thI’ve taken a two-month contract job and my head, she is spinning. At 8 a.m. Monday I had my first conference with the editor and by 9 a.m. I had four assignments, all due within one week.

The articles are all based on insurance, a topic about which I know as much as any other freelance personal finance writer. Translation: I’ve spent a lot of time researching this week.

By the end of the first day I was utterly wrung out and wondering just what I’d done. The only thing that kept me going was the memories of my first day at The Chicago Tribune and the first few weeks at MSN Money. In both cases I felt completely at sea but I managed to survive, and to thrive.


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thIt’s been far too long since I wrote for fun. But I’m still underwater, work- and project-wise, and thus don’t have the time and focus for a decent post.

I wish I could rise above the buzzing and busy-ness, because I don’t want to neglect the community that’s developed here. Sometimes you just don’t have it in you.

Hang in there, and thanks for checking back in.

In other news:


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thThink you’ve got a book in you? Learn how to birth that brainchild at the “Self-Publishing Success Summit,” which continues through July 23.

Here’s the best part: You can attend for free.

Starting tomorrow (July 13), some three dozen author/entrepreneurs will share their best tips for writing, publishing, marketing and monetizing your work.


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thHot enough for ya? That’s what I figured. Although recent temperatures aren’t unduly onerous except in places like Phoenix, even an 80-something day can take the starch right out of you.

That’s why this week’s giveaway is a two-pronged approach to beating the heat: a literary getaway and a cold to drink, consumed in an air-conditioned place, to go with it.


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happiness of pursuitSix months ago I gave away a copy of Chris Guillebeau’s “The Happiness of Pursuit: Finding the Quest That Will Bring Purpose to Your Life.” Just over 70 entries were tallied for that one.

Clearly the interest is there, so I’m giving away another copy.

The book is based on Guillebeau’s own grand challenge (visiting every country in the world before he hit age 35) as well as other people’s personal tests.

Or, as Guillebeau calls them, “ordinary people working toward extraordinary goals.”


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