Monthly Archives: November 2012

[The Freelance Life] Writing Your Business Plan, Part 1

The Brilliant Business Plan Top in Gold, by Mod Cloth. 

Previously on The Freelance Life, we talked about useful resources and what you need to have in place before you quit your day job. But as I said at the end of that post, after you’ve started pitching and making connections and saving a start-up fund, there is still one more entirely critical thing that you need to do: Write a business plan.


Filed under Freelance Life

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Going the Alternative Route with Migraines [Organic Spa Magazine, December 2012]

Organic Spa Magazine December 2012

Here’s a fun one that I wrote for Organic Spa Magazine, a new mag about all things eco-beauty and wellness. It’s no secret round these parts that I live with migraines or that I’ve actually had to go the fairly aggressive route to deal with them and the related issues. There was that surgery, which, alas, is turning out to have mixed results. Plus my neurologist injects my shoulders, neck and scalp with 25 to 30 shots of Botox every three months, which makes me feel vaguely like a car getting its oil changed (oh so painfully) but does seem to be working.


Filed under Press, Sick

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[The Freelance Life] Can You Quit Your Day Job?

"Quit Your Day Job" by Scott Albrecht via

I get this question so often. People are miserable with cubicle life, itching for a more flexible schedule and ability to be outdoors in the daylight hours, and they want to up and drop everything and hang out the freelance shingle.

So let me cut right to the chase and give you the short but sad answer: Probably not.

At least, not right now.

This is because pretty much nobody should quit their day job in the current economy without having already lined up their next job. Not if they are responsible for say, rent, or feeding themselves and perhaps other people. It’s too damn dicey out there.


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1 Comment

The Best Email I Received Last Month

Ever since my article “The Pink Pyramid Scheme” ran in the August issue of Harper’s Magazine, I’ve been getting the best emails (and blog comments and Facebook messages) from you readers. (Okay, I also get some funny and not so friendly feedback… but the positive outweighs the negative by a significant margin.)

 If I haven’t responded to your note directly, please understand that it’s only because I get such an onslaught and I am but one medium-sized person. But I love and read them all because hearing your thoughts and experiences has a major impact on the work I do. Anyway, I thought I’d share this one email, from a reader who asked to be anonymous,* because she’s in a pretty vulnerable spot. It takes a tremendous amount of courage to quit an MLM-style program and reconcile your losses (whether it’s money, self-esteem, friendships, or a combination thereof).  Her experience is pretty much why I wrote the article in the first place — to help women who have been exploited by these scams see what they are up against and get out.


Filed under Mary Kay

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There Might Have Been A Little Dancing. [Vote Rocked, 2012]


Filed under Government Watch, Happenings

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Let’s Do This! [Obama 2012]

Four years ago, we danced in the streets. Literally. I lived in Harlem in 2008 and when Obama won, you didn’t have a choice — everybody flooded out of their buildings and ran to 125th Street to watch his acceptance speech on the Jumbotron. Black, white, old, young. Strangers were hugging. City bus drivers honked their horns in time to the cheering. I called my dad (who is a professor of civil rights and constitutional law) in Philadelphia and held the phone up to the roaring crowd so we could both hear what history being made sounded like.

Here we are street dancing.


Filed under Government Watch, Happenings

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    The Eating Insinct: Food Culture, Body Image, and Guilt in America by Virginia Sole Smith

    Pre-order now!