paperjamming for freelancers

Not only are freelance writers their own bosses, they are also their own administrative assistants. And every doubling of duty results in a halving of available time. That’s one of the reasons that freelancers represent such a large proportion of the audience for organizational systems like David Allen’s Getting Things Done, Merlin Mann’s 43 Folders, and planners like Day-Timer and Franklin Covey.

Here’s the thing, though: no matter what organizational system you adopt for your freelance business, you still have to interface with the legal, financial, and contractual requirements of the rest of the world. And those requirements can be complicated. Plus, you still have to manage all those paper and electronic files you create. And store them somewhere. All of this while trying to develop and manage your business.

PaperJamming templates help you manage your files on the fly. These handy templates, featuring the distinctive and popular Active Voice design, distill professional information management practices into clear, easy-to-grasp guidelines. Now you can control your files right from your hPDA.

The most important thing to remember about freelance file management is that you are going to be saving at most 5% of all your paper and electronic files. That’s right — 95% of everything you create or collect along the way needs to be disposed of. The whole raison d’etre of freelance writing is to create clips; everything else is either there to support your business obligations, or in the way.

PaperJamming workflow

Effective file management is ruthless — but it can also be fun too, and it can be uniquely your own. That’s what PaperJamming is all about: personalized file management made fun.

Use the new PaperJamming templates — now available in 1.0 format on the Active Voice downloads page — to help identify and manage your files. Templates are available for Core, Administrative, Project, and Reference files and they come pre-loaded with guidelines for the most common types of files created and used by freelancers. Plus, there’s a blank template for listing extra files.

Put the templates in your hPDA so you can manage files on-the-go, or drop them into file folders for easy reference. Or create a binder of frequently-used templates that you can add to and subtract from as needed. Whatever works best for you, and however you organize your work, PaperJamming templates can help.

Remember, while the guidelines suggested in the PaperJamming templates are based on sound records management principles, you should always check them against your actual financial, legal, and contractual requirements first.

Questions about how to use the PaperJamming templates? Wondering what category a certain file falls into? Wondering where to get started with that overstuffed filing cabinet or full hard drive? Leave me a comment below or e-mail me. Perhaps an Active Voice consultation would be worth your while; take a look at the services I provide.

PaperJamming — Just because files have a life of their own doesn’t mean that they have to run yours.

Author: Paul Lagasse

Paul Lagasse provides expert-to-expert communications services to nonprofit, business, and government clients in the metro Baltimore-DC area. Specialties include science and medical writing, technical report editing, and content marketing.