Friday Photo Blogging: freedom

Yeah, so I’ve used this one before, but it’s appropriate and a favourite, so nyar.

Slippery Slope

Why a slippery slope? Because I just cut my connections to the world of conventional employment; as of 4pm today, I am a full-time self-employed freelance. The slippery slope could be to self-determination and contentment; it could be to penury and the lamentation of my own hubris.

It’s up to me to make sure it’s the former.


Writing about music

Things are starting to pick up at TDP once again, with four reviews published this week. I’ve got another new writer on board (who handled the Architects album review, and who should be working away on a report from their live show this Tuesday just gone), adding to the cadre and providing me a specialist who is more likely to grok some of the more extreme and cutting edge forms of metal than myself. Which means he’ll be the one to endure the illiterate abuse of teenagers who’ve just seen someone call their favourite band generic or average… 😉

Album of the week

No contest this time out; Old Money by Omar Rodríguez-López (the guitarist chap with the big mop of helmet-hair from The Mars Volta) is pretty much everything you’d expect. A mental mish-mash of high-paced prog weirdness, and no guitar tone left un-effected – put on your seatbelt before listening.

Writing about books

Regular readers will have noticed the first of my ‘reading journal’ entries earlier in the week, and I have notes on Interzone #220 to turn into another one sometime soon. No ‘proper’ reviewing has been committed this week, though I shall be taking a concerted leap into the Mind Over Ship piece over the weekend.

Futurismic

It’s been a busy and successful week over at the Big F. Two items got a link back from the Double-Boing (although, typically enough, they were the posts that I threw in as flippant filler; I’m evidently a poor judge of audience interest), and The Adam Roberts Project’s first headline appearance has generated a brisk comments thread and plenty of interest from elsewhere. These sort of things make a webzine editor a happy person[1].

Freelance

So, yeah, this is where it’s all at now. Sailing the seas of self-employment, a one-man privateer with a letter of marque and a whole bunch of over-extended metaphors… or something like that, anyway.

Now the moment is actually here, I feel kind of strange – part terrified, part Zen-master calm. I’ve thrown myself into the maelstrom; now all I have to do is learn how to swim without floats, and from there it’s a short (hah!) step to surfing with the finesse and élan of a buff and tousled Aussie beach-bum.

Yeah, so, these metaphors: I haz dem. My mind’s in an odd place right now. Good, but odd.

But hey, The Big Project finally went live, as announced earlier today! Plus people have lots of work for me to do, of varying types. It’s rather a relief to now have the time to think about doing them. It will be more of a relief when yet more requests come in further down the line; the eternal hustle starts now[2].

Books and magazines seen

Another blank week on the new books front. Not a bad thing, but still somehow disappointing. Maybe I like the attention; it’s nice when the postman actually has to speak to you. Nice for me, anyway; the postie always looks a bit discomforted[3].

Coda

So, this week’s coda is not just the coda to a seven-day passage, but to a nearly-two-year composition, and marks the end of one suite at the same time as ushering in another… (See? Metaphors. Beyond my control right now, I’m telling you.)

People keep asking me how it feels, and I really don’t have an answer. Liberating but petrifying is about as close as I can get to summarising it. After years of saying “yeah, that’d be cool, I should do that sometime”, I’m actually doing something about chasing my dreams. So all you lot get to watch the highs and lows of some guy biting off more than he can chew… or (more hopefully) mumbling around a big but manageable mouthful for a while. I hope you’ll stick around for the ride. 🙂

Anyway, I think I’ve earned myself a Friday Curry; hell knows I may not be able to afford one for a while to come, so I might as well give the world of employment a decent send-off.

I hope you all have a great weekend, too. Peace…


[ 1 – Unlike anonymous emails from people saying “I expect you’re going to gloat over Realms of Fantasy shutting down, because you’re a c*nt”, which are incredibly depressing. And completely real, too. ]

[ 2 – Feel free to plug me to anyone you know, loyal readers. I’m not proud. At least, not in that respect. ]

[ 3 – It’s his own fault; if he turned up a bit after 6:30am, I’d probably answer the door wearing more than a towel. ]

New client site launched: Zeno Literary Agency

It’s been open to the public for a couple of days now, so I can safely announce that the new website for Zeno Literary Agency (the project formerly known as The Big Project) is live and unleashed upon the intertubes.

Zeno Agency represents a big old swathe of genre (and non-genre) writers of note, so it’ll be a good place to keep an ear to the ground as regards the publishing circuit. Go take a look.

Zeno Literary Agency

Design-wise, it’s pretty stark and minimal; the real heavy lifting was getting the client biography pages to work the way we wanted them, complete with alphabetical divisions, little thumbnails in the listings and so on. There were times at which this project was intensely frustrating, but I learned a great deal about what you can do with custom queries in WordPress in the process. Every day’s a school day.

Aesthetic and ergonomic feedback is not just welcome but positively encouraged. 🙂