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Getting started on upwork (writing/proofreading/editing)

andrejco_megan
Active Member
Megan A Member Since: Sep 22, 2015
1 of 11

Thanks to all who take time to reply to these messages!

 

Here is my question: What's in your toolbox?

 

If you were to make a list of essentials--type of computer, word processing program, other programs, gadgets, sites, books that you use all the time--what would they be?

 

I am trying to decide whether to update my old Dell, running Windows XP, or invest in a new PC that comes with all that good stuff I need. Don't have a lot of $$, but would like to spend more time working than troubleshooting. I am struggling to learn about the technology I need to work online, and I would like the transition to be as smooth as possible.

 

Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

lysis10
Community Guru
Jennifer M Member Since: May 17, 2015
2 of 11

Windows XP isn't supported anymore, so it's extremely insecure. At least go Windows 7 or 10. Windows 8 sucks.

boshoffirene
Community Guru
Irene B Member Since: Feb 17, 2015
3 of 11

hmm....functional laptop....and MSW.

 

The rest...I dunno...It's all I use, really, as majority of what I do is given in word docs. 

lysis10
Community Guru
Jennifer M Member Since: May 17, 2015
4 of 11

Word and Excel here too. Adobe gave me a free subscription to their whole enchilada, and I never use it! I keep saying I'll mess around with it, but pretty much all I need for work is Word and Excel.

 

Occasionally, I need Adobe Photoshop. I did a gig a couple weeks ago where the guy asked if I could just type directly into the PSD image, so I did. That's so rare though.

 

Since I do tech writing, I do use my SQL Server Management Studio and VS occasionally. But again, rare.

 

Occasionally you get the faboi Maclosers who QQ that your Word doc isn't translating on their Steve Jobs proprietary workspace, so I had to download Sublime. blah

petra_r
Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
5 of 11

I have two of everything ... two computers (a laptop and a desktop), two internet sources (fixed and a mobile SIM based one with a mobile modem ) 3 headsets, various powerbanks... If one computer dies, one Internet goes down or I have a powercut I can keep working

colettelewis
Community Guru
Nichola L Member Since: Mar 13, 2015
6 of 11

Petra, you're more powerful than I am, but I couldn't do without my two computers - desktop and a  Mac OS X (which I have to update next week).

 

Megan, XP (the best in the world!) won't do any more. I would go straight for Windows 10. Windows 7 is OK, but I have a feeling this too will soon be unsupported. You need Microsoft Word 10 at least,or higher, and spend time getting to know it; don't try it out on a client until you do; not knowing, can lead to panic, particularly if you have to format pages and chapters etc!. Also get a machine with a fairly powerful memory. Files take up a lot of space, even when zipped.

 

I have had to do a lot of editing with Open Office - I find it extremely clunky, but it is worth getting to know as well.

 

You also need to be familiar with some of the main style manuals - CMOS, AP, APA, MLA, OUP/Harts (UK).

 

 

lysis10
Community Guru
Jennifer M Member Since: May 17, 2015
7 of 11

"two internet sources"

 

This has saved me a ton of downtime. I have DSL and cable. The DSL is backup and the slowest connection, but it's a good failover when cable is down. My cable company seems to think it's a great idea to do maintenance during the day, and you call them and tech support has no clue. Now, I just flip over to DSL and wait for cable to come back. It's great.

 

I'm a geek, so I'm about to buy a new rig and maybe set up a NAS for backup.

 

For $10/month you can have unlimited storage on Google Drive through Google Apps. I use Apps for my work email addy and sharing docs with customers.

 

Also, in case my hard drive crashes, I created a "TempUpwork" folder on Google drive. Each night before I wrap up everything, I upload my docs that I'm working on to my Drive, so god forbid my computer crashes while I'm asleep, I can just flip to a netbook as backup and the files are in the cloud and backed up.

petra_r
Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
8 of 11

@Jennifer M wrote:

 

Also, in case my hard drive crashes, I created a "TempUpwork" folder on Google drive. Each night before I wrap up everything, I upload my docs that I'm working on to my Drive, so god forbid my computer crashes while I'm asleep, I can just flip to a netbook as backup and the files are in the cloud and backed up.


 GREAT idea!

 

Stealing it!

 

Although most of my current work is done online, and my lone editing job on google docs, I think I need this!

lysis10
Community Guru
Jennifer M Member Since: May 17, 2015
9 of 11

No problem! I have stuff where, if my hard drive crashes, I would lose 2 weeks of work and I'd be on here crying hard. lol

 

I just posted this in another thread, but it could be useful here -- some people want you to sign contracts or NDAs and then send you protected PDFs, which makes it a pita. So, I print it out, sign it, and then I use an app named DocScan (free) to scan it. It will scan to a jpg image or a pdf and then email it to yourself. It's rare that you need it, but useful.

iaabraham
Community Guru
Isabelle Anne A Member Since: May 19, 2014
10 of 11

I'm a writer, proofreader & editor. I have Dell, running on Windows 10 (I really suggest you upgrade), and this is what I've needed for this type of online work:

 

- MS Word, Excel and PowerPoint

- Notepad (or any other simple text editor)

- Adobe Reader

- A Gmail account for Google Docs 

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