A former Apple Retail employee on the good, the bad, and the beautiful.

taken with iPhone 12 Mini
taken with iPhone 12 Mini
Taken with my iPhone 12 Mini

Note: My first job out of college was mobile technician at Apple’s Gran Central store. This post is not sponsored.

In this post I cover my experience on iPhone 12 Mini’s:

For context, my previous phone was an iPhone XR. Here’s the Mini by an XR.

Rituals regulate emotions and improve productivity

I took this before Jersey City closed its parks.

Writers and creatives depend on productivity for income. We get paid when we complete a project. While some of us are lucky enough to have retainer or subscription clients, 77% of freelance creatives charge per-project or hourly rates.

This pandemic is tough on a creative’s earnings and creative productivity. Stress and negative feelings are the primary causes of procrastination. “Procrastination is an emotion regulation problem, not a time management problem,” says Dr. Tim Pychyl, Professor and member of the Procrastination Research Group at Carleton University in Ottawa.

Procrastination is an emotion regulation problem, not a time management problem.

Therefore, managing…

Book Business

Renowned teachers with hundreds of classes to choose from

I took this somewhere in Upstate New York

The demand for good writers is growing nearly as fast (or faster) than some engineering jobs. In the next ten years, content writing jobs will grow 11 percent and technical writing jobs will grow 8 percent.

The need for creative writing is also on the rise — millennials out-read older generations. And thanks to streaming, original and scripted TV show airing has doubled since 2010.

To take advantage of this massive job growth and succeed as a creative, you must master your craft. To master your craft, you must invest in your craft. …

How to compound the income of your writing efforts

The Caucus Mountains, on my flight to Tbilisi, Georgia

A 2019 survey shows most freelance writers earn $10 or less per hour. Many writers feel defeated by the “freelance trap.” We want to be our own boss, we save up and take the leap, only to discover it’s tough to cover basics like rent and food with abysmal, per-article rates.

My leap into being my own boss has been lucrative—mostly because I understand how to generate “passive” income from my writing.

Here’s the truth about passive income:

It isn’t really passive.

The only means of creating income that’s “hands-off” is investing—where you put money into something, and your money…

Tips from authors, agents, and bloggers with major book deals

I took this photo in 2019 on a hike by the Grand Canyon.

Whether you’re an aspiring writer or entrepreneur looking to publish a book for the marketing benefits — if you want a traditional nonfiction book deal, you need an agent. A literary agent represents writers to publishers and negotiates publishing deals on behalf of the writer.

In this article we’ll cover:

  • What you need before you reach out to agents
  • How to get an agent
  • Advice from authors, agents, and bloggers with book deals

Before you reach out to prospective agents, you need the following three things.

1. Platform

Platform is how many fans, followers, and blog views you have. Here’s how much…

Book Business

A screenshot guide to writing proposals that win big clients

Photo by Jamie Haughton on Unsplash

If you want to grow a serious writing business, you need to write proposals that showcase all that you can offer clients. The trick is —

selling results, not actions.

Sell views, clicks, downloads, conversions, and profit — not writing or editing.

More than a few times, after I send a proposal to a prospective client (or prospect), I get a response like the one in the title, or this:

Book Business

Stories from writers at Blinkist, Intercom, and Tapad

A shot from my iPhone at Central Park, last fall

It’s the best time ever to be a writer. We have near unlimited options for income — blogs, freelancing, self-publishing, social media.

Many of the best opportunities for writers come from businesses — namely, tech businesses. Marketing, customer support, and engineering teams rely heavily on writing. Companies need writers to create:

  • blogs, ebooks, web copy
  • product manuals and instructions for software engineers
  • marketing collateral, video and podcast scripts

The demand for content is skyrocketing — one of the jobs in this article is growing nearly as fast as engineering jobs.

I’m not saying you should “sell your soul” or give…

Book Business

Earn what you’re worth with these examples of successful negotiations

Photo by JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash

I teach business workshops to many new and intermediate writers. Here’s the most common question writers ask—

How do I get people to pay me decent rates for my work?

There are a few caveats to negotiating better rates for your writing—whether you’re entering a new contract with a new client or asking for more money from a current client.

In this article, I use freelance article rates as my negotiation example. But, you can apply these skills to full-time salary negotiations and agent/publisher contracts.

Before we talk about negotiating, let’s be clear about skills. …

Book Business

Expert advice on freelancing, traditional publishing, and self-publishing

Photo by Fabian Blank on Unsplash

Whether you’re a freelancer on a mission to build your own writing business, a founder looking to publish a manifesto, or fiction author ready to submit a short story—

You must learn the business of writing.

In this article, I share best-selling books and a few, lesser-known gems that have benefited other writers and me greatly. The books are organized into these categories:

  • Freelancing
  • Traditional Publishing
  • Self-publishing
  • Improving Your Writing Chops (which is essential to business)
  • General Money and Business Wisdom

I have no affiliation with these authors or links.


Freelancers write for publications or businesses which pay them a…

Book Business

Tips from a Penguin Random House author and a ForbesWomen contributor

Photo by Andraz Lazic on Unsplash

Most writers I know feel that networking and meeting new people is awkward and uncomfortable.


You can’t build a business without a network, and authors and writers are no exception.

And, networking doesn’t mean hopping around and shaking as many hands as you can at as many events as you can stuff your calendar with. Instead, you should focus on becoming an integral part of a few, relevant communities.

Doing so means you won’t feel “awkward” — you’ll feel “part of something.” You’ll build lasting, mutually-beneficial relationships with likeminded folks. This makes networking enjoyable.

In this post, I share…

Kayla Lee

Writer and Business Consultant

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