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Growth Is Seasonless

Some of my clients have a seasonal schedule. They have a busy season and a season when there is almost no work. When I first picked up these clients, this dry spell worried me. I worried about having little work, which led to few checks in the mail.

However, as time passed, I began to manage my budget better to save during the feast to survive the famine, but even then I had time to fill.

I joined a few associations and became active in them, growing my online presence and credibility and networking with fellow professionals. I used this time to grow relationships by attending in-person and online networking events.

I also began using this down time to expand my skills through live webinars and on-demand training so I could be more valuable to my clients and provide them with additional knowledge.

Finally, I used this time to do or prepare for speaking engagements and work on my own projects, such as writing my own book or preparing to teach a new class resulting in multiple streams of income.

Here at NAIWE, we emphasize the importance of building multiple streams of income. That way, if one stream dries up, you have others to rely on while you create a new one.

April Michelle Davis
NAIWE Executive Director

October Webinar: You Have Questions about Grammar and Usage, and John McIntyre Has Answers

We wanted to get to know John McIntyre (NAIWE's Grammar Expert) better, so last month we sat down with him. Here are some thoughts he shared with us.

Do grammar rules change based on genre?

Something we all understand intuitively, but which some people find troublesome, is that we have many Englishes, and each one has its own grammar. “Me and Emily are going to the mall” is an error in formal, standard English, but the conjoined subject is immediately understood, widely in use, conformed to a recognized pattern, and, therefore, grammatical in the informal dialect in which it is used. Similarly, double negatives are an error in standard English but a recognized grammatical pattern for emphasis in African American English. That means that the writer must adopt the grammar to the genre. A legal or academic paper should follow the grammar of standard formal English. A work of fiction presenting dialogue should follow the grammar(s) of the dialects the characters use. And yes, we all know this. No one thinks that Mark Twain ought to have made Huck Finn use standard English.


John, who was a working newspaper editor for 40 years, has watched writers grapple with changing patterns of English usage and wants to help you make reasonable decisions. You can send him questions, and he will answer them at the webinar. Anticipating your concerns, he is preparing advice on perennial concerns: Should we give up on “whom”? Is singular “they” here to stay and acceptable everywhere? What can we do about “lie” and “lay”? You will get the best advice available.

You can join in this conversation on October 12, at 7 pm eastern, when NAIWE will host a webinar on grammar and usage and your questions! The cost for NAIWE members is $10 and $30 for non-members.

To register for this webinar, please visit the NAIWE website.

On-Demand Training: The Magic of Macros

Guest: NAIWE's Executive Director April Michelle Davis

The more publishing professionals can do to increase efficiency in the writing, editing, or proofreading process, the more valuable they are to publishers and clients, and the more they can earn. Get the scoop on creating and using macros in Microsoft Word to make your workflow faster, more efficient, more accurate, and more productive.

Here’s what you can expect to learn in this class:

  • The complexities of Microsoft Word
  • How to increase your hourly rate by speeding up your editing process
  • How to use wild cards
  • How to write, edit, and combine macros

April Michelle Davis is the executive director of the National Association of Independent Writers and Editors and the founder of Editorial Inspirations. She has a master’s degree in publishing from George Washington University and a bachelor’s degree in English from Messiah College, as well as certificates in editing, book publishing, and professional editing. April Michelle has presented sessions on what an editor does and the steps to becoming an editor, tips for and the benefits of working with an editor, indexing, macros, grammar, marketing, and Microsoft Word at the Be a Better Freelancer conference, Randolph-Macon College, Northern Virginia Community College, the Christian PEN: Proofreaders and Editors Network, RavenCon, the Hanover Book Festival, the Editorial Freelancers Association, Copyediting newsletter, Editorial Inspirations’ trainings, and NAIWE.

April Michelle has shared insights by contributing to several books: When Talent Isn’t Enough: Business Basics for the Creatively Inclined, Ease into Writing, The Indie Author Revolution: An Insider’s Guide to Self-Publishing, and Juggling on a High Wire: The Art of Work–Life Balance When You’re Self-Employed.

April Michelle has taken her role full circle by becoming a published author: A Guide for the Freelance Indexer, Choosing an Editor: What You Need to Know, and A Princess in Disguise.

It's Worth It

NAIWE prompt: Write about something in your life that is “worth it.”

I’m actually not about to write about something that’s “worth it,” but someone who is.

That would be my husband.

To read the rest of this article, please visit NAIWE member Suzelle Fiedler's blog.

October Webinar: Encouraging the Writer Within You

In October, we will be chatting with Marcia Rosen, NAIWE's Public Relations and Marketing Expert, on the staying motivated to write.

From staying on track to not giving up or giving in, from not listening to negative voices, including your own, the purpose of this presentation is to encourage you to stay determined, confident, courageous, hopeful, inspired, and motivated with respect to your writing. We’ll talk about some of what can inhibit and interfere with writing goals and how to move past them.

There are times it’s possible to be discouraged and unsure and wondering why you’re even bothering. But your soul cannot and does not really want to give up. So, write on, tell the negative voice in your head and from others to go away! Each writer needs the promise of possibility and hopefulness that their dreams and ambitions can be fulfilled.

In this presentation we’ll cover:

  • Having your voice heard during this pandemic!
  • Knowing you have the right to be a writer
  • Perseverance
  • Trusting your own voice
  • Dealing with and ignoring negative voices
  • Planning, preparing, pushing forward
  • Motivation and staying motivated
  • Setting a writing schedule or routine
  • Setting deadlines for yourself
  • Avoiding distractions and distracting people
  • Being comfortable with the plans for your work and your ideas on issues such as dialogue, character development, point of view, tone, and your storyline.

Marcia Rosen is a marketing and public relations advisor for authors and a senior team member creating out-of-the-box strategies for a marketing/advertising agency and client projects. She was owner and founder of a business/marketing and public relations agency and consulting firm in New York City; The Hamptons; and Albuquerque, New Mexico, where the company served as advisors to a wide range of national, regional, and local clientele. Marcia has presented book marketing and public relations programs at local and national events, including major book conferences, for nearly 20 years. In addition, she has worked with numerous authors developing and implementing plans to create an awareness of them as authors and gain recognition and sales for their books, including book launch campaigns and ongoing actions both through social media and traditional activities. Marcia is the author of ten books. She has published numerous articles and is a member of Sisters In Crime Los Angeles and Albuquerque, Central Coast Writers, Public Safety Writer’s Association, and Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers.

The cost for NAIWE members is $10 and $30 for non-members. To register for this webinar, which will be held on October 19 at 7 pm eastern, please visit the NAIWE website.

September's New & Renewing NAIWE Members

Aretta Ariel-Boggs (Springfield, OR); Robert Cameron (Edogawa, Tokyo); George De Stefano (Long Island City, NY); Laura Ewald (Picayune, MS); Diane Fanucchi (Arroyo Grande, CA); Betsy Fetchko (Ellicott City, MD); Alexandra Goodman (Channahon, IL); Kerin Higa (Altadena, CA); Marilyn Humm (Fairfax, VA); Jason Kingsley (Trenton, NJ); Clark Lamson (Sheridan, CO); Darlene Oliver (Hesperia, CA); Ryan Ozawa (Mililani, HI); Ofelia Perez (Orlando, FL); D. Olson Pook (Warner, NH); Ronald Searl (Westmont, IL); Amelia Smithers (Gentilino, Switzerland) Nanette Snipes (Buford, GA); Leslie Sussan (Silver Spring, MD); Alexandra Uth (Chicago, IL); Ellen Webster (Chantilly, VA).

Be sure to post on your NAIWE website, and we will link to it when you renew!

From CMOS Shop Talk

Q. Is a comma used after “But” or “And” at the beginning of a sentence?

Not usually. For example, both of the following would be correct:

  • But I don’t want to meddle.
  • And to avoid getting my feet wet, I wore boots.

The rule is the same as when the conjunction introduces an independent clause within a sentence (usually following a comma; see CMOS 6.22):

  • I’d tell you how to punctuate this sentence, but I don’t want to meddle.
  • I carried an umbrella, and to avoid getting my feet wet, I wore boots.


  • I carried an umbrella and, to avoid getting my feet wet, wore boots.

It wouldn’t be strictly wrong to add a comma after the conjunction in the second and fourth examples (see CMOS 6.26), but Chicago usually prefers to omit it unless the conjunction joins a compound predicate (as in the fifth example; see CMOS 6.32). The same logic could be extended to similar constructions that might otherwise call for two commas. For example,

  • But Jerome, we haven’t yet discussed commas.

Some editors would add a comma before “Jerome” (see CMOS 6.53), but unless you’re applying or enforcing a comma-heavy style, you can omit it.

Member Benefit

Social Media Marketing

The posts you share on your member website are eligible to be promoted on NAIWE’s social media pages. The NAIWE Member Activity Feed is scanned each week on Member Monday, and many post titles and links are posted on NAIWE’s social media to increase your readership. Member posts that are tagged with the #NAIWE hashtag can also be reposted on NAIWE’s social media pages for you.

Visit the NAIWE website to see all of the member benefits.

Why Should You Join an Association?

We seek to provide the place where you can come and receive the warm, personal touch that you deserve as you develop your career.


"To be independent of public opinion is the first formal condition of achieving anything great."

—G. W. F. Hegel


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