Thursday, 17 June 2010

Learning stuff

I panic on a regular basis. I try to do it when I am in the shower or lying in bed so that I don't scare those with whom I share the house. My panic is of the fifty-things-to-do-so-what-should-I tackle-first school. I often lie in bed in the pre-daylight hours mentally arranging my day. I then get out of bed and the day proceeds to go in whatever direction it so chooses, bearing me along spinning and twisting.

Showering tonight (it's way too cold to shower in the mornings right now) I realised that one reason that I have been so tired these last few months is that I have been in overdrive learning new things. I've learnt or am in the process of learning a couple of new computer programs, including InDesign which so far has not been a walk in the park. I've researched accounting software, legal requirements for businesses, commercial insurance and best design and programs for websites. I've bought and set up a new computer and home office. I've ditched Microsoft Word for OpenOffice and attempted to bend Gimp to my needs. I have a website in development and my new accounting software very accurately shows me how deeply into the negative side of the ledger I have so far forged. On the plus side, I am insured for all sorts of calamities that make my knees tremble simply to read about.

I've learnt that while sans serif fonts are great for signage, most book designers prefer to use serif for book contents because it is easier to read for long periods. I've learnt that bold fonts are a sign of amateurism in books. I've learnt about bleeds and slugs (which are nothing to do with kids or gardening). I've put a new computer chair on the top of my "to purchase" list to ease my aching backside.

And on the subject of learning stuff, would you make a decision about working with someone based on the fact that you knew they were a sole trader? That is, do I refer on my website to myself, first person singular, or to we, which seems to imply that there is more than simply me in the enterprise? I personally have no problems working with an independent business, but do you think it would discourage enquirers and business?


Vivi said...

Ethically, if it's just you, I think to imply there are more than one of you is misleading. Technically, if you get help from others (or subcontract) then you are a "we".

If it's a business that can be done by one person, I don't see why it should count against you to be one person.

Not much help, am I?

Blithe said...

I agree with you. I prefer to be totally upfront. I've just been reading some business literature that suggests otherwise but I'm not really trying to build that kind of business or reputation.

Joe MN said...

Are you implying that Mr. Blithe has no role in this enterprise? Technical support.... Procurement.... Investor.....?

Even if you're the only one in the front of the house, I think there is definitely a "we" if you include back of the house!