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Web Hosting - Do It Yourself Administration, Things to Consider The choice of whether or not to try to administer your own web site brings with it a host, pun intended, of issues. For most web site owners, the primary focus is naturally on creating, maintaining and enhancing the site. That often is just part of managing an entire business, for which the web site is just the means to an end. That implies there will be little interest in or time left over for technical administration like database maintenance (tuning, space management, security, bug fixes), establishing and maintaining backups to ensure they're successful and usable, email administration, disk space management, applying operating system fixes for bugs and security, and other tasks. But cost is always a factor in any business. Paying for technical help can burden the budget of a new and struggling business. Consulting fees can range from a few dollars an hour to over $100. On the lower end, the poor skill level and quality of work will make it not worth even that small amount. On the higher end, you can quickly rack up expenses that will bust your business. Permanent employees are usually somewhere in the middle of that range when you add up salary, employment taxes and more. Often, server and/or web site administration can be paid for as part of the web hosting package. That cost is usually lower than independent contracting help, but those staff are usually tasked with maintaining dozens if not hundreds of servers and sites. They can, therefore, give very little individual attention to yours. Often, novice web site owners are intimidated by some of the technical requirements for server or site administration. But, as with anything, a little familiarity can show that the knowledge required is more modest than one might expect. Administration in many cases involves fairly elementary, and frequently repetitive, tasks. These can be learned easily. Using a test site or a free hosting service is a good way to practice and learn without risk or cost, other than time invested. Once that initial hurdle is jumped over, administration can be done quickly and some even find it interesting. It allows the site owner to exercise additional control over the total product, and there's satisfaction in being able to say 'I did that' even if you prefer not to do it forever. That real-life learning experience also allows the site owner to better judge any consultants or staff that are hired. It's much easier to judge if someone is providing you with an accurate assessment of a problem if you've solved it yourself. Any time-estimate they provide to fix it can also be better calculated if you've had to do it yourself. Every web site relies on a variety of factors, usually unseen, in order to continue to function properly. But the fact is that they misbehave from time to time. Deciding whether to tackle those problems yourself depends on your available time and skill set, and what it will require to get things back on track. In other words, it's a standard cost-benefit analysis that everyone has to undertake every day in life.

Examine the Interior of Publishing Companies (publishing companies) The publishing company can be seen as the backbone of the writing world. Written words seemingly would not have been able to be seen without publishing companies. The publishing company provides a great service to society by publishing and displaying the work of authors. The existence of publishers is obvious, but the interior of the publishing world and its companies is unknown by many people. Publishing is known as an apprenticeship industry, which means that most of the knowledge needed by a publishing professional will be learned with hands-on experience on the job. Generally, information that is learned in one department of a company is useful throughout the publishing house, which gives professionals the opportunity to move between departments. There are many levels to a publishing company and they all have different functions. The administrative level is the first level of any company, and has many responsibilities in the functioning publishing companies. The administrative department is responsible for managing daily operations for publishing executives and management. This responsibility involves interaction with all of the employees from all of the departments, as well as interaction with authors and agents. The administrative employees are required to manage the calendar, maintain organized files, screen/prioritize mail, draft correspondence, make travel arrangements and prepare itineraries, process expense reports, take minutes at meetings and prepare reports. A position as an administrative employee allows a person to have a high-level of understanding of a publishing company, while being visible to executives. Advertising is another division of publishing companies. Most publishing companies have in-house advertising agencies that purchase media space and create and design advertisements. In a publishing company, the advertising department works closely with the marketing directors, editors, and publishers of titles to create an advertising plan that will promote sales of an individual book. Every advertising plan requires research and negotiation to provide the best venues and the most cost-effective methods of advertisement. These employees also work closely with graphic designers, commercial sales representatives, printing presses, and internal staff to facilitate the run of advertisements. The editorial department of a publishing house is one of the most important departments. This department acquires, negotiates, develops, and edits book projects for publication. The daily activities of editorial employees include preparing acquisitions for transmittal to the production department, developing and maintaining relationships with authors, booksellers, and agents, performing general administrative duties, participating in editorial, design and marketing meetings, and reading and evaluating submissions by writing reader’s reports. The editorial department must work closely with all departments. Another division of publishing companies is the marketing department. The marketing department has the responsibility of creating, preparing, and establishing marketing strategies and policies for each title by coordinating the efforts of the publicity, promotion, advertising, online, and sales departments. The marketing department is responsible for preparing all sales presentation materials, audio recordings, fact sheet collation, and promotions, creating and producing additional account-specific presentation materials, researching and establishing relations with new markets, and planning and maintaining sales and marketing schedules. The publisher’s office is also an important department for many publishing companies. The publishers oversee the life cycle of a title from acquisition to production, and onto the sales force. Publishers are responsible for making executive decisions for all titles within assigned imprints while staying within any cost restraints. This department is also responsible for sponsoring book projects, strategies, and initiatives for the publishing company. The subsidiary rights and permissions department is also one of the most important divisions of a publishing company. This department finds additional sources of profit for a given title, including serials, book clubs, and paperback, audio and e-book rights. The daily activities for the subsidiary department include writing submission letters, sending manuscripts, proposals, and books to foreign publishers and agents, coordinating co-productions with other publishers, working with book clubs and sales for special editions, and maintaining relationships with other publishing companies. Publishing companies have many divisions, including, sales, purchasing, publicity, promotion, production, managing editorial, legal contracts Internet development, information technology, human resources, finance, art and design, and audio.

To Enter or Not to Enter Writing Contests (writing contests) If you are a freelance writer, it is because you love to write. Why not put those abilities to use and enter a writing contest? You have nothing to loose and a lot to gain. You can find writing contests by simply searching the Internet. Writing groups and message boards may also have listing for these contests. No matter what you writing genre maybe poetry, fiction, non fiction, there is a contest out there for you. Read about them and choose which ones are right for you. It is not necessarily about winning or loosing but about the experience and knowledge that you gain to get there. Whether you win or not there are still valuable things that can be learned or gained by entering into contests. Entering writing contests will help you hone the skills that you have. Try something new, you may choose to write in a niche that you normally wouldn’t. You get constructive criticism from someone new. Someone that doesn’t have to worry about hurting your feelings and that is unbiased can be a wonderful asset to your career. The feedback you receive can be invaluable to you. It will get your name out there and give you a place to showcase your work. Depending on how good your story, if you make it to the next round your writings could be in front of editors and agents. This feedback and criticism is even more important than the first. Do not your eggs all in one basket. Enter a couple contests to get multiple feedback sources. Not every editor or agent is going to agree. By entering multiple contests and find common points about your writing that need perfecting you will be able to concentrate on a general consensus about your abilities. There are some downsides to entering writing contests, too. Chances are that a simple contest is not going to launch your career into star status. Do your research just as if you were going to write an article about contests. For many contests you give up your rights to your entry whether it wins or not. You need to decide whether or not you are willing to give up all rights to your story. If you win it is not a big deal, but if you loose your giving your work away. Are you willing to do this? Research the contest. You can search the Internet for reports or opinions on contests run by the company. You can find valuable information on if the contest is legitimate, if entering has had any effect of previous entrant’s careers, and if it is really worth it in the long run. The bigger and well-established companies will give credibility to your work if you win. But the bigger and more well know the companies are will also bring in tougher competition with well know authors. Some companies offer contests as a disguise. Yes they will give away prizes and declare winners but their main goal with the contest is advertising. It can be in the form of offering you to buy obscure book featuring your contest submission. Sometimes it is an editing company that offers a discount for its services or a company that will offer you discounts on writing classes. A writing contest is just a possible stepping stone. Whether it helps you or not is the unknown, but it definitely won’t hurt you. It may help you reach the next level of your career. You and only you will be able to make the decision on whether or not writing contests are a good move for your career.