Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in freelancing but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Stacy Juba, Founder of Shortcuts for Writers, located in USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
My business is Shortcuts for Writers. I offer freelance developmental and line editing services, online courses, and workshops for fiction and nonfiction writers. Through my courses, I teach authors how to simplify the writing and editing process and fit their goals into a busy life. My courses include Book Editing Blueprint: A Step-By-Step Plan to Making Your Novels Publishable, Time Management Blueprint for Writers: Transform Your Life and Finish Your Book, and the Energize Your Writing Toolkit: Cheat Sheets for Character Emotions.
Tell us about yourself
I have had several novels published in genres including mystery, chick lit/romance, and young adult, and I also have an extensive journalism background. About ten years ago, I started doing freelance editing for authors and discovered that many writers were making the same types of mistakes. They were maxing out their editing budget because their early drafts weren't developed or polished enough, and I was doing more teaching than editing. That led me to create online courses so writers can learn how to start thinking like an editor and cut down on their editing expenses. I'm motivated by all the authors who have told me how much my courses and editing service have helped them to reach a higher level. I love empowering authors with the skills to write a book they can be proud of.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
This past year, I took on a monumental project of switching my courses to a new platform. The new platform offered many advantages, so it was well worth the effort, but it took several months to get all the courses formatted on the new site and to figure out the logistics of moving my students over in a seamless way. Once the project was finally finished, I received a lot of positive feedback and was glad I made a move. It was a great deal of tedious work and took longer than I had anticipated, but it allowed me to scale my business to another level.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
I love creating new products and courses but need to spend a lot of time on marketing and spreading the word. Sometimes I'm itching to create a class or host a workshop, but I have to catch up on marketing tasks such as writing newsletters, reaching out to potential affiliates, or designing landing pages and checkout pages. You need to wear many hats as a business owner.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Level up your computer skills and entrepreneurial skills. I have saved money over the years by teaching myself how to design my own websites with a drag-and-drop WordPress platform, doing my own graphics, and learning how to create an effective sales page. I love using templates, but you need to find the right ones for your business.
- Spend your money wisely. To grow your business, you will have to put some money into it, but make smart investments that will give you a return on investment and help you to scale. I've bought software and courses that were an expense upfront, but I knew they would be worth it in the long run. Avoid spending money on "shiny objects" that won't have much impact on your business.
- Collaborate with others who share a similar audience. Partnerships are a great way to get the word out and connect with new people who might be interested in your product or service.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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