>Are you ready for next year?

>Dear freelancers,
2010 is almost over. We have a few days before the beginning of 2011 to take stock of the old year and make plans for the new one. So take some time this week to look at your freelance business.

What have you accomplished this year? Go ahead and make a list. If you have written but not published, that counts, too. Think of it as sowing seeds for future harvests. If you have published, have you organized your clips so they’ll be handy when you seek future work? Have you safely backed up all your files?

What do you want to accomplish in the coming year? Now is a good time to set goals. What will you do by this time next year? What do you need to do each month, each week, each day to make that happen?

What about money? Did you make money or lose money in 2010? Either way, if you’re freelancing for money, you need to report it to the IRS. If you have kept records all year, that won’t be hard. If you haven’t, set up a system this week that you will use starting on Jan. 1. I just signed up for QuickBooks to better organize my accounting. You can use any kind of computer program or write it out in a notebook, but you must keep records. On Jan. 1, write down the mileage in your car. You’ll need to know what the odometer says.

All the best to all of you for the new year. May it bring much success and happiness.


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