Friday, October 29, 2004

Indecision Over a Big Decision

the big news of the week is that i've decided to start my own business. it's something i've already wanted to do, and recently when i was talking to a girlfriend of mine (ms. zahra bizarra), we were listing off the things we really wanted to do in our lives. i always knew i wanted to be self-employed ultimately and then the epiphany: why not now? it was so clear and simple. i began to daydream of all the benefits: flexible hours; unlimited earning potential that will be a reflection of my effort, rather than a predictable amount i'd get no matter how i perform at work; no commute; no friggin boss; no risk of being fired for insubordination; more time with my baby juice; greater opportunity to travel on a whim; and more time to focus on my other, more important ultimate goal: writing. like real writing -- telling my own stories instead of others' stories, which i would be doing as a journalist.

the bad news is: i think i'm over journalism. i never really had that fire inside me to be a journalist, and it's not worth faking. i'm no woodstein. this might sound lame, considering i just accrued $20K worth of debt for a master's degree in the friggin field, but i think it'll help oodles in my new business endeavor, in terms of "qualifying" me to do good work and charge premium rates. and if i'm really honest with myself, i went after that advanced degree mostly out of boredom, partially out of vanity, and partially out of sibling rivalry (my sister has an MBA). also, that advanced degree somehow qualifies me to become a teacher, har har, which may be fun. so yes, no regrets.

but back to business: it will be a sort of one-stop copy shop, where i will provide copywriting, editing, proofreading and copy consultation services. it'll be geared toward all kinds of businesses and (graduate-level) students. this is stuff i know how to do, been doing forever and i'm confident in my competence. there are certainly many more details to this, which i am still hashing out. and i'm not under any delusion that it'll all be peaches and cream. i'm prepared for the hard work, crazy hours, sacrifices, financial instability, etc., that something like this brings. but i believe it will all be worth it. and i recognize that it will take some time before it really takes off, which is why i'm going to keep temping. so yes, i have realistic expectations.

the big dilemma: what the hell do i call this thing? i've been mulling this over for weeks now. a name -- that first impression -- will be so vital in attracting new business. i can't take it lightly. the problem is the world wide web, which is too vast -- all the good names for web sites have been taken. i'm left with the dregs. for obvious reasons, i prefer a .com over a .net web presence, and i want to avoid hypens. ideally, i want a sophisticated name, something that screams competence and professionalism, like The Final Draft (web site already taken). here is a list of potential names i've come up with, for which web sites are still available:

a preliminary poll of some of my most creative friends found to be the clear winner, but i'm not convinced. someone mentioned that the idea of surgery is unappealing, and what i'll be doing is more polishing than dissecting, so it's not exactly apt. but was taken. someone else mentioned that the 'golden' reference makes him think of piss, so i don't know. words have weird connotations for different people, which is why it's important to find a pleasant-sounding name that will make most people feel warm and fuzzy inside. i don't want to appeal to the lowest common denominator necessarily and i want to avoid gimmicky stuff. and i'm not sure i want to include the word 'editing' in the name as many people have suggested. it goes beyond just editing services (also available are proofing, copywriting), though 'editorial' might be a nice, all-inclusive alternative.

i don't know. i don't think i've heard the right name yet, one that covers all the bases (and is amazingly still available online). do you have it, biyatch? best email me if you do:, and leave suggestions in the comments box. thanks for playing.

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