After a long anticipated wait I attended a one day course on ‘Getting your website found’. Taking the course in December as I originally planned without a website would not have been nearly as helpful. The course was far more ‘techie’ than I thought it would be, but it was accompanied by useful handouts that I can peruse as required. There are many tricks to the trade when it comes to Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), but I was relieved to find that some of my instincts were correct. Writing does not lend itself to every social media site available, phew. Equally, some sites require more ‘feeding’ than others to encourage flows of traffic. Not for the first time, I sensed the careful balance required between creating work and the work to drum up interest. This will require careful consideration when I choose the next social media platform I want to engage with.
My head was still buzzing when I returned home. I thought seriously about how to keep things ticking over and actually work if forced to travel mid week. A lightbulb switched on, figuratively, then I got out of bed, as I realised the necessity for a travel writing kit. Writing materials required are minimal and don’t take up much space. But it’s the other stuff, a never ending supply of herbal tea, various snacks and soft jazz in the background that help move the work along. I’m evoking a dear friend now who commuted to various places of work with a brightly coloured, striped trolley containing all the equipment needed to work and personalise the environment. I’m remembering the marble fragrance burner she used, a memento from home that I guess helped to ground, familiarise and calm the senses, adding value to a physical work space. It made perfect sense and it’s my turn to carve a similar ‘working away headspace’ for myself.
My walking boots and bottled water are already in the boot of the car, subconsciously I’ve already been preparing. This is part of what it takes to be self-employed, you have to be ready. I no longer have the luxury of dropping everything and running to someone’s aid, I have to take my work with me. In this technological world there’s no excuse to not be available wherever you are. The added bonus means being seen for who I am, a writer. I was pleased with this progressive move forward, but there was more to come.
I attended the weekly job club with half an intention of applying for a part-time position suggested to me. Thankfully I was taken off track by a conversation with a career and business coach. After a short discussion I was invited to a Networking group, advised to increase my social media connectivity for businesses, encouraged to get business cards (at least 50), instructed to prepare a spiel and have a price list in mind. It’s fair to say my mind was blown!
Twice in as many days I’d been told I was ready. Mild protests about not being ‘quite there yet’ have been politely ignored and I’m being jostled into position. As if that wasn’t enough excitement, I am attending a Popular Fiction Summer school for a few days.
The onward trajectory did not stop there, I was invited to enter for a Website of the Year award, so I entered. The pace has stepped up and I’m going with it.