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In our UnCorporate Commentary on the Aquent Index, we drag in bosses, sagging bodies, and death. Huh?
Former public servant Andrew Caverly addresses the pleasures and perils of practicing on his home turf. Full Story
You have ambition, talent, and about five bucks to promote yourself. Here's how to make the most of your fiver.
Think your client's coming on to you? Don't panic -- read this instead.
Does abnormality qualify San to be a columnist?
Education in your field may be a business deduction, but what about the cost of getting there?
Architect: He's not a professor, but Tony Blackett thinks about universities all day long. This is the story of his big gig in Asia. Big Plan on Campus Full Story
Communicator: Actor- turned- communications- consultant Gary Hirsch teaches wage slaves how to freak out and be goofy. We approve. Loosen your shirt collar and read. You Call This Work? Full story
Curator: Surely you knew that museum curators can be independent professionals. It's an interesting life, complete with mother goddesses, problem clients (sound familiar?), and a diabetic male cat named... Susan? Don't ask. She's on Display Full Story
Detective: IP Chris Horsch is a private eye -- a real one. Turn off your TV and tune in to this story to find out what these guys actually do. The IP PI Full Story
Diarist: A diary can be a tool for self-expression, revelation, venting frustration, or just fun. But who would have thought someone could make a living helping other people make diaries? Self-Exposure Full Story
Event Planner: Charrisse Min Alliegro uses her Wall Street savvy to help couples tie the knot in style. Ringmaster Full Story
Executive: Even in the Internet industry, experience counts. Teresa Kersten has turned her 15 years of work at Apple, Intuit, and elsewhere into a one-woman Silicon Valley market. VP for Hire Full Story
Healthcare Consultant: People hire personal trainers to keep themselves fit. So do healthcare institutions like hospitals, medical clinics, and advocacy groups. Consultant Matthew McClain is their soft-spoken task master. He Pulls Together Healthcare Full story
Illustrator: Tim O'Brien is a well-known IP illustrator who's also a boxer. When was the last time you met an artist who sidelined as a tough guy? The Canvas Man Full Story
Landscape Designer: When it's hot in the Hamptons, superstar summer residents hire IP Elizabeth Lear. She Loves to Get Her Hands Dirty Full story
Net-worker: Since 1995, the coop on the knoll behind John Babiarz's Grafton home has hosted a 20th century gaggle of noisemakers new to farm country -- computer servers. The Fowl Internet Full story
Painter: Naima Rauam doesn't sleep with the fishes, she paints them -- right in the middle of the Fulton Fish Market. Here's how Rauam became Catch of the Day in the crowded sea of New York artists. Art of the Marketplace Full Story
Photographers: Long-time couple Tim Gray and Kim Furnald prove that free agency doesn't have to be lonely. Buddy System Full Story
Pilot: Gene Boyle of Moab Utah's Slickrock Air Guides is one part fearless aviator, one part trusted guide, one part showman, and 100% independent professional. Bird's Eye View Full Story
Producer: Even in the complex film projects of tinsel town, some people work for themselves. Meet John Daly. Film by One Full story
Restaurateur: A good restaurant offers more than tasty food; it exudes a vibe. Funky Frenchman Olivier Boudon helps aspiring restaurateurs make the scene. Restaurateur to Go Full Story
Stylist: Candy canes in July? Swimsuits in February? A casserole dish with attitude? Prop stylist Judy Singer digs up stuff like this all the time -- and makes a healthy living doing it. A Winning PROPosition Full Story
Techie: The information technology field is hardly glutted with female consultants, but they do exist. We peek into an IT career filled with computer languages, programs, and (surprise) difficult decisions. Madame IT Full Story
Charge Your Clients More: If you're ready to raise your rates (and you should be from time to time), do it. And don't be apologetic about it, either. Just be smart. Full Story
Gifts from the Gods: What do angels and Twinkies have in common? Believe it or not, they've both been used as financial tools by enterprising free agents. Full Story
Cough it Up: Getting work is good, getting paid for it is better still. Getting paid on time is best of all. IPs talk about how to get your client to pay the damned invoice already. Full Story
Should you do your own taxes, or have a professional tax preparer do them? 1099 speaks with three professionals about the pros and cons of each method. Full story
Taxes as Melodrama: At least once every year -- usually in April -- IPs have a first hand experience of film noir. We found an IP lawyer/accountant who divides his time between murder, bombs, and... tax preparation. Call it IRS noir. Full story
April's long gone, and if you were a good little girl or boy and filed your taxes on time, you can ignore this. But if you screwed up and are still having IRS nightmares, here are our picks of Key Web Sites for Tax Panic.
Bearing Your First Web Child: Just "having a Web site" doesn't make you special any more... especially if it's garbage. If you're planning to lose your online virginity, here's some advice to help you make the most of the (ahem) pregnant possibilities. Full Story
Don't Leave Home Without It: Does your business card say too much? Too little? In the entire realm of things, do these wallet-sized marketing tools really matter? Full Story
Don't Be Bashful: Nobody's saying you have to cruise the town square bellowing your name and phone number. Nobody's saying you shouldn't, either. But if you expect to succeed in self-employment, you'd better make time to market yourself somehow. Full story
Beating The Night Terrors: No work coming in? Living in your own private horror movie? We feel your pain... no, actually, that's baloney. Only you feel your pain. But we do have some advice. Full story
Professional Associations: Most independent professionals know that joining an association can help their networking. But what should you do once you join? Full story
Classified ads for IPs? The Great Scott, a magician, is used to stunning children and adults by making things appear and disappear. But not even smoke and mirrors can conjure up new clients... Full story
Naming Your Business: You can invent a name for your solo business, or simply use the one you were born with. We found that IPs disagree on this issue. Full story
My First Time: Your first freelance gig can be simultaneously nerve-racking and exhilirating. Two IPs tell their tales. Full Story
Saying No: Nobody likes to turn down work, but sometimes it's necessary if you value other things -- your sanity, reputation, and free time, for example. Full Story
Moments of Decision: It won't happen often, but every now and then a project will shoot you and your business in a completely new direction. Aquent talks with three IPs about the accounts that changed their businesses. Full Story
Clients You Can Live Without: Yes, we know, you love your clients. Most of them. Sometimes, however, a client crawls out of your nightmare swamp and almost makes you wish you were a wage slave again. Sound familiar? Full story.
Nice Work, If You Can Keep It: Client relations and project management. Full story
Up Periscope: It's ten o'clock -- do you know what your competition is up to? There's more than one way to find out. Full Story
Breaking Out: Three freelancers tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth about the great escape from the corporate big house. Full Story
The Two-Headed Monster: What do angels and Twinkies have in common? Believe it or not, they've both been used as financial tools by enterprising free agents. Full Story
Is the World Going Freelance? As Americans increasingly take control of their professional lives, like-minded workers beyond the borders do too -- somewhat more slowly. We review some of the issues facing Canadian and Japanese independent professionals. Full Story
Nobody's Home: Three traveling freelancers drum up new business, run from tornadoes and hurricanes, and, while abroad, take painstaking care not to be ugly Americans. All in a day's work. Full Story
The Tech Temptation: Computers and cell phones and Palm Pilots and all that other beeping blinking stuff can save you time. Or cost you a lot of it. 1099 talks common sense with three independent professionals about managing the temptations of technology. Full Story
Could you construct this zine? World's strangest self-employment webzine seeks talented Web designer/ production person. If you like the way this site looks and feels, and you're expert in HTML, Dreamweaver, Photoshop, and Sarcasm, you might be the one. Boston-area candidates only (sorry, we're not looking for long-distance love). If you've got the skills to pay the bills, move your mouse to this link.
Season's Growlings: December may be the season of good cheer for normal people, but normality is an alien concept for our demented columnist. Undaunted, out of the murky depths of his antisocial weltanschauung he manages to dredge up a yuletide parable for independent professionals. Full Story
Say, just how weird can an independent professional be and still make a living?
From our Shameless Bragging Department...
Love: We were nominated for a British Academy Award for Interactive Entertainment! (And here we thought this was a business site? Well, anyway, we went to the Awards dinner and did our best to speak English, but the British bird watchers' site beat us anyway. That made us all a-flutter, but we're chirpy again now.)
Love: USA Today named us a Hot Site, and Project Cool named us Sighting of the Day. (Is it possible to be hot and cool simultaneously? Say, are there any IP thermal engineering consultants who can clear this up for us?)
Love: Working Solo's e-newsletter said we're "filled with solid content and an upbeat attitude" and "well worth a bookmark on your browser." (Upbeat? Aw, gee, and we thought we had a lousy attitude!)
Love: The San Jose Mercury News called us a "flashy site worth visiting." (That's a relief... if the chief geeks in Silicon Valley don't like you in this Web biz, you're in trouble.)
Love: Fortune Magazine said we're "a great little online magazine." (Thanks, guys, we think you're a great little offline magazine.)
Love: The Orange County Register and About.com (The Mining Company) featured us too, and we're a featured content partner on Inc. Magazine's new Inc.com site. (We don't have a clever sarcastic remark about this stuff yet, but never fear, we're working on it.)
How to Blow an Interview: You're being interrogated... excuse us, interviewed by a potential client. There's standard advice on how to play this... and then there's our crazed columnist's advice. Hey, it's your career, dude. You decide. Full Story