I recently attended Kickstart Your Home-Based Writing and Editing Business, the fall workshop orchestrated by the fine people at STC San Diego and SD/Pen. It was really, really good. Takeaways up the wazoo.

And here I was thinking I had this freelance writer thing figured out…

It’s beyond my capacity to recount all the invaluable nuggets I tucked into my breast pocket during a day jam-packed with good advice from seasoned pros. Sara Feldman, one of the event’s organizers, summed it all up pretty well.

Still, blogging is one of the services I deliver as a freelance writer in San Diego, and I’m writing a blog right now—like, RIGHT now—so I thought I’d share an oldie but a goodie courtesy of Nikkie Achartz’s presentation on Pricing and Profitability.

The work of a good blog

  • Educate
  • Entertain
  • Engage
  • Establish expertise

There it is: our job as blog writers summed up in pithy, indisputable, bullet-point form. It snuck up on me, though, wrapped up as I was in an itchy blanket of presentation anxiety. And it hit me hard: simple tenets are those soon forgotten. If I could just remember these four important points, I’d never have trouble starting a new assignment, meeting deadlines, and wowing clients with kickass, evergreen blog content.

Writer’s block, begone!

What to do with such a solid takeaway? Get it tattooed, font Old English, on my ribcage? Maybe if I lose a bet someday. For now, I’m parking those four shimmering bullet points at the top of my Google Doc blog template, so that any time a new assignment comes in, I know to keep it interesting, informational, and—god forbid—funny.

Martin Ceisel presenting at an STC San Diego SD/PEN event

PS Here’s digital proof that I spoke in front of a crowd without having an Gonzo-style, acid-fueled meltdown.

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