Spill It: What’s Your Next Move?

I’ve never been one to make a fuss out of New Year’s Eve, or to saddle myself with once-a-year resolutions. I reevaluate my goals almost every month, allowing each day to be a new beginning.

Still, after the overeating and undersleeping that is the holidays, I admit I feel especially compelled to ask myself: What’s next?

Otherwise, gravity and lack of inertia might keep me from ever resuming work again.

I feel especially dazed and bloated today. Last week, I baked seven pound cakes and six varieties of Christmas cookies. I chopped and pureed six cauliflowers and trimmed and roasted six pounds of Brussels sprouts to bring to Christmas dinner (an affair that lasted 8.5, long hours). Then, the day after Christmas, I hosted a dinner party at my condo. Because — apparently — I wasn’t yet tired of cooking and stuffing my face.

For the love of god, I need something new and exciting to pull me back into my work. So what’ll it be? [Read more…]

Product Placement: Magazine Filing

[$21.95, Crate & Barrel]

On December 31, I posted a New Year’s resolution over at Modern Materialist, wherein I vowed to start pitching again. At the moment, my goal is to have 10 pitches out at any given moment (setting a specific goal is so helpful; Rachel Rose over at Notes on a Whim is doing the same thing).

I’m already up to five, so I’m feeling good about things. But I have to admit, my collection of magazine back issues has dwindled considerably, mostly because my filing system for them was crap, so I had to recycle, recycle, recycle.

I’d like to set up a new system for keeping the back issues I so often refer to when pitching. After the jump, some pretty-as-heck magazine files:

[Read more…]

10 Things I Did Wrong In 2008


2008 started out strong. I was finishing up an internship at Material Media (of Nerve and Babble fame), and gearing up to take on more hours at the New York Sun. And then I was chosen to be a blogger for Modern Materialist.

Soon after that, I realized that — only six months after leaving my full-time job in academic book publishing — I had matched my previous salary. I reveled in my blogging gig, was content with my regular copy editing gig at the Sun, and was also doing freelance work for several book publishers. I even got the occasional writing clip. I began planning for more.

I continued my self-education, and began blogging about blogging for Smarter Than Your Average Blog (a gig I eventually left behind). I also began considering a path toward career coaching, and career-related writing. I did extensive research and conducted informational interviews. I was all set to enter a certification program when everything went to hell.

The Sun folded, and the rest of the industry (not to mention the economy at large) followed suit. I no longer had the income necessary to sign up for a coaching certification program. I floundered trying to figure out whether or not I was cut out for freelancing, and what I even had to offer. I struggled unsuccessfully to find a part-time job in the publishing field.

I’ve since gotten a number of new clips (see here, here, here, and here), but I have yet to take advantage of the momentum, and suffer from mood swings and lack of motivation. Can I turn things around in 2009? Perhaps. If I’m willing to learn from my mistakes.

After the jump, 10 things I did wrong in 2008:

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Making Goals Manageable in the New Year

My goals for the new year?

To focus less on blogging and more on publishing independent pieces in additional online and print publications.

To save up the money for a career coaching certification program.

To stop worrying about money.

To fit into my jeans again.

Lofty and admirable goals all, not to mention unimaginably daunting.

How can I set the right goals for 2009…the types of goals I can actually accomplish?

[Read more…]