Sunday, October 12, 2008

7 Day's and Counting

Well, I had challenged myself to see what I could learn online about the things Holly would be teaching in her book along with trying to make some money over the next 7 days.

To get started trying to make some money, I decided to concentrate on two areas I knew something about, Half.com and consignment store selling. For those of you just joining my Diary, HERE is a link to an earlier entry telling about how I first became involved with selling books and Cd's online, first with EBay, then with Half.com. It actually felt good to be getting back to looking around the house and gathering up more books and Cd's to list for sale in my online store. Once I had completed this task, I continued to gather and sort through the larger items that I had originally intended to sell on EBay. Instead of getting back into the online auction program, I wanted to see how I would fare with selling through an IRL (in real life) consignment store. We are fortunate to live within the neighborhood of several of these stores so putting this part of my plan into action was very convenient. Another bonus for trying the consignment store? After they picked out the items they thought would sell, it was a breeze to take the remainder of things to donate to the charity shop where I received a receipt for Income Tax deductions. OK, so no actual $$$ yet, but, the foundation was getting set.

Getting a bit "itchy" to start learning, I decided to delve into seeing what all I could learn online. There are several forums for people interested in working from home and making money on the Internet, so I set about to reading as much as I could, and from the forums, I found links to independent articles and peoples websites and blogs, also packed with information and ideas. Once I started reading, my mind felt like a sponge, absorbing all these random bits and pieces of information, ideas, techniques and terminology, all about things I knew very little to nothing about. It was exciting because even though I was totally confused by all this new information, I was so inspired to keep reading. At one point a little switch turned on in my mind and I started brainstorming…which was really funny since I really had no idea what I was brainstorming about!

Now, this is where I will tell you to take note and consider doing, not as I did, but as I wish I had done. As I said before, I didn't know how I would use all this information I was picking up in the forums, articles, blogs and websites, but, I started jotting down notes, website addresses, and creative ideas on a little scratch pad that I grabbed in haste. There were actually several times that I had a thought, but my lone scratchpad was in the other room, and by the time I went to write it down, my thought was lost. My mind was in such a "free form" that the ideas were just flowing. Afraid that when my initial excitement subsided, the potential blast of creativity would also diminish, I wanted to take full advantage of this great moment in time.

What would I do differently? Instead of using a little scratchpad which resulted in my having page after page of random notes and website addresses, I would start organized instead of having to get organized. Just like when taking notes in school, having the proper supplies available is key. Everyone has the way they work "best". For me, I like combining handwritten notes with computer document files. What I eventually did was take all my random notes and determine how to categorize them.

I then purchased a writing tablet just for this purpose and began rewriting my notes into the tablet, by my categories such as:

Article ideas: For Reviews or Blogs
Items to incorporate in Articles
Blog site possibilities
Blog site theme ideas
Article submission sites
Forums
Web hosting options
Pay per Post sites
Domain name ideas
Affiliate Companies: Are there programs for the following products I am interested in? (my list then followed)
Money making ideas

In addition to purchasing the writing tablet, I purchased a small spiral, dedicated as a place to write my login name and passwords for various sites I was signing up for.

In the event that I had a brainstorm when I was away from my desk, I placed a small scratchpad and pen in my nightstand, by my sofa, and in the car…when I did find that I used the pad to capture an idea or thought, I made it a point to transfer the note into the appropriate category in my writing tablet as soon as possible. To get an idea of the types of products I'm referring to you can click here to see examples. In fact, it's through Amazon.com, so you can even buy if you need anything.

Though I am jumping ahead in the time line, I want to tell you of the program that I am using to write my blog entries, for if I had realized how great it is early on, I would have probably been using it alongside, or maybe even instead of, my writing tablet. It is my Microsoft Office OneNote computer program. For creative purposes, I really like the flexibility of this program, much more than Word or other word processing programs I've used. If you can picture having a notebook with dividers, where you can open up to a page and jot down a thought or quickly take notes, anywhere on the page, and have it automatically saved…then you have a tiny idea of how cool this program is. Anyway, if you want to see it for yourself, you can check it out here, it's the Microsoft Office Home and Student program with Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote.

During the process of all of this research, note taking, brainstorming and organizing, I had read several times about something some people were doing to make "easy" money online, and I began contemplating if I should try it. Hmmm? After all, I was supposed to be trying to make a few dollars this week for my "expenses". I decided that I would approach this idea like everything else: do a little research along the way and make an informed decision, only taking action when I felt confident that it was the right thing to do. So, I did!

2 comments:

Dustin said...

If only I were that organized!

I'm working on it though. It can be really tough to find a system that works for you. Glad you've found yours!

Annie T. Baxter said...

Hi Dustin! Now, keep in mind I've found a system to organize all my notes, ideas and sites to study, but implementing all the steps to turn what I've organized into successful projects is still being learned!

One of the important things I'm trying to keep aware of is not to negatively compare my progress to anyone else. Sometimes I feel that bit of "panic" when I read how people are makiing money and getting their sites in the top page rank (PR) of Google, but I have to remember I'm somewhere between crawling and learning to stand up, and I must remember to be ok with that. I know success will come...we just have to keep on keeping on!
Until next time...
Annie