Valentine’s Day 2013 has come and gone but love is still in the air – at least when it comes to the Word Carnival I take part in every month. The thing is, I’ve already talked about romance and my writing business, so this month I’m going to do something different and share the tools I love for my writing business. I’ve written about this before, but here are some new additions to the list:
Writing – the Easy Way
Dragon Naturally Speaking – this tool has saved my bacon multiple times. Most writers get wrist-ache occasionally, and it could be a sign of carpal tunnel or RSI. I’m no exception. On the days when the wrist straps won’t cut it, Dragon ensures I can do the work I need to do and not miss a client deadline. I recently upgraded to the latest version which works even more smoothly, integrates with external sources and features some cool phrase template features. Click the link above to check out my review of the previous version.
Saving My Research
Pocket – I’m always looking for new ways to bookmark and save the stuff I like. I used Pocket a while back when it was called Read it Later and have recently returned to the fold. One click saves something to read later and I can tag it if I want to. Then I usually download it on my phone and read it at my leisure. It’s become a great way to keep track of research for different projects. Runner-up: the Send to Kindle Chrome and desktop tool from Amazon.
Keeping Track of Numbers
Wave Accounting – While I’m not scared of numbers, I don’t enjoy tracking them, but in the past year I’ve moved from my Excel spreadsheet to an online accounting package, Wave Accounting. I like the at-a-glance reporting on the financials of my writing business and they have recently added the ability to send estimates from within the web application. I can invoice in different currencies too, which is vital as I have clients paying me from 5 or 6 countries.
Making Images Pop
Pixlr – this is an online photo editing tool. I only started using it recently, but it’s come in handy for enhancing and adding text to images to accompany posts. Since one of my goals this year is to market myself more through the blog on sharonhh.com, this will be very handy.
Scoop.it – Content curation is hot and as a writer I read a lot of stuff I want to share. Scoop.it makes it easy for me to do this from a single location. Once you set up a topic, link your main social media profiles to your account and grab the browser bookmarklet you can share anything simultaneously – and can even edit the update for the different networks. It integrates with my other favorite tool, Buffer, too!
LinkedIn – OK, maybe love is overstating the case for LinkedIn, because I don’t really love ANY social network (that’s a discussion for another post), but I love the connections they help me to make. In the past, I’ve made lots of friends using Twitter and Facebook, but I’m now focusing on LinkedIn to connect more with the clients I want to serve. For me, less is more, which is why I pared down the groups I belong to so that I can focus my interaction on the ones I enjoy. And more is more, which is why I’ve made a point of posting something to my LinkedIn company page or profile a few times a week.
What tools do you love that make it easier to do business?
Image: Matthew Allard/Flickr