A couple of weeks back, a young graphic designer I hired to do some work for me in 2006 emailed to ask if I was planning to send Xmas cards to my clients this year. I did this the first couple of years that I freelanced, figuring it was a good way to stay on-side with clients - letting my regulars know they are valued and reminding the one-offs that I appreciated their custom and that I still exist if they'd care to throw more work in my direction. Over the past 12 months, my workload has shifted - more journalism, less copywriting (plus the same amount of editing) - and I decided not to bother with cards this year. In all my years as a hack, I'd never once schmoozed commissioning eds with cards.
Thus it was that I mailed back the designer, who had made me such fabulous cards last year, to say I wouldn't be bothering this year.
Today I almost went into free-fall panic mode, reading the discussion on Journobiz about why sending cards to eds is so important! And, of course, it's too bloody late to order cards now. I suppose I could buy some from a shop but I liked having my own made up for me.
I need to think about this...
But I'm certainly not sending GIFTS, which is what the hacks on the Mousetrap forum are currently discussing. That is a step too far. What? Hand back my hard-earned pennies in the form of editorial backhanders?
Elsewhere, I see the Plain English Awards are being handed out tonight. I'm always highly amused by the embarrassing faux pas committed by the gong recipients. Perhaps I should email them all and offer my services to spare their future blushes?
A day in London beckons tomorrow... a meeting with an ed, a nice lunch, followed by cake at the British Library with some fellow hacks. I'll be the one with my head in a book...