2011 April

  • Why Driving a Steam Locomotive is totally a business decision

    It’s not, really. I just wanted to tell you about it.

    There are things in life you never think you will get the chance to do – things that don’t even cross your MIND as something you could conceivably do. And so, when you find yourself in the cab of a JA 1275, the second largest steam locomotive ever to drive on NZ track, and the driver shuffles aside and says “your turn”, you don’t think, your mind goes blank. You simply slide into the seat, put both hands on the reverse lever (you need them), pull the whistle, and before you know it, several hundred tons of train is entirely under your command.

    To say it is the coolest thing I’ve ever done belittles all the other amazing things I’ve been able to experience, but it stands out as one of life’s “moments of win”. I drove a steam locomotive.

    If I can drive a steam locomotive, I can do anything.

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  • Business Mini-Projects: Keeping the Creative Spark Alive

    I’ve been chatting with some other freelancers about keeping the spark alive in your creative business.

    Every business activity goes in cycles – query articles, write articles, send articles, get money, query more articles, or create ebook, launch ebook, collect money, create another ebook (or just about any iteration of this trend in your own field). Such is business, such is life.

    After a few years riding this hamster wheel, you may feel as if you’ve quit the day job to gain nothing. The work is still monotonous – sure, it’s interesting, but you’re not going anywhere. You’ve lost the momentum.

    I would hate hate hate for this to happen to me. This is why I always have a mini-project on the go

    A mini-project is a business activity, product or service that you develop outside of your normal routine. This doesn’t mean you have to devote screeds of extra time to it – I give myself a set-time limit to work each day, and if I finish my work before that time is up, I do an hour or two on my mini-project. If not, the mini-project waits for another day.

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