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In 2003, I was in my thirty-seventh year with SBC (Originally Pacific Telephone & Telegraph that was a subsidiary of American Telephone & Telegraph known as ATT. In 1984 The Bell System was divested into Baby Bells. PT&P became Pacific Bell or PacBell. SBC bought out PacBell and later bought the name ATT. I offer this history as a side note to bring together what follows.)

While working for PacBell, I was diagnosed with Meniere’s Syndrome and some other medical conditions. The most important one is the Meniere’s.

There are four symptoms to Meniere’s.

  1. Hearing Loss
  2. Fullness in the Ear
  3. Tinnitus (Ringing in the ear.)
  4. Vertigo + Nausea (Spinning world and sometimes vomiting)

I was blessed with all four symptoms. This is something one just learns to live with like taking B12 Injections for pernicious anemia You get used to it because there is no viable alternative.

In 2003, thanks to the Meniere’s, and unseen and less understood condition was not doing my attendance was less than exemplary. Fortunately, the company was offering an early retirement package to employees with enough time and age. I was lucky enough to be offered such a package. With termination because of attendance issues, this was a no brainer, I took the package in December of 2003.

After three years of retirement, I wanted something to do that keeps my mind active. I did a lot of volunteering. Friends of the Library, Citizens on Patrol, Worked in the Senior Citizens Thrift Store, Treasurer of Serenity Haven Animal Rescue and Sanctuary, Parliamentarian of the Citizens Club, President of the Fire Safety Council, events coordinator, publicist, and PR person for Serenity Haven. While I kept busy, there was still something missing.

In 2006, I began reviewing books. Having been an avid reader for over half a century by that time I noticed that the books I was reviewing could do with some proofreading if not large-scale editing.

Later began my career as an online copywriter of various subjects and interning as an online copy editor. My reviews offered me the opportunity to edit manuscripts and do some PR for the author of a book.

Since I am on a fixed income with a scant budget I have had to wear many hats.

I am a CEO, CFO, CMO, COO, CCO, Editor at Large, Content Creator, Publicist, and PR Department, which means always something new to learn and practice on a DIY basis.

MY WHY

I have thought about this question from the first time I heard it.

For me, it is not about the money, but helping people, small businesses, entrepreneurs, authors, unpublished authors, or anyone who needs the services of a proofreader or editor with a limited budget and can’t afford the services that cost hundreds or thousands of dollars.

Because of a litany of medical conditions and medications that require a regulated schedule I work from home that requires little to no overhead and able to work inexpensively passing savings onto the client.

I have read Asimov to Zola, Classics, Romance, Business, Medical Texts, Fiction, Nonfiction, Sci-Fi, Horror, Fantasy, and just about any genre there is.

I have had discussions about various authors with people.

I was fortunate to meet and have two books autographed after a talk at Southwest Manuscriptors Torrance, CA by Ray Bradbury.

As Mr. Bradbury explained it, his writing teachers were the tomes he found in the library.

His advice was invaluable. By reading everything one can learn to write, but only if they write something every day. One’s first work may be horrendous but should improve as time goes along. Very few people are born writers without some work before.

It usually takes time and hard work to become an overnight success.

My main drive is to help writing become better by eliminating clichés, redundant words, spelling, punctuation, passive sentences, and any other items from a reader’s viewpoint.

As Nathaniel Hawthorne said, “Easy reading is damn hard writing.” Ask any author if they agree and most will.

It a form of paying it forward. It is all about the copy and making it the best possible for the reader.

I have been chastised for the prices I charge causing others to not make as much for their work.

I don’t care. I charge what I do because I know that many authors can’t afford an expensive editor or proofreader when they self-publish.

I believe that there should be an editor for every author that the author can afford to work with without having to take out a home mortgage to pay for.

Does this “MY WHY” make sense?

Talk to me about it. I love discussions and helping people where and when I can.

I also deliver honest unbiased reviews and have been known to call out authors when there is something amiss for the reader. An Example is non-consistency of terms or in one case of a new writer the protagonist leaves in a truck to go to town and then gets into a car to come home but it is meant to be the same vehicle. If it starts a truck it stays a truck unless it is sold and a car is bought.

This sounds simple but can through the reader off and screams amateur.

Authors want to be taken seriously for their work and have readers. When a reader reads a book that hasn’t been properly edited they either stop reading or never read that author again. Readers who spend money for a book have an expectation of quality. An editor helps with the quality.

NOTE: I would appreciate comments you may have about this post.

Author

Robert Medak

Freelance writer, blogger, editor, proofreader, and reviewer learning marketing

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Many People Want to Work from Home

Unfortunately, working from home isn’t as easy as some portray. Many individuals and companies are willing to tell you it is, if only you buy this book, program or software, their agenda is to make money from you.

A Bit about Who I am

I have no agenda other than to help people by what I have learned from nine plus years working from home trying to build a business online. I began this journey three years after retiring from a job I held with a company for thirty-seven years.

The company was downsizing and wanted older employees to retire with a package that was hard not to accept.

Because of medical conditions, my wife and I decided it was time to take PacBell up on their offer. I retired in December of 2003 and began my journey my way in February 2006.

Along my journey, I added other services because the company I was contract with asked me to edit a manuscript besides the reviews I was writing for them. Through that company, I began to contract for another company as a reader and writer.

I would read books and determine if a book was worthy of being printed and to write a review if my opinion was yes the story should be considered for publication. Almost the duties of an acquisitions editor.

I have interned as a copy editor for and online site and worked freelance from job boards. I mention this only as a bit of background of what I’ve done from home.

Work from Home

First, ask yourself why you want to work from home.

  1. Freedom
  2. Money
  3. Be your own boss
  4. More time for life (Family, friends … etc.)
  5. Something you feel qualified to do (Would you do it if you never received money for it? This is what passion is all about.)
  6. Make some extra money

Second, forget about life work balance if you want to grow your business and be able to afford to quit your 9 to 5 job. Until your work from home scheme is able to pay for your present lifestyle, don’t quit your day job.

Third and perhaps the most important, how many hats you are willing wear in your business.

Hats? Yes, hats. Let me list a few hats unless you have deep enough pockets to outsource them.

  1. Office manager
  2. Accountant
  3. Business plan writer
  4. Content writer
  5. Data Processor
  6. Entrepreneur
  7. HTML manager
  8. Marketer
  9. Networker
  10. Programmer
  11. SEO manager
  12. Social media manager
  13. Web designer

There may also have to wear other hats that may crop up while running a business. You must be quick on your feet and flexible. There are always challenges and opportunities to learn more about being a contract employee.

There may be state, county, and local licenses and taxes that may be required to run a business from home.

As a work from home freelancer, you will be responsible for health insurance, business insurance, records, keeping books for the IRS if you are in America. You will be paying quarterly taxes.

How will you conduct your business? You will need to consult an attorney to make a decision to be a DBA (Doing Business As), LLC (Limited Liability Corporation), or an S or C Corporation.

Each has pros and cons. I highly recommend you consult an attorney to explain the differences to you so can make an informed decision.

What do you need to Work from Home?

  1. High speed internet
  2. Computer with sufficient RAM and Hard drive space for business only
  3. A dedicated business telephone line
  4. A dedicated workspace free of distractions
  5. A separate business bank account
  6. Voicemail

As you can see, working from home is far from as simple as some think. It is hard work and long hours to create a thriving home based business.

It is not all downside; there are many benefits to working from home, one needs to look at the reality of working for themselves in a home based business.

Any business is hard work and long hours to make is successful.

If you decide to go into business, think about what I’ve said here and be clear about what your motives for going into a home based business are.

Author

Robert Medak

Freelance Writer, Blogger, Editor, Proofreader, and Reviewer learning marketing

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