Is it just me who finds it easy to forget highlights and achievements soon after they've happened? Recently, I was chatting to someone who mentioned they make a note of their wins of the week so they can look back on how much they got done that week. I love that! So, I'm going to pinch the idea of having my own achievement jar. And, of course, because I'm an Obliger, I'm making it public so I have the accountability to keep it up. So, here goes, my blog celebrating wins, achievements and general things that made me happy in my business.
Highlights of February 2024
🐶 I'm borrowing a dog for a while - hello plenty of cuddles and walks as a break from focused writing
🦈 My niche seems to be paying off with an editor coming to me with cool stories that are right up my street
Highlights of January 2024
📰 January off to an exciting start with several cool commissions in the first couple of weeks
🐼 In particular, I've met a new editor who's been so kind & helpful with feedback and loved a recent feature pitch I sent (YEY) - really excited about writing this one. Watch this space...
📩 AND I've started receiving some assigned pieces (i.e. I didn't have to pitch) which I love
☕ Getting out in real life again too with some brilliant work meetings to chat about potential stories with editors, scientists and conservationists
🙂 But overall I've (so far) managed not to cram my diary so full that I'm treading water (a big win for me!)
🎭 So I've been able to also enjoy some coffees, lunches, dinners and even theatre trips with friends and family in the spaces between deadlines
🧦 Plus, Christmas gifts of warm socks, thermals and blankets have been helping me get through this cold spell
Highlights of December 2023
📰 After a slow-ish November, got some cool new commissions in early Dec
❄️ Taking some time to cosy up with a coffee and research pitches for 2024
🎄Festive celebrations with family and friends
📩 Took the bold step to pitch a dream publication I'd love to work with AND got a potentially positive response from the editor (cross your fingers that this might lead to a commission at some point)
🤞🏻 Applied to some more cool opportunities for 2024
🌟 Some cool enquiries coming in for clients looking for marine science & conservation copywriting support next year (remember, I talk about my editorial work a lot but organisations can hire me too!)
Highlights of November 2023
💻 Managing to get away from the laptop a little to look for stories
📰 Exciting new commissions in the pipeline
🌿 Joined the UK Seagrass Symposium to hear more about the latest restoration efforts
🌊 And the Ocean Symposium in Bexhill to meet local conservationists
🔥 My wearable blanket is keeping me super toasty and warm in this cold weather
🗣️ I was invited to speak about how to tell stories that engage the media at a conservation conference
💻 Found a cool local coworking space
📞 An animal writer I hugely admire was kind enough to spare some time to have a chat and share some tips with me
🐬 A few marine researchers have been in touch with a heads up of potentially interesting studies for me to write about (when the data is ready to be published)... more of this please!
🤞🏻 I was brave and applied to a VERY cool opportunity for an expedition fellowship... fingers crossed!
Highlights of October 2023
🦈 Had a great week at the EEA Conference and met heaps of brilliant shark and ray scientists
☀️ The UK gave me a teeny bit of sunshine before we slide into winter...
🐳 My latest Nat Geo piece is out with another commission in the bag already (watch this space)
📚 Filed the first draft of my debut article with a dream publication (but it's a long lead so you'll have to wait a while to find out who)
🤓 Clients booking in for January 2024 and beyond - as a freelancer, booking projects in this far in advance is amazing (for my headspace, security and general happiness!)
👩🏻💻 Not too bad on the work-life balance front - I have a decent amount of work but not too much (so I can still see friends and have some spontaneous afternoons)
Highlights of September 2023
🌊 Much needed time off to catch up with old friends (and plenty of beach walks!)
🥽 Back in the water again after four (ish) months without diving
🐳 Whale watching (hooray!)
👀 Smalleye stingray - the largest and rarest marine ray in the WORLD and I was so chuffed to see one again
🏖️ Plenty of (much-needed) time to relax and recharge
📰 My print debut in Nat Geo came out - pinch me!
📝 New client contracts in the bag
Highlights of August 2023
🤓 A couple of new commissions in the bag
📰 Got my first byline in Sunday Times - woop!
🚶♀️Deadlines shifted so took an afternoon off to go for a long walk
☀️ The sun finally came out!
🤗 Lighter workload meant I could prioritise time with friends and family
🦈 Fun chats with shark scientists (I love my job!)
🌊 Took some time off for much needed R&R!
Highlights of July 2023
🛥️ Had the opportunity to join MARINELife and learn about their surveying on ferry trips - pretty sure I saw porpoises!
New client pleased with the project I completed for them
🤓 After a super busy period, I've been able to slow things down a bit and try to catch up on other things!
😴 Related to the above, had some great naps haha
❤️ and managed to carve out time to spend with family
Highlights of June 2023
🤓 An editor approached ME asking me to write some stories for them (usually I have to pitch ideas so this is VERY exciting)
🛥️ Got out on the boat - visiting the local seal colony
🐬 Random and unexpected dolphin sighting while we were enjoying a glass of wine at the seaside
🐳 Spent an interesting day with the BDMLR topping up my marine mammal medic training
📝 My latest Nat Geo piece was published (yey)
🎙️ I've been doing some podcast recordings - very exciting to guest on some pods I love to listen to!
🦈 Got my first byline in New Scientist!
🤓 Spent a great day at the ABSW Summer School, getting tips on how to improve my science writing and pitching
Highlights of May 2023
☕Made the most of being freelance to flex my hours around family visits etc.
🍻 Made it up to London to see the lovely bunch from the Being Freelance community
🤓 About to kick off an interesting annual report copywriting project with a cool marine research organisation (yey)
Highlights of April 2023
🤓 My first month as Director of The Ocean Writer Ltd
🎙️Interviewed by the wonderful Sarah McLusky on the Research Adjacent podcast
🐟 Contacted by my wonderful friend and fellow science writer Sam Andrews to say how chuffed she was with my shout out to her in my Research Adjacent interview
☕ Finally managed to get a coffee catch up in with sustainability copywriter Andy Robinson from Helios Copywriting
🌊 Managed to take some time off to spend the week at sea. In case you were wondering, no wifi plus lots of scuba is the perfect recipe for recharging batteries
Want to chat about your wins (or vent about your frustrations?)
One of the best things about being freelance is the wonderful friends I've made with other freelancers. If you're in need of a bit of a chat with a likeminded freelancer, feel free to book in some time to chat.