Category: news writing

Foresight 2020

Hey, Happy 2020, alright?

When the new year comes, I don’t make a point of big personal statements, soaring platitudes about what I’ve learned in the past 365 or 366 days or where I see life taking me in the year to come. I try to trust that the past has been instilled in me and installed in my consciousness well enough that its lessons will serve me well, and I usually just like to see for myself what the next year will bring as it happens.

It’s not that January 1st is just another day for me. But I am not the type of person who thinks that somewhere between December 31st and January 1st we discover a “New You” for the New Year.

If you are that kind of person, that is great. No sincere effort toward personal betterment is ever wasted.

But for me, like many people, at the end of most years, I am simply ready for it to be over. Take 2019 for example. In just these few days since Christmas I have

  • been sick
  • had a minor skin wound
  • had part of my wheelchair break off, and
  • someone sat on the laptop on which I do my freelance blogging work screwing it up irrevocably, I fear. I’m working on seeing what I can do about that. Meantime, I’m writing this on an older laptop. I’m soldiering on the best I know how.

Yet guess what. After all of the frustrations numerated above, tonight I discovered that I’ve got a new gig writing about one of the things that I’ve always told myself I am meant to be writing about. The Beatles. I can’t wait to jump into 2020 with this project immediately in front of me.

The traditional concept of hindsight will nag at me saying that I should have been doing these types of projects for years now. But I know there is no point in thinking that way. It is here now. Hindsight is 2020 because you have the benefit of…well, hindsight. You’ve been there and done that already, so you have an informed perspective on events.

I want to approach the year 2020 like that, except going forward instead of looking back. I want to approach the future of Dailey Freelance with the confidence of someone who sets goals with an informed certainty.

I want you, the client to set expectations on my work for you with a certainty as though when I discuss what I’m going to do for you, you can consider it already done.

I want to cover every freelance subject I write on with the certainty of an expert, to make myself so well-informed on the subject that it will be the most natural thing in the world for me to write your content.

So let’s put 2019 behind us and move into 2020 with certainty.

Let Yourself Be Edited

As a freelancer, the clients I’ve worked for have given me fairly free rein to write as I like, after agreeing on a topic, that is. Even so, there have been times when I’ve asked the client their thoughts on a line or word I was thinking of using. I’ve always been glad I did, but it has usually been up to me to use my discretion and they’ve posted my work as I submitted it.

I’ve always felt that showed that the client trusted me, but it was also a great feeling knowing I gave them what they were looking for.

Recently I’ve written a freelance piece for a local magazine. That is a different animal altogether. I used to write for a newspaper but that was long ago. In the newspaper/magazine biz, depending on the deadline, you may submit your work and the editor will tell you they made a few changes, but you might not know what those changes are until the piece has been published.

And that’s fine. That’s why they are called editors. They are the gatekeepers. They have the final say.

There is an old writer’s adage, “Kill your darlings.” Editing yourself is a tough exercise. Ego comes into play. Delusions of grandeur even. Sometimes that bit you think is absolutely brilliant is just fluff and you may have to kill it.

Having been truly edited, the value of editing myself becomes all the more pronounced. Because though I will continue to freelance for magazines, I also love to write for business owners who hire me so they don’t have to make those decisions.

It’s kind of an important role they’ve entrusted me with. I respect that greatly.