57 episodes

Just a freelance writer discovering magic in the middle of nowhere, loving her job and dealing with the after-effects of colon cancer. With any luck, you'll get hints, tricks, and techniques to help maintain or get started on your own creative endeavor. After all, freelancing out here is the personification of a magnificent mundane life. :)

Notes from Minnesota Beth Ann Erickson

    • Religion & Spirituality

Just a freelance writer discovering magic in the middle of nowhere, loving her job and dealing with the after-effects of colon cancer. With any luck, you'll get hints, tricks, and techniques to help maintain or get started on your own creative endeavor. After all, freelancing out here is the personification of a magnificent mundane life. :)

    When Corona Hit Us

    When Corona Hit Us

    *NOTE: Scroll to the bottom of this page to listen to an MP3 recording of this newsletter!

    Hey Creative Entrepreneur!

    Oh my. It has been a while, eh? Truth is, we all got Corona. Wasn’t fun, either.

    I’ll go into more detail on an upcoming podcast but yikes!

    We’re all pretty much over the worst of it (knock on wood!) and I’m the only one left with lingering breathing issues, fatigue, and a big list of projects I need to catch up on. With any luck, I’ll be able to resume our regular Writing Etc. editorial schedule.

    But all is well. For now. And I can’t wait to be eligible for the vaccine so I don’t get this again!

    Take care. Stay safe. And wear your mask.

    Beth 🙂


    Has Covid mucked with your bottom line?

    Think it’ll take forever to earn a great living as a writer? Think again.

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    Craft powerful queries

    Promote your writing business for little or no money

    If you want to be a freelance writer who snags paying assignments, this book’s for you.

    AbsoluteWrite.com says Jumpstart is a “marvelous tool for novice writers and often-published authors alike. It’s refreshing, easy to use, and applicable.”

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    Life is Camouflaged

    Beth Ann Erickson

    An Excerpt from Jumpstart Your Writing Career (and Snag Paying Assignments), the Third Edition.

    Let’s take a minute to discuss what it means to be a writer.

    I take daily walks. Not because I want to, but because my little Rat Terrier would act berserk all afternoon if I didn’t. So every morning I snap on her leash and head out the door.

    Because I live in a small town, our route tends to be the same: We walk the parameter of our fair city — either clockwise or counterclockwise — resulting in a good twenty-minute stroll.

    The unchanging sameness of each days trek has taught me something valuable that I’ve adopted in my life as a writer: Life is camouflaged. Let me explain….

    When I began this daily journey around town I couldn’t help but wonder if I’d soon become bored seeing the same houses, the same woods, the same roads day after day after day after day. But that’s not what happened.

    As Lucy (my dear puppy) and I traveled our daily path it was as though scales fell from my eyes. I began to see things I’d never noticed before.

    Subtle changes my neighbors made to their houses began to whisper for my attention. Birds I’d never seen before — bright birds like Blue Jays and Cardinals — began to appear like a developing photograph. Squirrels, muskrats, cats, raccoons, fox — all these animals live in the same town as me — and I never knew it.

    So here’s my point: As writers, it is our job to notice the things other people can’t or don’t have the time to see. It’s our job to look at something long enough for the camouflage to disappear and for the scales to be removed from our eyes.

    We have the daunting task of not only living life, but stepping away long enough to really see what’s going on — in all places, and in all situations.

    • 5 min
    Amazon “Shenani-gones!”

    Amazon “Shenani-gones!”

    Sigh. The fun never ends!

    In today’s episode, the Chix discuss some challenges when selling books on Amazon. Issues like:

    * Buy Button shockers

    * Pricing conundrums

    * Some possible workarounds

    * The possibility of Amazon selling used ebooks

    * Possible workarounds

    * How this reality can affect Amazon Exclusive authors

    * Why it’s important to “tend to your own garden”

    * Does Amazon Prime live up to its implied promises?

    * What will happen to payouts when the Big 5 Publishers join KU?

    * How Bee sells her company’s ebooks direct to her readers

    Bottom line? You need to be proactive when it comes to selling on Amazon. Go in with your eyes wide open. Keep your options open. Understand it’s nothing personal. And most importantly? Maintain many streams of income.

    Websites mentioned:

    3Chix: http://3Chix.com

    BookFunnel https://BookFunnel.com

    Dee: https://CopybyDoyle.com

    Vee: https://TheRosendahlMethod.com

    Bee: https://FilbertPublishing.com

    • 20 min
    Is an oldie but goodie marketing strategy making a comeback?

    Is an oldie but goodie marketing strategy making a comeback?

    In today’s podcast, the Chix discuss a tried and true marketing technique that is making a quiet, yet strong comeback. Many proclaimed its death, but the Chix concur that in the right hands, this technique has the potential to gain new customers/clients at a fraction of the cost of online marketing.

    While marketing online is… was… a great way to grow your brand, prices continue to rise, engagement’s decreasing, fees aren’t going down.

    Is online marketing going to continue to dominate? The Chix analyze current realities and present a best practice going forward. Enjoy!

    • 24 min
    The Secret Equation to Successful Freelancing

    The Secret Equation to Successful Freelancing

    Hey Writer, Scribe, Influencer!

    My office is a mess. If you recall, we built a nice outdoor catio for our two kittys last summer. While my guys were pounding nails, I took a few days to Marie Condo the Filbert Publishing’s World Headquarters. 😛

    With temps dropping, the felines don’t get to enjoy the lovely outdoors as much. Hence, they moved inside… into my office! So, my once clutter free work space is now littered with cat tubes, a large cat tree, a dog bed (for the 19 year old Mini-Pin), and (just to class up the joint), a collapsible cat house. Sigh.

    My dear husband offered to build a portable wall to obscure the chaotic view when I record podcasts. I declined the offer. Who needs even more stuff to manage?

    So, if you check out the Notes from Minnesota Podcast, just ignore all the animal action behind me. Or not. After all, the kitties are pretty awesome…

    Talk later!

    Beth 🙂


    Who wants to market smart?

    If you need thorough, hard core, no fluff info on making a living writing; resources to help make the journey fun; tips to shortcut some processes; and (of course) a bit of biz gossip… check out this link.

    Most of all, this is top-notch, timely information; timeless techniques that support the core activities every writer must utilize to keep the coffers healthy.

    What? You haven’t joined us yet? Get the details here.


    The Secret Equation to Successful Freelancing

    Once you wrap your mind around the concept that freelancing isn’t necessarily difficult… it’s just dang daily… building your biz becomes exponentially easier.

    All you have to do is implement a few questions into your routine.

    How many queries do you want to send out every single work day without fail? And yes, I still snail mail a set number of queries daily. Note: I don’t send mail on Sundays or Mondays. Letters mailed on Saturday will hit your recipient’s desk on Tuesday… a very good mail day. But with many freelancers focusing on online prospecting, that leaves a nice void for some of us old school marketers to utilize snail mail. 😛

    Online, I’m currently experimenting with a social media calendar. Looks cool. I’ll let you know how that little project goes…

    Never forget to tend to your ads. Online ads can rock (or not) depending on how you set ‘em up. I have an entire issue of The Creative Entrepreneur Newsletter dedicated to simplifying how a paid advertising campaign should look… for now.

    So, what’s the top secret formula? Here it is:

    Consistent marketing = consistent work/sales

    Once you get your marketing under control, imagine how you’ll be drenched in work, sales, and inquiries if even a portion of these advertising efforts hit pay dirt. Ah, but we’re not done yet.

    Unfortunately, many freelance writers don’t understand the math concerning the process called “prospecting for work.”

    I truly believe some freelancers believe that if they foster positive thoughts, craft the perfect query, send it off to the appropriate publication, then boom… the recipient will recognize their genius and hire them.

    Doesn’t work that way.

    The jaw-dropping reality is this: Direct mailers send millions of letters to prospective buyers each month. In their opinion, if they make the sale three out of one hundred times, the mailing is considered a great success. If you’re a math buff, that would be a

    three percent response rate.

    • 6 min
    How we got started!

    How we got started!

    Today Victoria, Donna, and Beth share their personal stories on how they began their freelance careers including:

    * How Beth began her publishing house and why she runs it in the old-school, traditional way

    * How Donna went from a desk job at Prentice Hall to becoming an A-List copywriter

    * Why Victoria set aside her successful career as an attorney and decided to build her dream freelance biz

    They share the whys, the hows, and the specific skills they needed to keep on top of their game… many years later. They also discuss how they built skill sets, keys for longevity in this biz, and why a “wide” biz maintains stability.


    • 36 min
    Clients with champagne expectations but a rubber duck budget… what to do?

    Clients with champagne expectations but a rubber duck budget… what to do?

    What do you do when a client expects more but is only willing to pay less? In today’s 3Chix discussion, Donna, Victoria, and Beth discuss:

    * Donna’s famous Eight Second Sniff Test to determine what clients she’ll work with

    * When you should cut your fee… and why

    * An important reason you should avoid “cheap” writers from popular work sites

    * “Red Flag” clients versus voluntarily reducing your fees

    * How to avoid troublesome clients in an instant

    Enjoy today’s lively discussion!

    The Chix Website: http://3Chix.com

    • 29 min

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