Finding motivation

26 May

I think many work at home individuals go through periods of time where finding motivation is hard. For me, I think that it is the weather. It has been beautiful, albeit humid, here lately. We bought the kids a pool. My brother gave us a little tykes slide. We have been outside nearly everyday. We moved here in Feb. this year. The yard encased in a foot of snow, we didn’t know what the yard would hold….so, when the snow melted, and the (massively huge amounts of) flowers bloomed, we discovered a new found love for the outdoors. And that is where I have been.

I enjoy this time with my family. I enjoy watching Noah, who will be a year old in June, splashing around in the water. And I find myself spending more and more time away from the computer.

I have 2 books that I am working on, an e-book, and a plethora of other projects that need my attention.

So, how do you stay motivated?

Blogging 101: An overview

21 May

In the next week, I will be launching our first ever 100% FREE blogging e-course. This course will span 6 weeks and cover things such as:

  • Setting up a blog
  • Developing a niche
  • Monetizing a blog
  • SEO and Keyword information

What Can You Expect To Get From Blogging 101?

Each week, you will recieve information sent directly to your email inbox. You will recieve the lesson for the week, suggested reading and “homework”

What Is The Overall Goal Of  Blogging 101?

When you start with Blogging 101, the overall goal is to help you develop a blog from the ground up. By the time you complete the 6 week course you should have a fully functioning blog.

What If I already have a blog?

If you already have a blog, that is not a problem. You can still participate in the program.

What additional courses will be offered?

We will be offering advanced blogging courses, SEO courses and other blogging related course. Sign up for email updates for when the next course is available

There are still a few spots available for this Blogging 101 course. I work in smaller groups as that allows me more one on one time with the participants. There will be more than one Blogging 101 course offered, so sign up for our newsletter by sending an email to maustin27@gmail.com with “Newsletter” in the subject. If you wish to sign up for this course email me at maustin27@gmail.com with “blogging course” in the subject line by Tuesday May 25th

Writing A Query Letter

17 May

Freelance writing is more then just churning out some articles and getting paid per click. There is a whole world out there. Not that there is anything wrong with writing for clicks…I did it. I just wanted more. I was thristy for more.

Most freelancers can agree,  when you are first starting out, you are going to spend more time marketing and selling yourself then you will actually writing. It is the nature of the beast I am afraid.

Now, I am sure the next question you might have is “What do I have to do to market myself?”

You are going to have to write a “query” letter to any editor if you want to try to get in with the magazine or publication.

So what is a Query letter?

In short a query letter is a one page letter that pitches your idea, sells who you are, and closes the deal. Before pitching an idea, it is wise to read a few back issues of the magazine and either contact the editor for a set of writer guidelines or look it up on their website. Nothing is worse than wasting your time (and the editors) writing a letter pitching a topic they don’t cover, or a topic that has been covered to death. Also keep in mind, most magazine editors do not want you to send a completed article. They simply want a one page query..that is they want you to tell them why they should hire you to write for them.

The first paragraph of your letter needs to be the “hook”. You need to capture their attention. For example, if I were querying a nutrition magazine regarding a piece on eating healthy, I would open the letter with something along the lines of “Over 50% of Americans are overweight, and nearly half of overweight Americans are considered obese. The problem isn’t eating healthy, it is keeping those habits that seem to trouble many of us.”

After that opening line or two, I would give an overview of the article. I may or may not touch on who I will interview, or what resources I have.

The next paragraph I will use to cover why I would be a good person to write this article. I would list my accomplishments. (Don’t worry if you don’t haven’t gotten any published clips. )

The last paragraph I would site my estimated word length, if I have any photos available, and thank them for their time.

If you haven’t already, check out the 2010 Writer’s Market Guide that is updated with contact information, pay rates, and who you should contact.

Need help with a letter? Email me at melissaaustin@melissaaustincreativeservices.com today!

Free Blogging E-Course and Sale on E-Book

17 May

Blogging is an intergal part of successful social networking. Blogs give you a chance to reach out to your exisiting client base and reach potentially new clientle.
Beginning May 15th, I will be offering a free blogging E-Course. This complete package normally runs $50.00 for 6 weeks, but for the month of May I am offering it for free.
Each week you will recieve an email containing your “homework” and information pertaining to that weeks topic. During the month of May you can also purchase my “Blogging For Beginners” E-book for just $1.00. I normally sell it for $15.99.
If you are interested in signing up for the E-Course or want to purchase the book, email me at melissaaustin@melissaaustincreativeservices.com or Visit the Blogging For Beginners Tab located on the blog.

Advertise With Twitter

17 May

It is obvious that Twitter is one of the best ways to market your business. Because you are limited to only 140 characters, you have to get your message across the first time.

For $1.00 a day, I will write, and Tweet your ads/sales/promotions on Twitter.

What Does $1.00 a day get you?

3 Tweets a day. Spaced out, worded as to not trigger spam

Use of relevant Hashtags

Purchase 2 months and receive the third month for free.

Email me at melissaaustin@melissaaustincreativeservices.com to set up your campaign.