Monday, September 10, 2012

Getting Back in the Swing of Things

Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
Wow, time flies. After spending a summer preoccupied with looking for more work and not getting a lot done, I'm getting back into full-fledged writing, headed straight first into a realm in which I've only dabbled so much: social media. My Twitter account gets attention, but ultimately needs a lot more if I want to even more get myself out there. I'm getting myself started on Instagram (find me at heatherchadwick), letting my recent iPhone 4 purchase (yes, I couldn't wait for the 5) guide me into a great excuse to take more pictures. I'm also brushing up my page and moving things along on my Google+ page. I'm also even trying out Tumblr, which seems like something I would have very much liked back in the days when blogging was only for fun. It's easy to get distracted on social media very easily, which leads me to bring up the one thing I'm doing all of this for: my writing. I've been in a drought lately, finding myself not getting much done but domestic things (albeit very important) that haven't much to do with writing and little with anything else.

I have spent a great deal of time editing and formatting resumes lately, thanks partly to my work with Lynne Palmer Executive Recruitment as their Research Assistant. I work in the mornings, editing job descriptions and perfecting candidates' resumes. It's something I'm very fond of, and have great memories of. I used to do very similar work with my alma matter, Saint Peter's College,  when I was going to school there. I very much enjoy helping people in their job search and I especially love sharing the tools I have to get them on their way.

Now that some priorities have been fulfilled, summer all but done and my inspiration back in full force, I am ready to give writing a lot more than I've been giving it lately. I'm ready to write, read and work. And also to market myself into a different-looking page of Google listings. Happy beginning of new things, and if you're interested in my writing services, feel free to contact me at

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Oh, the places you'll go!

Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
I always knew writing would lead me to doing all sorts of things. Yesterday I spent my afternoon filming a promo that was assured to make its way to a NHL playoff game. This time next week, I will have covered two conferences that involved major decisions that affected whole populations of people. I began my foray into journalism by being one of the many that covered the protests of Occupy Wall Street. And while I'd never had any interest in being a professional photographer, in this digital age, I might find my photos accompany my articles before long enough.

I sometimes joke that writing puts you in the category of being one of those people that knows a little bit about everything- from public policy to sports stats to regional culture. In writing, it certainly helps if you're open to just about anything. I for one am not always comfortable introducing myself to strangers and asking them for something. Now it's something I have to get used to doing. How can I ever get quotes if I'm afraid to talk to people, right?

I also get to indulge in one my favorite past times- reading a whole lot. I've had the luxury of getting paid to read other people's work. I have yet to read something that I don't necessarily like. Of course, these happenings aren't as frequent as you'd think. There's plenty of work involved. I spend most of my time sitting on my couch, writing blog posts, formatting resumes and keeping up with social media. Getting to participate in activities out of the norm from a regular 9-5 desk job make the humdrum of everyday writing life worthwhile.  What I should make a point to do is take a bunch of pictures, of course, to document everything. Who knows what kind of book (or eBook) that could turn into?

Writing for a living allows me a whole slew of freedoms: learning new skills, having a different, varied schedule, being exposed to new things, and the like. In many respects, everything is new and that's something anyone can appreciate. It gives me many things to look forward to, and limitless potential (as long as I do the work). Who wouldn't like this job?

Saturday, February 25, 2012

On Writing

Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

One formal definition of writing describes the action as the act of forming visible letters or characters; ideas put together on the page to tell a story, give a singer a song, or educate those reading the work.
For me, writing is very much dependent on the writer's definition. It is what someone makes of it, and is as integral as the writer itself. Because every writer is different, the way they write is different. The hours they put on, how they come up with ideas, the notes they take, etc. It's very much an individual process.

Traditionally, writers liken it to hard work, something you delve into day in and day out, pounding away at at the keyboard or with the pen. For me personally, it is as much creative inspiration as it is anything else. I find that article ideas, paragraph openers, and simple sentences will just come to me at the most inopportune times- like when I'm showering or eating for instance. It's as if I'm supposed to stop everything and write, even if I've been plugging away all day, as if getting this idea down will be the only way to continue my day. I have plenty of moments where I'm in the middle of something, often conversation, and I suddenly have a better idea on how to phrase an opening paragraph. Article ideas love to come to me when I'm about to head off to bed. I've woken up in the middle of the night under the guise of having to go to the bathroom when I find myself looking for a pad of post-its and a pen.

Of course there are plenty of times when I'm looking at an empty computer screen. On a given workday afternoon when I'm finished with necessary work and have the time to start something else I suffer from momentary writer's block. I become unable to come up with ideas when I have the chance. I call this “radio silence”. It feels like static in my head that is preventing me from writing anything fruitful. It's annoying, and fortunately it doesn't happen a lot. Of course I have my moments where I don't like anything I write (great writing doesn't always just come to you), but you to have write and plug away it to get something great. Even if you think it's garbage, have something written than you can always edit and fix later. Even the worst opening sentence is a great place to start compared to writing nothing.

This is how I know that I'm a writer. I simply have to write because inspiration keeps on coming. It would be a waste not to. My advice to anyone who wants to start writing is to simply do it. Once you start and keep at it for a while, you'll find that inspiration starts coming to you. It won't always be easy- ask any other writer- but if you do it you're giving yourself the chance to write more. You might be like me and sometimes find the things you say sound like something you've written. And that's not a bad thing. It is such a great tool in so many ways. From grasping better spelling and grammar to learning how to form a compelling argument, writing is incredibly important. Try it sometime. You never know what you might come up with.  

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Finding Inspiration

Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

I find that I love to indulge in what I call "brain food" for inspiration to write. I need to feel smart to get my brain working. I need to feel intellectually stimulated to write, like I'm sure other writers do.

Here are some of my favorites:

The news, in general- I'm a news geek by nature. Whether it's the internet, television or radio, if I want to concentrate, I love all things informative making up my background noise. Sometimes I need quiet to work, especially when I'm fact-checking. Otherwise, I love having on the news. It's almost a reminder of sorts to get working. Watching the news makes me feel like an adult, and as an adult I have to work to provide for myself. And how do I provide for myself? I write. What can't the news live without? Writers.

NPR- Speaking of news, here's where I sometimes get mine. Talk radio in general is a great way to get your mind working. It's free, easy to find, and informative. While others may prefer more opinion-related talk, I prefer the news. NPR (on WNYC in the NYC area) focuses on topics I care about, and topics I don't hear about anywhere else. For me, it's a must listen. What's also great about news radio is I can turn it down if I need to concentrate, but feel like I need background noise.

Behind the scenes/plot, character analysis- I love the "goodies" on DVDs: behind the scenes, deleted scenes, intricate plot and character detail. I'm a big fan of television because of the opportunities it provides for character and story development. While film has its own, television series are afforded more time to develop with seasons. And I love those pieces about character and story change over the years. It's great contrast and thought-provoking.

Reading- Reading great editorials are what got me into writing in the first place. When someone else's thought inspire you to think about how you would relate messages to others, it gets you going. It's a bit odd to explain sometimes; I'm the type of person whose mind reads about current events and finds herself thinking about new ways to start an article about pop culture. In other words, reading other people's work gets me thinking about my own work. If you let your mind wander while being intellectually stimulated, you never know what you can get.

Call these my mental warmups- sometimes I’m not at my best if I start writing right away. I need a period of mental stretching, if you will. These things are important because they get me intellectually stimulated, and they get me inspired. Athletes need to stretch, singers need to do vocal warm ups, and I as a writer need to find some inspiration to write. And yes, while I'm not writing fiction, I do still need inspiration. It can be difficult to write an informative article if you can't come up with a proper way to get it started. I need to feel my mind working. And once it starts, it's up to meet to start. And with inspiration comes great work, thankfully. I don't know what I'd do if I had nothing to interest myself in. If I didn't, then I wouldn't be writing, would I?

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Where did September go?

Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
It seems that September came and went faster than the summer did. In the past month, I've been writing, editing, cleaning and pretty much being productive. I've recently been named a Contributing Admin to the WM Pet Connection, to which I regularly post to. I've also began my foray into journalism, going to Zuccotti Park in Manhattan to cover the Occupy Wall Street movement. I interviwed protesters, took photos and even looked into getting a press pass. Of course, I have to write more until I qualify for that, but it hadn't been something I thought about until recently.
So how about that- journalism? It's something I always rejected. It wasn't with good reason, however. I just never felt the need to pry. But my ever-growing interest in politics and social issues makes me very interested in pursuing that route, perhaps though not exclusively. For now, I think I'll try a flirtation with it and see how that goes. Here's to new adventures, the fall season and working my way to a press pass!

Recent articles

Comic Book Series Introduces Itself with ArtPrize Entry- Associated Content, Sept. 26, 2011
Occupy Wall Street movement proves to be peaceful, welcoming- October 10, 2011

Sunday, August 21, 2011

New digs= more work

Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
Well, that title is a mixed bag. It can be believed to be half right, if you consider I've done more cleaning and unloading than writing these past couple of weeks.  It's very easy to get preoccupied when there are boxes to be packed, couches to be moved and things to be thrown out. It can also of course be taken at face value, considering the physical workload I've undertaken, with the bruises to prove it. There's something about a new workspace that's inspiring; new surroundings can rejuvenate anybody. For me, it's not only about potential, but more of the feeling of needing to work more. I admit it's been easier to focus on the move than it has been on work. I've done more copywriting than article writing lately, so I honestly haven't felt like I've written as much. There's a romance to getting that first sentence just right. Once the first paragraph is finessed to your satisfaction, the rest of the article is smooth sailing.
Image Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons user Tony Hisgett
Of course, this moment of lackadaisical writing can also be likened to the need to enjoy what's left of the summer. I've never been a big beach-goer or someone that's really celebrated the summer. I'd always been preoccupied with something, whether it's work or school. It's very easy to procrastinate when you realize how little you've enjoyed the favorite season of the year. But with the summer being just about over and the move being all but done, it is time to get back to work and back to writing. It is what I do for a living, of course
It seems that many of my posts are about "getting back to writing". It is very easy, too easy in fact, to get distracted. Life and other responsibilities can get in the way. For a vocation that depends so much on the input of its workers, freelance writing can be so ignored.  When you're depending on the vocation to pay your bills and shelter, however, there needs to be more discipline. Thankfully, there's no more boxes to worry about. Now, it's time to push the writing. Again. Until my next slacking period, here's hoping that I get on a roll for a long while...

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

What a year of Freelance Writing has taught me

Image courtesy of
After one year of professional freelance writing, I've learned some things about how to start a freelance writing business and how to keep one going. Freelance writing to the uninformed can seem like a professional no-man's land, filled with non-stop promotion, marketing, job-applying and sporadic payoff.

Figure out what you want to write- Are you an article writer, business writer, or both? A great thing to do is to diversify yourself in your writing. Don't limit yourself to what you can write. I started out as an article writer and resume editor. Now I've added blogger, editor, social media marketer and copywriter to the mix. It definitely helps you get more work and more pay. And what writer wouldn't want that?

Get a website- If there's one thing a budding freelance writer needs, it's a place to show off their work. Look around at website providers first. Some services charge monthly payments, other charge a low yearly payment. Domain names are incredibly cheap these days; don't pay for something you can get at a tenth of the price somewhere else.

Diversify your resume- Don't limit yourself to one standard resume. Get used to playing around with it. Resume writing and revision is a lucrative market in itself, so practice retooling your own.

Learn Your Social Media- No writer is anyone without a Twitter handle and a Facebook fan page. And those are merely great places to start. Get yourself knowledgeable about hash tags and retweets. These platforms are a fantastic way to promote your work.

Make some writing friends- Getting in this field doesn't have to be isolating. There are networks of fellow writers who love to give advice and help steer you where you need to be. One group to check out is the WM Freelance Writer's Connection, where they offer daily advice on all-things writing. Subscribe to their daily newsletter, and get yourself a writing buddy.

Work it like a business- And never forget that what you're doing is in fact starting and running a business. Order some business cards, get a professional sounding email address and market yourself. Make sure your voicemail sounds professional, with a message that you wouldn't be embarrassed for a potential client to hear. Remember that voicemail you used when you were waiting for call backs from interviews? Exactly like that.

Don't take work merely because they offer pay- Look into the work you're offered. Do they want you to perform what would turn into several hours of work, for far less pay than you'd take at a job away from home? Don't work for pennies. I've had plenty of offers for $1/an article. For the asked 700 words, that would amount to $0.001 a word. For $ 0.1 a word, you would earn $70 for 700 words. Talk about a HUGE difference.

Don't sacrifice your life for your work- You certainly wouldn't do that for a 9-5 job, right? Remember to work hard but to live your life as well. Take breaks, days off and holidays. Remember that your career is supposed to enrich your life, not be your life.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

One Year of Freelance Writing

Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons user εΔω
Today marks one whole year since I had my first article published as a freelance writer. It was a piece titled Elena Kagan Promises Modesty, Impartiality, published on Associated Content. Since then, I've written album reviews, ghost written for blogs, edited manuscripts for publication and promoted businesses through social media marketing. A good start? You bet!
I've recently switched to a new server, giving it an all-new look. I am the first to admit I'm not the most html-savvy, so the switch was necessary. Now I've gone from a rather-boring template to something a bit more exciting. I'm also now very active on LinkedIn, a great tool to professionally network and look for jobs. I also have a Facebook fan page, a great way to promote my work. As I venture on through social media marketing, learning the ropes on how to build a substantial web presence, I am building up my portfolio and working to make a living via my writing. It hasn't been easy, but I know know it is very much doable.
So, here's to beginnings, first years, anniversaries and the like. I have to say I really enjoy sharing my foray into full-time freelance writing, ups and downs and in between. Next up on the agenda is going after higher-paying gigs, and getting more substantial work. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

My on-the-fence feelings about content mills

Ansel Adams image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
If there's anything I first came upon when I started writing for a living, it's the world of the content mill. I heard about Associated Content years ago when I was exploring the idea of freelance writing. I made an account that I didn't do anything with until this time last year. To be quite honest, when you're starting from nothing, it's hard to build. I've used Associated Content (and the getting more popular Yahoo! Contributor Network) to build my writing portfolio. Admittedly, not all of my work on there is my best. When you're being paid less than $10 for 400 words, you want to finish up your work quick; wasting an hour on about $5 worth of work isn't good for anyone.

Why do I still do it, do you ask? I want to have a place where I have a ton of work. If it takes me no time to do it and I can see even a little profit, I'll do it. I know it isn't the popular answer. Right now, I'm still in the beginnings of my writing career. When days are slow and paying work seems sporadic, it's nice to know you can turn to a place and writing something. Of course, I won't taking a feeble playing assignment that would take me more than twenty minutes; I see no reason to take forever on an article if I'm only going to make $5. I don't want to it represent my work as a whole. I understand that right now it might seem as such. In the long run, I want it to be one of the many places with which I've published my work. Taking it more seriously than that is not worth it to me. For the most part, it really is not a lot of money. Sometimes I find that my $4, $5 article turns in $20 with performance payments. That is always a nice surprise, of course. Basically, I'll take an assignment if it's something I can easily write about in five minutes. That way, I am justified in the low pay. A little money for what's essentially no work at all? Something I can finish in between higher paying work, especially when I either need a break in my writing routine or just another thing to help me fill out my workday? Sign me up!
Of course, there may come a time when I don't write for it. Hopefully, that's because I'm too immersed in more substantial work. Right now, it's merely a good place to start, earn a little money, and hone my writing prowess. Making it anything more than that might not be worth it. I hear what people have to say about it. I understand that it can only get me so far. Hopefully people can understand where I'm coming from. At the very least, where else can I rant about what won't matter six months from now and get paid for it? Perhaps it'll encourage those interested in what I do to make a go at it for themselves. At a time when jobs (and when I mean jobs, I mean both at home and away from home) can seem too far and in between, any start to high-paying work will do.

And we're back!!

Ladies and Gentleman, is back! After some confusion, getting to speak to some courteous (and endlessly courteous) HTML-savvy people, my writer's site is back online. Now it's back to normalcy, gearing up for whatever revamps I can come up with and any ideas I have.  Time of course to concentrate more on writing, garnering more clients, and getting more clips out there. Cheers to working stuff out!!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Keeping up with the writing- while sitting in a writer's no man's land

Image courtesy of Office.Microsoft.Com
For the past couple of weeks, I've been patiently waiting for my old website provider to release my web domain, leaving me available to buy it again. No such luck. I was told the process would take about two to three days, and I'm still waiting. Rather than name-check the server, calling them out at every chance I get, I've decided to just carry on as I usually do, getting ready my new official writer's website. I've kept on writing, working diligently through the days as I ready this welcome change. Now I'm assuming that this transfer might take a while. At least two to three months, the time span I've heard it takes for domain hosts to allow domain names to be available for purchase again.

Some recent articles:

The Most Common Pet Ailments- The WM Pet Connection

Could Newt Gingrich Be The World's Worst Boss?- Yahoo! News

Q & A With Nick Landy-

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

My conundrum: A Writer Without A Website

Image courtest of Office. Microsoft.Com
Today I decided to embark on what for me is a major undertaking: switching website servers. In a really risky move (albeit one I didn't fully grasp at the time) I cancelled my service from which I'd been running my writer's website, after being unsuccessful in performing a successful transfer. Ever have one of those situations where neither party will listen and doing something drastic seems to be your only action? That was me today. Yes, it's not a move I'm not particularly fond of and yes, I don't want to lose any potential business, but the circumstances weren't favorable to  making any easy transition.
I'm not well-read in HTML, and I'm not knowledgable in the logistics of CNA names and DNS servers and the like. This was very much a situation of not being able to fulfill both parties' needs (the former server and the new, intended server) to get the transfer done. This unfortunately has left me in the all-too-unfavorable position of a writer being without a writer's website. What in the world? For the past couple of hours, I've been checking the status of my domain name, hoping my old server would put it right back on the market. When I spoke to the salesperson on the phone, I was told it would take 2-3 days. Here's hoping.
So now I'm in a conundrum: just how do I make this work? I don't want to be without a writer's website, I really don't. I also didn't want to wait the couple of months to let my domain name officially expire and wait out the expiration period that would probably leave me without a website for the whole summer, and it's only June 1.  As of right now, I have set up, which will serve as a temporary domain name until I can get back on my small domain name feet. Wish me luck on this adventure, readers! I will keep you updated....

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The occasional Writer's Block post

Image courtesy of Office.MSN.Com
Oh yes, the brilliance of not liking anything you write. Writing sentence after sentence, continuously hitting the delete button. Wincing and whining about what you can't stand to post or publish; feeling a little lost because you're not liking what you're writing. I am certainly having one of those moments. Sometimes being productive has its drawbacks, especially when you're not in the mindset to properly do so.  Sometimes I'd rather just listen to music, watch TV or play games- anything but writing. It's easy to feel tapped out after getting a lot done.
Of course, when you're writing to make a living, you need to actually work. How to get inspired, you ask? Good music inspires me, and great writing. I'm a longtime fan of Rolling Stone magazine, and can always get inspired to write after reading one of their articles. Music is a lifelong passion of mine, and I've always been able to find inspiration from good music. Once I read about someone I'm a fan of (or something I find interesting), my mind literally goes off into spurts of sentences, paragraphs, song lyrics, etc. Reading good writing can be a great starting point of inspiration for my own writing. I'm not one to want to write in the same vein of what I've just read; I just need to read something I find really good to get me to want to write something of my own, regardless of what it is.
Here's a question for all you other writers out there: what gets you going (besides pay, of course)? I often find I need nothing at all; silence is something I often feel the need to fill, which can bring on the writing. Life is inspiring too, and as of late my need to get out of the house more often has come in the way of my writing. The fun of hibernation can only last so long (good riddance, Winter!). In the middle of April, I am ever so eager for May, the summer days and the sunny mornings. There also just seems to be more time in the summer for some reason. Don't ask me why. Perhaps because it's easy to feel less lethargic when you're not either snowed or rained in. Either way, summer is always very promising.  As it gets closer and closer to May, it is also getting closer to the one-year anniversary of the first thing I ever published as a writer (June 30), and I'm really excited to say that it's going well so far. Now, if only I didn't get so distracted sometimes...

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Next up: furniture!!

Finally, I have gone from writing in a cramped space (if you consider having to write on a coffee table in front of the couch cramped, which I certainly do) to working at a desk, officially as of today, March 31, 2011. Happy I Have a Desk Day!! One trip to Ikea, some running around and around five hours later, I officially have the desk that I wanted. Of course, I picked a desk that required a lot of work, with more nuts and bolts than I would have liked, but now not only do I have the desk that I want, I have one that fits perfectly well in my apartment without taking up a lot of space.
If there's nothing else that can inspire me to work, it's better working quarters. I'm sure that sentiment goes for other writers as well. I have stretching room now, better organization and more room to have necessary resources right in front of me (take that, having to walk across the room to get a book from my bookcase!) It's a nice addition to my living room. Perfect for spring and spring cleaning, I'm in the planning stages of my own spring cleaning and household reorganization. Adding a writing desk to it not only helps me reinvigorate my apartment, but it also is good for my writing as well. It's definitely something that's on every writer's "must-have" list, right next to a working internet connection and good lighting. Next up: decorating the thing, as it's all-white coloring could get very boring very fast. Perhaps I'll add a couple of stickers and photos to make it interesting, or I could just leave it alone for right now.
So where does this leave me right now? Of course it's progress and a most necessary purchase, but it also means that I have to back up this purchase. For me that means earning the money back that I spent on this. That won't be hard, of course, but I want to give myself an incentive to work harder. The desk itself is inspiration enough, but another reason certainly couldn't hurt. Talk about changes since the very end of last June: I've gone from only talking about writing to actually writing. I've also gone from making a little money to making some. I'm still building up my writing portfolio (Does that ever stop? I don't think so.) and working on my online presence.  I have business cards and stationery. Yes, the writing thing is going, but I know well enough that I'm just only getting started. One more possible addition: coffee. If only I could bring myself to give it more of a chance. I know this puts me in a minority. An early bird without coffee?!?!? WHERE?

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Am I A Writer Now?

Image courtesy of
What an odd question, right? Certainly I am a writer, with a website, clips and business cards to prove it.  But yesterday felt very much like I had finally hit the big time. Yesterday I received my biggest writing check to date. And for someone working hard to make a living off of writing at home, it feels pretty darn good.
So where has all this writing gotten me so far? It has been around nine months since I published my first piece as a writer. Since then, I've landed some clients, made some money, garnered some writing friends and contacts, and have learned more about business than I ever thought about.  Sure, there have definitely been some long hours, long nights and burn outs. These I think have been more my fault than inevitable, as in the beginning it was very easy to get daunted by large projects. Now I think I've calmed down a bit, and welcome the opportunity to do something different from my usual work.

Image courtesy of
I've recently taking up writing for a website dedicated to the goings-on of my hometown Harrison, NJ. I've started a new aspect of writing (egads...interviews!) that I'm rather unfamiliar with, but am eager to try. So far I've taken the easiest foray into it (emailing questions), letting it be my training into getting ready to do one in person. For those interested, you can also check out DailyHarrison on Facebook and Twitter. I've also been networking more on LinkedIn; you can check out my profile here.

I've also taken steps into copywriting and learning about contracts, definitely some necessary skills to add to my resume. I plan on spending more time in the near future focusing on improving my skills in these areas. If there's one way I know to make some surefire good writing money, it's copywriting. Another skill very much necessary these days: proficiency in social networking: Facebook, Twitter, StumbleUpon, etc. StumbleUpon is something I don't know much about, and I'm not too sure of its effectiveness. I'm definitely proficient on Facebook and Twitter (isn't the whole world at this point?), and love the ease of promoting my work on them.

So far now my real big writing news is one of the best fall outs of doing a good job: getting paid. It is encouraging, and makes me only want to work more. Am I exactly where I want to be? Not yet, but this is definitely a step in the right direction. I'm sure with more work I can get there. As for right now, this definitely gives me something to talk about...

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Website upgrade

Image courtesy of Office.Microsoft.Com
 I've spent some of the past couple of weeks redoing my website, attempting to make it look more appealing to potential clients and look as good as some of my colleagues' sites. I use the server, and while it's easy enough, I still can get very much confused. HTML is a tricky mistress if you don't know it enough already. I'm using an easy site builder service offered by my server and am learning the ropes. It's hard to get the look you want when you have only so many options, of course, and it can be especially hard when you're not sure what you want.
Right now, I think my site looks lackluster, to be quite honest. I've looked at other writers' sites for inspiration, but I'd like to have something notably different. Though, what could possibly set me apart from other more experienced writers? Not much yet frankly. But I am working on it. I have my portfolio, biography, a list of services I offer, a link to my blog...and that's it. I need some pizazz, something exciting. Or at least something that makes me look more like a seasoned professional. Maybe that takes some time to earn, but I'd at least like my site to look better.  So, for the time being, I will be learning website basis via trial and error, edits and reediting. Thankfully, at least I have some content to fill it with. As I stay on the hunt for new clients, get more work, write for the clients I have and build my business, my website will grow as well. Here's to growing, developing, and bowing down to the HTML Gods...