WordPress.com or WordPress.org? Or, is WordPress.com okay for big business blogs?

After becoming very concerned about the effect that clicking a Like or Follow button can have upon sensitive souls within the wonderful WordPress community, I stopped to think about whether this is the place to attempt to make a part-time or hopefully even full-time income, out of my art, writing, and blogging.

It wrenches my heart to learn that a person may feel like committing suicide over a Like, or Follow button being pressed on their blog, when they do not receive a comment, or if it is from the new Reader where blogposts can be read without entering the actual blog, then without even a view showing up to be counted!

If you notice a direct threat of suicide and you know the blogger, contact law enforcement straight away. There are steps to take outlined in this WordPress Support page Self Harm and Online Safety. Having lost a brother to suicide I take this sort of thing very seriously.

If you are currently in crisis, please contact Lifeline. The trained operators at Lifeline are available to talk or chat 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. 

Here is the contact information for Lifeline, the national suicide prevention hotline. Please do call  them.

Phone: 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
Website: www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org

Here is the list of International Suicide Hotlines.

My first thought was perhaps we should all stop clicking any Like or Follow buttons in case it has such a negative effect. Then this seemed silly, since all those who feel shy of making a comment would have no way of leaving something to show they care. There are a lot of silent readers out there, who are terribly shy of putting their words in print in a public place.

Should we take Like and Follow buttons off all blogs? That also did not make any sense.

Then I thought of About.me, and how people who view your page show up in the stats, so you can see exactly who viewed your page, and how people can send various types of compliments, which are standard, such as “I like your bio,” or “I like your page,” or “I’d like to meet for coffee,”  or “I have a business idea I think may interest you.” (Sorry these are off the top of my head and not the exact wording.) There are also standard replies that can be clicked on, such as “Thanks,” or a whole lot of other options.

I wonder if WordPress might consider putting some more buttons besides just the Like and Follow buttons? What do you think?

Then perhaps bloggers can choose which one to press, and also choose which ones to take notice of.

I considered throwing away my idea of starting a business on WordPress.com, and started to believe that actually perhaps it was not the place for a business at all. Then I read this support information from WordPress which says that YES, even big businesses are welcome to run their commercial blog on WordPress.com.

Here’s a little quote from within the support information  in the first link below, “You are welcome to sell your own work on WordPress.com and install a PayPal button…”

The $64,000 question: WordPress.com or WordPress.org? | The Daily Post

Some of the world’s biggest brands and industries rely on WordPress.com VIP.

Support > General >WordPress.com and WordPress.org

So I will soldier on and find a way to setup in business without being nuisance. As for the angry remarks that sometimes erupt between bloggers, hey take care people, how you treat others. There is a Support page also which covers defamation, which means saying things about people which puts them in a bad light for others. It is different if you quietly tell someone to their face, without anyone else to overhear it. When I last checked, defamation law applies even if what you say is true!

http://en.support.wordpress.com/defamation/

Advertisements

I love you! Best online shop setup for blogging income.

I love PayPal!

I love Sellbox! (and Dropbox!)

I love WordPress.com!

How exciting. After exploring so many options, these four things have combined together to create a successful way of making a small roadside stall at the end of my virtual driveway.

Thank you to everyone who has come by my humble colouring book and bought it off my virtual shelf. I appreciate you all so very much. Why am I so shy about saying I love you too! I really hope that the colouring pics bring some calm, joy, fun, healing or at least a bit of colour into your lives! That is my peculiar brand of love for you. A little thing. Just a little drop in the virtual bucket.

So far, I have made about $54 NZD and it feels great. I welcome any feedback about what works or doesn’t work with your colouring book download. That’s because I want to make the next one better, and create more after that. Your feedback will help me to improve. Or if it is perfect as it is, then it will help me to keep it the same for others to enjoy for the same reasons you enjoy it!

If you haven’t bought one yet, and are wondering what all the fuss is about, or want to review it and give me a bit of feedback, please try this link: http://sbx.sk/AkD1

Mostly, for all my blogger buddies who also want to make an income of some sort online, please know that I have found something that works for me, and perhaps it will work for you too! Darn good therapy.

Links:

PayPal takes care of all currency conversion, and provides secure payment service, including credit card payment which keeps your credit card details private. They provide financial reporting for tax purposes. http://paypal.com

Sellbox provides a brilliant interface between buyer and product, with space for preview pictures, and the option for donations, and promotion codes with discounts.It’s easy to take the Sellbox link for a product and insert it anywhere on your blog. http://sellboxhq.com

DropBox is cloud storage of your digital files, so they are quickly accessible from anywhere in the world. http://dropbox.com

Or Google Drive, which is also cloud storage. http://drive.google.com

And of course dear WordPress, home of the best blogs ever. http://wordpress.com

Much thanks and loves also these two writers who have greatly helped me along the way.

Opinionated Man at the HarsH ReaLiTy blog taught me  how to build a blog audience. His Blogging Manual e-book is available on Amazon.

John Tighe wrote an excellent book How To Crush It With Kindle, which has taught me and is still teaching me much about how to sell a Kindle e-book. I translate those principles into selling my digital files of any sort on my own blog page.

Make or break

After a year of hiding away from the world at large, I have an awful lot of appointments with people in the next week and a bit. There’s also a wonderful Arts Festival taking over the town! I will either sink or swim, and I’m pretty sure I’m swimming. I’m feeling about as organized as I was pre-childbirth. If I am completely intact, and even happy and confident… and *enjoying* all the social interaction, by next Wednesday… then I say that for now, I am cured.  If not, then I will have something more to work on.

I painted today. Black canvas, gold paint.

Blogs are not for making money

Okay, this is a business therapy update… I have learned that blogs are not for making money. It’s not the end of the world, just the end of the direction I was heading in. I still have the e-books, the art, and the technical skills I have developed over the last six-months to a year.

And lots of contacts online. The online community, and the flexible nature of working online are very important to me. I have advertised a “Meetup” for meeting people in the ‘real world’ and already I am finding it more and more difficult to visualize it as a sustainable thing for me. I have been noting my physical condition, and the mental processes relating to setting it up.

I still have trouble making phone calls. To the point where I am not making them. I have improved to the point where I answer my phone, and I am making calls out to close family. I am making appointments and keeping them, and this is all good. Minimal stress involved.

There are things that are outside of my control, and potentially dangerous, when it comes to meeting random people at a set date and time. When I start pushing into this sort of territory, the “symptoms” I have noticed are:

Avoidance (as in phone calls.) I know that if I push it, this will lead to a stress response which gets my immune system all fizzed up. Kind of like asthma or allergic reaction.

Tearfulness, and feelings of dread, at random times of day.

Nightmares. And sort of daymares..

My mind goes through all the scenarios of the potential danger I would face. Although I am not experiencing terror or panic, I am feeling the heightened stress and pressure.

I would have to kind of go all hyper and almost pretend to be someone else in order to push through it all, and from experience this would last about three months, before needing a doctor’s appointment for stress/exhaustion, etc. I foresee it would culminate in allergy problems, compromised immune system, which at this stage could lead direct to cancers due to the long-term nature of this stress, and things like chronic fatigue where the adrenals basically start to completely pack it in. Kept up too long and I face unconsciousness, coma, and death. Sounds morbid doesn’t it, but I have done my research.

In the last week I have fallen down three or four times. Have had trouble getting to sleep, mostly due to putting pressure on myself to speed up the process of earning an income online. My skin inflammation has worsened, and my legs keeping swelling up, on and off.

Prior to that, with the positive excitement from last February onward of setting up a business online, I have been really very healthy and happy. The daily art has helped I reckon.

I have another appointment soon, with the powers-that-be, and hope they might have some useful suggestions for how to handle things from here, with regard to my personal circumstances.

For now, I have an another e-book to put together! And this one is going to be marketed like none of my others have…. And, I am publishing and marketing it for someone else, not myself. This works well for me. If it sells well, (and I am aiming for a bestseller) then perhaps there are more e-books I could market for other people. We will see! 🙂

(Ed: October 6th, Lost some kgs, and down another size in clothes. o.O Hehe don’t know whether to call it good or bad. Appetite poor, and queasy on and off. On the good news side of the picture, sunshine helps with de-stressing for sleep, as does a long walk, and a hot bath at the end of the day. A good sleep helps with thinking and ideas. Dentist visit might lead to an extraction, who knows, due to a split tooth. Toenails are brittle. Thoughts are a bit all over the place and I may hunt for an advocate on Monday. There are things that are hard to say, and possibly (hopefully) unnecessary to say. Please excuse all the notes! Best thing for calm at present is to trust in God.)

Ta-Daah! Hire me… go on, I dare you :) Yes, this is my CV.

CV

I am actively seeking part-time work from home as an artist, or within the creative industries.

Business Start-up

I am strongly interested in helping people heal from trauma, by encouraging creative expression, and community. I believe that raising awareness is important particularly in regards to mental health. From February 2013 I have focused my energy on setting up a business online, currently called the Wildersoul Colouring Book. http://wildersoul.wordpress.com Various contact details are available from a central point at http://about.me/anasera.trifonoff

Self-employment Information

Sold various paintings privately from 1986 to date.
June 2012 Self-employed contractor. Demonstration model for video advertisement for a physiotherapist
October 2011 to March 2012 – Self-employed contractor. Video testimonials for patient interviews for a chiropractor. (Clinic has since moved to Wellington)
From May 2003 to October 2011 Self-employment in various capacities as below.
Desktop publishing for a takeaway shop.
Colouring Artwork for a Tourist Park
Colouring Artwork for Special Education speech therapists
1996 – Exhibited and sold paintings at French Art Shop Gallery, Ponsonby, Auckland in 1996.
1988 – Exhibited at Gallery 16, Kumeu, Auckland.
Sold my first painting at age 15 after it was exhibited in the Auckland Star Secondary School Art Exhibition.

Education

On-the-job learning 1988, and 1990 to date, in a broad variety of industries. Some short courses taken in Art, Stage/Screen and TV/Film Acting, graphic design, desktop publishing, electronics, and outdoor pursuits. Some involvement in Community theatre and Community circus.
Secondary school 1984-87 and 1989. ‘A’ Bursary awarded.
Graded in the top 5% nationally for Art at age 16.

Explanation of break in employment

Left work to raise a family from 1997. Homeschooling my two children since approximately 2003. Casual work during this time included some childcare, preschool, afterschool and a holiday programme for teens, as well as some cleaning and gardening work, and private tutoring in English for a speaker of another language. Health issues have made it difficult to take on more. Mostly related to stress. The worst of these issues has been addressed from mid-2012 to early 2013, in an intensive self-initiated treatment plan.

Transferable Skills

Creative, Artistic

Artistic, music appreciation, dance, body movement, perform, act, draw, sketch, render, present artistic ideas, play instruments, expressive.

Working with People

Patient, care for, pleasant, counsel people, sensitive, supportive, help others, insightful, teach, anticipate needs, open-minded, kind, take orders, listen, serving, trust, working with others, understand, adaptable

Leadership

Motivate people, plan, delegate, run meetings, direct others, explain things to others, self-motivated, get results, think of others, direct projects, team builder, solve problems, mediate problems, take risks, empowering others.

Some Key or Other transferable skills

Customer service oriented, accepted responsibility, desire to learn and improve, solve problems, team player, work independently, computer skills

Use my hands, assemble or make things, safety-conscious, follow instructions

Using Words, Ideas

Innovative, logical, research, create new ideas, design, understand the big picture

Summary

I’ve bolded the skills which stand out to me the most. That is; artistic, draw, sketch, render, help others, adaptable, self-motivated, get results, work independently, computer skills, use my hands, assemble or make things, innovative, create new ideas, design, understand the big picture.

Computer Skills

  • Inkscape – vector graphics editor
  • GIMP – image editor, similar to Photoshop
  • WordPress.com blogs
  • Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, About.me, Goodreads – social media
  • WordPress.org self-hosted blog (basics)
  • Windows, Linux and Macintosh operating systems.
  • Scribus – page layout and publication (desktop publishing program, similar to Pagemaker)
  • CreateSpace paperback self-publishing
  • Amazon Kindle e-book self-publishing
  • Gmail for email, also familiar with Outlook.
  • Chromium browser (Linux version of Chrome)
  • OpenOffice, LibreOffice, similar to MS Office.
  • OpenShot video editor. Also familiar with iMovie for Mac, and MovieMaker for Windows
  • SoundCloud audio
  • Grooveshark broadcasting, and recording
  • YouTube video
  • VideoPress on WordPress
  • Audacity – record and edit audio files
  • Skype, Google Talk
  • Synfig Studio – 2D animation (basics)
  • DropBox – file sharing in the Cloud
  • Sellbox – upload and sell digital files from DropBox
  • Previous experience with Excel spreadsheets, Word documents, PowerPoint presentations, although not currently using them.

I am a quick learner, and most of the above programs I set myself to learn over the last year. I am not afraid of good old-fashioned roll-the-sleeves-up hard work.

Some Previous Employers (prior to 1998)

Internet ProLink NZ Ltd (bought by another telco)
Napier Computer Systems Ltd
Avnet Pacific Ltd (NZ merged into Asia/Pacific)
Select Appointments (Temping agency – name changed to Randstad Pty Ltd)
West Plaza Copy Centre Ltd (Now Colour Copy & Print Ltd)
NM Studios, the Signmaker (downsized to work from home)
Walshes World Ltd – International Tourism Marketing (Now The Walshe Group Pty Ltd)

References on request.

Two e-books on blogging and Kindle

I am finding the principles in both of these e-books very helpful, and highly recommend others who want to increase interaction, views and followers on their blogs, and make a profit from successful sales and promotion of their Kindle e-book.
 
HarsH ReaLiTy (A Blogging Manual)

Crush It With Kindle – How to self publish your books on Kindle and promote them to #1 bestseller status

Social networking is all about being social, and not only for the business side of things, attracting possible customers, also for the sake of simply being sociable. For me this is important as I have experienced some big ups and downs when it comes to being with other people. Opinionated Man’s blogworld has opened up a doorway for me which has helped me to learn (re-learn?) some basic essentials about being sociable.

I have (re-)learnt the basics of visiting people, inviting people over, opening conversations in which people express their opinions, how to treat others’ opinions with respect even if we disagree, and keeping up with current events. Opinionated Man shows how all of this translates into certain things we can actively do online to have the same social effect. OM’s e-book HarsH ReaLiTy (A Blogging Manual) is more than just a blogging manual, it holds the principles of how to build a creative community, and also shares some of his life and background. I have only begun to tap into this potential, and I believe it applies not only to an online community, but also to creating a community outside of the internet.

John Tighe’s e-book, Crush It With Kindle, is specifically designed to help make a success of selling a Kindle e-book. I am still part-way through reading it properly, because it really calls for a step-by-step approach, whereas I have not yet begun to design my e-book. I had previously thought that it was not possible to print my colouring pages from a Kindle, and found out this week that I was wrong! So, I have read the book once-through and understand the principles of it, and I believe it will work to set my e-book off to a roaring start. It is a system that obviously worked for John Tighe and I am very glad he has chosen to share it with us all.

My offline life is about to benefit from increased sociability, after some time of adjusting to being shunned from a large social group, and also recovering from the worst effects of post-traumatic stress. Might sound strange, but it really seemed like I needed to completely re-learn how to be social, from scratch. Opinionated Man’s methods seem to have provided a social theory, that I could practice from the relative “safety” of an online identity, and now feel confident that I can put it into practice in ‘real life.’ I won’t outline my plans as yet because they are in the delicate idea stage! It does relate to art.

My income is, I hope! about to take a turn for the better due to John Tighe’s step-by-step advice. I want to share this with anyone who is also hoping to make an income from their successful Kindle e-book.

All the best,
Anasera

Computer Skills

Hokey cokey. Here’s a huge list of computer skills, ready to add to my not-yet-created CV.

  • Inkscape – vector graphics editor
  • GIMP – image editor, similar to Photoshop
  • WordPress.com blogs
  • Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, About.me, Goodreads – social media
  • WordPress.org self-hosted blog (basics)
  • Windows, Linux and Macintosh operating systems.
  • Scribus – page layout and publication (desktop publishing program, similar to Pagemaker)
  • CreateSpace paperback self-publishing
  • Amazon Kindle e-book self-publishing
  • Gmail for email, also familiar with Outlook.
  • Chromium browser (Linux version of Chrome)
  • OpenOffice, LibreOffice, similar to MS Office.
  • OpenShot video editor. Also familiar with iMovie for Mac, and MovieMaker for Windows
  • SoundCloud audio
  • Grooveshark broadcasting, and recording
  • YouTube video
  • VideoPress on WordPress
  • Audacity – record and edit audio files
  • Skype, Google Talk
  • Synfig Studio – 2D animation (basics)
  • DropBox – file sharing in the Cloud
  • Sellbox – upload and sell digital files from DropBox
  • Previous experience with Excel spreadsheets, Word documents, PowerPoint presentations, although not currently using them.

I am a quick learner, and most of the above programs I set myself to learn over the last year. I have self-published two books, one for me and one for another author. All of the above computer skills are useful for setting up an online business. And that is what I have been working on, while also sharing knowledge and experiences with the children I homeschool.

It would be wonderful to have work within the creative industry. Perhaps there are services I could offer. Or I could perhaps teach others these computer skills. Three hours a day, five days a week… book a time and name a price 🙂

Mostly, I am working on creating and selling my artwork online, and learning to run my own business. This takes a lot of reading, some meeting with experts, and a fair bit of trial and error with good old-fashioned roll-the-sleeves-up hard work.

Transferable Skills

This is a huge list that wouldn’t really fit on a CV, so I will have to decide what to put on and what to leave off. Notably I left out the entire section on “Dealing with Data.” I pretty much burnt my brain out with analyzing data and facts, investigating, locating answers or information, classifying, comparing, inspecting, recording facts, counting, observing, compiling, research, detail-oriented… and it would not be a good job match for me at present. I can deal with it in the doses required in my home-life, and that is my limit.

Here goes – my transferable skills:

All of the Creative, Artistic section

artistic, music appreciation, dance, body movement, perform, act, draw, sketch, render, present artistic ideas, play instruments, expressive.

Working with People section

patient, care for, pleasant, counsel people, sensitive, supportive, help others, insightful, teach, anticipate needs, open-minded, kind, take orders, listen, serving, trust, working with others, understand, adaptable

Most of the Leadership section

Motivate people, plan, delegate, run meetings, direct others, explain things to others, self-motivated, get results, think of others, direct projects, team builder, solve problems, mediate problems, take risks, empowering others.

(Must note that this is the natural position of a homeschooling sole mother. Whether it transfers to any environment is the question. Those I direct and motivate are my own children.)

Some Key or Other transferable skills

Customer service oriented, accepted responsibility, desire to learn and improve, solve problems, team player, work independently, computer skills

Use my hands, assemble or make things, safety-conscious, follow instructions

And lastly, the Using Words, Ideas section

Innovative, logical, research, create new ideas, design, understand the big picture

I’ve bolded the skills which stand out to me the most. That is; artistic, draw, sketch, render, help others, adaptable, self-motivated, get results, work independently, computer skills, use my hands, assemble or make things, innovative, create new ideas, design, understand the big picture.

I will list the computer skills in a separate post. This is a different kind of CV than I have made in the past. Interesting process of looking at myself and seeing what is there which might be of use outside of the home. Apparently I can enter my CV into seek.co.nz and it will pop up with ‘suitable’ or ‘appropriate’ job vacancies relating to my skills and interests. I feel a bit weird about this, as it also puts my CV in front of possible employers, whom I do not know. This is different to what I am used to, where I have either been introduced to an employer by someone I know well, or I have searched for, and sent a letter with a CV to them, after doing some research, and choosing an employer within the field and position I wish to work in.

What seems to be overlooked by those who know nothing about homeschooling, is that it is a whole bunch of skills in itself.

The latest article I read on homeschooling: http://www.connectthethoughts.net/blog/2011/10/hard-questions-about-homeschooling-part-seven-%E2%80%93-the-world-seems-to-hate-homeschool-part-i/

Mañana

I put my Roadside Stall up at the gate, and it was an interesting process.

Before I could put it out, I designed some mini-flyers with email and website address on them, and some info about colouring. And added some shelter from the rain which spattered a bit in the morning, and held back with threatening clouds amid patches of sunshine.

Then I had to print 15 extra copies of the mandala colouring book, because there were more flyers than books.

The 20 books had me thinking… $2 x 20 comes to my initial goal of what to earn, five days a week.

Our dairy has closed down, on the corner.

I reckon sweets would most likely sell better than colouring books, in my location.

And now my brain is engaged on figuring out where is the best place to put my work up for sale. I am compiling a mental list, and a list of bookmarked locations online.

The process of putting up a roadside stall, which my kids have been familiar with since they were very young, is something that feels quite new for me. And it is different doing the whole thing for myself, than it is to provide the experience for those in my care.

I have worked in many businesses, and have not had experience in setting up my own. It is a big learning curve, and for me at least, involves a lot of emotional processes. I made no money today, and yet I feel richer in spirit, more filled with courage, and having a greater value and appreciation of my own work. It needs more colour, and a gallery environment, with a higher price tag. This requires a huge amount of courage. And somehow, to feel that I am capable of it, brings up feelings of great hurt and rejection as a person. It is sometimes easier to think that the negatives given to us by others are true or deserved, and to become just as negative and hard on ourselves, than it is to think and believe and accept that those others treated us so hurtfully.

Business therapy… To believe my work has monetary value to someone, without being ‘reduced’ to quantitative values only, is a difficult thread to weave into my reality. I have sold artwork for hundreds of dollars before… now and then. Always while I was working for a living in a field other than the fine arts.

I feel at a standstill, and it is because I am ready to start painting, and I am not ready at all. You know that feeling when someone gives you a blank stare? That’s what my blank sheet of paper gives me. I thought of printing out a circle to fill in, and it isn’t what is needed.

Might need to do something completely different. There are some very small squares of MDF and plywood that could become tiny paintings. One tiny painting might get me started.

My wonderful sister..

I am ever so grateful for the quiet words of support given by my wonderful sister.

In view of my mission to get a CV and some sort of explanation ready for an appointment in a couple of weeks, my dear sister shared these very helpful and encouraging links. For all you artists or budding artists or creative types out there, have a read and feel good about yourself.

http://tlcxpress.ac.nz/2012/04/art-creativity-and-transferable-skills/

Here’s the checklist I will print out in the morning when the printer won’t wake anyone from their dreams. It’s going to be fun to fill out and have a good look-at and think-about.

http://www.roguecc.edu/emp/Resources/transferable_skills_checklist.htm

Thank you Stara.