Merry Xmas

In which The Author uses the delayed-action feature again

One handy feature of WordPress is the Post Scheduler, which I’ve used once before. I knew I probably wouldn’t be online at 11.00 a.m. on 11 November, the day of publication of Geoff Evans’ book The Men Who Marched Away. Luckily, the Post Scheduler enabled me to post that day’s entry by ‘remote control’, so to speak.
As it’s unlikely that I’ll be online tomorrow, I’ve set the timer again for this post. As my regular readers will know, the last couple of years haven’t been easy for me, or for many of my friends.
However, there seems to be a new tone of optimism in the air. Gareth L. and I had a long conversation yesterday, during which we agreed that odd-numbered years tend to be ‘good’ and even numbered years tend to be ‘bad.’ Richard Jones, my friend who runs a consultancy advising businesses and public bodies on disability legislation and related issues, agreed with our analysis.
This afternoon, I had a good chat with a chap named Mike H., another of the Aberdare Library regulars, and he’s starting to put a business plan together. He was picking my brains about web design and hosting (which didn’t take long, as I don’t know very much!) I’ve promised to put in touch with a couple of my pals after the holidays, and they can definitely point him in the right direction. It sounds as though Mike’s idea has legs, and he’s decided that self-employment would be the best way for him to put his skills to good use.
I’ve come to the same conclusion too. In the new year, I’m going to try and elevate my proofreading sideline from an occasional hobby into a fully-fledged freelance business. I’m going to start targeting publishers, as well as making contacts with business and companies locally. Ellen in the Jobcentre is making arrangements for me to see a small business adviser. Mike suggested a couple of other avenues which I could explore, too. I know for a fact that the work is out there. To judge from a number of new(-ish) books I’ve read over the past couple of years, even some large book publishers who say they’ve got all the freelance help they need could do with another pair of hands on the tiller. (I’m not mentioning any names here, but have a look at the authors I’ve namechecked recently and you can draw your own conclusions…)
I’m not going to use Delboy’s famous line, ‘This time next year we’ll all be millionaires’, but there has to be an alternative to signing on and/or being a retail wage slave again. Gareth, Richard, Mike and I all have our own plans sketched out. All we need is the willpower to make them a reality. Watch this space.
All that remains is for me to wish my readers, my Twitter followers and my Facebook friends the compliments of the season, and to offer my best wishes for a happy, peaceful and prosperous 2015. Have fun!

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