Previously, On the Ditch the Day Job Diaries…

When I first left my job in February to become a full-time freelancer, I starting doing a regular video diary about my experiences to share with subscribers to the Clear-Minded Creative newsletter.

Although I initially intended it to be weekly, that wasn’t entirely realistic, and I only ended up filming 14 episodes. The final episode ended on a bit of a cliffhanger too, so I apologise to those of you who were watching it regularly for leaving you in the lurch!

It struck me that those 14 episodes would work quite well as ‘Season One’ of the web TV show, and that Season Two could start from the time I headed off to the US to the World Domination Summit, and all the changes I’ve made since then.

Here then, is a handy recap of the first season of the Ditch the Day Job Diaries – look out for Season Two, coming soon!

If you want to catch up on the first season, and be notified when Season Two starts, remember to subscribe to the newsletter!

p.s. if you can’t wait until then, there are two interviews with me which will give you an insight into what I’ve been up to.

I was interviewed recently about being a freelance writer for the excellent Media Muppet site:

Media Muppet Interview: Milo McLaughlin – Copywriter & Web Editor

And I was also interviewed by my good pal Fabian of the Friendly Anarchist for his new ‘At Work’ series. He asked me some interesting questions about my work habits and even my morning routine:

 Friendly Anarchist At Work Interview – Milo McLaughlin

Thanks for watching/reading, and do let me know in the comments if you have any questions you’d like me to address in Season Two of the Ditch the Day Job Diaries.

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Riding the Train of Awesome – Interview with Nathan Agin

Nathan Agin in action at his WDS2012 healthy lunch meetup

Nathan Agin is a former actor turned modern day nomad who shares his healthy living practices on his blog Nonstop Awesomeness.

I met Nathan at WDS2012 in July. He organised a number of unofficial meet ups, including a healthy lunch and meditation sessions and we talked about how healthy eating and exercise can have a dramatically positive effect on our mental health (see the Mental Health Foundation website for more on diet and mental health).

This is a man who definitely ‘walks the talk’ when it comes to healthy living, and as I’ve now committed to a Year of Clarity (i.e. no alcohol!) what better time to get advice on that topic.

I chatted to Nathan in sunny L.A. (via the wonders of Skype) and asked him about his exciting plans for a new show celebrating healthy food and travel which recently placed #6 (out of 121 ideas) in a recent Good.Is contest.

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Book Week Scotland & The League of Extraordinary Book Lovers

Yesterday morning I attended the launch of Book Week Scotland which was announced by Fiona Hyslop, the Scottish Culture Secretary.

I had the unexpected pleasure of seeing Miriam from the Istanbul Review dressed up as a member of the ‘League of Extraordinary Book Lovers’ (see below pic).  The League consists of members of all ages, from 5 to 75, who will appear in a puff of smoke on street corners handing out book recommendations during Book Week Scotland.

I quite liked the TV advert for Book Week Scotland which features locations in Scotland but with signposts for a number of well known fictional locations. The advert asks ‘Where Will You Go?’.

I for one can certainly recommend fictional worlds as an alternative to an expensive foreign holiday, it is much cheaper and more environmentally friendly and you don’t have to pay ridiculous roaming charges to get a 3G signal.

I even got given a ‘Krypton’ sticker perhaps due to my uncanny resemblance to Clark Kent (well, I wear glasses). Another thing I have in common with Clark is that he is apparently now a blogger. Yes, it’s being reported that he’s left the Daily Planet to start a blog, because DC Comics are keen to represent the real world in their latest storylines.

I hope they explain how he actually makes a decent living blogging, which has so far escaped me. But then he is Superman so he can probably type faster than me.

The Details

The event takes place between 26th November and 2nd December and is organised by the Scottish Book Trust who have made sure there are loads of ways to get involved.

They’re giving away free picture books to all Primary 1 schoolchildren in Scotland, and 150,000 copies of the book ‘My Favourite Place’ which is a collection of stories and poems written by Scottish people.

As well as contributions from some famous names, including Michael Palin and Arab Strap frontman Aidan Moffat (I wonder if it’s toned down from his usual work), many of the entries are the winners of over 1,000 entries to a creative writing competition on BBC Radio Scotland. You can read all the entries here.

Physical copies of the book will be distributed widely, including at Specsavers shops (!) and MSP offices across the country, and there will also be a free ebook and audio book. There’s also a national Reading Hour on St Andrew’s Day where people are encouraged to go to the library to show their support for reading.

For more info see the Scottish Book Trust website.

 Update: Let me know in the comments ‘where you will go’ for Scottish Book Week (thanks to Pauline from SBT for asking first!)

Design Your Own Curriculum Micro-Guide

To get Design Your Own Curriculum (and the other micro-guides when they’re published), sign up to the newsletter now!

This free micro-guide is all about how formal education may no longer be necessary in order to achieve our creative and career goals.

Why? Chiefly because of the online education revolution.

That’s why I’ve included a handy list of amazing online resources for Clear-Minded Creative Types.

Of course as you can tell from the Clear-Minded Classics series, I’m still a big fan of that old favourite, books – whether of the dead tree variety or on a new fangled fancy e-reader or tablet device thingy. I talk about the benefits of those too.

And I also include various approaches to deciding what to learn and ways to actually fit your self-directed learning into your life, including the concept of ‘Beducation’ (TM) which I think you might like..

It’s arrived a little later than originally planned because I wasn’t happy with the first version, so I went back and added a lot more content and tweaked what was already there. I hope you’ll find it even more useful!

This is the third free guide in a seven part series. The first part is completely free (no sign up required):

The Career Masterplan for Mad Geniuses (Micro-Manifesto)

To get Design Your Own Curriculum (and the other micro-guides when they’re published), sign up to the newsletter now!

Cover photo by Dospaz

Resources photo by Johan Larsson

A Year of Clarity Update: We Did It! 20 People Will Get Clean Water

Wow! I’m blown away by people’s generosity. Not only did we reach the target I set for my birthday campaign, we doubled it – meaning instead of 10 people in Rwanda getting access to clean drinking water, now approximately 20 people will.

You can see the results over at the Charity: Water site:

http://mycharitywater.org/year-of-clarity

It’s been very humbling and inspiring to see so many people rallying to the cause, and being so supportive and generous.

Of course my challenge – to give up alcohol for a year – is only just beginning. I said I would do it if we met the target, and now that we doubled it, I am doubly committed to making sure not a drop of alcohol passes my lips until 1st October 2013.

Thankfully, and believe it or not, I’m not the first to commit to such an undertaking. Here’s an interesting article written by Edinburgh Personal Trainer Tracy Griffen about the difficulties and benefits of giving up alcohol for a year:

http://www.leithermagazine.com/2012/07/22/abstaining-from-alcohol-for-a-year.html

And an inspiring video about the same topic from a site called ‘Hello Sunday Morning’. It was posted on Facebook by my friend Paul who is giving up booze for 6 months:

 Of course I’ll keep you posted here about how it all goes!

p.s. the Charity: Water campaign runs for another 87 days. Whilst I won’t be actively promoting the campaign during that time, if you want to sign up to a Creative Clarity & Strategy Session, I’ll keep the offer open for a while longer. The next available times will be during November and December.