Monday, December 30, 2013

Greetings Y'all

I know I haven't posted on this blog in a while. I had some pretty crazy stuff happen, including my laptop crashing. That sucked because this year Windows 8 came out, and there were no new laptops in my price range. I HATE Norton and totally have a conspiracy theory about how they put viruses on people computers. Anyway, I had to settle for a Chromebook which is very limited, so doing my art work is harder.

Also, I've been having a bunch of ups and downs. Being poor sucks too. And I went to Texas to escape the North East winter this year, but that didn't work out. I didn't realize how cold Texas gets in the winter time. In fact, Greyhound delayed me for three days coming out of Texas due to ice on the roads. I ended up flying to instead, but that was during my shark week. (Shark week = code for menstrual). As you can imagine, I'm trying to repress those memories. But I'm back home now, and it's beautiful.

I really hope that I can get my stuff out of storage in PA. It would make working on this project so much easier. I got to get myself together. Fortunately, things are okay right now, and I just have to get the ball rolling again. Wish me a ton of luck.

--M.A. Baycroft

Friday, March 22, 2013

A Small Success

Hello all!  I just wanted to take some time to blog a little about my small success with freelance editing.  I worked pretty hard this week to meet my basic quota and did so in three days.  I know, I'm awesome.  :P  Now I've received an email inviting to me to be a part of a team of editors with a higher weekly goal. The incentive is a $60 bonus for the editor with the most edits (and $40 for second place and $30 for third).  Typically, editors have the chance to get a weekly $50 bonus if they complete a certain amount of edits.  This new bonus will be in addition to the regular weekly bonus.  So now I have the potential to get up to a $110 bonus if I get first place.

Now, I know this doesn't sound like much to you fancy CEOs who get six and seven figure bonuses, but I'm just a normal have-not.  Us poor girls gotta work for what we can get (that is until I make it big with my graphic novel, Penn State Massacre).  I'm motivated to do the work, but right now is a tough time of the month to put in extra hours.  It's shark week, if you know what I mean (and I know the women will).  But I think I'm going to use some home remedies, suck it up and try and kick ass as best as I can.  Wish me luck!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

A Freelancer's Advice

So lately I've been doing well with being focused on my goals.  Before I was basically a train wreck.  Part of this was because I was living in a hectic environment, but the other part was because I had a hard time staying motivated.  I have sought advice on the subject, and I found one article that gives seven tips on meeting goals:

1. Find a good reason as to why you want to meet this particular goal
2. Break down your goal into daily mini goals
3. Do something daily for the first 30 days, as this is the amount of time that determines whether you are serious about your goal
4. Adapt and adjust your efforts; don't do something too easy or too hard
5. Get feedback and create a reward system (like gold stars for homework) to keep you motivated
6. Schedule down time when you are not working
7. Know that you will get board and persevere through the daily grind anyway

I think that I've done at least five of these at least half way.  So I'm doing a lot better than just a couple of weeks ago.

My reason for doing freelance editing and writing, even though I would rather spend that time working on my graphic novel, is that it is "financial stability while I pursue my art." I have this very quote posted above my work station so that I don't forget why I should keep working hard.

To keep track of my work hours, I use a free time tracking app on  You should try if you find it hard to keep track of how many hours a day you actually work (and not surf the internet procrastinating).  I've also been able to break down my days by hourly goals with the use of Google Calendar.  Google Calendar sends me reminders via email, text and screen pop ups to remind me what I have planned for the day.  This has been working great so far.  I no longer spend hours surfing the internet wondering how the day went by so quickly.  In fact this is why I am blogging two days in a row rather than months in between.  It just so happens that blogger logged me out while I was typing this post and has asked me to verify my account via a text message code sent to my cell phone.  I guess blogger thinks it's strange too that I'm now blogging so often.

It's been great being more cognizant of how few hours there really are in a day.  If you look at the layout of Google Calendar, it is obvious that a day is not much time to accomplish really big goals, but days are ideal for small goals that add up.  Yesterday, I got out all of my Penn State Massacre stuff that I hadn't looked at for weeks and organized it.  I even wrote out the panels for chapter 6, which was really fun.  There are approximate seven parts roughly plotted out of my graphic novel with around four or five chapters in each.  I finished writing out the specifics of part one when I was living in Ocean City.  Now I've started part two.  I'm on my way to finishing a complete script!

I also have a tentative reward system for the work I do to support myself while I finish Penn State Massacre.  I give myself a happy face if a do enough edits to get by the a week.  I get a star if I make a couple hundred above a survival wage.  Finally, I give myself a smiley-faced sun--which means I'm awesome and radiantly fantastic--if I earn enough to survive, to have some fun and put away money for a rainy day.

I don't have a feedback system in place yet because I don't many people where I live.  I'll probably figure out some online alternative.  What do you guys think?  Do you have advice on how to successfully meet one's goals?

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

My Stint in the Ghetto

Hello, hello.  It's been forever since I've posted on my blog.  It's not because I've fallen out of love with it, it's because I have been dealing with some extenuating circumstances of late.  You will not believe all the different layers of crazy I've experienced since leaving Ocean City.  That was at the end of December and the beginning of January, and I was kind of broke.

During that time I came to Baltimore and stayed in a youth hostel in the Mt. Vernon area near the Basilica Cathedral.  That wasn't so bad, but it was expensive as hell.  That place charged me an arm and a leg just for a three-day stay--thanks to Baltimore's 15% hotel occupancy tax and other fees.  Anyway I didn't have much money and I couldn't stay at the youth hostel for longer than three days, so I ended up rented a place for $100 a week in East Baltimore.

If you didn't already know East Baltimore is a ghetto and a living a hell.  Blah, blah--The Wire--blah, blah.  I can't believe I lived there for two months.  My room had a window that faced the busy street called E. Monument, and I would hear the most obscene, offensive conversations audible to humankind.  It was so loud.  At least ten police sirens would pass by my building everyday.  Punk ass kids would just hang out in front of my window too and be obnoxious as hell.  Living in the ghetto is not for me. No way, Jose.

But I was poor.  So I endured while I slowly went mad yet also sought out opportunities for financial advancement. in Baltimore, as far as employment is concerned, is full of shit.  All the posters are scammers.  I had to go Washington, D.C. for gig selling stuff at Obama's inauguration, but that turned out to be kind of illegal.  I almost gave up but instead I did some volunteering--cough-medical-research-cough.  :)

While I was busy "volunteering," I was following up on an online opportunity to write and edit.  All the other websites that I've worked for previously didn't pay well enough for me to survive on.  However, this opportunity was different.  Don't get me wrong.  I definitely had to jump through some hoops to prove that I could write and ultimately edit.  I passed my qualifications tests, and I am now a better paid freelancer.

Thankfully, this meant that I could afford to move out of the ghetto in Baltimore.  It's a good thing too, because as the whether got warmer people were getting rowdier.  Right now I rent a room in Charles Village which is further north of Mt. Vernon.  I'm next to the John Hopkins campus, and it is so quiet.  Now I have time to address my side projects which is what I really want to do.  And TaaDaa!  Here I am back blogging again as if the whole nightmare never happened.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Better Late Than Never...

Hey you guys.  I know it's a little late but I would like to wish you all a Happy New Year!  I have been busy running around trying to keep things together.  I recently relocated my place of living so I will be going through more adjustments.  The tough thing I have to figure out now is how am I going to find a way to make time for drawing.  I know I will figure something out.  It's just going to be a tough couple of weeks.  If anyone has any advice to offer on the subject I would be much obliged.  Thanks.  :)