they are looking for a full-time person. This could turn in to a great part-time gig or at least boost out your copyediting portfolio.

Small print houses or print-on-demand services use freelance copy editors to review their clients manuscripts before printing.

Freelance writer (ok, duh!)

What you do:

Write articles for blogs, consumer or trade magazines, e-books, create website copy, company newsletters or white papers. Any company that has a website needs a writer.

How to break in:

Build a freelance writer website and start a blog. There are tons of freelance designers who can help you put up a simple website and it doesn’t have to cost thousands of dollars.

I found a local freelance designer who built my website for way less than a thousand dollars, gave me some great tutorials to get started, and advises me on maintenance.

Your website is an investment in your business. It’s your digital calling card and your biggest marketing tool.

Next step is to find a niche or two or three and become an expert. Read incessantly about your niche and research what companies sell products to that industry. For instance,if your fascinated by green initiatives you can guest post for green blogs, write for gardening, scientific, and environmental trade magazines and websites, or write for businesses that produce green products.

Go after your niche market by searching through social media sites and start building relationships. You can search through twitter using the # (for example #greenliving) and find people who work in your niche.

Manuscript evaluator

What you do:
Edit and critique fiction and non-fiction e-books, book proposals and manuscripts.

How to break in:
Start with who you know. If you’re excited about slogging through manuscripts than you must have some writer friends. Let them know you’re editing manuscripts and casually slide in “Didn’t you mention one time you were writing a sci-fi novel?”

Connect with local writers groups and offer to conduct a free editing workshop. During the workshop you can pass out your business cards and talk about the manuscript editing process.

Build up your email lead list by starting an editorial blog or weekly newsletter. Another option is to join a freelance editorial firm. These firms do electronic copyediting and usually charge by the page.

Technical writer

What you do:

Write instruction manuals, work with software companies, computer manufacturers, and other tech businesses to take complex information and break it down into every day language for the end user. This is a highly lucrative and growing field.

How to break in:

If you’re not a tech expert become one. Most tech writers start out with experience in a technical field like web design, engineering, or computer science. If you’re not ready to chunk out the change or time for one of these degrees then build up your tech writing portfolio by writing a how to guide for a piece of software or review a new gadget for a tech blog.

Brett Kelly was a big fan of Evernote and decided to write an e-book guide called Evernote Essentials. The guide scored Brett a job with Evernote and he’s still earning a nice income from online sales.

Find tech people online and at trade shows. Head out to a tech trade show and pick up user guides on products or white papers to understand how technical information is put into everyday language.

Self-Publisher

What you do:

Ditch the traditional publishing route and self publish e-books and digital products.

How to break in:

Pretty simple here, you have to write an e-book. Initially, the majority of self-publishers were writers frustrated with the limited powerhouse publishing opportunities. Now many digital entrepreneurs pay ghost writers to pen books on hot topics such as weight loss, travel, and self-help.

If you want to write the book yourself, start with your passion and expertise. Then do some market research. Review the big e-book marketplaces (Google play store, Amazon, Barnes & Noble) what can you add to your subject that’s not already on the market.

Make a customer profile – who is going to buy this e-book? Just like any good marketer you need to understand what’s keeping your audience up at night. If you’re a blogger, what questions come up over and over again in your comment section? Pick one thing and answer the question throughly. Be an expert!

Once you’ve written your e-book find an editor (or a writer friend to do a close read) and a designer. The last thing you want after spending time writing is to deliver a product that looks cheap and is full of punctuation errors.

Extra tip: Connect with other professional writers and editors by joining a professional association.
National Association of Independent Writers and Editors
Editorial Freelancers Association

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Where does a writer’s passion come from? Joyce Carol Oates is one of the most prolific American writers.

American Author

Joyce Carol Oates – American Author

In her career she has written novels, short stories, plays, essays, poetry books, and has a seemingly endless stream of inspiration and manifests itself into beautiful story ideas. She is inspired by every day occurrences and big news items, by missing her home city, and she even finds ideas while running.

 

By far, I have read more of her books than any other writer, and I cannot keep up with her outpouring of work. She writes a book nearly every year and never shrinks back on literary quality or page turning plots. She examines the underbelly of society and gives a voice to those who do not know how to express themselves in a clear way.

A lot of her characters move through life with a rapid inner dialogue that rages and a small voice that they show to society. It’s cool. She offers great lessons on how language, ideas, and experience are assembled to create art.

 

Here are some quotes from her book The Faith of A Writer

“Inspiration and energy and even genius are rarely enough to make art: for prose fiction is also a craft, and craft must be learned, whether by accident or design. 

“Young or beginning writers must be urged to read widely, ceaselessly, both classics and contemporaries, for without an immersion in the history of the craft, one is doomed to remain an amateur: an individual for whom enthusiasm is ninety-nine percent of the creative effort.”

“Art is the highest expression of the human spirit.”

“The individual voice is the communal voice.”

“The regional voice is the universal voice.”

“Write your heart out. Never be ashamed of your subject, and of your passion for your subject.”

“Your ‘forbidden” passions are likely to be the fuel for your writing.”

“Without all these ill-understood drives you might be a superficially happier person, and a more involved citizen of your community, but it isn’t likely that you will create anything of substance.” 

“Read widely, and without apology.”

“Write your heart out.” 

My method is one of continuous revision; while writing a long novel, every day I loop back to earlier sections, to rewrite, in order to maintain a consistent fluid voice; when I write the final two or three chapters of a novel, I write them simultaneously with the rewriting of the opening of the novel, so that, ideally at least, the novel is like a river uniformly flowing, each passage concurrent with all the others.

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