Sharpening Your Writing Skill

The art of communication has evolved over the years through different media. The need for a proficient writing skill can not be over emphasize with the increasing need for written communication through the internet writing, emails and lots of other means.

Writing is essential to our day to day life. This can range from writing letters, memos, scripts, best selling books and compelling articles. Do you remember that adage, that a pen is mightier than the sword? This and many more cliches give credence to the importance of writing now and always.A few practical steps are carefully outlined here to enable you hone your writing skills.

1. Be an Avid Reader: To be a good writer, you must first be a good and avid reader. Reading exposes you to timeless ideas and innovations of the future, which are locked in the pages of books written by great minds. It can be very difficult to really cultivate a strong habit in this fast paced world, however, the truth is that a whole lot of busy top executives, billionaires, business and world leaders are voracious readers. While hard-copy books in print seem to be around and will ever be present for a very long time, portable gadgets and smart devices have made carrying tons of books a great possibility for everyone.

2. Start Writing: Speakers Speak while Writers Write. The best way to learn to write is to start writing. Start writing on topics and issues which are most appealing to you. Write on topics that catch your interest, topics for which you have great passion and anything imaginable. The idea here is to cultivate a strong habit of writing, and the best way to do this is to write daily at a set time, whether you feel like it or not.

3. Criticize your Writing: You must go on to constructively criticize your writing. Check your writing for spelling errors, ascertain the proper use of tenses and punctuation marks, look out for right blending, coherence and a general mastery of the language.

4. Never Stop Learning: Read more Self Development Materials, read self help books on the web. Ask questions from seasoned and experienced writers, in short, never stop learning. Surround yourself with people who are ready doing what you dream of doing, this is an excellent way to keep your passion going.

5. Never Stop Writing: Do not stop writing, keep on writing, what you do not use, you eventually lose, so keep exercising your writing prowess and keep getting better till you arrive at the final destination-Perfection,

Actually, the journey of a great writer is one which continues to evolve because perfection itself is an ongoing journey.

Marathon Training: How to Stay Injury Free and Finish Strong With Expert Tips

Long distance running requires commitment. To run a marathon you have to train. And for successful marathon training, you’re going to have to run. In most cases, to be good at any sport you have to practice that sport… a lot. It’s sport specific workouts, right?

The exception is someone like Lance Armstrong. As you know, he’s an endurance athlete in cycling. However, with very little additional marathon training he was able to complete his first marathon in less than 3 hours.

The Tour de France and the New York Marathon both involve distance and endurance, and Lance Armstrong is, well, Lance Armstrong so he already has the status and fitness level of an elite athlete under his spandex… so he can do that.

To run a marathon and train smart you need commitment and support

I’m going to go out on a limb here and guess that you’re not Lance Armstrong… even though you might be in decent shape. So just know that in order to run and finish the marathon you must be willing to make the commitment in time, effort, and nutritional education in order to get ‘er done.

As Juma Ikangaa said, “The will to win means nothing without the will to prepare.”

So for starters, you should be able to run. And many marathon training guides suggest that before you start training for a marathon, you should be able to run for 30 minutes without stopping. Others say that having a year of consistent running on your running resume will help you to train, and run, with a smaller chance of injury.

Either way, a safe marathon training schedule usually looks at 16 weeks minimum with the exception being someone who has run a marathon before, recently.

Marathon Training Has Various Styles and Goals

In many of the marathon training programs you will find a mixture of short runs, distant runs, speedwork, and rest days. Most all of them have you taper off your training before race day to give your muscles time to recover before the marathon.

The question many people have is whether one marathon training program is better than the other.

And, some of you won’t be satisfied with the answer of “it depends.” But that’s the answer. The reason is because it depends on what your goals are for the race.

A program that is intended to help you improve your finishing time is going to be different in structure than a program that will help you just complete the race. So, if you intend to have a faster time, but follow a marathon training program that simply helps people cross the finish line with no specific time goals in mind, then you are probably going to be disappointed.

Additionally, everyone is starting at a different level of fitness. You could be someone who is completely comfortable with running. Or, you could be someone who plays a lot of soccer so you do a lot of quick, strong running in short spurts.

You may be generally in great shape, but have just been active in a different sport so have to adjust your training for a marathon.

And then, some people are just freaks of nature and can easily run without any major effort!

Dietary Supplement and Nutritional Support for Marathon Training

Finally, to be successful in any sport even if you’re a novice, you must have the right kinds of food and the best dietary supplement support. When training for a marathon you are asking your body, your mind and your muscles to give you the best. So, it only makes sense that you give your body the best support through food you eat and extra nutritional support.

Yes, this means carbs. But there are also other vitamins, minerals, nutritional supplements and protein sources that are important to support your cardiovascular health. Even when you look healthy on the outside, you have to manage your internal systems so they don’t get overloaded and quit on you too soon.

Transitioning From Elementary School to Middle School – Study Strategies

Transitioning from an elementary school to a middle school or junior high school can be a frightening experience for many students. After all, for many children, this is the first time they will be moving from class to class without a teacher or school escort. Students will be learning from a variety of teachers with different specialties and teaching techniques. Also, they will be intermingling with many students rather than their small classroom cohort.

Yet, one of the hardest transitions for many students making the leap to the middle school level is test preparation. Parents often ask, “How should my child study for a test?”, hoping that there is a secret strategy that will guarantee their child’s success on exams. Unfortunately, there is not a one-size-fits-all technique when it comes to test preparation. That being said, here are a few helpful ideas that may ease your child’s stress level (and yours as well) and hopefully increase his overall performance.

Have a plan and get organized

Odds are your child will have homework in nearly every subject throughout the course of a given week. Help your child create a calendar where he can write down due dates for assignments as well as all of his extracurricular activities. This will give the student an opportunity to visually see how many days he has to prepare for an upcoming test. It will also be valuable as the child will see the other assignments and activities he needs to accomplish in addition to having to prepare for exams. Furthermore, this will help you and your child see if he will have multiple tests on a given day.

Even if your child has difficulty remembering his homework or has a habit of leaving his assignment notebook at school, most schools have homework and assignments listed online and available for parents and guardians. Familiarize yourself with the homework page for your child’s school so that you can help him populate his calendar with all important information.

Keep in mind middle schoolers are notorious procrastinators. If they see on Monday that a teacher has a test scheduled for Friday, then they think they don’t have to prepare for that test until Thursday night. Cramming does not work! With the jump to the middle school level, the amount of information received by the student increases exponentially and there is too much information to cram in the night before an examination. Try to help your child divide the task into manageable time chunks when it comes to studying. It is much easier and less nerve-racking to study for an hour a day for three days than to try to study for three hours the night before a test. Thus, have your child make a note on his calendar on the days leading up to the test date to start preparing for the test at least two or three days before the exam.

Encourage them to “find” time on their own

One of the biggest alibis middle schoolers have for poor test performance is that they didn’t have time to study for the test. It is true that most children are involved with multiple activities both inside and outside of school, which all require a substantial time commitment. However, there are times throughout the day that students can find to review material. This can occur in a study hall, a few minutes after they finish lunch or in the car on the way to soccer practice. The goal is to encourage your child to review the material as often as possible. While I understand this is easier said than done, ten minutes here and there can make all the difference. Repetition of the main concepts is key.

Repetition develops talent

It doesn’t matter if your child is attempting to learn a new musical number for the piano, trying to memorize lines for the upcoming school play, working on his penalty kick, or trying to throw the perfect curveball, repetition is always the key. Too many times students think because they re-read the chapter the night before the test that they have “studied” and are prepared. They need to familiarize themselves with the material on a continual basis. It doesn’t matter the subject, the more students study the material, the greater their chances for success. After all, we don’t expect them to master a musical piece after only playing it once, so why would we expect the same when it comes to school content?

Find the method that works best for your child

There are many different ways that a student can study for a test, such as:

· Flashcards

· Re-reading the text

· Taking the textbook practice tests

· Creating his own study guide

· Re-writing her classroom notes

· Having another person quiz him

· Finding online practice quizzes

All of these are viable strategies to prepare for tests, but the key point here is to have the child find the strategy that works best for him. This will take some time to flush out. Each child learns differently and each must find the way (or ways) that gives him the best shot at success. A child’s preferred method might be one of the aforementioned strategies, or it might be a combination of the strategies, or it might be a strategy that does not even appear on the list. It does not matter what strategy the student chooses as long as it works consistently and is sustainable. Encourage your child to play with different strategies in order to find the methods that best fit his style of learning. And if your child isn’t getting the results he wants, then don’t be afraid to encourage him to experiment with different methods. Continue to experiment until he does find the one method that produces the desired results. After all, he will need to carry with him proper study skills well past the middle school level. The goal here is to help your child feel confident in his ability to prepare for a test on his own by the time he enters high school.

And of course, the stakes only go up from there.

You Can Easily Master How to Learn Italian

There are many advantages to learning a new language. Probably the most important benefit is that it makes a positive impact on your brain physiology. Up until now your primary language has been instrumental in shaping your intellect and how you view the world around you. It is the driving force behind how you analyze information to make your decisions.

Recent studies conclude that Italian speakers can actually process and read information at a faster rate in comparison with English speakers – this even happens when Italian speakers attempt to read languages other than Italian.

Now it would also be good to know that learning to speak another language; solving word problems as well as learning to play an instrument are deemed to be one of the top activities that one can participate and do – and this keeps your brain active and healthy. This is the reason why it is highly recommended to try and learn another language such as Italian.

It is actually very easy when you are learning how to speak Italian. The reason for this is because learning the Italian conjugation and words accentuation are relatively simple when you compare it to other languages. In addition, the Italian orthograph is a lot easier in comparison to French.

In order to learn Italian easy and quickly, you simply need to psyche yourself into thinking that this is actually a fun activity. Take note that Italian language pronunciation is relatively simple apart from maybe the rolled “R”. Now remember that a single letter should not pose much of a problem especially after constant practice. Once you get the hang of it, you will realize how delightful this virile R’s are, as well as the wonderful melodic rhythm of the Italian language.

Now another way to learn Italian easy and quickly would be to try to constantly improve on your Italian language vocabulary. Once you start learning the Italian language, particularly its vocabulary, you will notice that spellings of Italian words are quite different in comparison to Portuguese, Spanish and French. You will also come to understand that a range of particles added together at the end of the words would seem like they were a part of it, in addition to the S of negative verbs.

Currently, there is a method that you can apply in order to learn Italian easy and quickly – this would include taking Italian online lessons. It is simple and inexpensive to learn Italian online, you just need a computer; access to the internet, a headset with a microphone and you may need a web-cam. In taking up an online Italian program or course, you will obtain the necessary foundation when it comes to Italian vocabulary, spelling, pronunciation, grammar as well as the history of the language.

Now bear in mind that Italian is part of the Romance language which also includes Romanian, Portuguese, Latin and French – with the latter being the closest one to Italian. The distinctions among these Romance languages and the Italian language would be about a hundred frequent words, its pronunciation and false friends. An example of the latter would be the Italian word “Dottore,” which is not an individual with a doctorate degree nor a medical doctor, but simply a graduate of college. So another tip for you to learn Italian easy and quickly would be to focus and study on the three factors mentioned above which sets the Italian language apart from its Romance language counterparts.

11 Plus Exam Preparation – By Failing to Prepare, You Are Preparing to Fail

One often comes across the view that a child should not do much preparation for the 11 plus exam. Either the child has got it, or it hasn’t, either the child is grammar school material or it isn’t. I don’t agree with this view, I don’t believe that a child’s ability is innate, I believe in improvement through practice, that practice makes perfect, that, as Benjamin Franklin said, failing to prepare is preparing to fail. Professor Brendan Bunting, an educational psychologist at Ulster University, found that pupils coached for nine months prior to the 11 plus improved their scores by 40 per cent. Hard work, good tuition and practice really do work.

Depending on where you are in the country determines which of the verbal reasoning, non-verbal reasoning, maths and English exams will be examined. Verbal reasoning and non-verbal reasoning are not topics that are studied in primary school and are also not studied in grammar school. The fact that a child may not perform too well in these tests is not an indicator that they are not grammar school material and that they will struggle with the study of French, German, history, geography or maths at grammar school. They are just tests that help to gain entry to grammar schools, and they need to be practised, since they will not be something that the child has received much exposure to. Similarly the fact that a child is currently weak at maths does not mean that they will not be able to cope with history, English and chemistry at grammar school. As with everything else in life, maths knowledge is not static and can be improved by good quality tuition and hard work.

Competition for places at grammar school is fierce. For some schools there is a ratio of ten applicants to every place. Other children will have been well prepared. To give your child a good chance, it is important to do the same. The best way to prepare is to practise questions that are similar to those likely to appear in the exam. Sample practice papers are a valuable resource. Try to get as many practice papers as you can, provided they are of a similar level to the real thing. Try to find practice papers that provide detailed explanations for the answers rather than just providing the numerical answer itself. This provides the additional element of tuition and enables you and your child to work through a problem and understand how to arrive at the solution. Interactive computerised tests are also valuable as many children prefer working with computers rather than with paper and pencil.

Nothing can guarantee a place at one of our top grammar schools, but as Benjamin Franklin said, “by failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail”.

Preparing Your Children’s Education

Talking about the future heritage for children, I think we are all agree that science is the most imperishable treasure. Science is a treasure that can never be stolen, and can not be exhausted.

To provide a lot of heritage, we must prepare it with investment products. No exception of education. To get a high education, we should prepare it since early, because as we are all know that higher education also takes the high cost of form of preparation. There are lots of ways of investment to prepare for that matter.

Lot of banks also has their own product to provide investment for your children future. Or even insurance companies can provide you high quality investment way. Each of them has their own calculation, payment terms, investment return, period of time, and different benefits of each product.

Education saving

One of the products to achieve the goal is education savings. As the name implies, this product is a savings product, but with a special allotment for the cost of achieving the goals of education. If talking of type, this product is the measure savings product. It means savings products which have special rules that have a certain time to be saved.

So in this measure savings product we can not expect to withdraw the funds at any time as our other regular savings accounts. As compensation on this rule, the product usually always offer for the results or the interest rate higher than regular savings accounts, and of course without any supplement that does not need to cost as the cost of ATM (Automated Teller Machine).

For products with a special allotment, we are usually given the freedom to determine how long a period of time savings and how much deposits responsibility we are ready. As a depositor so we can easily estimate the amount of goals you want to achieve with the product and of course adapted to our capacity. Some people consider this product as a means for self disciplined or forced to save.

On a regular saving product, the interest rates are very minimal (can even 0%) and amenities such as ATM and debit card to make savings is not a product of investment but more as a product of financial transactions easier.

To achieve this goal, namely continuity in terms of deposits, education savings products are usually made as a ‘derivative’ product of the parent product that is a regular saving. Education saving’s deposit is taken with the debiting or cut the value of mother-of-balance savings deposit rate that is agreed. So you just need to make sure you always have enough fund in saving account to debited on the specified date in the amount payment value for the education saving account, and let the product work for education savings.

The Maverick Money Makers Online Marketing Course Review

I have been making a living with affiliate marketing for almost four years now. At the beginning, I was so confused about what to do and how to do it. To overcome my confusions and frustrations by being guided by affiliate marketing experts, I joined many of the online marketing course programs.

Unfortunately, it didn’t take me long to get more confused. Also, the something worse was happening, my confusions and frustrations were keeping me from taking any action.

Finally, when I was about to quit trying to earn money from affiliate marketing, I found the best online marketing course and finally started making really good money online. This course is called Maverick Money Makers Club.

Thanks to the Maverick Money Makers Club affiliate marketing training, I started to earn a steady income. I feel very lucky that I have found the best online marketing course and have had an incredible experience with it.

Why to Join the Maverick Money Makers Club Online Marketing Course?

First of all, this course is a membership site. By joining the course, you are going to get a ton of assistance and guidance that will guarantee your online income. Easy to follow videos and step by step directions make it very easy for the members to get quick results.

The following is an outline of what you are offered by the Maverick Money Makers Club online marketing course:

– All the required instructions about all of the steps you have to know to start your business and make it a cash creating machine
– Some assured short cuts to start to get some fast money flow
– Skill set videos that show exactly how to build the obligatory talents for your web business success
– Particularly useful steerage in the perspective training area showing you the right way to develop the right perspective to remain centered and to make your business a big hit story
– Access to a community of experienced affiliates for any help and direction
– And bonus items like insider reports, turnkey sites and niche selling tips and concepts

Based totally on my experience, The Maverick Money Makers Club overpowers each single online marketing course! Mack Michaels claims that many of the affiliate marketing experts try to sell their money generating systems but almost none shows the complete process.

I actually believe in him since after trying plenty of the super products, only The Maverick Money Makers Club online marketing course helped me generate genuine and consistent revenue.

Know More About Online Colleges

Online College Education has now become very popular amongst students worldwide. It concentrates on technology and instructional system design. Through online learning program, students can continue with their preferred courses without actually being present physically.

Benefits of Online College Education

Online colleges are beneficial to students from under served population. The program allows students to choose the course they wish to take especially those that are not provided on their respective jurisdiction. Without traveling expenses and boarding expenses, students save bulk of money. For people with age issues or chronic illnesses, this program becomes very beneficial for them, they are allowed to study various specialty subjects without having to get out of their respective homes, and this fact allows undergraduates to come back to school at any age without needing to face humiliation that typically happens on real colleges.

Looking for the Right School Online

There are multiple colleges that offer affordable online college education. Remember to do your research to know if these internet colleges are worth for your money. There are affordable online colleges but does not provide quality education and you might be oblige to spend more money in the long run. Be careful with scam online colleges scattered over the internet for you might spend your money for nothing.

Here are some tips that you need to consider when looking for the right school:

1. Make sure that the online college belongs to a legitimate organization recognized by your country’s government.

2. Choose a course that provides the education related to your future plan. You can picture or list the industries or companies that you aim to be a part of in the future. This is a common issue for most students. They choose courses that are not related to their field of interest which made it harder for them to get a job right after.

3. Check if the online school you are interested in enrolling to, is accepted by your target company. You can do this by attending company job fair, asking people who are already in the position on your target company or by speaking to an HR representative of a certain company you wish to apply to once you graduate.

4. Once you’re done listing and finalizing the candidate school of your choice. You must now start to narrow down your list. To do this considers tuition fees and other related factors such as school competency. Choose the right one and enroll. Remember your education is your future’s foundation.

Benefits of Career Coaching – The ‘Coach’s Space’

An acquaintance of mine recently asked me what career coaches do and why would anyone hire a coach to help them figure out what to do when they finally ‘grow up’? Granted, this friend was chiding me a bit but instead of launching into the text version of what career coaches do, I explained the magic of the ‘Coach’s Space’. The Coach’s Space involves three elements which benefit the client.

1. The Third Space – You see, when a client and a coach connect a ‘third’ space is co -created in which creative ideas, insights and results emerge that otherwise would not occur if the client tried to focus on such thoughts independently.

2. A neutral partner – The space created by the career coach is not easily obtained by a client and say, his or her spouse/ partner etc. The coach must be a neutral third person who holds no agenda nor tries to set an agenda. You see, the other unique quality of career coaching is that the client sets the agenda. It’s the coach’s job to help the client keep focused on that agenda and embody the principle that “It’s all about them.”

3. No bad ideas -A career coach provides a supportive environment which enables the client to ‘try on’ different ideas. How many times have we had what we thought was a great idea but were hesitant to share it with our partner our spouse for fear of being criticized. A thoughtful career coach will encourage her clients to experiment with many job targets until the right match is discovered.

To illustrate the value of coaching, I will share a personal example with you. When I was in my late 20’s the sport of triathlon was just beginning to emerge. At the time, I was a decent runner, a mediocre swimmer and had not touched a bike since I was a kid. Becoming intrigued with triathlons, I began training and ultimately completed my first ‘sprint triathlon’. I was hooked!

As I started to gain confidence, hoping to compete in more events, I shared with my husband (at the time) that I wanted to train for the Ironman Triathlon in Hawaii. (Big mistake!) He promptly turned to me and said, “Debbie, you are crazy. There is no way you could ever do something like that.” Talk about a put down. Well, I did not let that stop me. I made the decision to start working with a triathlon coach. The rest is history. At age 55 I have completed 4 Ironman Triathlons (including two in Hawaii), dozens of Olympic distance triathlons and numerous marathons. My coach understood my passion for the sport and supported me in my goal of completing my first Ironman race.

Like athletic coaches, career coaches create a supportive environment where clients can realize their potential and reach goals that might not have been achievable otherwise. Individuals seeking meaningful careers stand a better chance of reaching their goals when partnering with a career coach.

Turbo-Charging Your Writing Career – 6 High-Yield Strategies

Hands up all those who’d like to have a successful writing career.

(What’s that you say? What do I mean by ‘successful’?)

All right, I know all writers are individuals. To some, ‘successful’ might mean just getting one article published. Others want a string of best-selling novels, recognition in the supermarket and megabucks in the bank account. So, for the purposes of this article, we’ll define ‘successful’ as “achieving regular or ongoing publication credits in tandem with a growing income”. That income should increase as you become more recognized and popular as a writer.

Now for the crunch. How do you achieve success? How do you win a growing readership? And the biggie: how do you make sure you get paid for your efforts?

There’s a simple answer. You need to INVEST in your career. Think of your writing as a fledgling business. Wise investment will help it to grow – and help you to get the results you want.

  1. You need to spend a buck to make two (or more) bucks
  2. You need to prioritize your spending
  3. You need to invest time as well as money
  4. You need to invest energy
  5. You need to surround yourself with wise advisors and positive people
  6. You need to plan, review, and plan again

1. You Need To Spend A Buck To Make A Buck

Every craftsperson needs to have good tools to get the best results. A writer is no different.

  • You can make do with a typewriter – but a computer is better. (Why? It’s easier to edit your work; you can connect to the wider writing community via the Internet, and editors are increasingly asking for manuscripts and proofs to be emailed to them.)
  • You can make do with looking up publishers in the Yellow Pages – but the latest edition of a Writer’s Marketplace is better. (Why? It gives you much more industry-specific information – and it’s a darn sight more convenient.)
  • You can make do with business cards and postcards to promote yourself – but an email address/website address is better. (Why? The take-up rate of Internet users is phenomenal – people can reach you or read about you easily and conveniently.)

It’s easy to talk yourself into “making do”. And it’s true that writers can spend almost nothing on tools of the trade. However, successful businesses know that in the end, you have to spend money to make money. That doesn’t mean waste money – it means you carefully plan your spending.

2. You Need to Prioritise Your Spending

There are three main things you need to think about when you’re prioritising your spending on your writing career.

  1. What will help me improve my skills?
  2. What will help me to do my job more effectively?
  3. What will help me to become better known and to market my work?

Look realistically at your income and expenditure, and decide what you can spend on your writing career in the next 12 months. Don’t make this the least possible you can manage. Think of it as ongoing costs in building an effective business. (And remember that many start-up businesses don’t expect to make a profit for the first 3 years!)

Here are a few ideas:

(a) What will help me improve my skills?

Books on writing for your professional library – a writing course – a writing workshop or program – a writers’ seminar or conference – membership of a writers’ centre – writing software – a critique service

(b) What will help me do my job more effectively?

An up to date computer – a good-quality desk and chair – an internet connection – a directory of writers’ markets – a separate room for writing – a reduction in working hours in my outside job – a fax and/or good printer – a better word processing program

(c) What will help me to get known and to market my work?

Attendance at writing talks/seminars/workshops/groups – local functions and social groups – internet discussion lists – my own website – submission of articles to industry magazines/ezines – run my own seminars and workshops – business cards – regular column for local paper – radio chat show appearances

These are just a few ideas. Brainstorm a list of your own, then rank the items on each list in order of importance to you. What is the wisest use of your money at this point in your career?

3. You Need To Invest Time As Well As Money

You have probably already noticed that many of the career-boosting strategies that involve investment of cash also require an investment of your time. The importance of giving time to your career cannot be overestimated.

  • It takes time to read up on markets and draw up a submission list.
  • It takes time to keep records about where your work has been and where it needs to go next.
  • It takes time to go to seminars, workshops and regular group meetings.
  • It takes time to read up on techniques to build your writing skills, to use them, and to get feedback on how well they worked.
  • And of course – it takes time to actually sit down and write!

In writing, as in any field of endeavour, there are far more ‘gunnas’ than achievers. “I was gunna write for an hour every day, BUT…”; “I was gunna do a chapter this week, BUT…”; “I was gunna go to that seminar, BUT…”

It’s far easier to find excuses for not doing something than to get out there and do it. With every excuse, your writing career stalls again. Sure, we all have times when everything that could go wrong does go wrong – but we need to be careful that this enforced ‘time out’ doesn’t stretch from weeks to months, or from months to years.

4. You Need To Invest Energy

An energetic approach to achieving success in your writing career is just as important as spending time and money. You can spend thousands of dollars and you can sit down at the computer for four hours a day seven days a week – but if you don’t invest energy then you are diluting the effects of both.

Example #1: You can go to a seminar and sit by yourself the whole time (or nod off because you’re bored/tired)… or you can make an effort to talk to other writers; ask questions of the panel; introduce yourself to an agent.

Example #2: You can skim through the posts on an internet discussion list… or you can join in and toss around a few ideas (and get to know the others on the list).

Example #3: You can sit at your desk for 2 hours and write a page, play 10 games of Solitaire, answer your email and chat on the phone to a friend for twenty minutes… or you can write a scene, print it out, read it out loud for pacing, analyse the dialogue, then rewrite it – in short: be proactive about using your writing time.

5. You Need To Surround Yourself With Wise Advisers and Positive People

It has often been said that writing is a lonely occupation. It certainly can be, if all you do is sit in front of the computer for hours on end, lost in your writing world. It’s even lonelier if you seem to be the only one who believes that you’ve got a chance of making something of ‘this writing caper’.

Am I saying that it’s a bad thing to become really involved in your writing? Not at all – but you do need balance. You also need to surround yourself with the right kind of people to help you move forward – (1) the right advisers and (2) positive people.

Who are the ‘right advisers’? People who know something of the world of writing. Usually, these will be other writers or professionals connected with writing: agents, editors, writing centre personnel, and experienced members of writing groups (online and offline).

What about ‘positive people’? This is easy. Getting published is hard enough without the doomsayers undermining your confidence. If your family is not supportive, look for others who are. Talk about writing with people who care. Beware of published writers who launch savage attacks on the publishing industry without offering any constructive advice (sometimes they have a hidden agenda).

You love to write. You want to make a living at it. You want to know how to make this a reality – not be told how awful and impossible it all is.

Naturally, you shouldn’t close your ears to sage advice. If there’s an editor everyone hates dealing with, you want to know about it. If there’s a publisher who takes ten months to respond to a manuscript, doesn’t take calls and is slow paying contracted authors – you want to know about that too. But overall, mix with positive people. Your enthusiasm and effectiveness will soar.

6. You Need To Plan, Review, and Plan Again

A well-run business reviews its performance regularly. As you invest time, money and energy in your career, stop periodically to review the effectiveness of your strategies.

  • What did you learn from that conference/workshop?
  • How much return will you get from your investment in that book on technique or that directory of writers’ markets?
  • How much difference has your investment in an internet connection made to your knowledge and contacts?
  • What is the next step in your career?
  • What do you need to invest to take you to the next step?

Plan, review, then plan again. This should be an ongoing process in your campaign to establish yourself as a successful writer!

By employing these 6 high-yield strategies to investing in your career, you’ll notice a definite change in your attitude and your results.

Does this approach work?

Well, for over a decade now I’ve had a career based solely on writing and writing-related activities. It pays well in both satisfaction and dollars. I’ve always invested time, money and energy in my career. I’ve tried to surround myself with good advisers and positive people. And yes, I do plan, review then plan again! I’m constantly updating my knowledge, tools and contacts.

These 6 high-yield strategies have worked for countless other writers. They’re based on (1) common sense and (2) good business sense.

Give them a try, and watch them work wonders for you.

(c) copyright Marg McAlister