- The Vacation Test 🌴
The Vacation Test 🌴
And How to Craft a Fab Freelance Writer's Bio
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Greetings from NYC!
I just returned from a vacation in Italy (if you need recommendations for Florence or Tremezzo, let me know!). 🇮🇹
Because an algorithm is an all-knowing entity that knows everything about you, this tweet popped into my newsfeed precisely when I was en route to home in NYC.
I have never come back from any holiday feeling relaxed, refreshed & reinvigorated to get back into work.
I come back with the taste of freedom, still fresh in my mouth, a renewed hatred for work, and a strong suspicion that this is not what I should be spending my life doing.
— Uncle Ari (@MazeDaMouth)
Jan 5, 2023
I’m fortunate to be in a place in life where I don’t relate to this. But it wasn’t always this way.
Right before the pandemic hit, I went on a bite-sized vacation with my parents. I worked 19 days non-stop in preparation, juggling my three jobs (bartender, music coordinator intern, and gym receptionist).
I remember the car ride to the airport after vacation feeling a sense of dread. The long shifts. The pizza grease. The Excel spreadsheets.
But I wouldn’t even have a chance to return to the job(s). The pandemic slammed into NYC and I lost all three gigs in one fell swoop.
It was the catalyst that led me to start my freelance writing business. Although being a freelancer is a melange of poisonous doubts and “what ifs”, I know I’m on the right path because work passes what I call the Vacation Test.
Simply put: after vacation, how do you feel about opening your laptop?
To pass with flying colors doesn’t mean you’re stoked about returning to work (you’re human, after all). Instead, passing means you feel…calm. There’s a twinge of excitement to continue your projects. You’re curious about what your co-workers and clients have been up to. You’re brimming with ideas.
If you can pass that test, good news: you’re on track with the work you should be doing. 🌴
Charing Cross Bridge 2, 1901, Claude Monet
✍️ Quick Writing Tip
Can you spot what went wrong in this sentence?
“A survey from PwC found that 35% of Gen Z are planning on quitting their jobs within the next 12 months.”
It starts with the source. This is called “burying the lede,” which is when you fail to mention the most important part of the story at the beginning.
Because let’s be real — no reader is going to be enthralled by the mention of “PwC.”
Here’s the rewrite:
“35% of Gen Z workers are planning on changing jobs within the next 12 months, per a recent survey by PwC.”
🥒 Content Diet
• ✍️ Syntactic Surprise Calculator — This is so cool. It’s a tool that judges the effectiveness of your copy by rating how “surprising” it is. That’s because surprising copy (i.e. “Red Bull gives you wings” instead of “Red Bull gives you energy”) is more likely to grab your reader’s attention.
• 📚 Storyworthy by Mathew Dicks — I’ve just purchased this book to enhance my storytelling abilities and holy moly, you guys. 40 pages in and I already have a pageful of notes on how to become a better storyteller.
• ✍️ Our Obsession With Self-Optimization is Hindering Our Quality of Life by Me — I wrote this essay after stumbling on “Be Interesting,” an essay about how the majority of people you meet are “boring” who aren’t worth your time.
It’s a BS perspective that falls under the toxic self-optimization umbrella. Our pursuit of being our “best self” — from filtering the people we meet to the food we eat — is destroying us.
✍🏼 Freelancing Journey
This Week: How to Write a Bio Clients Can’t Ignore
I’m almost done reading Amy Suto’s book, Six-Figure Freelancer, and wanted to share one of her tips I found very useful: how to write your biography (why is writing about yourself so cringe?).
Here’s the new biography I created using her advice:
And here’s the step-by-step breakdown so you can create your own bio:
Relevant Background Experience: “Alice Lemée is a self-taught writer who left her career in the music industry to pursue freelance writing and digital nomadism.”
Expertise and Niche: “She’s a newsletter ghostwriter and writes emails for seven-figure business owners, award-winning YouTubers, and other inspiring entrepreneurs.”
Secret Sauce (Your USP or Unique Selling Point): “Alice taps into her three years of professional ghostwriting and audience-building experience to help her clients grow a loyal following and lucrative marketing channel.”
Fun Fact / Personality Twist: “When she’s not in Google Docs, Alice works remotely from cafés in Paris and surfs (or more accurately, wipes out) in Mexico.”
We love an easy recipe. If you’re a freelance writer, I’d highly recommend Amy’s book ( and it’s only $2.99 on Amazon Kindle so there’s nothing to lose). 🤷♀️
Thanks for reading and I hope you have a beautiful week, wherever you are. If you enjoyed this newsletter, why not share it with a writer friend? 🙂