Recent work: Writing and photos

I’ve often heard that writers are masters of the written word while photographers hold domain over what’s visually appealing. But I sometimes think it’s nice when the two can mingle and a person can be creative in both arenas.

I give you my photos.

Rick Jackson of ELA Group talks to Columbia residents about revitalization.

Rick Jackson of ELA Group talks to Columbia residents about revitalization.

Columbia residents, business owners strive to revitalize – Story for LNP

I got to snap a few shots of presenters during this public meeting in Columbia. The topic focused on revitalizing a borough that has great historical significance but needs help moving into the future.

Carla Christopher-Waid performs during Playback Theatre.

Carla Christopher-Waid performs during Playback Theatre.

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Independent contractors: Determine your worth

Photo courtesy of TaxCredits.net via Flickr

Photo courtesy of TaxCredits.net via Flickr

One of the biggest challenges for me as a freelance writer is to determine my worth.

Not only the worth of me as a person – based on my education, experience and expertise – but my worth as a writer and the value in each word that gets written across the page.

As I check off the five months of freelancing on my calendar, I’m reminded that determining my worth is what will keep me afloat and independent as a freelance journalist.

Sure, I’ve taken the jobs that pay very little. But I’ve also taken jobs that pay eight times as much.

There is a fine balance to all of this, especially as a new freelancer who is gaining ground, expanding my market and figuring out how to make my dream job my dream career.

Here are a few things to keep in mind as you determine your worth as a freelancer. Continue reading

The power of an hour: What can be accomplished by waking up earlier

bed

Getting up early has been a struggle for most of my life.

If there wasn’t a work obligation or an early morning college class forcing me to crawl out from the sheets, I felt no reason to wake up before I was perfectly ready. While I am an advocate for getting plenty of rest, I also believe there is a lot of power behind going to bed a bit earlier and wake up at a reasonable time.

Working from home has given me the flexibility to wake up whenever I like. The problem with sneaking out of bed between 8 and 9 a.m. is that by the time I get my coffee, get awake and start feeling like a normal person, it might as well be lunch time. And, to be honest, I’m ready for a nap at that point. Continue reading

How to become your own brand

branding

I had never really thought about branding myself much when I left college and entered the professional world. Yes, I wanted  to market my skills and expertise, but the term “brand” had never crossed my mind. At the time, landing a job in that moment was the biggest priority. Who knew what would happen after that?

But I’ve learned that branding is something that is done over time. It’s something I must work on each day, even if I’m not looking for a new job or trying to dramatically change my life in any way.

If you work hard to brand yourself the benefits will follow. Some of the immediate benefits of branding are easy to attain, while others will pop up and surprise you. One of the most recent benefits of branding I found was that someone saw my work, liked it and wanted to find out how I could do the same type of work for them. They were able to find me and learn about my expertise  thanks to a few dedicated hours of branding. Continue reading