Friday, May 26, 2017

What Is Your Worth?




With my birthday being last Sunday and turning the ripe old age of 43, not only did I think this was a timely post, but I would also like to mention my weight loss to date of 2stone/28pounds/13kgs in about four months. You can read the whole sordid weight loss journey over on my style blog, Jewel Divas Style.

Let's move on with this costly post...see what I did there...

Sometime last year I somehow can across blog posts from authors who were doing book tours and what they charged for a visit. Reading on, I found lists that they compiled of what they charged for and one author suggested adding the cost of your child caring time, your housework time, your time away from writing, basically everything that your visit would be taking you away from. And then there was the time needed beforehand to prepare and get ready, the cost of petrol to drive there, the air flight to fly there, the hotel stay etc, etc, etc.

So I thought about this and many a year ago after I did my styling course I was going to set up a style business off my jewellery business and planned out a pricing guide. That of course didn’t come to fruition but I was considering what my hourly rate was going to be.

Obviously since 2013 things have changed. I’ve written more over the last two years and my jewellery has been pushed to the back of the bus. My jewellery store is on holiday more often than not because I just couldn’t deal with it all. At least I don’t have to package my books and send them off. People can just buy them online and download them to their device.

But more about money. I decided to try out the author’s suggestion of dividing up my time and what I would be taken away from, so I’d know what to charge for and came up with this plan…

What I Do…

Run a business and all it entails.

Care for parent and all it entails.

Run a household and all it entails.

Broken down into detail…

1 - Jewellery Creation: time spent on finding and buying beads, findings and everything else, creation of pieces, making full collections.

2 - Book Creation: handwriting of books, typing of books, editing, creation of covers and interiors to produce complete book.

3 - Business Management: taking pictures of jewellery and books, uploading of jewellery or books to sale sites and spending time filing descriptions, covers, interiors, publishing, blogging and social media, paperwork, research, web management and all that entails.

4 - Caring Management: appointments, calls, doctors, medications, home care and anything else that comes up.

5 - Household Management: calls, appointments, tradies/housing trust, housework (cooking, cleaning, dishes, washing etc), and anything else that comes up.

Now originally when I had set a cost for my styling business I was going to charge $60 for the first hour and then $180 for each hour after. But after what’s happened to me and the amount I’m working all day if I needed to be taken away from this then my time had better be worth it. So I came up with this…

First hour, $1 per minute per each item, so that’s $1 X 5 items = $5 X 60 minutes = $300 for the first hour. Each hour after it’s double that at $600 per hour. Now that may be a bit rich for some but seriously, I do the one job the rest of my siblings don’t do…LOOK AFTER THEIR MOTHER!!!!!

So quite frankly, I’m worth it. My time is worth it, and my bloody energy is worth it. If you can’t afford me, don’t ask me!


Friday, May 19, 2017

For Authors, What Does 'Not Well Written' Actually Mean?



I recently had one of my tween stories given a review and that is what it said. It was not well written. But not well written compared to what? A literary masterpiece? It’s a tween story for god’s sake.

The review didn’t mention spelling, grammar, maturity, issues with the story etc, so not well written means what exactly? You could look at 100 books and none of them will be literary masterpieces. They will be written as well as the author can write it, but then that still may not be good enough for some people.

By what standards are they using? Their own? Not well written compared to their books? Their English skills? Clearly some people just expect everything to be a masterpiece. Except people don’t write like that. That’s right, NO ONE writes literary masterpieces without help. The very few books that become literary masterpieces are beaten to a bloody pulp by countless editors telling the authors what to write. So what do us mere mortal authors do? Do we write to the best of our ability and stick to that, or do we ask the reviewers to expand on their comments so we can get some idea of what they thought was wrong with it in case there actually was something wrong with it? Of course, it could just all be in their own head.

It’s a real pity there wasn’t more to the review than just, not well written.

At the end of the day what does not well written actually mean, coz I’m confused?


Friday, May 12, 2017

Author Versus Writer. What do either really equate to?


There have been a lot of blog posts and columns about this topic, so I’m going to weigh in myself.

Some people believe that authors are not writers and vice versa.

Some people believe that writers are not authors and vice versa.

Some people think you can be both.

I think that each word/title means something a little different.

To me, a writer is someone who writes different things across different areas, mainly non-fiction columns, blog posts, web stories, magazine articles etc. They are writing, so they can use the label writer.

To me, an author is someone who writes books, fiction or non-fiction. Yes, they are a writer, but since the primary object is books, to me, the title of author seems more fitting.

To me, a novelist is someone who writes novels. Hence the title, novelist.

To me, a blogger is someone who blogs. Hence the title blogger.

To me, a columnist is someone who writes magazine/newspaper columns. Hence the title, columnist.

Get the picture?

I think it all means something to everyone and I also think it depends on what you write. If you do a bit of everything, go ahead and call yourself a writer. But I don’t necessarily think an author needs to call themselves a writer even though they write.

To me, that would be like calling a reality show contestant a celebrity…

ah *shudders*

It's all much of a muchness and what you want to call yourself is up to you, just make sure it has some authenticity to it.


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