>Housekeeping

>I’m tying up a few loose ends and sorting out a couple of things to help me get back into the rhythm of freelancing again.

I’ve contacted the Writers’ Bureau to see if I can re-activate my course there. It was a course I didn’t really need but I wanted to do it, but it always got pushed to one side if there was something more important (i.e. income-generating) to do or if I simply didn’t have time.

I’ve also applied to the British College of Journalism for a 12 week online course. They may turn me down yet, because of my pre-existing background. They’ve been sending me details of their courses for months and each time the price has gone down and down and down, but the timing was never right. Now I’ve got it for half price and I start (hopefully) on 6 June (which is also when the decorator starts).

If accepted, and if WB send me my details again, researching and doing the assignments should get me back into the swing of things and the assignments won’t be wasted because they’ll be (hopefully) saleable. And I’ll get feedback.

I’ve ordered the Writers’ Market Deluxe Edition 2011. This is the American equivalent of our Writers’ and Artists’ Yearbook and it helped me land the single, best paying writing assignment I ever had (before the annuals). The deluxe edition includes the directory – I do like the smell and feel of the book – and acces to writersmarket.com at one bargain bundle price.

And I ordered a replacement all-in-one copier/scanner/colour printer. It cost less than £29 (apx $46) and I’ll use it for all of my letterheads and other stationery and for scanning and making jpgs. The one I have is quite old and leaves grubby marks all over the paper. We’ve cleaned it and we’ve sprayed the paper with a purpose-made solution, but it’s just dirty. I can’t have letterheads or cuttings going out dirty. I have a laser printer for actual, good quality mono submissions, and I’ll use the dirty printer for drafts until the inks run out.

With this and the work I’ve ordered on the house, I now need to stop and try it out a while. I’ve tried to prioritise and I’ve done things like overhaul the car instead of look for a new one or arrange cosmetic work on the house rather than anything major.

I’m going to have some time on my hands until I get going again, and while I have money in the bank this is the ideal time to re-train, refresh, and write novels or anything else that will go out on spec. I’ll also settle down to Devon’s 5 Stories in 10 Weeks again as this is a great resource for sticking a rocket up the backside …

This week I have books to proof and an annual to write, plus whatever admin I can get ahead on. I’m emptying my office at work gradually. When that’s done, I’ll get back to de-cluttering the home office.

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10 thoughts on “>Housekeeping

  1. >Why would the journalist course turn you down? Seems a bit strange. I'd be interested to know how you get on with the WB course. You hear good stories about it, but they could just have good PR!The interregnum period is always a bit weird, waiting for life part 2 to start.

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  2. >They reserve the right, for whatever reason, and the only reason I can think is that I already have 26 years experience. They've accepted, though, so maybe they needed the money.WB course is, in my opinion, the best of the home study courses, and this from an ex-tutor of one of the others. I've taught one and been a student on 3. Last time I checked they still didn't have an end date like the others do, and you get good course materials. I liked their assignments too because they get you working straight away, something I always used to do in my own courses.

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  3. >As usual, you sound like you've got everything well in hand. I'm glad that you find the booklet helpful. I'll actually be teaching it in real time at Savvy Authors at some point next year — it's on my Workshop page.

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  4. >I began the WB course 20 years ago and had to stop for various reasons. About 8 years ago I wrote to them to start again and got all set up – right before my life imploded and writing was the last thing on my mind. I've been thinking for a while now about contacting them again but I'm not quite sure I have the nerve. I have heard good things about them though so maybe I'll be brave enough!

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  5. >I stopped and re-started before too, and they were great. But I'm not sure how many times we can do that. I've not heard from them yet, but if you drop them an email too, it might be worth comparing notes.

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