Content Writing – Byron Bay to Brisbane

Content Writing Brisbane to Byron Bay

Giving you back the time

to GROW your business!

Amber_6430 Face crop-1 BIOPIC 2012 facebook

Bio:

My name is Amber Greene. I’m a writer/publisher/blogger/storyteller with a passion for film. ABN: 17429649233

I qualified in 1997 as a teacher, and have worked in a variety of educational roles with children alongside my writing career.

I write for many different publications across themes of education, parenting, travel, style, design, homelife, creativity and craft, and health.

I’d love to write for you too!

I write:

I’m an experienced online content writer based in Brunswick Heads, looking to support small businesses and sole traders from Byron Bay to Brisbane with content writing, freeing up your time to focus on growing your business.

I specialise in writing quality, relevant and inspiring content for family/parenting websites, online and in-store retailers who focus on products for children and family, and travel-based businesses.

I have 5 years experience working with household name brands for online campaigns, reviews, event attendance, and sponsored posts .

These include Crayola, Britax (car seats and strollers), Target Australia, Staedtler, Tommee Tippee, Lonely Planet, Tiger Tribe, Dyson, and Annie Sloan Chalk Paint, as well as a HUGE number of small businesses.

I can help you with:

  • Content for your weekly/fortnightly/monthly newsletter, keeping you top-of-mind with your customers and clients
  • Content for your Blog posts with relevant links for your business or company blog
  • All website content is SEO optimised for best online results
  • Ebooks (small incentives to encourage readers to subscribe to your site)
  • Media releases
  • Social media content across Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest
  • Stock image sourcing and curation of suitable images for content pieces
  • Sourcing and implementation of graphic design (ensuring consistency across your brand)
  • Attending events on your behalf and writing up reviews, post-event stories etc.

Availability:

  • Monday: 9:00am to 5:00pm
  • Tuesday: 9.00am to 5.00pm
  • Wednesday: 9:00am to 5:00pm
  • Thursday: 9:00am to 5:00pm
  • Friday: 9:00am to 5:00pm
  • Saturday: 10:00am to 4:00pm
  • Sunday: 10:00am to 4:00pm

Note:  My hours are flexible and I work many a night!

My websites/businesses:

SUPER DOOPER FUN Travel with Kids/Family Travel site:  www.roamthegnome.com

Early Childhood Education:  www.educator101.com.au

Rainbow Bridge Family Day Care Service Provider (Owner/Director/Educational Leader)

Accreditation:

  • Currently undertaking a Certificate 3 and 4 in Media (Screen)
  • Bachelor of Education
  • Associate Diploma of Childcare
  • I LOVE to learn and have spent my adulthood on a learning journey, building my skills and abilities across many fields through workshops, conferences, !

Why choose me?

I’m also a qualified teacher and adult educator who has been in the education and communication industries for over 20 years.

I have over 7 years blogging experience, and am passionate about helping small businesses streamline and SCALE their business to potentially generate other income streams.

I guarantee to provide copy on time, or before time. Time management and organisation are two of my key characteristics.

If you’re looking for a content writer to take your business to the next level, please call the number on the top right of the page or send an enquiry email. No job is too big or too small. Make contact today for a confidential discussion and quote.

Business Brainstorming

I also offer one-to-one business brainstorming, a 3 hour face-to-face session where YOU pick my brain and together we map out the possibilities of what you might do in your business future. (Testimonials coming!  If you want to think BIG or BIGGER, then you need to book a session with me.)

 

Contact me today:

Call 0422 630320 or email hello@roamthegnome.com

I look forward to helping you out!

 

A definition of a great (creative) teacher

Great teachers are like diamonds.
Hard to find, yet super sparkly when you strike it lucky!

 

I’ve been slowly reading through “What the dog saw” by Malcolm Gladwell and keep coming upon, what I call, ‘drops of gold’.   A few words or a sentence that strikes you dead centre in the heart.  Those words share a truth you could never have seen before without his help, and mean that now, you can never see the world in quite the same way again.
  He is a great teacher.
A great teacher makes you think, inspires you, helps you to strive higher or to somewhere that you thought was out of reach.

In one article, “Most likely to succeed”, Malcolm shares a story of an Educational Researcher, Jacob Kounin, who defines other things that help make a good teacher, great.

One of them is ‘withitness’.   This is non-verbal communication that tells the students that you are ‘onto it’ or ‘onto them’ (!) without ever having to speak the words.  This is Presence.

Isn’t this something that we want in a teacher?

To know that no matter how much we try and bluff our way out of something or be disengaged or misbehaving or ignorant or downright scared or even in awe and believing we are not creative enough to do “that”,  there is someone who cares enough about their students to be interested in what they are up to, so they can help them re-engage and learn.

Great teachers also take content and make it so much fun that even the most boring topic becomes as interesting as the latest fashion tip!  They “value add”- topping up a subject with a dose of interest and a spoonful of creative thought.

Great teachers truly inspire!

Creativity and the Human Condition

I’ve just finished reading Malcolm Gladwell’s book, “Outliers.”   (I loved it!  I love him! Did I tell you that a few times already?!!) This book focuses on the reasons people are successful, or not. It seems culture, and where/when you grew up, might really play a part, and there is nothing wrong with that! Because I love to learn about successful people and the creative potential of the mind, I read a lot of business books, biographies and lots of things about the human condition.  This book is worth a read.




My favourite quote in the book is “Achievement= Talent and Preparation“.  I think if more people knew and believed this, the creativity in the world might explode.  It seems it is not just down to sheer talent alone.  Right, now our lone excuse (I’m not talented enough) goes right out the window!  Great stuff!  It is time to take responsibility and Just Do it.



That’s the secret, isn’t it. If you, like me, want to be a successful writer/artist/poet/songwriter/screenwriter or whatever else it is that you dream of being, we have to TAKE ACTION.



Finding the ideas is the easy part. Making the time for the work is far more difficult. The only difference then between those that are successful and those that are not, is that the successful ones set their goal and every single day, put their attention and focus and time into doing the things that would help them reach their goals.  Every day.  I sit at the computer and write, regardless of whether my inspiration is shining or not. I just write.



I’ve always suspected that if we could find that pocket of creative thought in our bones, (we all have it somewhere) and stop wishing and hoping but instead, gave it time, and lessons, and lots of hours practice (all of which would protect the flame), one day we’d wake up and realise that our creative dream had COME TRUE!!   We might not be Lady Gaga but we would be singing for our supper!!



Malcolm also spoke about a type of school in America, the KIPP initiative .  I’ll be honest, I’ve never heard of it but gee I like some of what they are doing.

One thing really struck me, because it is something for all, not only for struggling school students or disadvantaged children.  We could all do better in life with this little hint up our sleeve.



Here it is:  The SSLANT Protocol.
Smile
Sit up
Listen
Ask questions
Nod when spoken to
Track with your eyes



Simple, isn’t it.   Last week, I was talking to a doctor whose children attend two (the boy and girl versions) of the most posh schools in my town.  He shared a story of the moment he was most impressed, the instant that he and his wife knew they had made the right schooling choice for their family.



“I went to pick up my little boy, who was in Prep at the time.  All the small boys were lined up outside their classroom, with their boater hats on.  The teachers told them that once they saw their parents arrive, they were dismissed for home. My son saw me, and so he walked over to his teacher, took off his boater hat, shook her hand and said goodbye, and then walked over to greet me.   In that moment,  I knew he’d be all right in life”



This kind of thing is so different from the typical classroom. The bell rings, the children might stand behind desks and sing “Good afternoon, Teacher”, then it is time to rush or run off.  It sometimes feels like absolute chaos, a whirlwind of a tornado and it happens all over the school.  But it can be different. One of my mentors, years ago, encouraged me to greet, and farewell, every child with a handshake and their name.  As in, “Good Morning Tom. How are you today?”    I really believe this eye to eye, HEART to HEART, contact is the greatest gift we can give our children. When children grow up believing that they have every right to be here, feeling respected and able, they mature with a deep belief in themselves and their ability to succeed.



But what if you didn’t have that growing up? I don’t think that can be an excuse.
Why not start believing in your ability to be successful now?
We can start with these KIPP principles.

Smile
Sit up
Listen
Ask questions
Nod when spoken to
Track with your eyes



It starts with a smile.
With every person I encounter this week, I’m going to Smile, sit up, listen, ask questions, nod when I am spoken to, track with my eyes, and greet everyone I meet by their name. It continues to amaze me that we can practice outward behaviours and make such an impact on our internal reality.  Success. Here we come.



I’m betting that if you make these six behaviours part of your everyday reality, it won’t be long before you are back at the page, roaring and ready to go into action and achieve those dreams and goals of yours.  Cheers to your future success!

Jobs for creative minded folk

I remember back in high school going to one of those ‘Career’ expos.
I can still smell the crowds, see the bland (ohhhh, so bland) displays and recall the many ‘big’ employers of the day with their stalls.
I remember, even not that far back in 1990, that there didn’t seem to be too many choices.

 

There were broad categories:
Health (eg Doctors, Nurses, Physiotherapist, Occupational therapist, Gym instructor)
Education (Teacher, childcare worker, speech language teacher, special needs teacher)
Trades (Carpenter, Builder, Plasterer, Brick layer, Painter, Electrician, Mechanic)
Hospitality (Chef, Waitress, Hotel Manager, Security, Concierge)
General (Hair dresser, Utility driver, Retail)
They were jobs.

 

I don’t recall much being said about going into business, and definitely not into business for yourself.
The idea was that your pathway, no matter if you went to uni/tafe or became an apprentice, was to become permanent full-time on a salary.

 

There was definitely no direction towards an artistic career.  No mention of the possibility of work experience on magazines or alongside journalists (years later, I was so happy to think that some lucky ducks did have this opportunity) , no way to bridge the gap to a working, paid artist or introductions to ad agencies or writing teams where creative thought might just have been welcome.

 

So, for anyone who was a little left of centre, the ‘job’ (just over broke) scenario just wasn’t going to cut it.

 

I packed my backpack (started out with 58 kg, returned 3 years later with 28kg- smart!) and set off on a world tour by myself at 18.  I had no idea what I wanted to do, just that working for someone else in a boring 9-5 job was not going to do it.  And that trip opened my eyes towards possibility!

 

Lately, I’ve been hearing about some super creative jobs and pondering the “luck/hard work/right place-right time” of those who either find or create these.

 

  • A lady who is sent instructions, via email, of the ‘patient’ role she must play for newly trained and final year doctor students.  She is given a strict set of guidelines as to what she must do, eg rant and rave and complain about the 15 other ailments she has not directly connected to the current problem, being meek as a mouse and vague on describing symptoms, being authoritarian and full of ‘internet’ knowledge about their undiagnosed ‘dis-ease’.  With these boundaries in place, she must turn up to the ‘surgery’ in full regalia and “become” the patient.  I love it!
  • A lady who travels the world, from London to Dubai to New York and Europe, in her quest to predict the next ‘in-thing’ for Christmas. Not this one, but next. She is in charge of choosing colour palettes, styling scenes, choosing cool ornaments, figurines, flashing lights and wrapping paper and then has to train her team to display these products to their best ability.  I love it!
  • A man (yes, a dad of one of my old school peers actually) who travels the world painting with his private bits.  Yes, his private bits on his front, AND his bottom cheeks.  If you don’t believe me, you can look him up.  Prickasso. Making a fortune supposedly.  Mmmmm….
  • Becoming a year-round ‘elf’ in Santa’s village in Lapland.  They have the task of loving and believing in Christmas 365 days a year, making gingerbread cookies with ‘Mrs Claus’ each night for the new visitors, finding and decorating new trees and driving reindeer.  I love it!
  • A local man who spends his days making all kinds of cheese from the milk of dairy cows on the farm.  I could think of worse things to do than make and taste cheese all day.

 

Years ago, I spent a whole summer dressed in a ‘convict’ uniform of blue and white, with a merry cap on my head, being ‘dunked’ by anyone with a spare $2 coin and a good throwing arm.  Yes, I sat on a little 15cm square seat above a huge rainwater tank and waited joyfully (or not, if it was overcast) for an instant submerge!  Climbing out drenched and heavy, I reclaimed my teensy seat and waited for the next throw!

 

I never thought I’d spend my teaching years making home-made bread, making felt creations, painting with watercolours, drawing artistically on chalkboards with vibrant colour, baking endless muffins, singing all day long, writing songs and stories and just generally being enveloped in colour, life, light and love.  That is my kind of teaching.  Thank goodness for creative schools that encourage the creativity of their teachers!  A creatively well-fed teacher cannot help but nourish the students they teach.

 

(I don’t know about you, but I’m not seeing too many juicy exuberant souls in our current education system.  With Christmas coming up, it might be time to think outside the box for our ‘teacher gifts’ and aim to ‘nourish’ their creative spirits, rather than their stomachs, no matter how much one might love chocolate.  Check back tomorrow for some ideas on out-of-the-box teacher gift suggestions!)

 

And to think we can get stuck behind a desk!

 

We all have stories of jobs/careers beyond the norm.  Let’s share them here! 
 I believe that if kids or teens only knew there were BIG possibilities, they might take the time to dig a little deeper to find just the right fit for them.  A fit that will nourish their own quirky creative mind, rather than be stuck mindlessly in work they hate.

 

I wish someone, my own creative angel, had whispered in my ear.
Let’s be that angel for someone else.

 

(And you know what, it is never too late.  Our stories here might just inspire or push/shove someone to take the wild path now, no matter how old/crabby/tired/flat out/uneducated they feel.)
It is potent with possibility.

 

I’d love to hear all about your most outlandish job/career/tasks or ones you know of or that your friends might do!  Whimsical, wild or downright wacko, please share them here!!

Ideophoria, the rapid flow of ideas.


 

Have you ever heard of Ideophoria?  I hadn’t until I read the book 12 Secrets of Highly Successful Women, The: A Portable Life Coach for Creative Women.  I have my diagnosis. This is my problem!Ideophoria is a ‘rapid flow of ideas‘. But Gail McMeekin likes to describe it as ‘the ability to generate lots of new thougts and ideas quickly. It is an experience where one feels a constant onslaught of new ideas, creating a euphoric state of idea creation.’ (2011)Honestly, sometimes it feels as though my brain is a whiteboard and new thoughts are being rapid fired at me by a conference room full of men and women on expresso coffee.  I can’t keep up!  It’s like I write something down and then something else down, whilst at the same time, an invisible someone wields the whiteboard eraser to make room for the next thing.  Ideophoria is like a creative person’s ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder).

I like the ideas. In fact, I love them. I’ve taken to keeping a pack of post-it notes by my side just about everywhere I go and fill these in with gusto.  I’ve set up a container on my shelf to collect these idea tit-bits and over the week, slowly make my way through them. I add them to my writing or crafting or sometimes even here on the blog.  But I just don’t have enough time to do all of them.  What is with this ’24 hour in a day’ limit, hey? I could do with another 12 at least just to catch up on the sleep I missed in the first 24.

Ideophoria is a strange thing too.  The more ideas I note down, the more that seem to appear. It’s almost like there is someone out there in the universe saying, “Hey, she’s listening. There, over there. She’ll take it. Send them to her!”  Want to share?  Easy.  Start listening to!

I’m often asked how I get so much done? It’s easy, I say. I don’t have a television.  But its not only that.  I make a daily plan.  Every single day, I wake up and no matter what my obligations for the day, whether I need to be somewhere or doing something, working outside the home or attending a meeting, I schedule ONE creative thing I must do to help my dreams move forward.

With all these ideas floating around, the hardest thing is to avoid getting caught up in the joyful exuberance of possibilities and avoid the hard work of preparing the muddy foundations so the ideas can take wings and fly.

About 3 months ago, I participated in an on-line course and this idea of noting down ONE THING was probably the best bit of advice I’ve had in years. I now write this ONE thing down at the top of my diary every day, and do not go to bed until it is done.  Experience has taught me to do the one thing early in the day!  And to be realistic about my ability to achieve it on any given day.  On busy days, my thing might only take 5 minutes. On days where I am able to be home, it might be an artistic activity, such as taking photos for a crafty how-to, that takes hours.

In the book, Gail gives six practical solutions to overcoming the challenges of Ideophoria too. Focus is the key.  I’ve found the way to balance the idea flow, and engage with them too, is to give each idea a little bit of my time.  I can become a baker, a gardener and a candlestick maker, if only for a day.  You can too!


Learning: that a new study from Harvard University proves that for women ‘a lack of creativity and not enough decision-making power in their work puts them at risk fro suffering a heart attack or heart disease”. (Alpert, 2011)
Wow. Definitely time for women to start bringing their heart and soul to work (not just their brains or ability) or find another job where they can.  I thank my lucky stars for the 10 years I spent in my last job. I honestly didn’t realise just how lucky I was to work creatively every single day, in an environment that actually paid for my artistic development too.  I knew it was good but for me, it was normal. I only learn it wasn’t normal when I talk to other women friends about their job environments.  Now there is proof. For our health’s sake, let’s fire up our creative sparks at work too!

  









Tradition kills creativity

Burn, Baby, Burn.
Creativity Fire Starters.  

I love traditions.
I love the ritual of doing something in a particular way, each season, or each birthday or each year.
I think there is something extremely nurturing for everyone in experiencing a seed of something familiar, repeated on a predictable cycle.

 

But…
I also know that holding onto traditions dogmatically (often for the sake of it) can actually kill the opportunity for free creative expression and a living, breathing response to a particular event or activity.

 

When we do something, such as a festival or a Christmas dinner or telling a bedtime story or serving up a dish on a certain plate, we must ask ourselves why we do it.   If we have a good reason, we have answered our question.

 

But, if we do something because that’s the way it’s always been done, that is as good as cultish behaviour in my book.  If we would like to try something new, but we are thwarted by ‘tradition’, this can be a source of conflict and tension that indiscriminately kills of all creative thought.

 

Beware of ‘tradition’ for the sake of ‘tradition’.

 

For many years, I worked in a space where things were often done ‘because that is how they are done’, even when it was obvious that the way wasn’t working anymore.  If one was to question why, or suggest another way, you could be seen as ‘breaking ranks’ so people just went about ‘breaking traditions’ quietly instead.

 

I think this time gave me some of my greatest life learnings.  The most important being, ASK QUESTIONS.  If you value your creativity as I do, the only way to stop yourself stagnating is to continue to ask the questions, whatever they may be, pushing the boundaries of ‘correct behaviour’ and coming up with new ways of putting things back together.  Sometimes, you have to be really, really, really brave to do this. Especially if it means challenging someone in a position of power, such as an older sister, or a boss, or the head librarian.  (Head librarians can be really scary sometimes.  Don’t you think?)

 

This is what it means to be an Artist of Everyday Living.  To reconfigure, and reconstruct, the world that you engage in on a daily basis, over and over and over again.  Staying out of the ‘rut’ -whether that is being afraid to break the status quo of your friendship group by bringing in someone new, always seeing the same kind of movie, eating the same kind of food (even it is the most delicious and healthy Hare Krishna curry fare) or living in the same suburb for years on end- is something we need to be aware of, and fight against if we are to keep our thoughts and energy fresh.

 

Embracing (rather than resisting) change is the key, don’t you think?
What traditions have you kept and what traditions have you discarded?  

Bobby McFerrin hacks your brain with music | Video on TED.com

The power of music, hey! Watch this little three minute video.

Bobby McFerrin hacks your brain with music | Video on TED.com

If you haven’t visited the TED.com site before, OH MY GOSH!!! You are missing out on some of the most outlandish, wild, amazing talks and videos out there in cyberspace….
Have fun with this one! Bet you hum along….