Jan 26, 2004 -- It's a Play Day... part 5 of 5
Volume 3, Issue 4
The weekly ezine with a road map for
"Be better writers today
than we were yesterday."
Thank you to our subscribers, new and old! We crossed the magic
line with over 1500 subscribers this week -- thank you! A special welcome to our new subscribers from the Worldwide Freelance Writer and National Association of Women Writers.
Thought for the Week - It's a Play Day
Whew! We made it! The end of the month. Are you feeling a little more organized and ready to tackle the new year? We've got some outstanding resources this week, and you even get a Play Day in January (see the 31st below). Be sure and treat yourself, and if you're working on a book, check out the new web site: Book-in-a-Week.com .
This 30-day plan includes links to my ebook, The Organized
Writer: 30 Days to More Time, More Money, and Less
Frustration. They are listed below as BOOK:. You can buy
it for only $14.95 (instant download, no shipping) at: http://www.booklocker.com/books/937.html
I also have a couple more tax resources to pass along to you. Julian Block, attorney and syndicated columnist, has written "Tax Tips For Freelance Writers, Photographers And Artists." (Yes, it is THAT Julian Block!) The book answers those tricky freelance questions like "Can I record unpaid
income as bad debts?" and "What if my 1099 includes
reimbursed expenses?" He also explains some of the 2003 tax law changes and how freelancers can use depreciation.
One of the biggest hurdles for freelancers is maintaining a business status. Block explains what's important to consider, how to get free help from the IRS and how to legitimately hire your children to help with your business.
I particularly like how this book addresses some of the most complicated issues facing freelancers today. To get your copy, send $9.95 for an e-mailed copy or $14.95 for a postpaid, printed copy to Julian Block, 3 Washington Sq., #1-G, Larchmont, NY 10538.
You can also take Julian's continuing ed course called "Tax Tips For Freelance Writers, Photographers And Artists." The New School in New York City and several colleges in neighboring Westchester County will offer the one-session course in April and May. For more information, contact Julian at
==> Book-in-a-Week: The Power of BIC, HOK, and TAM
==> Make It Relevant
==> Clothing Flow: In, Out and Around
Mon, Jan 26, 2004
Day Twenty-Six - Write and Market Your Book!
How much writing can you do in a week?
What if you promised yourself to write so many words this week? What if you then promised some friends you would write that many words? Would you be more likely to keep your promise with your friends peeking over your shoulder?
to find out what BIC, HOK and TAM can do for your writing next month.
For one week each month, the site encourages its members to set writing goals and track them online with other members. The next session starts February 2nd.
Day 26 Checklist
___ 1. Check out book-in-a-week.com
Tue, Jan 27, 2004
Day Twenty-Seven - Improve Your Skills
How will you improve your skills in 2004? One of the most
powerful ways to improve your writing is to improve your
Here are a few of my favorite tips for speeding your
1. Use your finger to guide your eye down the page.
2. Read just the headings.
3. If you have a long page of text, try just reading the
intro, the first sentence of each paragraph, and the
conclusion (if the writer did their job, you should be able
to get at least 85% of the article this way).
4. Convert the font whenever you can. Plain text in
Courier (often used in email) is the most difficult to
read. Copy the text to your word processing program, and
change the font to a more readable one like Times Roman.
RoadtoReading.org has put together a study guide and
cassette tapes to teach speed reading and improve
comprehension skills. If I had one wish for you for 2003,
it would be improve your writing by reading more and
EBOOK: Day 27. Acrobat, Ctrl+N, p. 152. Paper p. 146.
1. How do you learn best? Take the quiz to determine your
2. Find out about the other "speed" every writer needs.
3. Get links to ten online course sites.
Day 27 Checklist
____ 1. Improve your speed reading.
____ 2. Find out how you learn, and consider online courses.
Wed, Jan 28, 2004
Day Twenty-Eight - Make Your Household Hum (so you have
more time to write!)
How's your clothing flow? I can hear you now, "Julie, what ARE you talking about?"
Clothing flow is the path clothing takes in, out and around your house. The basis for this concept came from my cost accounting class when we discussed the best ways to keep inventory and goods flowing into an organization at just the best possible time. The best time had several considerations: you need enough inventory to meet all your orders, but you don't want more around than necessary.
So back to your clothing.... it operates in much the same way. First, how does your clothing flow IN? Each season you probably need at least one shopping trip to bring in the new. Do you also get clothes on birthdays and holidays?
All this stuff coming IN needs to be balanced with an opposite amount going OUT, and this is one of the weaknesses in my house. The old, too small, out-of-style clothing keeps piling up so one of my goals for this year is to do a better job of getting the old stuff on to a new home (Don't forget to track your donations for your tax return. Here's a handy list to help with prices:
Finally, AROUND the house. I don't know about you, but getting dirty clothes into hampers, to the washer and dryer, folded, and back to its home before we need to wear it becomes a daily mission. The best weeks are those when I do all the ironing in one big session, and get the laundry folded and put away as soon as it comes out of the dryer. Good luck with your own clothing flow!
EBOOK: Day 28. Acrobat, Ctrl+N, page 157. Paper, page 151.
Get a ton of tips on how to streamline common household
chores - food shopping, preparation and cleanup, laundry,
paying bills, and cleaning and clutter - and find more time
Day 28 Checklist
____ 1. Streamline your household chores so you have more time to write.
Thu, Jan 29, 2004
Day Twenty-Nine - Rework Your Time
Now that you've completed the 30-day plan, what are the
most important changes you need to make in your writing
EBOOK: Day 29. Acrobat, Ctrl+N, page 162. Paper, page
1. Answer the five most important questions to ask
yourself about your time.
2. Answer the five questions you should consider each
Day 29 Checklist
____ 1. Rework your time.
____ 2. Consider the five questions for each week.
Mini-HTML Course: What is CSS?
CSS stands for Cascading Style Sheet, and it is a way to keep your formatting consistent across your web site. You create a special CSS file, and then reference it on each page of your site.
EBOOK: Day 30. Acrobat, Ctrl+N, p. 164. Paper p. 158.
1. Use the the productivity measurements to determine how
far you've come in the past month.
2. Design a plan of attack for any tasks you did not
Day 30 Checklist
_____ 1. Make list of outstanding tasks.
_____ 2. Assess your productivity measurements.
Mini-Copywriting Course: Make It Relevant!
Two simple steps will dramatically improve your copywriting:
1. Rewrite your "I" sentences to "you" sentences, or even better, "you" questions. Similar to a regular conversation, you (and your writing!) will be much more interesting the more you focus on your reader.
2. Get rid of the extra stuff. I started reading a book for writers last week and gave up on it. Why? Because the author included too many details about the background of the people he mentioned in his book. He went on and on about credentials -- but instead of making me more interested in his subjects, all the extra stuff lost my interest. Step back, and make a pass through your writing to see what you can cut.
Sat, Jan 31, 2004
Day Thirty-One - Play Day!!
Did you ever have Play Days in elementary school? We
always had one at the end of the year to celebrate the
school year and play all day long!
It's time to celebrate! You reached the end of the
thirty-day get organized plan.
Pick one of your favorite rewards, and have a party today
--even if you didn't get to everything.
So how did you you do? Have you written more in 2004 so far? One month down and 11 to go. You are all set!! Happy writing!! Julie
Writer.com? You'll love the ebook.....
"Julie, I love your book. I have read (or at least opened) more than a trunk load of books about writing over the years. Yours is the first I have seen that gives readers so much in one place. For me, the Master List and putting that together was more than worth the cost."
-- David Stoddard
Motivational writer, trainer and publisher of the
Terrific Life Concepts ezine.
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