Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Article: Another French Open Upset as Martic Beats Bartoli

On Wednesday, May 30, 2012 a great match was played at the French Open between Marion Bartoli and Petra Martic in round two. The favorite for the win was Marion Bartoli, who is French and the hometown favorite. Petra Martic is from Croatia and went onto the court knowing the crowd would favor her opponent. Although it initially seemed obvious at whom the winner should have been, the crowds were in for a surprise.

Martic secured a win against Bartoli by serving an ace on the second match point. Bartoli in the end lost the match primarily due fourteen double faults served. Bartoli did come back from a break down in the second set for a tie, but she never did manage to overcome Martic in the end. The match concluded with an upset for Bartoli with a final score of 6-2 3-6 6-3.

Bartoli should have won the match for a variety of reasons. First of all, Bartoli is a more experienced player with 11 French Opens under her belt and was a semi-finalist in last year's French Open. Secondly, Bartoli is also a much higher ranked player. Bartoli is currently eighth in single rankings while Martic is fiftieth. In fact, Martic has only ranked as high as forty-seventh. The fact that Martic won this match is a complete shock and obviously something that will certainly give her a boost mentally when she gets ready for her next match. Martic secured a spot in the third round in a match against Spanish 29th seed Anabel Medina Garrigues.

For round three, Martic will need to proceed with caution. If she wants to win the next match against Garrigues she will need to put the upset against Bartoli into perspective. Martic will need to analyze what she did well and what Bartoli did not do well that such as the double faults that kept Bartoli from the win. Without some reflection on the previous match and taking it with her, the win will mean nothing other than she had a great day.

As the French Open continues, it is certain that there will be more upsets and more surprises on the court if things continue as they have. Hopefully Martic will continue with her success and win in the third round against Garrigues since it is nice sometimes to see the underdog win. There's just something about watching someone win a match when they are not the obvious choice. It makes you want to cheer them on much more than before.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Article: Credit Card Offer Fun

Quite often I receive credit card offers in the mail. I don't use credit cards for daily purchases and I don't even have a credit card in my purse. So I am really not interested in any credit card offer that comes my way. Honestly, they are annoying and I don't even open them up. I destroy and dispose of any credit card offer that I get.

My grandparents who grew up in the Depression never used credit cards either. In fact, grandma taught me one thing that I had forgotten until recently. What is that? She taught me something very simple to do with those pesky credit card offers. She would also destroy them and did so before identity theft was as much of an issue as it is today because she was paranoid. But she would save the postage free envelope. Then instead of throwing away the credit card offer, she mailed it back in little pieces in the envelope. She did all of this with a nice smile on her face.

So now I am no longer throwing away my credit card offers after I destroy them. I am also saving that postage paid envelope and mailing my credit card offers back to those banks who want my business. I figure why not help out the postal service by giving them a little more mail to deliver since it will increase my mailings weekly and it will also cost the credit card companies for postage.

Grandmother's can teach us a lot and I am thankful for her wisdom. She taught me many things from cooking to how to budget my money to spend it wisely. I think mailing back credit card offers would come under the category of budgeting my money. Thanks Grandma!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Tips for Getting Past Writer's Block

Do you ever get stuck as a writer where you have nothing to say? You either have a client waiting or a deadline looming but yet it's not motivation enough to get the words out. What do you do when you have writer's block? Well, here's a few tips:

1. Take a break. Get up and clear your mind. Often you are thinking too hard and it blocks anything from getting on paper.

2. Just start typing. As crazy as it sounds sometimes you just need a push. Then the floodgates open. It doesn't matter if you don't get it all right because that's what editing is for. The important thing is to get started.

3. Read over the assignment. By reading things over and making sure you understand what is needed it could refresh your mind and help get things going.

4. Write a simple outline of the points you want to make. Then broaden your thoughts from there.

5. Let your mind go. This is the same concept as just typing except you are not worried about keeping your mind going at the same pace as your typing. By doing this you might realize you have more to say than you think.

By learning a few simple tricks when you have writer's block can really help. Knowing a few tricks will also help at various times since different things might work at different times. The important part is getting past those slumps and getting on with your work.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Article: CADE Winery is the place to go in Napa Valley

CADE Winery was established in 2005 and is located on Howell Mountain. Shakespeare inspired the name of CADE from the term referring to wine casks used for transporting wine. CADE Winery is known for their quality wine making process through their achievement in being the first LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold Certified estate winery in Napa Valley.

The estate of CADE Winery sits on 54 acres on Howell Mountain. The landscape offers a view of rolling hills and temperatures that are often sunny and cool. Architect Juan Carlos Fernandez worked with Winemaker Anthony Biagi to design the winery. The vision in creating the winery was to honor its surroundings. This was done through consideration of the ecological effects and aesthetic pleasure to match the production of the superior wines produced by CADE.

While visiting CADE you can enjoy tasting the wine in their tasting lounge which is a beautifully decorated room that offers a spectacular view in an intimate setting. Here in this relaxing lounge you can enjoy tasting wines such as the Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot. Guests can also make arrangements for private parties or take part in special events.

CADE Winery is a beautiful winery in Napa Valley that caters to their visitors on Howell Mountain. Through organic farming and a winery that was created to be as if it was always there shows the expectation of quality that goes into every bottle of their exceptional wines.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Freelance Writing Tip- Write for Each Client

In the world of freelance writing you will come across clients that are easy to write for and some that are more demanding. The key in creating a good working relationship that results in work that satisfies your client is making sure that you write for the client.

What does this mean? First of all, you want to make sure that you form relationships with clients that you naturally work well with if possible. Ask yourself if there are open lines of communication if you need to ask questions or get further information in order to complete a project. Is the form of communication they use one that you can work with? How do they respond to you when you are first contemplating working with them? If you get a good vibe from the client chances are it will be a good working relationship. If there is something in the back of your mind that it does not feel right or just that "gut" feeling, it might be in your best interest not to work with that client. Sometimes you can't pick and choose, but try to find clients that are a good match.

Another way to make sure that you are catering to your client is by making sure you understand exactly what the client is looking for before the project is started. Ask questions, get samples of writing that the client seems to like, take a look at the client's website to get a feel for the style of writing they already have used. By understanding the style and what the client is looking for the better the chances that you will be able to produce work that they will be happy with.

If you have not worked with the client before, make sure that you send a rough copy of the project for them to review so that they can see where you are at and if they have any suggestions they feel needs to be done. This is something that can be hard for a writer, but keep in mind that you are writing the piece for the client and not yourself. Be open to suggestion and constructive criticism. It's better to know while you are working on the project what the client thinks about your work than to learn after you have spent hours on it only to find out they are not happy.

By finding clients that you work well with naturally, knowing what the client is looking for, and keeping the lines of communication open you will be able to produce work that will satisfy your client. When you write for the client you will find that you will have better chances of them using you again as well as benefiting from the best form of advertising which is word of mouth referrals from happy clients.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Freelance Writing Tip- Maintain Multiple Clients

When you are a freelance writer one of the biggest things you can do to make things hard on yourself is only writing for one client at a time. By putting all of your eggs in one basket you are risking not only your career as a freelancer but also your income.

Try writing for more than one client at a time whether you write for more than one website or use an online service like oDesk and carry multiple contracts.

The advantage of this is when a relationship ends between you and your clients, you are not only loosing just a portion of your income rather than 100% you will also keep yourself out of the unemployment line.

By balancing clients and working on more than one project at a time you will ensure an income and keep things steady for your resume.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Article: Deactivate Facebook?

I have done what some people think is totally crazy. What was so horrible? I deactivated my Facebook account. Yes, you read it correctly. My next step is to just cancel the darn thing altogether.

One might ask why in the world I would want to get rid of Facebook. Well, there are many reasons. Here is a simplified list:

1. I feel like a neighbor who is intruding on other people's business.

2. I have nothing to talk to you about when I have read your life story over Facebook.

3. I do not believe that everyone that I have come into contact with needs to know what I have been up to lately. (Yes, I know there are filters. But when someone else read the post but so and so didn't see it there seems to be some sort of social problem with that.)

4. I don't want to deal with the issue of somebody I do not know wants to be friends on Facebook when I ignored them the first three times.

5. I don't see the need to "Like" anything in order to get a coupon or entered into a contest.

6. Facebook is loosing the charm of what it was intended for as it continues to grow.

7. I can do without people hashing their problems out via Facebook posts.

8. When I don't spend time on Facebook, I have more time to have real interaction with people that actually matter.

9. Nobody needs to know that I can play a good game of Bejeweled. I will do what I want in my free time and I don't need other people "watching" me or trying to beat my high score. I was just trying to relax.

10. I don't have to do what everyone else is doing. I am fine being an oddball. My mom used to tell me God broke the mold when He made me. Since there isn't anyone like me, might as well not fight it.

So there you have it. My reasons for deactivating my Facebook account. Anyone else want to join me?