Blog-etter or News-log, Why Not Both?

Me wondering if my verbs would improve with looser shoes

For a while I’ve squinched up my face when I’ve been writing my blog posts. Not that they’ve tasted of rancid cheese, but that they haven’t felt fully satisfying. After letting that notion sit on my head for a month or two—I’m slow—I came up with it: it’s more the format that’s got a hitch in its giddyup, rather than the content. (I’m willing to have you argue the point that it’s the content that needs more caffeine.)

Rather than continue a monthly blog post that’s often an essay-style exploration of a single writing topic or writing concern native to me, I’m going to pen writing-related thoughts on a looser basis in the blog: shorter, possibly more personal, and at least a couple of times a month rather than monthly. I’m going to resume the monthly newsletter I suspended a while back and use that as the forum for longer posts.

In both, I’ll include links to my published pieces, which have been scant of late, but the curated links—which for a long while have dealt with maintaining mental balance and a broader perspective in pandemic times—will only be in the newsletter. I put some in here for old time’s sake, goopy sentimentalist am I.

In the main, the next few newsletter posts are going to deal with the past year and a half of writing a couple of books, and my current effort to set them up for self-publishing.

So, I would love for you to stick around here. Let me know if there are any topics (or tropics) you’d like explored—in a succinct, dazzling way, of course—in the blog.

And please join me on the newsletter list too. I am outlawing rancid cheese there as well.

Of course, if you’ve smelled old cheese in my posts for a while, you’re welcome to clean out the fridge by the way of the unsubscribe button. It’s been fun to have you—best success to your work and your subsequent cheese selections.

Links to Thinks

Chatting With the Bourbon Sasquatch
Me on a video chat with the Emperor of All Things Bourbon (AKA Steve Akley) on one of his many podcasts. I’m in my ’66 Airstream office, blathering about shoplifting, Las Vegas, and yes, whiskey.

Scientifically Speaking, Doing Nice Things for Others Could Help You Live Longer
“The beautiful thing about kindness is that it gets you outside of your own perception box, and it helps you to remove the focus from yourself and put it on other things in the world that help to provide meaning and purpose.”

5 Simple Principles That Will Help You Live Your Life On Purpose
“You don’t need to save the world by inventing an eco-friendly toilet that’s made of recycled microplastic and turns your poop into money for needy kids when you flush. Instead, it’s about making a difference, no matter how small.”

Positive Phrases for a Healthy Author Mindset
“And therein lies the premise of today’s post: using positive self-talk to improve your mindset and prospects as an author. Achieving this feat might seem unlikely now if you struggle with negative thoughts but, providing you have a healthy mental state in general, it’s possible. The key is learning how to identify and dispute your irrational thoughts. Turning the tide is a challenge but you can overcome it with a few key phrases.”

100 ways to slightly improve your life without really trying
“17 – Don’t be weird about how to stack the dishwasher.”

Writing Jobs Delivered to your Door (er, Screen)

For all of you freelancers who toil in your treetop aerie, serenaded by regal raptors, and even for those who might subject their verbs to subjective verbalizations in an old Airstream, you might wonder where your next crust of bread (or better yet, bottle of Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Reserve) is coming from. Fret not.

That old series of tubes dubbed the Internet will whisk job listings straight to your screen, so that you can continue to work your magic behind the home keyboard like the great and terrible Oz. You won’t have to go out into society job-hunting, where you might expose those accidental dreadlocks you’ve been cultivating. There are all manner of job sites Netwise, but I’m talking here about listings of writing jobs delivered directly to you—and they have the bonus key lime pie of being wrapped in a writer’s newsletter, full of the newsiness you writerly types are keen on.

Here are a few of my favorites:

Writer’s Weekly – This is the handiwork of Angela Hoy, and it gets around: as stated, “The highest-circulated freelance writing ezine in the world.” Angela sends out a weekly newsletter that has a range of contract job listings for telecommuters of every stripe. The mailing also has her reports about personal travails and triumphs, a lead writing article, warnings on deadbeat publishers and more. On the deadbeat publishers issue, if you contact her about a venue that hasn’t paid you your due, she reports it online in her Whispers and Warnings column, and will write (for free!) a series of letters to the offending party, acting as a liaison between you and the crumbbum who stiffed you. She does get results.

Writing World – Lots of good stuff on the site itself (many helpful articles in the Business of Writing section), and sections on all writing genres—what, no haiku? But I go for the free newsletter, which also has a lead article on the business of writing, a Inquiring Writer column where readers help readers on writing requests and issues, and the Jobs and Opportunities portion, which has freelance work and submissions listings. Delivered twice a month.

Funds for Writers – No, they aren’t just going to dole out dough to you—I already asked. But the free newsletter lists lots of writing grants and retreats, writing contests and job markets. And Hope Clark, the woman who runs the joint, is charming. Her column is personal and always worth the read. Delivered once a week.

I’m also a member of The Writer’s Bridge, a paid site that sends out a daily compendium of job listings from across the U.S., including gleanings from all the major Craig’s Lists. I have gotten a couple of juicy contracts from these listings (though there are some clunkers in there too, as any Craig’s Lister knows). Ten bucks a month, and like I say, every day. Darrell Laurant, the fellow that runs the site, is a long-time journalist, and a good guy.

Sites (and Sights!) Galore
Those are the only sources of writing jobs on the whole Internet. Wait, did I hear you grunt in disdain? OK, true, that isn’t even a quivering bacterium’s ecological cloth grocery bag’s worth (say that ten times, fast) of the job listings for freelancers on the net, but dang, who’s got the time to list them all?

But if you absolutely lust to look at other lists of contract writing work (and associated writing advice and resources), here are a few other job site conglomerates I flip through now and then:

Journalism Jobs

Freelance Writing Jobs Network

About Freelance Writing


If you see anything there about writing songs for lovelorn squirrels, buzz me—I’m a pro.