Category: OLD BLOG

The OLD LittleZotz Writing (2010-2020)

Once upon a time, LittleZotz Writing was very gray and very “professional.” Its tagline was “Writing for businesses. Advice for writers.” The blog won multiple awards, the freebies were well-regarded, and it was overall a useful source of information.

The bulk of it was made during the absolute worst years of my life (2007-2017). I grew to loathe the old LittleZotz Writing — I even tried to hand it off to my readers (removing “LittleZotz” from!).

I eventually realized that was silly (no “LittleZotz” at! Preposterous!) and I came back, taking LittleZotz Writing in a far more personal (and colorful!) direction.

While I still want nothing to do with most of the old content (it makes me very sad), I realize that it’s a much-beloved and invaluable source of information to many of my readers… So, I made a separate section on my site for it. You’re in that section now. Enjoy?

Still Alive, Still Not Accepting Guest Posts

Hey, Everyone!

I just wanted to make another quick update. As I stated in October 2020, I’m no longer accepting guest posts on LittleZotz Writing. That’s still true and will continue to be true.

Going forward, LittleZotz Writing is going to be drastically different from what it was. You’ll still be able to read all of the old content (I created an “Old Blog” category where all of the 2010-2020 posts will be stored); however, the new content will be much different. And it will all be written by me (Lauren Spear AKA LittleZotz) again. No more guest writers on LZW.

I will still be accepting guest posts on my other website, Unfortunately, I won’t be able to accept any guest posts any time soon due to my ongoing health issues. I’ll make an announcement when I’m accepting posts over there again.

As for my health, thanks to generous donations on my GoFundMe, I now have the funds needed for surgery. We also have the surgeon and the anesthesiologist on board. Right now, we’re just…endlessly waiting. You can read the updates on my GoFundMe for all the details but, basically, everything is “good to go” except for the facility where the hysterectomy is to be performed. So, we’re stuck waiting until the surgery center’s owners can sort out their issues and let us set the date. That’s been very frustrating. But, overall, things are looking a lot more hopeful than they were. We’ve made more progress in the past few weeks than we did in the past several months, so I can’t complain too much.

Thank you for checking on me. I’ll update again when I’m able. I can’t wait to be well and share my LittleZotz Writing + plans with you all!

Keep me in your prayers. Thank you again.

Until next time,

I’m No Longer Accepting Guest Posts

I’m just writing a quick note here since my inbox is filling up with pitches faster than I can write replies:

I’m no longer accepting guest posts on LittleZotz Writing.

I’m planning to do something different with when I’m able… But, for now, I’m prioritizing my health and content.

Thank you for understanding.


6 Major Ways to Kick Butt as a New Freelance Blogger

woman on the beach kicking a laptop, a book, pens, pencils, an eraser, and a peach that kinda looks like a butt
Image(s) via Pixabay

Out of the zillion blogs on the internet, you want yours to succeed. As a new freelance blogger, you want faithful followers who see you as an authority in your industry. So, what do you have to do to be like those amazing bloggers who already get loads of comments on their posts and boatloads of shares?

As a new freelance blogger, you already have a lot on your plate. Not only do you have to set up your workspace and website, you also have to track your projects and finances, create and follow a blogging schedule, send out pitches… WHEW!  

OK, take a deep breath. It’s important to remember that everyone starts somewhere. This new journey you’re on right now? This is where you’re starting.

Are you ready to learn the six major ways to kick butt as a new freelance blogger? Let’s get started!

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How to Write Effective Business Emails as a New Freelance Writer

cartoon of a woman praying over a laptop, waiting for a reply to her business email
We’ve all been there… Anxiously waiting for a positive email response from a potential client! This article will help! ♥ | Image by ijmaki from Pixabay

You have all the necessary qualities required to become a successful freelance writer! …And yet paying writing gigs seem elusive and uncertain.

Ever since you made that big decision to start writing full-time, you’ve sent approximately a million emails to thousands of business entities; however, the responses have been demoralizing.

Have you ever thought: “Maybe it’s my initial approach that’s turning clients off?” I know it’s a hard pill to swallow, but it very well could be!

What if you could introduce yourself in a professional manner — if you could really stand out from the crowd in a way that it’d be impossible for the potential client to ignore your pitch? What if you could write a killer email that leaves the corporate client of your dreams begging to hear more from you?

I know. Sounds tough! But let me tell you: it’s entirely possible (and easy!) to write professional emails that will be well-received by business people. All you need to know are the necessary freelance writer “etiquettes” and use them in your email to make it truly professional.

Below, I’m going to share my tips on how to create an outstanding impression with your very first email. You’ll learn the ins and outs of writing a professional email that will impress even the snobbiest corporate client out there.

And, if that’s not enough, as a reward for reading my entire article, you’ll get a proven email template I’ve used successfully throughout my career. Let’s do this!

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Working from Home: The Ultimate Guide!

stuffed animal working at home

“I don’t need to put pants on today… right?” Working from home provides the ultimate in freedom and comfort — but sometimes, a little too much. Before you know it, you’re three seasons deep into Game of Thrones and you haven’t accomplished a single task. So, how can you maximize your productivity while running your business from home? I’m going to share 10 of my best tips.

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How to Escape the “Single Client” Trap

Being a freelancer or running an agency is an amazing and rewarding experience. You get to set your own hours and work when you want (in an ideal world), and you only take on as much work as you feel you can handle at any given time.

There’s just one problem: what will you do when the work dries up? What if that one big client you have suddenly doesn’t have any work for you, or unexpectedly cuts their budget and has to cancel your contract?

There’s nothing worse for stability and security for an agency or freelancer than falling into the “single client trap”. As the old adage goes, don’t put all of your precious eggs in one basket, which is exactly what happens when you become too reliant on one or even a couple of “main” clients. If you find that 80% or more of your income comes from just one client, then you’ve fallen into what’s often referred to as the “Single Client Trap”.

Let’s look at how to get out of this all too common “trap” and into a regular rotation of clients and work that is consistent, reliable and dependable.

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LittleZotz Writing: The Blog is in YOUR Hands!

Hey, Everyone!

Lauren “LittleZotz” Spear here! I got some messages recently from readers who were afraid I’d, ahem, lost my battle with depression. Given my openness on the subject (and considering my suicide attempt in 2014), I don’t blame folks for fearing the worst…

GOOD NEWS: I’m still alive!! And I’m VERY well!

It feels strange (in the best way) to say this, but… I can’t even remember the last time I felt depressed! My mental health has been thriving and my physical health is following its good example (hehe!). As of this writing, I’ve lost 100lbs and I’m more “fit” now that I’m pushing forty than I was for the bulk of my twenties. Weird!

Now that you know I’m still among the living (whew!), you’re probably wondering: What’s up with the LittleZotz Writing blog?!

LittleZotz Writing Going Forward

This year (2020) marked the first year since its inception that LittleZotz Writing didn’t win any awards or land on any “Best Websites for Writers” lists. At first, I was mildly huffy about it like, “Aw! What?! I’m still bringing it! Why no prizes?!?”

But, after some soul searching, and looking at the blogs belonging to the folks who did win… I realized that I was, in fact, NOT still “bringing it.” My content was poop! I’d lost my passion and I was rightly demoted from my “best” status.

I’d grown bitter and had nothing good to say anymore. And that’s zero fun — for me AND the LittleZotz Writing blog readers.

Going forward, the LittleZotz Writing blog will be SOLELY guest submissions. That’s right. I’m leaving my beloved blog in YOUR hands!

There are already several guest posts featured on the LittleZotz Writing blog and I dig ‘em! The writers are all super gung-ho and have fresh, relevant, tips to help their fellow freelancers succeed. It’s pretty exciting!

If you want to submit a guest post, check out my guest post guidelines and send me your best pitch! Right now, I’m posting about one article per month… but if more folks start writing in, I’ll increase the publication rate. That’s all up to you guys and how many of you send me articles!

One note: I know a lot of people would send me articles solely to see what kind of custom illustration would appear with it. lol. Totally understandable! The custom art was a lot of fun for me too! However, going forward, I’ll be using stock photos with the blog posts. I can only afford to buy custom art for ONE website (it gets pricy, and rightly so — the art is amazing and deserves top dollar!), so I’m only shelling out for my other website.

Which brings me to…

Where’s LAUREN Going to Be?!

I’m still writing and editing, but I’m being VERY selective about the projects I take on now. This is still my “hire me” website… But I’m NOT going to say “yes” to everything anymore.

For the most part, you can find me on my other website:

Illustration by Heather Landry/Sandpaperdaisy Art

It’s been a dream of mine for YEARS to run a horror-focused website. I grew up in the horror industry (my folks were both practical special FX artists for horror movies) and the genre means a lot to me.

So… I did it! I now own and operate a horror website! My husband and best gal pals are co-founders!

I’m still utilizing the skills I honed here at LittleZotz Writing — I write articles, I edit guest articles, and I host weekly podcast episodes/interviews! — but I’m having way more fun than I’ve had in YEARS.

If you’re a horror fan, or simply want to check out what I’m doing these days, check it out! I’m also very active on Twitter (@LoveHorrorFam) and Instagram (@LoveHorrorFam).

Oh, and I accept guest posts on as well! 😉 So, if you ARE a horror fan, and you need additional writing clips, feel free to pitch articles to me there too!

Take Good Care of My Baby

LittleZotz Writing will always be my “baby,” but it’s up to YOU to take care of it now.

I’m really excited to read what y’all write!

Get those pitches in!!

And feel free to say “hi” to me! I’m SUPER alive. Promise.

PS: There will be a guest post coming out later this month and another one in May!

5 Ways to Stay Healthy as a Freelance Writer

Yes, there’s more to it than just “stand up!”

Illustration by Sandpaperdaisy Art

You know the usual tips for staying healthy when your job involves a lot of sitting — take breaks, use a standing desk, stretch — but you probably don’t have the tricks to follow through.

Let’s be real, how many of us actually get up and walk around every fifteen minutes or stay vigilant about our posture?

I know I don’t. In fact, I’m currently writing this in an armchair in my living room. (Not the most ergonomic).

So, let’s break down some ways you, as a freelance writer, can stay healthy during your workday. As a bonus, I’ll include an app recommendation for each tip to help you stick with your new habits.

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6 Tips to Develop Your Writerly Resilience

writer heroically facing rejection
Rejection deflection is a superpower! | Illustration by Sandpaperdaisy Art

Every writer — even the most successful ones — has had to face rejection. It goes with the territory. But that doesn’t make it any easier to swallow. Here are some practical pointers to help you grow a thicker skin and learn to roll with the punches.

1. Try to see the positive

Rejection is tough. You can’t help but take it personally. So much of yourself goes into what you write, it’s hard not to conclude that it’s you who’s being rejected along with your work. As the rejection letters mount up, you may start to believe that you’re simply not good enough. It’s really important not to let that happen.

A rejection doesn’t have to be a negative thing. Look at it instead as an opportunity. They think you’re not good enough? What better incentive could there be to prove people wrong?

Some successful writers have even viewed their rejection letters as a badge of pride. “I love my rejection slips,” wrote Sylvia Plath. “They show me I try.” The poet Brett Elizabeth Jenkins set herself a goal of getting a hundred rejections in a calendar year, and when she succeeded she found she’d “grown as a writer, met some kickass writers, sprouted relationships with a few editors, developed a thicker skin, and learned to take rejection like a champ.” Often there would be an encouraging note attached to a rejection, and a few, after she had made some changes and resubmitted them, turned into acceptances.

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