Back to Europe. And to work.

My traveling in Morocco has today come to an end and a new part of my Summer trip awaits me starting as soon as I publish this entry.

Work wise — some of you may know I traveled to Western Sahara to gather material for a possible story — it has not been extremely fruitful, and alas, I think I will need to go back was all due to a mixture of unfortunate circumstances and mistakes on my parts. I have learned the lesson and not all is lost.

But, while driving interminable miles mostly by myself up and down the country I had the time to do a lot of thinking, and I came up with what I think is a good and promising idea for a future project. Writing? well, not only, but yes, writing of a different type and in a different way...refer to the previous post to see where part of this inspiration comes from.

Something is cooking in the pot...

Regarding this I will now have to sit down and draw a proper plan of action, which I usually enjoy doing but to which I seldom stick...soon I will also discuss my idea with some of you in the real world to get your impressions, listen to your doubts, and ponder your advice.

To start with, who has any idea on how to draw a business plan? Any Business Plan for Dummies type of books out there?

Exploited in Palestine - The Freelance

One of the pictures I took at a NUJ's London Freelance Branch meeting and that was published on the branch's own magazine.

Journalist and researcher Penny Quinton has carried out a series of interviews with Palestinian colleagues focusing on how they cope with the stress of working in a conflict zone, often for Western news agencies that lay them off if they get injured or wounded. This was the case of Osama Silwadi (pictured) who used to work for Reuters and now runs a photo agency from a wheelchair.

Browsing (in) Marrakech

Moroccan kids from in a Atlas Mountain village, Morocco.

Another little update, still far from my goal of keeping this blog regularly updated, but for the moment internet is definitely not my priority...apart from today since I'm in Marrakech where I have found this little place called Cafe' du Livre: very much an expats type of eatery, but they have good wi-fi connection that I've been using all morning.

As some of you may know by following my trip on my travel blog, I have had several opportunities to think, ponder, reflect...about my life at present, my traveling around Morocco, and — somewhat more relevant to this blog — my professional future and ideas to make it into something that I can be proud of and happy about.

Peering around the corner in the village of Imilchil, Morocco.

Before leaving London at the beginning of August, I managed to meet up with a journalist and academic that I've always esteemed since working with him back in 2007: Charlie Beckett, the director of London think-tank POLIS. We chatted mainly about my career prospect as a freelance writer and photographer, and, among other things, he pointed out three things that he sees as the only alternatives to make in an increasingly competitive industry:
  1. find a niche market and create a small but consistent client base, or
  2. find a new product that nobody else is doing, or
  3. find an innovative way to do the any of the above.

The last option immediately struck me as the most appealing and feasible, but in the last few days I've been thinking about an idea that will include number 2. and 3., and in some way number 1. as well.

Joyful epiphany and happy days!

For obvious reasons I cannot use this space, at least at this time, to say any more about this little idea of mine: its realisation, crossing fingers, is rather remote in the future, and some serious research work and proposal preparation will have to be undertaken...but I am saying already too much. Farewell.

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