Twirling Tiger Tales

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I still recall that long weekend in San Francisco when the parking gods smiled down on me. With one exception, great, free, relatively spacious spots (for easier parallel parking) materialized right when I needed them. An empty parking space appeared in front of our Noe Valley AirBnB on an 8% graded hill; then upon visiting Golden Gate Park on a busy weekend; and later, across from my daughter’s apartment in the crowded Richmond District. Even...

Park Yourself Here: What to Read, Listen to and Watch

Thanks to a flood of contract writers and the rise of content mills, the commerce of writing is taking a huge economic hit. So are writers who depend on their craft to earn a living. That’s why freelance writers need a contract. Statements of work or author agreements —or whatever such  contracts are  called—are designed to clearly explain expectations and publishing rights. Most writers understand the deliverables and deadlines. It’s the publishing rights that can...

Why Writers Need a Contract

July Recommendations for What to Listen to Need a calming distraction from daily annoyances? Science reveals that listening to music can benefit our physical and mental health. Beyond the fact that structures within music can help to communicate happiness or sadness, a tune’s lyrics can further influence a listener’s emotional state … and offer some really good advice about life and business. Here are my picks for lyrics that encourage a different future action. #1 ...

Sage Advice in (Almost) Five Songs

“You can’t use an image without permission from the creator of the work (and, almost always, a forthcoming payment).” I’ve contracted with creatives working as independent contractors over the course of my career, and, with good reason, I know and respect this fact. I’ve needed to restate this case numerous times to others within organizations in order to legally protect companies, clients and myself. Here’s the deal with image makers: Unless the work that’s generated by...

Imagery: Give Credit (And Payment) Where It’s Due

Last month, The Atlantic published an article on luxury resorts struggling with requests for free stays from so-called Instagram influencers. Such exchanges are nothing new; in fact, the FTC mandates that bloggers and other social media users disclose if a product or service is given gratis in exchange for a review or mention. Typically this disclosure comes at the onset or closing of a post with a line letting the reader know this post is...

How to Pitch Like a True Influencer

Tomorrow we celebrate our nation’s independence from the British in the 1700s. What better time then to discuss how you can become more independent too. In this case, we’re talking about becoming an independent contractor as either a side gig or to replace a job that no longer works for you. Twirling Tiger Media works with a range of independent contractors, many of whom have been with us since our start. I’ve also been a...

A Guide to Being a Great Independent Contractor

  While ambling through a few museums on a recent trip to Washington D.C., it was apparent to me how all types of design influence our emotional and cognitive impulses to make us decide and act in different ways. As a museum-goer in our nation’s capital and observer of other patrons, I can testify to the fact that participatory interaction with environments, displays, masterful works of art and one another was not only the new...

Making Physical Spaces Your Own Through Technology

Think of “The Home Depot” and you’ll likely conjure memories of chasing down an elusive orange-vested employee in a vast warehouse lined with aisles of towering racks storing hardware gadgets. With its more than 2,200 stores in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, we’ve all likely shared similar sensory experiences (schlepping along cement floors and then suddenly dodging a beeping forklift, wondering if the small birds that inhabit the store ever escape to the outdoors, the...

The Home Depot Moves into New Markets with Style

Many, many years ago I befriended a disc jockey and requested a song on his popular radio station. It was October and the disc jockey’s response when rejecting my request: “That’s a summer song.” This was in the days of vinyl, when FM radio ruled. Now the music industry is highly fragmented and increasingly dependent on internet streaming services. But still the concept of the “summer song” endures. There’s that one piece that earworms its...

The Sound of Music

Ever since a friend brought it to my attention, I’ve noticed I misuse the word perfect frequently, at least in speech. I say it when I find a mutual time to talk with someone. When I sign off on instructions. When I’m offered fresh fruit in lieu of bacon for brunch. The one place I rarely use it: my own work product. Perfect should not be the goal “Perfect” may be my current catch phrase,...

Not So Perfect: Learning to Let Go of an Elusive Goal