Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Why Freelance Writing Is Good For You In 2013?

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Have you been thinking along the lines whether 2013 would bring in better writing opportunities to capitalize on? Would you be earning more in the coming year? Well, irrespective of the global economic situation, writing as career will always be profitable. In case you have been thinking of getting into writing as a profession or looking for better paying jobs as a freelance writer, 2013 seems promising. 

But you'll need to put in time and effort to make it a possibility. Apart from the challenges that you'll face when it comes to developing a new clientele and improving your own portfolio of writing, you have to take into account numerous online businesses that would go online and the employment opportunities that would be available. 

Professional and Quality Content 

The trend of online business industry has increased manifold over the last 5 years and many industries are eying global customers for the products they sell. With several benefits that online businesses offer, entrepreneurs are opting to developing websites and business pages to establish and sell online. Needless to say, every website that is developed requires appropriate content for the homepage and internal website pages. 

And that is why with more companies going online, freelance writing is on the rise for the coming year as excellent content will be in demand. As a freelance writer, more projects will be up for grabs in 2013, irrespective of the nature of the industry. With social media integration and development of websites will ensure ample writing opportunities. Unless the business owners have exceptional writing skills, the demand for professional writers is always there. 

Benefit to employers

With European and US economies still in the doldrums, most companies are downsizing yet require manpower and professionals. Whether it is to create a press release or do a case study, the companies cannot do it without business writers. By employing effective, professional freelance writers, the companies have higher benefits as they are cheaper to employ with no strings attached as compared to conventional services. With 2013 around the corner, as a freelance writer, you can expect desired results of more jobs and better pay. 

If you are looking to make it big within the freelance writing industry, the time is perfect but the key requirements are that you are professional and provide non-plagiarized, quality content. In case you own an online business, you need to have professional Search Engine Optimized and creative content for your e-Commerce store or website. For a seasoned professional writer, all of this is easy to work on taking into aspect the growing demands of social media and quality content. 

With online businesses on the rise in 2013, for freelance writers it is boom time as all of the businesses would be looking for unique, top-quality content. The coming years along with 2013 is considered to be ideal for freelance writers and in case you are looking for more projects or taking your first steps into the industry, the freelance writing industry has a lot to offer.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Tips for Creative Writers

Writer's Block
By Ian B Thomas

Creative writing as a discipline demands not only talent but also persistence. This means that those aspiring to be creative writers must work hard to hone their craft. Beginning writers will do well to follow several tips that will not only improve their writing but also enhance the way that they perceive the world, which is useful for any kind of artistic discipline.

One tip to which many artists swear by is to bring a small notebook anywhere you go. Aspiring writers may jot down any idea on the notebook that comes to them-whether it's a fleeting feeling, a striking sentence, or even a simple word that they fancy at a certain moment. Writers may even attach small clippings of articles, pictures, drawings, literary works, or even ticket stubs or product labels, as long as this item makes them feel inspired and worked up to write something in the future and for sure, creative writing will be their forte in the end.

Another tip is to write everyday. Some aspiring writers complain of something called writers' block, a condition where they seem to be unable to write anything. Others claim that they do not have time to write. Setting aside some time every day, even an hour or thirty minutes, allows the mind to focus on the writing for that time, forcing ideas to come out of hibernation. Again, the important thing here is to do it everyday until it becomes a habit.

Reading a wide range of works both literary and non-literary is also very advisable for creative writers. Anything from poems, stories, advertisements, newspapers, magazines, movie reviews, jokes, and Twitter posts will be useful for this purpose. This wide range enables creative writers to become fully aware of what is happening in their environment as well as how language is used in different situations. Thus, they are able to craft more plausible plots for stories, more authentic dialogues for plays, or more memorable uses of words in poems.

Finally, writers should have fun in creative writing. A lot of writers get frustrated and give up on the craft because they feel it is too difficult. So, it is good to accept foremost that writing is a solitary activity in which writers necessarily have to be alone in their thinking and manipulating words to fit the meanings they seek to flesh out. However, writers must not focus on this lonely aspect of writing. Instead, it is better to give attention to how writing transports them to a new environment, allows them to explore new worlds, or on any other purpose that drew them to the craft in the first place. Essentially, this is what will help them persevere in the craft and develop to become even better writers.

These are simply some tips on how some writers may harness their mental activity into the humble yet honourable pursuit of creative writing. Yet, these pieces of advice are by no means applicable to every writer's situation, given that each writer has a peculiar temperament. In time, creative writers find the process that best works for them.

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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Finding Inspiration for Blog Posts

You wake up in the middle of the night. In you dream you know you had the grain of an idea. There was something in there that was going to make for the greatest blog post ever but you just can't quite put your finger on it again. It slips away into the night and it looks like you blog won't be updated for a while yet.

After the initial rush when you start your blog and you put all your great ideas out there then it can be quite difficult knowing where to go next. Unless your blog is one where you are reviewing products or supplying news or similar then at some point you are going to be struggling to see where to go next.

Well the first answer to that is to make sure that your blog is something that you have a passion for as it is possible to write about anything that makes your heart burn with joy and inspire your readers.

With passion you can turn an little idea into a big article that people will love. All you have to do is let it flow out of your heart.

The second thing is to start with the title. Just think of a question you or someone who reads your blog would like answered. Usually I just put down a title to get the ball rolling and close my eyes with my keys on the keyboard and then kaboom... the article just arrives on the page. The key here is to get the forward motion.

The third thing in order to get inspired or to think of new article ideas is to read and contemplate things outside of your circle of expertise and then try to translate those ideas into something that applies to your line of writing. Push your boundaries by thinking "what if I applied this concept to my line of expertise?"

Look outside and bring it in. Relax and let inspiration come to you. Let it flow. You already have the idea... just let it come out.

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Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Top 10 Books You Were Forced to Read in High School

In honor of the 50th anniversary of the publication of Harper Lee's perennial middle-school novel To Kill a Mockingbird, TIME rounds up the classics that have monopolized school reading lists for years

#1 To Kill a Mockingbird

Harper Lee's 1960 paean to the South is one of the most beloved American novels ever written. Some of that is due to the 1962 classic film adapted from it, which stars Gregory Peck as Atticus Finch, a small-town lawyer who also happens to be the most upstanding and sympathetic father ever. But much of the respect accorded the novel (the author's only book) has to do with its memorable main characters, brother and sister duo Jem and Scout. With its competing subplots about a black man on trial for allegedly raping a white woman and the children's attempts to learn about their reclusive neighbor Boo Radley, the novel is perfectly structured to provide half a dozen lessons about history and acceptance and injustice and compassion. No wonder it's the staple of all middle-school staples. Happy 50th, Mockingbird!
Article written by GILBERT CRUZ

#2 Of Mice and Men

The Great Depression and the hardship it caused spawned many classics of American literature that have since become fodder for high school English classes across the nation. Topping the list is John Steinbeck's novella Of Mice and Men. The plot traces the journey of George and Lennie, two migrant workers in California farm country. We meet them after they've been forced to leave their previous ranch in a chain of events chalked up to Lennie's odd behavior. Upon arriving at their new farm, owned and run by a character known simply as "The Boss," George and Lennie once again find themselves in crosshairs. The strong and complicated bond between the pair forces George to take weak Lennie's life into his own hands. Along the way, their pursuit of the American Dream (and the attendant prospect of land ownership) falls by the wayside, the victim of a harsh economic downturn, a freak accident and mob hysteria.
Article written by DAN FASTENBERG

#3 A Separate Peace

One of the great coming-of-age tales, A Separate Peace is also one of the darker novels assigned to teenagers. The plot revolves around two roommates at Devon, a New England boarding school, during the summer and winter of 1942. The narrator, Gene, an introverted, studious Southerner, recalls his relationship with his best friend Phineas, known as "Finny," a charismatic, gregarious athlete. Over the course of the summer, Gene becomes envious of Finny's graceful, easy demeanor and takes part in an accident that ends Finny's athletic career. During the winter, as the country descends into World War II, the boys of Devon wage their own battles against each other to determine whether Gene intentionally harmed Finny. The novel chronicles the boys' maturation as the war encroaches further and further into their lives. While Knowles' tale of the journey from innocence to experience has been described as depressing, his capture of youthful emotion, surprising maturity and reactions to life's great tragedies make it a must-read during those awkward teenage years.
Article written by NATE RAWLINGS

#4 The Catcher in the Rye

Published in 1951, Catcher has long been a literary touchstone for alienated high school students. Main character Holden Caulfield is the ultimate whiner — everyone's a phony, everyone's a crumbum, and the only person who is really worth a damn is his little sister. Because Catcher is a fairly glum tale about a screwup of a kid who may be going crazy following the death of his brother, it's really easy to forget that it's kind of the ultimate high school fantasy — Holden roams around New York City for a couple of days, gets into bars, dances with older women and gets beaten up while trying to procure a lady of ill repute. While it may seem like the boy is just drifting, that sounds like living! For those very reasons, though, many of today's teens are having trouble relating to the book, according to a June 2009 New York Times article. "I can't really feel bad for this rich kid with a weekend free in New York City," said one teacher, paraphrasing some of her students. But despite the generational gap, this book won't be leaving classrooms anytime soon.
Article written by GILBERT CRUZ

#5 Animal Farm

This classic tale of an animal revolution gone rogue is George Orwell's allegorical take on Stalinism. Under two pigs named Snowball and Napoleon, a group of farm animals overthrow their drunken human caretaker and establish a new community based on seven commandments, including the tenet that all animals are equal. Soon after, Snowball and Napoleon engage in a power struggle to control the farm, with Napoleon emerging on top. He quickly turns Snowball into a scapegoat for a failed windmill project and kills any animals who appear to have an allegiance to his opponent. As time passes, the swine adopt human traits, soon wearing clothes and walking on two legs. Before long, the lowly farm animals can no longer distinguish between the pigs and the people.
Article written by FEIFEI SUN

#6 Lord of the Flies

Prominently featured on the American Library Association's list of the most banned books ever, Lord of the Flies is a complex allegory packed into a tale of struggle and survival. The book begins when a plane carrying a group of British boarding-school students crashes on an isolated island. The boys (in the truest meaning of the word; the oldest is 13) establish a working society, with Ralph as their charismatic yet humble leader. Order breaks down as Ralph battles with Jack, the leader of the school's choir, and the entire group slowly descends into chaos. The end, a brutal literal and figurative shattering of humanity, has served as the book's chief teaching point and mark of contention for half a century. Often seen as a cautionary tale about the breakdown of civilization, the book details "the end of innocence, the darkness of man's heart" and the horrific possibilities that lie within us all.
Article written by NATE RAWLINGS

#7 The Great Gatsby

Every school takes a field trip to Long Island, New York, at some point, visiting the Roaring '20s as only F. Scott Fitzgerald could write them. Thanks to its evocative setting, rich themes and masterly prose, The Great Gatsby has secured its standing as a reading-list staple as well as one of the greatest American novels ever written. Here, the moneyed East meets the modest Midwest, and Fitzgerald's memorable characters — Jay Gatsby, Daisy and Tom Buchanan, Jordan Baker — perpetuate a lavish lifestyle that, alas, doesn't offer much of a life. The enigmatic Gatsby has the best parties, but it's Daisy he really wants. He may have no shortage of party guests, but he's sorely lacking in funeral attendees. Narrator Nick Carraway is witness to the glitz that ultimately reflects emptiness, not success.
Article written by ALEXANDRA SILVER

#8 A Farewell to Arms

When Ernest Hemingway combined his "consciously bald" style with his experiences as a World War I ambulance driver, the resulting novel was an immediate success. Published in 1929, A Farewell to Arms not only revisits the conflict that had ended just a decade earlier; it also tells of romance. Sadly — not that dutiful American-lit students would expect to be cheered up by Hemingway — the love story isn't any less tragic than the war. Lieutenant Frederic Henry and English nurse Catherine Barkley have to face the fact that death can make its presence known off the battlefield as well as on.
Article written by ALEXANDRA SILVER

#9 The Scarlet Letter

Nathaniel Hawthorne's best-known work opens in Puritan Boston, with young Hester Prynne on trial for adultery. Because she refuses to name the father of her infant daughter Pearl, Hester is ostracized by the community and forced to wear a scarlet piece of cloth in the shape of an "A" on her chest — an enduring symbol throughout the book. This central conflict is the basis for all the themes the novel examines: sin, repentance, moral purity, forgiveness.
Article written by FEIFEI SUN

#10 Macbeth

As high school students, we may have been drawn to Macbeth because it's known as the shortest of the Shakespearean tragedies. But the tersely written play spares no human frailty — and few characters — on the battlefield of 11th century Scotland. Whereas decisiveness, the lack thereof and revenge drive the other Great High School Shakespearean Play, Hamlet, ambition and personal morality are at the center of the plot of Macbeth. The play's title character finds himself pitted against a fellow lord, Banquo, when the two are made privy to a series of prophecies from a trio of witches. The toiling witches forecast a future royal line, and the will to power is soon unleashed. Upon losing his wife in the fray, Macbeth delivers his epic "tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow" soliloquy, which captures the sensation of despair as well as any other verse in the English language:

Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing ...
Article written by DAN FASTENBERG

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Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Improve your Writing and Create a Better impression!

Well written, good, informative content is the best way to ensure you achieve a successful text. However, this isn't everything. You could have the best piece of content in the world, and some simple mistakes can turn your text into a laughing stock.

Many people rely on their spell checkers to pick up any errors or mistakes you may have picked up when writing. There are many huge problems in doing so. Here are just a few of them:

1. The spell checker will not detect typing errors that turn a word into a completely different word. For example, "window" can become "widow". The spell checker wouldn't notice this, but your sentence could mean something completely different than intended.

2. The spell checker will not detect grammatical errors, your sentence could be completely incorrect and the computer wouldn't know.

3. Words that sound the same but have a different meaning, for example, "there" could be accidentally changed to "their".

4. Words that are spelt differently in other countries, for example, the word "colour" is spelt differently in USA, "color".

These simple errors will turn your text into an unprofessional collection of words. The best way to eliminate these mistakes is by using proofreading services. This can help your text hugely and create a much better impression on the reader. Simple mistakes like these can be very frustrating to read when marking work. It's the same when a potential customer is reading about a company. If the content has a lot of simple mistakes within the text, the visitor is less likely to become a customer. Don't let these errors ruin your text, and stop it fulfilling it's purpose effectively. See if you can improve your sales/grades with something as simple as this.

Thanks a lot for reading and I wish you good luck in your future writing projects.

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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Writing Books for Children Under 5 Years of Age

There is a misconception that writing for children is easier than writing for adults. I am not sure where this statement originated from, but anyone who has written for children, or indeed has thought about, planned to or drafted a story for out little people will know that it is horribly difficult to write for this age group; and particularly for the under 5's. Why? Well because when it comes to writing for children, every word counts! There is no room for error, there is no possibility of fudging over a difficult storyline, description or characterisation by adding in a couple of extra adjectives here and there every word counts. And when it comes to children under 5 years of age, you've hardly got any words to choose from in the first place!
Children under the age of 5 year will notice adults and other children around them reading and will start to get frustrated that they are unable to participate in this activity. Thus it is important that children of this age have access to books that are interesting and accessible to them. There is a national programme to help children of a young age access books. This programme is called Bookstart and it is funded by Sure Start promoting a lifelong love of books. The programme works through local organisations to give free packs of books to babies and toddlers, as well as guidance materials for parents and carers. There are different types of Bookstart pack available for three different age ranges:
- 0 to 12 months
- 18 to 30 months
- three years plus

Local libraries can help families access local Bookstart programmes. Where programmes do not exist in the local area, Bookstart packs can be ordered online.

If you are looking to write a book for children under 5 years of age, or if you are looking to buy books for children within this age group (perhaps you have a child who is under 5 or you work with young children) then there are some key principles that you should keep in mind:
- Children are attracted to colour and shapes. Ensure that you incorporate these principles into the books you write or buy. If you are writing a book for children, think about working out the visual impact or illustrations for the book before you finalise the text
- Children learn through repetition and rhyme. This is where the "every word counts" rule comes into play. Incorporate these principles into your manuscript
- Children find it easier to relate to things that they are aware of in their everyday life. So think about this when you are creating the landscape or characters for your text
- Children like to be read to this is a crucial part of their learning. So ensure that the words you write can be read well aloud having characters with different tones or voices is a great way to do this. It also ensures that the story becomes fun for the parent or carer who is reading the book aloud too!

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