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Monday, August 30, 2010

At last I feel Happy about Blogging

Since I started blogging, I had always the dilemma of earning money vs personal satisfaction. I had to do many things. The most important thing I had to do was to learn about blogging. So, I had to study a lot about Blogging, Search Engine Optimization, Earning Money through blogging etc. I also made a huge mistake of trying to spread myself too thing and I worked in many blogs.
As a result, life became full of stress and I was working sometimes 16 hours day after day and month after month. I do not regret all the mistakes in the last four years because I have learnt a lot from the mistakes. Secondly, because I dedicated myself completely about reading on blogging, now blogging is not difficult for me. If my health was some better then blogging was indeed no problem.
I am now becoming better and I am grateful to God for that. Today, I have taken a huge decision of just trying all out for one blog: Laptopet. Thus, I feel almost no stress and exhausting about blogging. This is for the first time in four and half years, I feel very happy about blogging. In the past, I was happy too but there was a sense of tiredness, exhaustion and stress working on me as I was in a field that I did not have much knowledge and skill.
Also, from today, I am going to start doing some research. So, it has brought a lot of satisfaction in my mind. 

Thursday, August 26, 2010

What to Do with Four Hours?

At last, my health is becoming fresh enough to work. The feeling is excellent after a long time. There are four hours before going to bed to sleep. So, what to do?
Of course, the first thing to do is to finish this entry in this blog. Then, I think some, make a plan and search some and again think and write.
When you are a journalist then one advantage is that you know your assignments. In other words, you know what you have to write. However, when you are a blogger and you only write in your own blogs then this becomes a problem. I have noticed that a lot of time gets wasted everyday just to think that what should be written.
Thus, a good portion of the next 4 hours will be perhaps wasted thinking about what to write.
In the last one week, I received two nice comments in my inbox through Feedburner. I like to thank both of these two readers. Comments like these surely help me to get more energy and motivation to write.
The long summer heat is almost finishing. Now, in our home, we have less power cuts (load shedding) and this is good for working. 

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Finding the Humanistic Touch in Writing about Business and Technology

In my earlier entry, I wrote that I am going to focus only in two blogs from tomorrow, South Asia Blog and Lapopet. The first blog is about business and economy while the second one is purely related to technology. My educational background is pure Arts. I studied English Literature and then English Language Teaching (ELT) in my BA and MA respectively.
You may wonder whether I have any knowledge or skill to blog in these two blogs. Well, I liked Economics a lot and I used to read about economics when I found time in my school and college days. I have been writing about International business since 1997 (13 years). I also have been writing about computer and Internet since 1999 (11) years. So, I think that I have some skill for writing about business and technology or else I would not survive so long.
I especially enjoy writing in South Asia Blog. When I write a business entry then I try to add some humanistic touch. If you have some time then read this entry: Impact of Global Economic Recession on Nepalese Economy
I feel that the humanistic touch make my entries easier to read and more enjoyable.  
I need to find the same touch while writing about technology. Until now, I never tried to write about technology seriously. Now is the time as we are going to make Laptopet our main blog.
I dream of a day when I can full time write about humanities topics like history or literature or linguistics. Now, I am hopeful that it will come soon. 

Decreasing Quantity while Focusing on Quality

Quality and Quantity most of the time have opposite relationship. If quantity increases then quality decreases. This is even truer in writing. To write in a good way, you have to give a lot of time and efforts. Of course, the more you try, you become better and faster. For example, I am almost continuously blogging for more than 4 years and 6 months. Naturally, I am now much faster when I write an entry compare to 4 years ago. That is perhaps why, this feeling has come inside me that I should focus on quality from now instead of quantity.
Well, at first, I had to focus on quantity as I hardly knew anything blogging, about earning money or getting traffic. Now, I am at the peak of skill in Blogging and that is why, I feel that it is time to focus on quality.
What is quality in blogging? To me, the definition of quality is simple. I should get maximum satisfaction after writing an entry. I have noticed in the past that when I wrote a quality entry, it brought good response. I got links from some influential blogs and social bookmarks. Of course, after writing a good entry, some promotional activities are needed or else others wont find my writings. So, I know that I can write quality content that gets linked by others.
The sickness, hard work, mental stress, getting the money after earning it, suffering disaster because of shared hosting- all of these took away my confidence and mental energy. I lost the motivation and ability to write the nice entries consistently. My health is coming back and this is helping me a lot.
I am an Aries and maturity became much later in my life. I guess that at last at the age of 37, I feel matured. I still feel very young in my mind but now, I have started to feel matured.
Perhaps the main problem now is to focus on a fixed topic for a long time. I can sit in front of the PC for many hours but I cannot focus on a topic continuously even for 10 minutes. I get distracted too much with many things. Now, the main challenge is to focus on something for nearly one hour. If I can totally focus on writing for one hour then in two hours, I can produce something not perhaps magical but I am satisfied with the quality.
Thus, this is now my main challenge. I love writing a lot and I am happy to be a writer. I cannot think of any other profession that would bring even 10% of happiness like writing. I lost track but here, I am back again to my very best.
It is time to enjoy writing again, take writing as a challenge and enjoy the challenge. Yes, this time, I am matured and happy. Writing is the thing that I can do best and I want to try my best this time.
One of the things that really makes me happy is that I can find happiness and satisfaction in any kind of writing. I am going to focus only in two blogs from now, South Asia Blog and Laptopet. South Asia Blog is a blog about South Asian Business and Economy and Laptopet is about laptop and gadgets. Still, I enjoy writing in these blogs. Especially, South Asia Blog is my most favorite blog. Unfortunately, writing about South Asia does not bring good money or else, I would just focus on South Asia Blog.
My life has been full of struggling against poverty and suffering from frustration. Unfortunately, my parents were never wise about money and wealth and as a result, as the only son and eldest child of the family, I had to earn money from a very early age. I am happy that this is past. Fortunately, God compensated with all my sufferings with a good marriage with an exceptionally good woman.
I am happy that I experienced the kind of love that I always dreamt and read in novels and watched in movies. It is indeed a fairy tale story for me.
Now, I am optimistic because I feel more peace and calm. After years of suffering, at last, I feel I can take some rest. It has been almost 18 years of long journey of hard work for day and night, for weeks and months and years. I have made many mistakes because of immaturity. I had to tolerate many cruelties in life.
Still, I had a dream to be a writer and now I feel that I am very close to fulfilling my dream. In the last one year, I was sick most of the time and I had to depend on my 3 assistants for the blogs. They are very dedicated and I really have no complain against them. They are still working with me. However, I am the type of person who loves to work and when I could not write myself but had to guide them then I felt helpless, frustrated and useless. I like to be in charge and I like to do things myself. Thus, it was a bad torture for me.
Nevertheless, I am deeply grateful to God for this break. The last one year has not only made me matured but also has changed me profoundly. God has helped me immensely to keep the blogs more or less intact and I can again come back to writing. So, with this entry, I am making a comeback and it is like a second beginning for me. 

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Race against Time for a Blog

On this Friday (20 August), I moved our Laptop blog from Blogspot to its own domain. Well, when you do that to a blog then for the first weeks, the blog does not get good blessing from Google. So, we have to try for it a lot.
I am some concerned about this matter because in November, it is the time of Black Friday 2010. Black Friday is the time that we get most traffic for this blog. In November 2009, this blog got 110,000 page views and I think that on November 2008, it received more than 200,000 page views. So, we have just September and October or nearly 70 days.
I am hopeful that 70 days would be enough but I also know that we have to race against time so that by November 1, the blogs gets strong and gets good blessing in Google search results. Well, I am hopeful because we always give original content and we try to put quality content. 

Monday, August 23, 2010

Best Blogs on Freelance Writing: A list

If you are looking for good blogs on Freelance writing then I would like to direct you to two entries I found in other websites. Here they are:

Some of these blogs are really useful and I visit them quite frequently. If I find time then I will try to a make a list of the good websites that are useful for freelance writers. I visit Absolute Forum almost once a day. 

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Ten Tips on how to Survive as a Freelance Writer

There are really millions of people who want to be a writer. I am just one of them and I am happy to say that my full time work is writing. It is actually not freelance writing but Blogging. Many freelance writers would perhaps frown at people like me and they would say that Bloggers are not real writers. Anyway, this entry is not about me or Bloggers but here, I am going to discuss about some tips on how to survive as a freelance writer. I have been earning my livelihood as a freelance writer for quite sometimes. I have also suffered some of the worst experiences. So, I think that I am a write person to give advice on this topic.
1. Think again if you want to be a writer: yes, this is my first advice to anyone who wants to be a writer. As I have already said that millions of people want to become full time writers but only very few of them become successful. Most others either quit or suffer too much for their whole life and still do not get any success. That is why, it is better that you think again seriously whether you want to be a writer and suffer the instability and insecurity of a freelance writer. If you are not ready for the instability and security then you should not be in this field.
2. Get inspiration from the lives of other writers: Whenever I feel disappointed and frustrated, I try to think about two writers. The first one is Charles Dickens and the second one is Alex Haley. Both of them realized what poverty was. Charles Dickens in fact hardly got any chance to get school education but he taught himself and he had to literally earn money just to stay live for some of the early years of his life. That is why, I get a lot of encouragement and inspiration from the life of Charles Dickens. You do not have to get inspiration from Dickens alone. There are many other poets and writers who suffered a lot just like you.
3. Keep your dream intact: Most people are afraid to dream and even believe in their dream. I would strongly suggest that you never loss your dream. It does not matter whether you become successful or not but you must have your dream intact. For example, these days, I have to work on Blogging and earn money. I enjoy Blogging because it is a kind of writing and many people are reading my entries. However, I really wish that I could write some stories, novels and I could dedicate all my time for writing and reading about history. However, writing about history will not bring money for me and that is why I am becoming a more serious Blogger. Still, I have my dream within me. As soon as I can get good success in Blogging and can earn decent amount of money, I will try to allocate at least 20 per cent or 25 per cent of my daily time for writing and reading about history.
4. Don’t leave your day job right away: This is one of the most important tips I want to talk about. Many people get too much excited and carried away and they just jump into freelance writing. Many people even give up their day time job that brings regular money and pay all their bills. You should not do it until you can earn some regular money by selling your writing. I am grateful to god that the time of Blogging came and I could get some regular income through it.
5. Cut back on your hobbies and luxuries: When you want to become a full time freelance writer then forget about your all luxuries. May be you are fond of a very expensive restaurant and you want to go there once a week. When you become a freelance writer then just forget it. Or else you cannot control your expenses and you will suffer sooner rather than later. As for hobbies, try to think of the hobbies that does not need money at all. For example, I try to read all the news in internet and do not buy any newspaper. I also try to read as much free e-books available on internet as possible instead of buying books. I am among the persons who is crazy for newspapers and magazines.
6. Beggars should not be choosers: This is another important lesson. In your early years of freelance writing career, do not try to be an idealist or perfectionist. Sometimes you will get projects that you do not like at all. For example, I used to get a lot of projects for translation works related to computer field. My background is from Humanities and at first, it was not only distasteful for me but very difficult too. However, I realized that translating in the computer field was bringing much more money than any other kind of writing. This skill helped me a lot when I became a Blogger. So, be prepared to write the things you don’t like at all. Or in other words, sometimes, be prepared to sell your soul sometimes.
7. Work long hours: Remember that writing is not a 9 to 5 job. When you get a project and you need to do a research and work on it then be prepare to work for long hours. When I started professional Blogging nearly four and half years ago, for many months, I used to work 12 to 14 hours a day. I did not take any off because I needed to know about professional Blogging. Because of this, I survived quite well in Blogging and had decent amount on income.
8. Take loan and charity: This happened to me really. Nearly eight years ago, I left my university teaching job and decided to become a full time freelance writer. At first, it was impossible for me to earn any money and I suffered a lot from money stress. It became a real nightmare every month to pay the house rent. I had to take loan or even sometimes begged from my friends anyone I knew. Just be prepare to leave aside your dignity on some occasions and if needed take charity.
9. Success will come: I know that often writers get the feeling that they will struggle forever. I am not saying that if you work hard you will become rich or a millionaire. However, I can assure you that if you are ready to work hard regularly then at least you will be able to have a decent middle class life from the income of your writing.
10. Think again really: At first, I said you that think about the matter whether you really want to be a writer and if you are ready to suffer all the hardship, frustration and insecurities of the life of a freelance writer. At the end, I am again telling you the same thing because it is not a child play. Life is not rosy at all when you decide to become a freelance writer. You are bound to suffer for several years unless a miracle happens. 
In the end, just kind of off topic and self promotion. Today, we could move our laptop blog to a domain: http://www.laptopet.com/
If you can then pay a visit. 

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Freelance Writing: Dream and Reality

Most probably, I have written about it in an earlier entry. Still, this is something that is in mind a lot in the recent weeks. It is a personal issue but also I think that most writers have to deal with it just like me. For many years, my dream was to be a writer like Charles Dickens, George Orwell or O. Henry. They are great writers and they could influence and entertain lot of people. Still, people love to read their writings. Of course, Orwell did not achieve that much popularity but both Dickens and O. Henry are still very popular not only among speakers of English language but also in the whole world.
This was my dream but I could not fulfill my dream and I am not hopeful that I can ever do it. It does not make me sad because reality is that very few writers can become successful. What makes me sad is the fact that I do not have any time to write about the things I love. I love to write about history, international politics, business but I cannot find the time. Well, more than time, they do not bring any money.
The main problem is that I am trying to set up a company and the birth pain is too much. Running a small home based company with 4 workers may not sound to be a big deal but it is more than I can handle. I have to take care of everything as I am the owner.
This matter consumes a lot of time for me. However, on the other hand, because of this company, I am free of any stress related to money.
Anyway, what I have realized is that having a dream is very important in life. Compared to 5 years ago, my condition is better now and if I have the dream then may be after one year, I can write the things I dreamt. I do not dislike blogging but I think that writing about history, international politics or current affairs, business would make me happier than writing about sports and technology or entertainment.
Secondly, I wish that everyday, I would write just entry instead of writing several entries. Well, if I have enough money then I surely can do it. Or, I try to write the short entries very quickly and then devote the whole day for writing a good and long entry.
Writing should be fun. However, the stress of work and real life has taken away all the fun and I became both physically and mentally tired. I hope that gradually I can again come back to writing for fun.