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Category: Being your own boss

Studiolog: Week of November 26

It took some doing, but we got out of vacation mode. And then what did the Shames get up to? Perhaps most importantly, this is being written on December 1st, meaning that NaNoWriMo is over. I crossed the 50,000-word threshold with about 30 minutes to spare! Still have about half the story left to go, but I feel solidly into it, enough to keep the momentum going. Amy wrote (nearly) every single day in November,…

The Writers in the Room

About a month ago, I wrote about how Amy and I have been doing a “live podcast.” The trend continues! We have managed to stream each weekend, despite sickness, busyness, and distraction, and now we’re moving from something super casual and unofficial…to being The Writers in the Room. Jake is mostly responsible for the title. We were working with “Worldbuilding with PrincessFray and half_pint,” which is a mouthful and a half and doesn’t actually give a…

I’m fickle and I know it

In college, I got accused of being “fickle” a lot. Yes, I’m going to go there: the dictionary defines fickle as, “changing frequently, especially as regards one’s loyalties, interests, or affection.” Hmm. Is that so bad? I guess if you’re someone who wants to prey on people who stubbornly refuse to change their minds once they’ve made a decision, then someone who’s fickle is probably a wrench in your plans. But if so, you’re not…

Live podcasts

I mentioned in the last studiolog I wrote that we’ve been streaming our studio. Since then, we’ve refined that practice a little bit: Jake and Josh stream their shop time, which is mostly guitar work, and Amy and I stream our creative collaboration time. It feels like a live podcast. And it’s awesome. (For us, at least.) I’m not a big podcast fan. I’m not an audio learner, and I find it difficult to focus on…

The writer’s guide to self-care

Writers are notoriously bad at self-care. Here’s a non-exhaustive questionnaire to get you on track to focus on getting the words out. Have you brushed your teeth? Have you had a glass of water in the last couple of hours? Have you eaten today? If you consume caffeine, have you had a reasonable amount of it? Have you taken a walk today? Have you stretched in the last 30 minutes? Have you taken vitamin D supplements today,…

Dogfooding your art

For a while, when I was a wee overachiever, I was often called a perfectionist. It wasn’t true, though. I was (and am) just good at spotting things that could still be improved. A perfectionist can’t bear to put something out into the world until it’s perfect, and thankfully I’ve never really had that problem. (I’ve been posting my drafts online since 2001.) When I started working at Microsoft nearly five years ago (!!), I…

Taking myself seriously

Earlier this year, squadmate Amy sent me a Sarah Cooper article. Beyond the fact that the article was painfully spot-on (I’m guilty of all of them except maybe the one-handed typing and the moustache), it was well-written and enticing. I went deeper into her catalog. And I found “Do You Take Yourself Seriously?” My heart sank as I read through it. Because no, I didn’t, not really. These three quotes stood out to me, as…

Mischievous mice: A short history

I’ve known Nicole longer than I’ve known either of my siblings (by a solid year) — we decided we didn’t want to play house with the girls in our Sunday school class, we wanted to play animals with the boys. We went to the same college. We got married within a couple months of one another. Oh, and she stole my original last name. And now she’s opening up her own shop, Mischief & Mouse.…

It’s MY platform.

One of my very enterprising peer-friends, Nikki, told me about a year ago that I needed to start getting my brand in order. My…brand? was my clueless response. She meant the brand of my online presence, the composite virtual face I was presenting to the world. At the time, I had little more than a LinkedIn page and a personal Twitter account used for silly interactions with my colleagues. Nikki’s advice was sound. I’ve been trying…