The new improved work ethic is definitely helping me get more done (and paid work is picking up again, which is awesome) but it’s also making me feel under pressure and a bit overwhelmed, so I think I still need to think about framing it in the best way – but still, a good week!
I started my day with a sample edit for a potentially huge paid project, though I knew going in that the author likely wouldn’t be able to pay my standard rate. I really enjoyed the extract and I’m keen to get the project, so I see potentially tough decisions ahead! [Unfortunately, the author decided I wasn’t a good fit.]
Next was looking at this week’s Revision Club critique submission.
I thought about getting in touch with a good friend I hadn’t spoken to in nearly two weeks – but a voice inside my head said, “Your new work ethic schedule does not include chatting with your friend!” I told myself not to be an idiot and contacted her anyway.
After lunch, I went back to my husband Dave’s comments on my fifth novel, Dividing the Darkness. I crossed the halfway mark – but I’m still fluctuating wildly between thinking, “I believe in this story and I really want to do a good job of revisions,” and, “Oh, wow – this is going to be so much work and I really don’t want to have to do it.” So, no different from normal, then!
Next was starting to read the novel opening of one of the TL;DR writers, who had asked for feedback on narrative flow, pace and emotional connection.
Later, Dave and I finally got around to discussing some feedback I paid for about my author website, maybe 18 months ago or more… We updated the site in some important ways and I put together a list of other clear action points to do at a later date. It felt so good to tick this off the list because it had been hanging over our heads for so long!
At the marvellous Editors Learn Together Unconference in October, I won the giveaway of a free place on a Networking for Freelance Editors course, which was awesome. The course kicked off today, so I logged onto the learning platform and went through all the introductory material, with a view to launching into the course proper tomorrow.
I actually sat at my desk today – at least while I was doing my paid editing for the day. This was line edits on a book about football – though I discovered by chance partway through that sections had been lifted directly from the internet, so I let the client (publisher not author) know…
I went through a few more of Dave’s comments on Darkness, then attended this week’s Revision Club session. I was able to report that I had achieved my goal of working on the novel four days out of seven – but only because I did a sneaky fifteen minutes right before the call…
The session was awesome, as ever – but the crackling sound on the laptop came back during it, which was a major downer (I’ve been trying to get it fixed for two months and three more-than-week-long periods at the repair shop…).
Later, I read more of the TL;DR writer’s novel and worked on the Networking for Freelance Editors course.
I wrote a review of a very cute board game my brother gave me for my birthday, which he bought just because it was so cute – but it turned out also to be quite fun and interesting!
I spent quite a lot of the day actively stopping myself from pre-emptively offering a new regular editing client a discount to try and guarantee that she would give me more work… [She ended up giving me our previously agreed rate for her next [proje
I got my pre-work morning routine down to less than 90 minutes today and sat down to start at 8:40am – even though I didn’t have any paid editing to do! Then, of course, I faffed around with email and online communities for a bit…
Instead of client work, I wrote all the scripts for Stanley Bear’s online content for December, and read the next section of the TL;DR writer’s novel. I was meant to write my descriptive pieces in answer to this week’s Writing Club prompts from Dave next, but I really wasn’t feeling it – and then my comic book client came to the rescue with a new instalment, so I did that instead.
After that, I went back to the Networking course and worked my way through the next couple of lessons. Based on that, I contacted a few previous clients to ask if they have any more work, which resulted in a great conversation with one of them relating to marketing my upcoming nonfiction book, Meditations, and a possible opportunity to give a talk somewhere. So, networking result!
I nearly gave up on the rest of my list after lunch, but managed to knuckle down to reviewing more of Dave’s comments on Darkness. I noted that they’re getting snarkier as the book progresses, which I totally understand because they’re largely pointing out the same thing over and over again – but that’s good for me, because I only have to write each point down once (even if it does mean I have to address the issue at multiple points throughout the story…).
I started today with reviewing a video script for one of the TL;DR writers, about the key to great storytelling. I felt bad because her request had been up for a couple of days and nobody had commented on it, so I decided to read it – and not only gave her some (hopefully) helpful feedback, but also gained some insight into how to potentially improve Darkness. So I added some more notes to my revision plan – which perhaps counts as ‘working on the novel’ today…?
Next, I posted Stanley’s latest blog and sent out his fortnightly newsletter for him.
Then I started work on a new paid editing project that I was assigned the night before – hurrah! – making dialogue sound more natural for an interactive romance game. It was pretty hard because the dialogue was actually already pretty good, so I had to think about each line very carefully. It was also quite complicated to follow the plot, since it was ‘choose your own adventure’ so there were multiple different paths through the story. So, definitely a challenge – but a fun one! Though it did take me a lot longer to do the first section than I anticipated – and the overall amount of text was quite a bit longer than the client had said – so I messaged her and asked if there was any more budget to increase the fee.
I wrote a couple of reviews of a dance show we went to last night and the book I finished on the way home.
Later, I read some more of the TL;DR writer’s novel and Dave and I looked at some passages from Perdido Street Station to analyse the descriptions for Writing Club.
I’m benefitting massively from the online editor communities I’ve discovered recently – several new friends with lots in common, tons of recommendations of resources and marketing strategies, people highlighting events and courses that might be useful…
It’s amazing how much you can gain just from a small action that then balloons out into endless opportunities and possibilities!
Today, I signed up for a ‘networking for creatives’ workshop next week, which sounds like it should be both fun and useful – who knows where that may lead?
Later, I thought about a possible entry for an upcoming novel opening competition and also uploaded the latest episode of the podcast, which made me a bit anxious because we haven’t recorded the next one yet, and I like to be two ahead…
I also wrote a review of the latest Marvel movie, which we went to see on Friday.