How To Digital Detox as a Freelancer / Small Business

Digital detox – you might have heard the term. Essentially it means to disconnect from some or all social media accounts. Although the science behind a dietary detox is pretty shoddy, there are good reasons to take a break from social media. When done well, you can come back refreshed and with a better focus.

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Who Had Wildfires, Pandemic, and Mass Protests on their 2020 Bingo Card? (My Year in Review)

When I have looked back on past posts defining my expectations for the year ahead, change seems slight and incremental. Little changed between the January and the December though I’m typically heading in the right direction. But this year, all bets were off. The post from December last year looking forward to 2020 seems like 1000 years ago now. Little did I know then, just 6 days before Christmas, that the worst pandemic in over a century was on the horizon.

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This World Mental Health Day, Give Yourself Permission to be Creative

It’s 10th October and that means one thing – World Mental Health Day. Last year, I essentially “came out” to my family about my own struggles with depression. It took me a long time to come to terms with the mood swings, the inexplicable low periods, the periods of anxiety and especially the SAD. Now I’ve fully embraced and acknowledged it,

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How You Can Support Independent Sellers This Pandemic Christmas

Article originally published in 2018 updated in 2020 with pandemic information.

Have you started your Christmas shopping yet? Over the last few years, there has been a movement in retail trends imploring consumers to have an #IndieChristmas – buying Christmas presents from places other than big business and to prioritise independent sellers.

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Phobetor’s Children Chapter 1 (Free to Read!)

Here it is! Just over a week away from release of a science fiction psychological horror I’ve been working on for over 7 years. Ladies and gentlemen, I am proud to introduce to you the first chapter of Phobetor’s Children to read for free.

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Frank Herbert’s Dune: “Thou shalt not make a machine in the likeness of a human mind.”

This was actually one of the first articles I wrote on this blog way back in 2011. It had an overhaul in 2016 or thereabouts and now, with the new film due, a second revamp.

Science fiction is often about technology, yet there are some fictional universes where some technologies we take for granted are taboo. Let’s take computers, for example. Religious dictats are as prevalent in one world as strictures against Muslims and Jews eating bacon are here, today, arguably even more enforced. That is the world of Frank Herbert’s Dune.

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The Pandemic Has Given Me Time to Write Fiction, and Think. How About You?

It’s been a weird year. I don’t know any other year like it. Even 2016 with its celebrity deaths, Brexit vote, and Trump’s shock election doesn’t even come close to the worst Australian wildfires ever, the biggest social justice marches ever, and a pandemic that led to many countries shutting right down.

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You Are the Brand: Selling Yourself While Introverted or Camera-Shy

“You are the brand!” That applies to whatever it is you are trying to sell: books, photographs, business services, fudge, recipes… it doesn’t matter. But trying to sell yourself when you’re an introvert is one of the hardest things to do. If you’re camera-shy, private, or simply don’t like seeing photos/videos of yourself, it’s difficult to engage.

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Do You Believe Book Buying is a Choice of Monolithic Amazon vs Plucky Indie Bookshops? Think Again

Since the lockdown started in the UK, there has been a move to help small businesses. When non-essential retailers were permitted to reopen across the UK this week, it began a wave of “Don’t buy from Amazon! support your local indie bookshop instead!” Ultimately well-meaning and driven by a desire to help the smallest businesses who are struggling the most, it’s problematic in many ways. It has to do, in part, with Amazon’s business model, and that of the publishing industry.

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Keeping Your Customers Engaged During COVID-19

It’s now early June. The UK is still technically in lockdown though some restrictions have now eased. Throughout the month, more restrictions will gradually lift. We are still expecting a second wave; Health Secretary Matt Hancock warned that a second stricter lockdown could still happen. One thing is clear: normality is not “just around the corner”.

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