Creative Currents: Best News of the Week for Creative Entrepreneurs 10-23-16

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It's like the Sunday newspaper for creative people. Click To Tweet

Creative Currents is a weekly feature at The Free Creative Society posted every Sunday. Below you’ll find the most interesting news, blog posts, and useful information for creative types published during the previous week.

If you have a suggestion or if you’d like your own content featured, please feel free to alert me.

There’s a lot of stories below, so if you’re pressed for time, here are my Top 5:


Entrepreneurship & Business

On Changes + Really, Actually Trying + Gratitude

Love this inspirational-as-hell post from Sarah von Bargen about her experiences after starting her (excellent) blog. (read)

The Right Way To Back Out Of A Networking Conversation

From Elana Lyn Gross. Because everyone needs a getaway plan. (read)

Snapchat for Small Business: A Guide for Beginners

I have a feeling that this is a strategy many of us aren’t taking advantage of. But is it effective? Brenda Savoie makes the case for Snapchat as a marketing opportunity. (read)

What 1.5M Pins Taught Us About Pinterest Marketing: Common Words, Popular Times, Plus 4 Experiments to Try

Are your Pinterest efforts lacking? Hailley Griffis goes deep into the social media rabbit hole with this one — really excellent write-up from which I’ll no doubt be taking a few ideas, since I pretty much suck at Pinterest. (read)

Quick Tips for How to Speed Up WordPress Like a Pro!

The folks at MarketingInfographics have produced another beautiful infographic, this time filled with actionable tips on how to speed up your WordPress installation. In case you weren’t aware, page loading speed is important for more than just your reader’s convenience. (read)

Writing & Indie Publishing

Attention, Freelance Writers: Stop Calling Yourselves “Generalists”

Erin Olilla shares some useful insights for freelance writers — I too believe it’s smarter to drill down your niches rather than being a “jack of all trades.” I also loved her points about writing authentically. (read)

Bree Brouwer on Choosing Her Freelance Writing Specialty

As a complimentary piece to the above story, Jenn Mattern interviews Bree Brouwer on how and why she selected her freelance writing specialty. It’s probably not what you think. (read)

NaNoWriMo: Preparing To Hit 50K

With NaNoWriMo right around the corner, Jo Linsdell sat down to pick the brains of winners Amanda Gernentz Hanson and Vas Littlecrow Wojtanowicz. (read)

How to Run Short-Term Social Media Campaigns

Chris Syme, author of Sell More Books With Less Social Media, shares detailed tips on running short-but-effective social media campaigns for authors. (read)

Can AI Really Help You Write Better Emails?

An interesting piece from Susan Johnston Taylor with some useful data for anyone who writes emails regularly. Freelance writers looking to perfect their cold pitches should take notes. (read)

Featured Webcomic


In an effort to make Creative Currents more like a real Sunday paper, I’ve decided to include everyone’s favorite part: the funny pages!

I have no doubt parents can relate to this one. This week’s featured webcomic comes from Unearthed Comics, produced by Sarah and Rob Zimmerman. (more) (Twitter)

Graphic Design & Art

3 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Hate Comic Sans

My fiance hates Comic Sans. Sometimes I use it just to bug her. Can’t wait to send her this surprisingly interesting piece from Andrew Tiburca. (read)

20 Fresh Illustrator Freebies For Your Collection

Iggy over at Line25 has posted a batch of 20 excellent vector icon sets. And they’re free! (read)

7 Essential Tax Deductions for Freelance Designers

Good reminder piece from Jack Sartory of Hurdlr. Have you considered all of these? (read)

Run With It Books

Dan from The Casual Optimist showcases a few unique designs from Run With It Books which use words from a random phrase generator. (read)

DT Post – Karen Sessions’ Collage Halloween Cards

Karen Sessions shares her unique Halloween card designs on the Joggles blog. Fun and inspirational — it’s easy to forget that not all of your designs have to be digital. (read)

Programming & Web Development

Learning Arduino the Fun Way – Writing Games With Arduboy

If you’re at all interested in single board computers, Scott Hanselman has done some ridiculously cool projects you’re going to drool over. Earlier this week he posted about his experience with the Arduboy, a hand held, open-source game system that you program yourself. Very cool. (read)

Webdev Humor: Things That Only Developers will Find Funny

Take a break and have a laugh with Oksana Preda‘s collection of jokes that only web developers will get. (read)

A Developer on Switching From Windows to macOS

Developer Justin Hamm goes into great depth about his experience switching from Windows to macOS for development, including actionable steps. (read)

3 Ways to Present Your Client’s Website Before it Goes Live

Andreas Hect suggests a few solutions to showing your clients their website before it goes live. Personal note — I once had a client who had their website redesigned before several months before hiring me. The web developer left up a staging site live on the internet, which was essentially a copy of their actual website. Yes, Google had indexed it. I like these suggestions better! (read)

Being More Than “Just the Programmer”

James Hague posted a thought provoking piece about how programmers are sometimes viewed as the “implementer of someone else’s vision.” In this post, he offers guidance for programmers facing situations in which they feel that their non-coding input isn’t being valued. (read)

Miscellaneous Mashup

Anonymous Vigilante Is Fighting Asshole Drivers With This Genius Parking Note

OK, so this is sort of unrelated to the topics we discuss here, but I couldn’t help myself. It counts as being creative, right? (read)

A.Z. Anthony’s Blog

General blog recommendation for FCS pal A.Z. Anthony. Writer, Floridian, and all around good guy. (read)

7 drone-based business ideas for 2017

Got a drone? Start a business with it. Or, you know, don’t, because I don’t entirely know how I feel about the cyberpunk-esque dystopian nightmare our society is almost certainly becoming. (read)

Intercourse, PA

A fun post from Julia Dent about her adventures in none other than Intercourse, PA. Yes, that’s a real place. Great photographs too, and don’t worry, they’re SFW. (read)

Bombshell Business Podcast: How to Write a Basic Business Plan

A well produced podcast from Amber Hurdle, a Fortune 500 speaker and coach who seems to always be busy with something cool. (listen)

Note: I didn’t have time this week, but I’ll be including a section for Podcasts in next week’s Creative Currents. Until then, check out the rest of Amber’s podcasts.

FCS Posts You May Have Missed

The Dirty Little Secret That All Freelancing Blogs Have in Common (Including This One)

My most controversial post? (read)

The Ridiculously Complete Guide to Freelance Writing

Interested in becoming a freelance writer? I wrote over 15,000 words to teach you how. For free. (read)

It's like the Sunday newspaper for creative people. Click To Tweet

Thanks for reading, see you next week!

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