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5 Reasons Your Project Went Off the Rails and What to Do About It

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Your project was going along quite well and then one day things just went crazy. Or maybe things were pretty bad off right from the start, a fact you realized as soon as you landed the project, and now you feel stuck with a client who constantly complains, keeps changing his mind, and is never satisfied.

Whether the bump in the road cropped up suddenly or the discontent has been brewing all along, managing a project where you and the client are at odds can be frustrating for both parties. And, unfortunately, such occurrences can be a fact of life when you run a service business, especially one built on creativity and subjectivity like a writing business. If you’re in business long enough, you’re bound to run across such a situation. But fortunately, those situations can be few and far in between, when you know what to look for.

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50+ Tips to Network and Build Relationships in Your Business Or Career

Connect-and-Conquer-cover-375If you’ve been struggling for new ways to get business or are simply interested in adding a new technique to your mix, then check out my new book, Connect and Conquer: Grow Your Business, Organization, and Career Through Online and Offline Relationships. Relationships have been a key to my own business success, and I believe they can help you, also.

This is the reality: Your next job probably won’t come from the job boards. But it very well may come from your relationships. Your next business deal may not come from the ad you placed. But it very well may come from the relationships you are growing. If relationships hold so many opportunities, shouldn’t you be working on yours?

Relationships can be the difference between failure and success. If you don’t take care of your relationships, think you can only show up when you want something, or approach networking with a me, me, me attitude, then you won’t get very far. Contrast that with respecting relationships, consistent communication, and an attitude of giving, and you can reap huge benefits.

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How to Bring New Money Into Your Freelance Writing Business

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The proverbial feast or famine can strike anytime in a writing business when you’re not paying attention. Or for some writers, it may feel like famine and still more famine. Whatever the case, if you’ve hit a patch where money is running low and no new infusion of cash is on the horizon, you can feel pressed to hit the panic button.

What not to do

Well, first, hard as it may be, don’t panic. When you panic, you make rash decisions; decisions that can get you further down the hole. Another good reason not to panic is that you don’t want anyone to smell the stench of desperation on you. If they do smell it, one of two things will happen: They’ll run away from you, meaning no new business is coming from that direction. Or they’ll try to move in for the kill and get you to take on a slave-labor project. In your panic and desperation, you might take on the project that is paying way too little money, as you are just happy to have any dollar sign headed to your bank account. But then a strange thing happens when you take on a project for way too little pay: You hate the project.

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5 Reasons Why Every Freelance Writer Needs a Book

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If you’re hanging around this site, there is a pretty good chance you make a living writing or aspire to do so. You’ve probably written all kinds of projects for clients — projects to help them market their services, earn more income, and build their brands.

But have you thought of doing the same for your own writing business?

If you’re like a lot of creative service providers, you might be pretty good at doing the work based on your talent and skill but you’re not as good at marketing what you do.

That’s where a book comes in.

It’s time for you to write  a book.

A book helps build authority and credibility like nothing else. Even in this cluttered marketplace where more than 3,500 books are published a day, being an author still means something. So make it mean something for you.

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A Publisher Is Offering You a Book Deal — Now What?

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A client in our book ghostwriting business recently called to tell me a publisher was interested in offering him a book deal. Of course I’m always happy when clients see success with projects we’ve helped them create, and this time was no different. We talked about the merits of accepting a book deal, which got me thinking about several things to consider when deciding if a book offer from a publisher will be a good fit for you. When I landed my first book deal (which I later terminated) and even my second one, I didn’t know much about book contracts. But now, as an experienced author and editorial consultant to other authors, I have learned just how important it is to read through the contract and negotiate your points — or skip the contract and stick to self-publishing.

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7 Secrets to Building a Successful Writing Business

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Just yesterday, RootSky Books, our book publishing company, turned 12. It’s been through many changes since those early days where my only aim was to self-publish my own books and get my words out to the world. And through those changes, I’ve learned a lot. A lot that can help you as you grow your writing business.

First, a bit of the history.

I accomplished my first goal of self-publishing my own books and as a result, landed a book deal. I self-published my first two novels, As If Nothing Happened and Sacrifice the One before landing the book deal. As If Nothing Happened came in 2002 and Sacrifice the One two years later. The agent came in 2005 and the book deal in 2006, I believe. (Memory gets a little hazy on the details.) Self-published books? Check. Agent? Check. Book deal? Check.

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Selling Your Book On Amazon: Advantage, Marketplace, CreateSpace, KDP

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Amazon provides a great opportunity for self-published authors to sell their books on equal footing with traditionally published authors, but choosing how to do that can be a bit confusing.

A client had questions about the best Amazon option as she looked to plan her distribution and marketing for a book we had ghostwritten and designed for her. I realized what she needed to know was something many others need to know, also. Some people think that if they already have an Amazon account they use for buying books or selling their old stuff like the jewelry they no longer wear or the books they’ve already read, then they are good to go. But not necessarily. It depends on how you want to sell your books, including how involved you want to be in the process, and whether you have other products you also sell. Amazon Advantage and the Amazon Marketplace are the options most often considered.

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10 Keys to Finding Your Dream Clients

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When you’re running a freelance writing business, or actually any type of service business, you will get to a point where you want to be a bit more discerning in the type of clients you take on. Sure, when you’re just starting out, you might scramble to get any client who comes your way. But as you gain more experience, confidence, and success, you will realize there are certain types of work you prefer.

One of the reasons you launched your freelance writing business may have had to do with the freedom to choose. Well, this is one area where you absolutely can choose!  Yep. You don’t have to take every piece of business that comes your way. Instead, you can focus on doing your best work for clients you enjoy, and on projects that excite you. When you focus your marketing efforts on the clients you do want, you can build a better, stronger — and more enjoyable freelance writing business.

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5 Secrets to Building Your Personal Brand Online — When You Have a Service Business

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Figuring out how to stand out when you’re a solopreneur or small business owner can be confusing, intimidating, and daunting.

But setting yourself apart doesn’t have to be overwhelming. When you learn how to distinguish yourself from all the others offering similar services, you can build a stronger business and get better clients. Building a solid personal brand is key to that process. Whether you are a writer, designer, coach, consultant, speaker, or other person building a business around what you know, you’ve got to build a personal brand. We all have personal brands, by virtue of the footprint we leave. But those who manage their personal brands and play up the unique aspects of those brands are the ones who succeed.

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5 Reasons Your Personal Story Matters to Your Clients and Customers

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When you’re growing a small business, you’re looking for any way you can stand out and draw more people to you.

But many people forget one very compelling way to attract clients.

Their personal stories.

Your personal story can help you attract your target clients, give you something in common with those you want to do business with, and relate to those around you. In today’s world of increasing interest in the lives of others — as displayed by the popularity of reality television and social media profiles — you could be missing an opportunity if you ignore your personal story. This isn’t to say you need to blab all your personal business to your customers — that would just be weird — but do consider being more open about who you are as a person and how that influences the work you can do for them.

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