Staying Organized When You’re Working Anywhere

With great freedom comes great responsibility. And great risk. When you’re working on your own time, in your own environment, it’s not hard to succumb to your worst propensities towards disorganization and laziness.

It’s not uncommon for freelancers to have multiple employers and projects on their plates—all while working from a home office. With crisscrossing deadlines and obligations to keep track of, learning tricks to staying on top of it all is absolutely critical to completing your tasks, maintaining a reputation of reliability with your employers, and ultimately paying your bills.

Here are a few critical pointers to include in your strategy right from the bat if you’re new to freelancing, or to incorporate into your existing habits if you’re a seasoned freelancer in need of revamping.

Must-haves for Every Freelancer

  • Regular daily schedule
  • Realistic workload
  • Localized note repository
  • Prioritized personal time
  • Healthy email habits
  • Intuitive financial tracking software
  • Reliable, go-to gigs

The Breakdown

Regular Daily Schedule & Prioritized Personal Time

If your schedule is up in the air, everything else goes out the window right along with it. Alternatively, by blocking out portions of your day just for work, you’ll have a set schedule to share with your family and loved ones so that they’ll know not to bother you during those predetermined timeframes.

A set schedule also allows you to define the distinction between your work life and your home life, which can get blurred when you’re working from home. It may start to feel like you don’t have a life outside of work at all if you haven’t made it clear with yourself when you’re allowed to live it. Conversely, “work time” can blur into “personal time” and become less productive than a scenario where the lines were boldly drawn.

That being said, make sure that you are also prioritizing your personal time, now that you’ve distinguished it from your work time, so that you don’t burn yourself out.

Realistic Workload

Defining “realistic” for your unique situation is going to take some experience as you get to know your skillsets and turnaround speed. Once you have an understanding of how long it takes you to do certain projects, you can accumulate a realistic amount of projects that won’t overwhelm you or impair your ability to produce quality content. It’s okay to be picky about what you take on, and to say no to work that you simply won’t be able to complete to your satisfaction within the determined timeframe.

Localized Note Repository

This will depend on your preferences. Do you like physical notepads or digital programs like Evernote? Which is going to be the most feasible for you? Which will you be most likely to use consistently? The main point is this: always, always write down your creative ideas for topics and projects, and keep it all in one place.

Healthy Email Habits

While keeping separate folders for all of your contacts and subcategories for your projects is a fantastic idea, remember that organizing your daily influx of emails into these folders is going to take a significant chunk out of your allotted work time. Leave that for after you’ve replied to important emails from your clients and employers. You never want to keep them waiting and it will help to strengthen your reputation of reliability.

Intuitive Tracking Software for Your Finances

As a freelancer, you are your own HR team and Accounts Payable. In order to keep a set daily schedule, you should keep a standing appointment with yourself every week to review your finances. Using a paid bookkeeping service instead of an Excel sheet will provide you with hugely valuable tools and features come tax season.

Reliable, Go-to Gigs

In the course of your experiences as a freelancer, work extra hard to maintain those relationships that you like. Prioritize the projects that promise additional work for the future. Securing those concrete gigs, including—if necessary—a part time job on the side, will provide you with some security in a characteristically insecure profession.


Feloni, Richard. “7 Tips for Freelancers To Stay Organized.” (December 12, 2014.)

Online Writing Tips for the Cool and Adventurous

There are many types of online writing because—even online—there are many types of readers. There are still readers who will read for pleasure (blogs, ebooks, etc.) and for them, long, prosey text is appropriate. But for marketing/sales text, there are a few guidelines you will be wise to follow as you write.

Follow these guidelines to avoid repelling your online browsers and up your chances of converting your readers into buyers of your product or message (this doesn’t just mean spending actual money, but it means persuading your readers to your cause or point of view).

9 Tips to Write Compellingly Online

  1. Pay special attention to headlines
  2. State your main point first
  3. Keep paragraphs short
  4. Convert any type of series into a list, bulleted or numbered
  5. Parallel lists only
  6. Online copy can be personal; use I, you, and we
  7. Use active, not passive, voice
  8. To exude authority, use the imperative
  9. Use hyperlinks, bolded text, and italics to highlight important keywords and phrases.


Your readers will scan this first before reading anything else, so pretending that the headline is all they’ll read, what information do you want them to walk away with? This information should be in the headline.

Give Your Main Point Priority

Don’t lollygag when you’re getting to your main point. Your readers won’t have the patience to wait. Jump right into the meat of your post and starting talking about what’s important.

No Long Paragraphs

You want your page to be both scannable and welcoming. Blocky paragraphs are intimidating and unattractive to your busy readers. If you keep your paragraphs short and palatable, you won’t go wrong.

Use Lists!

If you find yourself list out anything in a sentence, convert to an actual list to make it more scannable. The eyes love consuming lists so give your readers what they like to look at. Keep your lists parallel.

Don’t Be Afraid to Get Personal

You only want to avoid informally addressing your readers if you’re writing something official or academic, and even then there may be exceptions. Think about what’s appropriate for your audience and make the call on your own. They are after all, your audience.

Be Active

The passive voice is a drag and has a tendency to get boring. Don’t get stuck using phrases like “Mistakes were made” or “a fire was started.” What this does is remove the subject of the sentence and introduces ambiguity. Keep your text direct.

Exude Authority

Use the imperative to create an impression of authority and action. This means giving commands and writing with confidence.

Highlight Important Text

Italicize, bold, or better yet, hyperlink your keywords and other important phrases that you want to stick out to your readers. The hyperlinks should go to related posts on content on your site or blog.


Questions or comments? Drop a line in the comments below!


Nordquist, Richard. “Twelve Tips for Improving Online Writing.” (January 30, 2015.)

Why Freelancing is Great for Stay-at-Home Parents

The allure of freelancing is generally freedom, right? You get to set your schedule, handpick your projects, and work from anywhere with an Internet connection. The world is your oyster! As a parent, these same benefits can come in especially handy when you’re juggling the rigmarole of child-rearing with the tedium of income-earning.

As you’re fine-tuning your freelancing game plan, here are a few other benefits you may not have even considered yet.

Perks of Freelancing for Parents!

  1. Keeps you sharp
  2. Breaks up the monotony
  3. Great writing practice for larger goals
  4. Creates a versatile and prolific portfolio

Stay Mentally Fit

Many mothers, and even fathers, who spend the bulk of their days alone with the kids struggle with what has been termed “mommy brain.” Even daddies can develop “mommy brain” if they’re the ones assuming the stay-at-home parenting role. There’s more to “mommy brain” than simply the changes your mind and body undergo when there’s a human developing inside of it. It has to do with lack of mental stimulus that can occur when you’re interacting regularly with infant and toddler-aged lifeforms. You’re not exactly being challenged mentally and before you know it, you’ve been reduced to their level.

Freelancing gives you a way to work out your articulation skills as well as your vocabulary. It also gives you an outlet for goal setting and the reward of reaching those goals.

Do Away With Monotony

Depending on your portfolio, areas of specialty, and interests, your freelancing projects are going to be varied and diverse, giving you an exciting outlet for your creativity. You will also begin to make connections with other like-minded professionals as you network and join forums and groups. This will give you a sense of community and social interaction that you will often have to do without during long stretches of time as a stay-at-home parent.

Beginner Steps

Many writers and authors start out with freelancing as they work on their larger goals of authorship or screenwriting. What this does is give you the chance to hone your craft. Words are your tool and how well you wield it depends entirely on the amount of practice you’ve had with it. Write, write, write, and your big writing dreams will become more and more attainable as your skills grow to match them.

You’re a parent now, and that may have been one of your dreams as well, but you don’t have to accept that it must be your only dream.

Build that Awesome Portfolio

Be flexible in the projects you take on. The highest paying may not be the most enjoyable, but you’ll need to take them on to keep bread on the table, but throw in some varied gigs that will excite and entertain you. Not only will this flesh out your portfolio, but it will give you something to look forward to or distract yourself with when you require a break from those harder, less enjoyable projects.


Overall, it’s a great boon to parents to have creative and productive outlets away from the task of parenthood. Many have found that to split their time gives them more satisfaction in the professional world as well as the domestic. You will all-around be a better mother or father as well as a better freelance writer. Enjoy!

We’d love to hear how you’ve handled freelancing and parenthood. How has it been the most satisfying or frustrating? Share in the comments!


Carpenter, Courtney. “Balancing Motherhood with Writing: The Benefits of Freelancing.” (February 6, 2015.)

Top Ten Best Places To Find Writing Inspiration This Summer

We’re all guilty of sitting in a room with our eyes fixated to the laptop while our fingers relentlessly tap away at keys, but is that really the best situation for writing great content?

There’s nothing inspiring about writing in the same place all the time, so one common method authors use to revamp their creativity is by simply changing their environment. New York Times columnist Carol Kaufmann wrote this piece back in 2013 on how writing outdoors can stimulate the senses and enhance creativity.

If you want to improve the quality of your content and find writing inspiration, try changing your environment. Not sure where to go? Here are our top ten best places to find writing inspiration for you to try out while you craft your latest blog post.

Where To Go To Find Writing Inspiration


Local Parks
This is one of the most relaxing and inspirational locations for writers. With a fully charged laptop, spend a few hours writing at a nearby park. As you observe all the activities and life happening around you, you’re bound to strike inspiration. Just make sure to leave your cell phone at home and be free of all technological distractions.



We all know libraries are a great place to write because they’re quiet and full of resources, so why don’t we write there more often? Pack up your laptop and head to your local library but this time, picture your work on the self. Is it enticing enough for you to pick it up and check it out? Bounce ideas off of librarians, more often than not they’ll be excited to help you find inspiration too.


Up In The Mountains
If you find it hard to resist the temptations of technology, next time you write try taking your computer up to your favorite hiking spot. The fresh air is guaranteed to inspire you and the workout you’ll get reaching your destination will help clear your mind. Take some water, bug spray, a chair, and whatever else you need to be distraction-free and in the perfect zone for creativity.


Public Transit

Many people find inspiration while writing on the bus or train, being surrounded by strangers picking up intercepted conversations may have something to do with it. The next time you find yourself riding public transit, treat it as an opportunity to find inspiration and get your thoughts down in writing.


The Mall

It’s crowded, busy, and smells like pretzels, but it’s also a place to be inspired. There are hundreds of people who traverse through the mall every week, put yourself in the middle of that and contemplate. Among hundreds of very different people, what makes you the most different and unique? What do you stand for? Think about what you want to project in this world and find creative gold.


Waiting Rooms
When it’s nothing but you, your thoughts, and a couple complementary magazines, there’s nothing else you should do but find inspiration to write. Take whatever is around you and brainstorm for story ideas. See a woman trying to quiet her rambunctious child? That’s a blog post waiting to happen! Take your creative expertise and put it to the test the next time you’re stuck in a waiting room, it’ll pass the time faster than Candy Crush we promise.


At A Market

Whether it’s a market for farmers, crafters, or fleas, you’ll meet some talented people with stories that will help you find inspiration. Every vendor at these fairs has a story and will enjoy the opportunity to tell it to someone. It’s a great opportunity to take photos and connect with the community – thus inspiration is bound to be found.



It may sound crazy, but where else can you go to find creative inspiration that you can (1) be distraction-free and (2) be in a comfortable, new environment? If you can’t escape the distractions of everyday life, the best thing you could do is to invest in your idea and spend a night in a hotel room immersed in thought. If you’re not getting work done anywhere else, it could be a good way to force yourself to catch up.


Historic Districts

What better way to find inspiration is there other than traversing through history? Visit your town’s historic districts and think about how much has changed. Think about the stories there are to learn and the stories that were lost. What does it take to stand the test of time? Is your writing timeless and unforgettable, or is it something that will be remade into something better in a few years?


Headlines, Billboards, and Advertisements

Okay, so maybe this one isn’t a place – but still a good way to find inspiration nonetheless. Headlines, billboards, and advertisements show us things that are emotional, trending, or newsworthy. These are all core components of a quality blog post, so rather than ignoring them, look for an opportunity to write something great.


We hope our list helps you find a perfect place for inspiration to strike! Where is the strangest place you’ve found inspiration? Let us know in the comments and thank you for reading!