“So how’s that new business of yours going?” What business? Oh, yes, the one that I’ve been researching how to put together. Freelancing is a hard business to figure out. First, there’s registering a name for your business with the State. That costs $20 in Montana. Then there’s obtaining an EIN for tax purposes from the IRS – that means you have to choose your business structure and that, of course, affects your taxes and the dates they’re due. Another factor is State licensing, credentials, and miscellaneous other things that will have to be kept track of.
Yes. That indicates the need for written records of your every breathing moment here on the earth if you want to get yourself into the best tax situation possible. Bookkeeping. Income. Expenses. Mileage. Office. Shipping. Queries. Contracts. Negotiations. Rights to the work and who gets what. It’s like selling a piece of historical land!
To begin any of this, you need to have developed your service (and product). That means you need a manuscript, or need to have some ideas before writing queries and getting that long, drawn-out process started. It begins with a manuscript, which begins with a first draft – a bad first draft. If you’re like me and prefer to write without an outline because you’re a non-linear thinker, then write the outline anyway, then crumple it, chuck it, burn it, tear it up, have some fun destroying it in general, and then write. Let your character flow in the words that you write on the page or type on the computer screen. Sometimes I like to write it out with a pen paper, then dictate it in with Dragon after I finish tweaking my paper draft so that all is saved on paper, on the hard drive, and in the cloud. Your first draft should be an explosion of word fragments, sentences, partial phrases, incomplete thoughts, and general ideas. It should truly be a mess!
Prior to writing my first draft, I often do a word-association brainstorming exercise that I learned in junior high. It’s highly visual and works well for me, as I am a visual learner. My manuscript is underway and I’m writing a little bit every day. Gotta pick up the pace! Of course, I have to find a market for my book, too! Easier said than done, haha!