Enhance productivity at home, outside, and far away
Both staff employees and writers think that working from home is a pandemic-generated innovation—but it’s not true. One Gallup poll found that, even before COVID, the rise of home-based employees rose from 39 to 43 percent between 2012 and 2016.1
There are no real stats on authors per se, but according to the last Freelancers Union’s report, 57 million Americans were freelancing.2 The odds are that a fair number of those are writers working remotely.
Just like the rest of employment (and life!), working remotely offers a variety of positives and negatives. Claudia Suzanne, renowned leader of Wambtac’s Ghostwriting Professional Designation Program (GPDP), always reminds her ghostwriters that success is only achieved by hard-working professionalism, something she reminds authors in consult calls, too. Achievements only happen by overcoming challenges—including those imposed by a remote location.
“What’s stopping me?”
If you hear those words in your mind once in a while, it’s probably not too negative. Your brain recognizes an issue and is seeking options to overcome it. But finding yourself dead in the water every day is a whole different kettle of fish.
The good news? You’re not alone. Even before COVID’s lockdown, the social isolation that can come with being home-based or working remotely (in a shared office space, for instance) was challenging.
Here are a few recommended practices for fighting remote isolation:
- Set normal work hours—This is one of writing’s great advantages. A night-owl ghostwriter can start work at 11 a.m. and not go to bed ‘til 3 a.m. An early bird who needs flextime to help children or older loved ones can be a “work in very early morn” lark.
But set specific “business hours” and (barring unavoidable outside life demands) stick to them. Make sure family/friends know your official work hours and know not to knock on your office door (or table) or call during that period.
- Schedule exercise—It’s so easy to keep sitting…and sitting…and … The average American gained over 20 lbs. thanks to COVID isolation. And when the temperature skyrockets or rain gushes or snow piles up, it represses folks’ outdoor movements like walking and jogging, even around their own homes.
Surprisingly, indoor exercise has actually been easier since mid-2020. Folks have saved travel money and have purchased indoor equipment like an exercise bike or treadmill.
But if you’ve tightened your budget to steer dollars towards book success, go online. You’ll find TONS of free exercise blogs and vids (both sitting and standing versions) using little or only modest equipment. Some suggest lifting canned goods instead of buying dumbbells to release your shoulders, pump up your biceps, or increase your stamina. With all the options available, there’s no reason not to exercise.
- Team up—Arrange with a colleague to give each other the boot twice during whatever workday you’ve each scheduled. Schedule reminders on your phone for a quick chat or even a text message. Just get each other moving!
- Get dressed, really—Clothes change our sense of self, so present your best self in online meeting. Get out of pjs, sweats, and other leisure apparel. You needn’t be too dressy; just something that makes you look good on Zoom and feel like a real biz owner. Someday, there will be a library of funny pandemic pictures of people dressed professionally for the camera but wearing their slippers or bathing suit outside the camera’s frame.
Consider moving out
No, we’re not suggesting running away from home. But you might want to consider working at some other locale, even if just a few hours every weekday hooked up to Wi-Fi at a Barnes & Noble, Starbucks, or your favorite local cafe.
If you want a true office, check the ‘net to find ads for offices as well as in-depth checkpoints on what to consider, like location, costs per square footage, available utilities and their costs, and even parking availability.3
Being truly remote
Even before instant communications made sending a message a 2-second task, writers worked remotely—beyond the USA (think Hemingway).
Current technology allows an author to work from anywhere—and who knows where your ghostwriter might be? Just a few of the European locales recommended to freelancers are Barcelona, Spain; Prague, Czech Republic; Amsterdam, The Netherlands, and Berlin, Germany.
The benefits cited among these locales:
- Better help for start-ups
- Easy transportation
- Fast internet
- Cheap cost of living (in some!)
- Learning new languages and cultures
And these don’t even cover finding other places to locate your new career. Is it Australia? South Africa? Greece? Where else in the world do you dream of writing?
Wherever your remote goal may be establish your daily discipline for success, no matter where you may be sipping your latte.
Wambtac’s Certified Ghostwriters can aid your understanding of checkpoints for your book’s success. They help you outline your ideas, mentor you through writing, and/or edit your manuscript to make it sing. Check out our blog posts on wambtac.com for more insights and support. We’re always here to help—feel free to call us when you need consults to get your passion project on the right track.
1“You want to work from home, but your boss wants you back in the office. Here’s how to meet in the middle,” L. Curry, Anchorage Daily News, 6/721
2“Freelancing in America,” Freelancers Union, 2019
3“Find and Lease Office Space for Rent in 6 Steps,” K. Treece, Fitsmallbusiness.com, 8/31/18