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Hello all. I hope you are doing and feeling well today. It has been an eventful week but not just because I saw a play in the park last night. No, the eventful week is because I signed my non-exclusive contract to sell my book on the Goodnovel.com platform. Can’t wait to see my mystery in print. And I have been getting work from Topcontent. I am about to get some more assignments via my Upwork account. And then there are my blogs including my book review blog.

You know the latest craze for me are the Instagram Reels. That’s right I am a “Reel” Girl! You got to laugh at that one. So I thought I would share one with you. Hold on. Let me see. Ah here is one.

I think these are great entertainment and showcase the personality of the people in the account. Plus with all those fads- if you want to yell at me for saying so-I think this is just as good as TikTok. A good advertising tool as well as just a plain fun tool. Definitely take the time to watch the reels on Instagram. Particularly because you are reading that Instagram may be moving over to video entirely. And then of course there is the follower requirement. I sincerely hope they let us all stay even those without the high follower count.

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Work is going well. In fact I just got invited to the Storyteller’s Quill Awards. It is to acknowledge the accomplishments of the self-published author. It will be online on August 20, 2021. I hope you who are attending join me for a non-alcoholic cocktail that evening.

Have a great evening!

How Do You Bank as a Freelancer? Part One by Nicole Harmon

Heads up-freelance work equals 40+ hours work weeks.

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Hi all. Heads up-freelance work equals 40+ hours work weeks.  But the flipside is if you find a paying client-not actually working until 10 p.m. in the evening is very feasible. For most of us we start our days as soon as new tasks available.” For me its either 1:00 a.m. to 3:00 a.m. I’m so happy to see that email. I’ve got work. Seems hokey right? It is not.

What that means is I live paycheck to paycheck.  Is that wrong? For me it is semi-accurate. Let me explain. I get paid once a month. If all my checks for freelance work came in, I would be paid two checks per month. My last store job didn’t last. I am not currently working as a substitute teacher. So, I don’t have unemployment. I have been offered grant money which I am looking into accepting. The problem with the pay scheme as that scenario is- I need money to go into a bank and accumulate. I also may have to pay fees. Sometimes it could be weeks between paychecks as in more than two. I’m at one month. I need a bank that won’t charge me a fee, also gives me checks, charge card and a savings account.  What I have read is that freelancers would also like a bank that could tally taxes and pay taxes. Some prefer a QuickBooks type that also tracks expenses, mileage, petty cash, bills, cash disbursements plus pay checks. Recently there have been a lot of options to help people particularly freelancers’ bank.

There are several new banking options for freelancers. I’m keeping track. Why you ask? Because I have problems with my checking account at a brick-and-mortar bank. Mostly I keep track of my money but sometimes I didn’t. As a result, I couldn’t keep my accounts. Now I need a checking account even for freelancing because some want to give you a check to deposit by mobile banking.  Mobile banking is not as easy as it sounds particularly when you get email checks that you must print out to send into the bank.  Sometimes they cash them, bounce them and then sometimes they just bounce them.

Options for Banking

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I started with PayPal. It was a personal account. I could be paid via ACH or electronic payment. For me I could get paid without fearing a bounced check or fraud. If need be, I found out I could send checks to me for deposit in my brick-and-mortar bank. I could transfer money to my bank if it was attached.  And I just found out I could cash checks through the website which then allows me to deposit and write checks.  As PayPal is my business account that would do me very well. My first PayPal was for non-business even though I got paid for freelance ghostwriting. I was given a cash-debit card. The only way I could use it was if there were funds in my account (secured credit). Since I never made enough money, I didn’t ask for a 1099 which I could obtain via my freelance website PayPal.  This year I have too because I opened my business: Nicole Harmon DBA Yasmine Jameson to an EIN.  I was informed by the IRS; I must put that on all my taxes from now on and I must file. My eyes were so happy to see I could use Direct Deposit with a personal account.  Then I changed to Thrive Cart for one of my affiliates-Hope writers.  Unlike my fellow affiliate counterparts, who got informed how to join without upgrading, I had to upgrade my account to a me a kick in the pants to start the DBA.

But I still needed a bank account for checking. Before you say what about local banks, let me inform you we have two. I have been at one since 2007 when I moved back home to my parents prior to my father’s death. My problem is with recurring payments. I give my credit card number to the bill collector on the account and information needed to pay monthly bills upon due date by automatic payments-and one of 2(3) things happen in tandem:

  1. I lose my job
  2. End of unemployment
  3. Low funds in a bank account.

Plus, I would forget who had automatic payments on which credit card which by the way was unsecured credit in the beginning. I would stop not all my automatic payments or get charged and overdraw my account, bounce checks or both. Hence, my account would be closed and I’m without a checking. I had to close three checking accounts not the PayPal.

I also opened a Skrill account because I write for Topcontent and at the time they did not accept PayPal. I do a lot of work overseas for United Kingdom blogs and businesses who have blogs including gaming and gambling establishments.  I also do work for the surrounding countries. Recently, I was granted “True Skriller” status. How? I downloaded the App. Now I can use as I use any other secured credit card. But I still need a checking account because most businesses give me a hard time with paying me via electronically.  Websites have no problem. Companies do because they would like you to have checking at a brick-and-mortar bank. Recently I was told to open an online checking account such as Citibank online banking which is an online checking account.  All is done via mobile phone and online.  We shall find out the status of that later in the post.

Yes, a lot of new ways to bank are being offered particularly to those who have no bank and freelancers.  All are being touted as the banking of tomorrow for freelancers. At last count four or five have been offered in my Facebook and Instagram account alone.  

See How to Bank as a Freelancer Part Two on next post.

Note: If you would like to donate or subscribe to this website please choose one of the buttons. I have revised the subscribe payment amount. You can subscribe for $5.00 per year to receive the following: newsletters with premium content that will be marked on the website once I have subscribers. Access free of charge to the webinars and masterclass. And discounts on future books by Yasmine Jameson. You can also choose to donate any amount you wish from $1.00 up. Thank you for your assistance.

Live Love Laugh and Be Healthy with Yasmine Jameson Newsletter Issue # 2 (misnumbered but correct)

Here is the link to my newsletter it is live. Please download a copy and if you like then subscribe. Many more to come. Also note that I am attempting to set up and schedule a webinar on “How to Start Working as a Freelancer”. If interested in joining please leave a comment with your name and preferred contact method including email address. I do work with affiliates so they in the future may contact you for advertisements. https://www.getrevue.co/profile/madam_mystery/issues/live-love-laugh-and-be-healthy-with-yasmine-jameson-issue-2-561653

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Solitary Life is a Writer’s Life by Nicole Harmon

Writing is solitary. Many of us do it alone. I like my house but when I go out, I like coffee shops.  Used to be the park or the library. Now I’m chained to a wall adapter.  My current project is out to nobody yet because I’m still working on it. But until then I am working on my freelance portfolio. Today, I was watching my email for call backs. Call back means an article sent back for editing, different than an actor’s call back. Been running a malware scan on my computer. Not only is it time for a new computer but also some more online storage. Did you know I have to have my Google sheet off during my virus scan? IK, IK, why am I telling you this-rambling on like this? Nah, I’m not bored…… TIRED! I’m Tired!

Photo by Rodnae Productions

Problems of a Book Reviewer by Nicole Harmon

Hey from Nikki’s Book Reviews. That’s the name of my book review blog. I am grateful for those that follow me. But lately I have been having problems. Yes, I have a lot of books. As long as my eyesight is good and I am coherent, can write and type, I can review. 

I have equipment which currently still doesn’t work right. Currently, my Kindle won’t stay open. I am resetting my clock a lot. Soon to be fixed by the arrival of my monitor. Currently, I have a lot of book reviews due. Two are due now. Two more due. Two overdue. Three to do. I can do it. If only my equipment didn’t give me fits. Problems is a book reviews.

Photo by Christina Morillo from Pexels

Affiliate Marketing by Nicole Harmon

Hi. This is a friendly reminder that this post may contain affiliate links. This means that if you click on them, I may receive some form of commission. Hopefully, though you will want to click on all the links. Also, I originally wrote this on June 11, 2021.

Photo by Karolina Grabowska from Pexels

Affiliate marketing-I am going to give it my best. I had recently started posting in my social media accounts about https://www.topcontent.com/. See link here: https://app.topcontent.com/signup?aff_id=GjPacZGs. Why? Well, I have been a working member of the site for approximately two-three years now. Since starting I have had some work and then sometimes, I had no assignments. My true feeling-if you have assignments and don’t do them you lose them. And sometimes future opportunities will disappear. I do know if I take the assignment offered, I work. I know because I got an assignment, I didn’t mind at all. Yay was my reaction. Note to self: Someone else wasn’t so happy. So, I copied the original. And worked off that adding original content as I wrote. I think it came out well when I was finished. Waiting is what I do now to see if accepted and if I am receiving new assignments. Upon checking my email soon thereafter I handed it in there was no return email from https://www.topcontent.com/ and none returned regarding my second assignment. What I find to be gold here is I got my URL (-.com) for the website it will be posted on. So, copying the exact title helps me and you to find the article. Last week or the beginning of this week I joined the Affiliate Program of Topcontent.com. It’s to market the website to businesses to gain work for those of us who work there. To me, it’s a win-win. I recruit those who here the website and pay me.

Today or rather late last night, I was tired (find time). I posted in several of my accounts the affiliate link with this message:

Posted on June 10, 2021: Hi. Remember I have been talking about Topcontent.com? Well, I recently found out that you can also utilize their writing services as a business owner. If you are looking for a way to hire freelance writers Topcontent.com is the way to go. If you want to pay competitive rates, then Topcontent.com is the way to go. Just use the link provided below to learn more and join. Here is the link: https://app.topcontent.com/signup?customers&aff_id=GjPacZGs/. You won’t regret it. #freelanceopportunity #hiring #jobs #digitalmarketing #moneyinyourbank

                Here is a recent post from Facebook: Posted in https://www.facebook.com/yasminejameson/ Hi. This post contains affiliate links: If you click on it and decided to use their services, I receive a commission.

I belong to a group of writers who write for a website group called Topcontent.com. They have a Facebook group here called Topcontent Freelancers. This is a website that will have steady work for you if you work. If you are a business or freelancer looking for workers to help you out on your blogs, or other writing then using this service is a good thing for you. You can join Topcontent.com and have them find the freelancer for you. All you do is click on this link: https://app.topcontent.com/signup?aff_id=GjPaZGs/. Once you join you decide how to pay the person, how many words, keywords use, backlinks used, and where it is posted. The freelancer who picks the assignment will write it for you. And the standards on the websites are high. Please click on this link: https://app.topcontent.com/signup?aff_id=GjPacZGs/, and join. Sincerely thanks, Nicole Harmon.

In case you wanted to see what my freelance writing since I started getting jobs has been like see my link to my portfolio on this blogsite: https://www.liveloveandlaughforahealthylifestyle.com/nicole-harmons-portfolio/. I also have a section specific to Topcontent.com. If you are wondering why there are no article titles listed there it is due to the terms and conditions of the website. We are under an NDA which is a non-disclosure agreement and cannot tell you what we do.

Here is the total number of articles I did last payment cycle: 8.

My hope and call to action for those who are reading this article is: If you need ghostwriters then please hire on Topcontent.com ghostwriters.

Their standards are good, and we the ghostwriters follow your instructions as laid out by you. The turnaround from editor to proofreader is a few days, and the ghostwriter has 12 hours to return the corrected article. Sometimes it may be longer if returned more than once. Do you need a translation of your native language to English? If so, Topcontent.com has the people to do it. The latest add-on to website tasks is editor/proofreader. You see it is one-stop shopping. I hope you can see your way to hiring ghostwriters through Topcontent.com. Just use their link here: https://app.topcontent.com/signup?aff_id=GjPacZGs/.

Not only do you get ghostwriters, but you can also request private tasks from those you like. To date, I have I believe had four or five private tasks. I missed two recently. One I opened only to have it blip right off the screen. I was told that someone had gotten to it at the same time. If you prefer to hand out private tasks, then come try Topcontent.com. Just use the link: https://app.topcontent.com/signup?aff_id=GjPacZGs/, https://app.topcontent.com/signup?aff_id=GjPacZGs/, and start.

I work there and have found them responsive to my questions and requests for work. So, if you want to write join, take the test, and start work. On the flip side if you are a business looking for ghostwriters then join Topcontent.com too. Am I selfish? Yes. You join and I may get more work. So how selfish can I be?

If you are black and are looking for networking connections, business connections, or personal connections the following should be of interest to you. Although I am not an affiliate for the two, I think they are worthwhile groups to look at if you are interested. Please if you are not a black person do not be offended as the following links are intended for black people. The groups help black-owned businesses get noticed and work. (BOB) Black-Owned Businesses. Join this group. And (BOBW) Black-Owned Businesses by Women. Join this group.

JOIN ALL OF THE ABOVE! JOIN!

Read These Useful Tips for Freelancers to Know When Looking for a Job by Nicole Harmon

Then it hit me-why not make a similar list for what freelancers should look for in a client while also telling the freelancers things that they should be aware of and showcase during an interview.

Photo courtesy of Pexels from Ketut Subiyanto

As I was looking through my email, I found an article in the Forbes Business Council Section.

I immediately read it as it was about freelancing. The article was mostly about what prospective employers should look for when hiring a freelancer. Then it hit me-why not make a similar list for what freelancers should look for in a client while also telling the freelancers things that they should be aware of and showcase during an interview. So, without further ado:

My Freelancers Cheat sheet 

Photo by Keira Burton from Pexels

A person reading a book

Description automatically generated with medium confidenceThis is a cheat sheet for freelancers and prospective employers to review and use during the interview process. On each section, you will see a part for the freelancer and beneath that the part for the prospective employer. At some point, you may see the only one which is the same for both. I will have available soon a download in pdf format of this article for you. I am hoping that at the same time you will also download my newsletter. Warning: I have only been making money as a freelancer in the past recent years. So, some of this is also new to me. But I do highly believe that it will help not only me but you as well. Please use this cheat sheet after downloading. And if you would like to subscribe to my blog and newsletter. You can also offer a donation as well or pay the subscription fee.

FOR FREELANCERS:

Join an agency that specializes in you. When you then receive opportunities the process of applying and interviewing, possibly testing you helps and the agency in finding you jobs. Your previous portfolio is the basis for all future jobs. Then once hired, that add-on helps cement your relationship with the agency you are a part of.

FOR PROSPECTIVE EMPLOYERS:

Look for agencies that have looked at their freelancers and their history, who have checked their records and verified them. Look for agencies that have personally interviewed that freelancer whose resume they are forwarding to you. This is a step that helps you quickly move forward in the process.

__________

FOR FREELANCERS:

Always update your portfolio with recently completed projects include if able the actual work itself. Also include the client’s name you worked for with contact information and possibly or a review/recommendation. When applying always use recent projects preferably in the same job or using the same skill set.

FOR PROSPECTIVE EMPLOYERS:

Ask the freelancer for relatively recent projects. This means that you ask the freelancer for six projects to discuss with you or rather show you. This occurs before your in-person interview. You review six and chosen three or four. Contract the client and ask and your questions such as:

  1. How was he as a coworker?
    1. On-time
    1. Pre-paid
    1. Coherent
  2. Did he understand?
  3. Would you hear him again?

________ 

Keep track records and references. As a freelancer, you must keep very good or meticulous records regarding the jobs you were hired to complete. Included in the track and reference spreadsheet is:

Date of Project Here

Name of Client here

Contact Info here

Project time here

Deliverables here

Word Count here

Date Due/End here

Pay due/Miscellaneous here

From this a freelancer can obtain the following:

  1. Last six projects current to the date of the application
  2. Name and contact information of client who also serves as your reference
  3. Deliverables requested and your understanding of the job

Note: What you don’t have to give right away is your money earned on that project. You can use that information as a reference point for the pay of the current job.

Group by deliverables for your application. Always keep a record of who you give out as a reference and to whom.

FOR PROSPECTIVE EMPLOYERS:

When preparing to interview ask for a resume and references from the freelancer. During the interview ask for recent projects completed by your interviewee. Based upon how the person performs during that job and your belief in how they would fit into your current office culture, you may determine if they fit in well. Ask for most recent projects at least three of them. Look for the following information to be given:

  1. Duration
  2. Deliverable
  3. Understanding.

____________ 

FOR FREELANCERS:

Make a vision board to explain experiences on the job coinciding with the portfolio. Details of what worked and what didn’t should also be on the board or your accompanying paper.

FOR PROSPECTIVE EMPLOYERS:

When asking the freelancer about previous experience ask open-ended questions and include their portfolio of needed. Use the previous portfolio to say a similar article.

FOR FREELANCERS AND PROSPECTIVE EMPLOYERS:

Use personal and professional networks. When looking for a new freelance job utilize both personal and professional networks.

___________ 

FOR FREELANCER AND PROSPECTIVE EMPLOYERS:

Hiring for emotional intelligence is critically important for both the freelancer and the prospective employer.

On the freelancer, it shows how well you adapt to certain work situations and people dynamics. How well you operate in the situation shows your emotional intelligence.

The client-employer, when you are vetting the prospective freelancers, you can determine their emotional intelligence.

For instance, the freelancer’s skill set can show if they can handle the work whereas how is smarter and/or has more experience than she, gives the new possible employer if the freelancer is a good fit for the company.

__________________ 

FOR THE PROSPECTIVE EMPLOYERS:

The employer has an idea of who would fit in with the company’s value system as an employee. You can utilize the interview time to ascertain who the freelancer is in your company.

FOR THE FREELANCERS:

The freelancer can likewise do the same for the employer and the company.

FOR BOTH:

If it is an online interview, you can still do some of that determination by how you each react to each other.

________

FOR FREELANCERS AND PROSPECTIVE EMPLOYERS:

For both the freelancer and the client-employer a relationship both are comfortable with both in and out of the office. Always respect the job. Always respect the time. Always respect the money.

______

FOR FREELANCERS AND PROSPECTIVE EMPLOYERS:

For both the freelancer and prospective employers this is probably a question most don’t consider unless it is a huge part of the equation. Note: freelancers consider your real-time situation in your answers. Impress your boss.

________ 

FOR PROSPECTIVE EMPLOYERS:

Take note of these freelancers. Make freelancers part of the team. It is important that the newly hired freelancer feels just as much like an employee as everyone else. Introduce, explain, and include. This ensures open communication.

_______

FOR PROSPECTIVE EMPLOYERS:

Hire people with the “right” attitude for your job prospective employers. If the person doesn’t fit either from the freelancer perspective or the employer -then no hire or expectation of one is expected. And it doesn’t have to happen.

________  

FOR FREELANCERS AND PROSPECTIVE EMPLOYERS:

Make sure the relationship is results-based. Remember to establish clear rules and expectations among the party. Make sure the work handed in is what you expect.

_________ 

FOR FREELANCERS AND PROSPECTIVE EMPLOYERS:

Start your new hire freelancers off with tasks normally completed by non-freelancers. This is done because anyone in the company could do them. However, the purpose for the freelancer doing them is to judge how the freelancer works, how they adjust, and how the others respond to him. Then gravitate towards the assignments that the freelancer would normally handle.

Photo by Lisa from Pexels

I can tell you from personal experience that all the freelance jobs I have gotten have all had the last four included. I was made to feel welcome. I was told I had the right attitude. I gave in my work, so the results were in their hands. Both I and the client established clear rules of behavior and expectations. I was given a test task or audition task if you will see if I fit. But all the points mentioned above I have thought about or have done. The agency is new because I am being courted by agencies. I am also awaiting the return on the pilot program for an agency. The results-based job that all should probably check out as a point of information is Topcontent.com. If you work, you will be given more work. And if the work you give in is good and the clients like you will receive work.

I hope this helps you out as you search for a job. I will be making this a pdf download for you to pick up.

Hopefully, the newsletter will be out soon thereafter. So don’t forget to pick up the newsletter. And if you feel like donating $1.00 it is always accepted. If not just subscribe to my blog to get more out of it. I am designing a masterclass soon and a webinar. Both will be discussed sometime later.

Newsletter by Nicole Harmon

Hello. Remember I said I would be starting a newsletter? Well I started two. I like this one and I hope you will like it to. I am attaching a screenshot of the page you need to click on to download the newsletter. Wait-there is a surprise inside for my fans and fans of Yasmine Jameson. I hope you know I appreciate you for sticking with me.

@Madam_mystery tweet

Just download the newsletter. If you like hit the subscribe button 🔘. Why you ask? Glad you asked. You my subscriber receive the following:

• weekly newsletter.

• early access to books prior to going on sale at retail. And if you join my website as a member (see contribution button) you get that plus:

• access to all my affiliate marketing campaigns with emails and information

• free webinar class when scheduled. Others have to pay.

Thanks for all your support. And for the likes and the follows. I hope you will become a paid member.