I’d like to start by thanking everyone for the comments and the support on the blog. I honestly didn’t think it would get this sort of attention or feedback so thank you. I have had a week of brainstorming and I’m really excited for the future with not only these blogs but for the company.
I’ve written this post a couple of times, partly because I started rambling and partly because I didn’t know how to write about this topic. It’s not easy to explain to people what I do in my day to day life, because it changes every day. Some days I’ll be doing finances, updating the website, and emailing all day. Some days I am doing client work all day and don’t have time to do anything admin related. So I thought maybe I would just take you through my week this week and let you see how hectic and unpredictable it can be.
Monday - 25 July 2022
I woke up around 9 because my house-mate Luke had an important pitch to do online. I love to get nervous and scared for other people. Turns out his pitch wasn’t until 10:30 so I had a chance to go downstairs and get breakfast and talk to him a bit about his pitch. I didn’t do much work (ok, I’m starting the blog post right now)
while he presents. Our computers are set up in the living room so while he is presenting I am up in my room trying not to take up all the Wi-Fi so his video will load. I also sat and watched a YouTube video while I waited for the ‘office space’ to be free. I try to watch creative videos in the morning to get my mind working and in a creative headspace. Unless I’m doing admin, in which I don’t watch YouTube until the evening or my lunch break. Today's video was Urban Sketching tips because I’d like to start urban sketching.
I then had a meeting at Treforest campus with 2 advisors on a course I recently took part in. Ideas 2 Innovation was a business course and quick turn around on setting up a business and getting it investor ready. We started in February and we were supposed to finish in June, but luckily we got an extension to the end of September for support and a place to work. So I had a meeting with the advisors on how I’ve been doing since we last saw each other. I also had a nice catch up with some of the other participants.
Luke and I had to rush home because we have internet issues so we were expecting an engineer to come out and tell us for the 5th time “your internet is slow”. So I couldn’t do a lot of work, I have a way of summoning things when I don’t want them. I knew as soon as I turned on my computer, the engineer would arrive. So I did some emailing instead. Just general enquiries for my VISA.
Tuesday - 26 July 2022
I was really productive today! But not in the way you’re probably thinking. We have a really weird shaped living room/office area so we’ve been trying to maximize the space we have. So today we did a lot of cleaning and we found a giant 5x5 Kallax (which we’ve been hunting for for a while now) on facebook. We got this huge unit, boxes, drawers, and a table add on for £50! Score! So we’ll go and pick that up tomorrow.
Luke had a new monitor showing up so we completely cleaned off our desks and cleaned everything we use. I also have some new equipment so I’ve been trying to figure out how I want everything set up. So all I did today was clean my messy desk (I won’t submit you to that picture… it’s not as bad as you’re thinking…) and I played around with monitor layouts. I’m keeping it the same as I always have but with a new adjustable arm on my drawing tablet. Hopefully I can fit my laptop under it when I need to use it.
Sometimes the work I do doesn’t involve being on the computer, sometimes it involves cleaning up my desk space so I have a clean space to work in and I’m not frazzled by the clutter. (I am the type of person to leave sticky notes on my desk for months after it’s needed, no shame) I don’t think startups should feel shame or pressure from others for taking a day to clean. The space we work in has a huge impact on us mentally, so why shouldn’t it be cleaned, organized, and prepped in a way that I like and works well. So if you know a startup and they say “I didn’t do much today, I just cleaned my desk and house” remind them that they are human. We shouldn’t have to apologize for taking 30 minutes to do the dishes and start laundry or to lay in bed a few extra minutes because we have a splitting headache.
That's the best part of self employment, the chance to choose our own timetable. I don’t like a 9-5 work day because I absolutely hate mornings. So I’ve chosen a 10-5 schedule. I can wake up a bit later and still get a lot of work done. I also don’t
give myself hard rules. If I need to go out and get groceries, I’ll go and get groceries when I have a break. I have a normal life to live and for me, weaving the professional life and normal life together is best done when I can switch between the two when I feel it’s necessary. It also helps with my mentality around work. If I’m struggling with work or I have a serious issue going on, a 20 minute drive to Tesco allows me the time I need to rant to Luke about what I’m struggling with. It also allows for a 20 minute drive home of Luke offering me advice or giving me his opinion on the situation. This goes for anyone, I have called my mom on facetime for a rant and some advice, I’ve sat crying on my bed texting my business coach asking for help, and I’ve sent voice memos to my closest friends ranting. And when I say ranting, I mean full on sassy comments, references to movie scenes with complete quotes and annotations and all kinds of emotion. I don’t think my friends can ever get rid of me now since they’ve heard me rant for 30 minutes straight and STILL have the voice memos on Messenger. I wouldn’t allow them. These times also give me a break from my computer screen, which, if you’ve ever sat in front of a computer screen (I have 3) for 8 hours a day, every day for a week, you’ll understand the emotional and mental toll it can take on someone. (Zoom fatigue from the pandemic anyone?)
Wednesday - 27 July 2022
Remember how I said we shouldn’t apologize for taking time to ourselves? Well I woke up feeling absolutely horrid so I took the day off. I stayed in bed late and around 2pm I came downstairs and watched SharkWeek. I also took a managerial position with Luke putting in that giant Kallax unit we found. I sat on the couch asking him questions and pointing out the obvious while he put it all together. Great teamwork!
Thursday - 28 July 2022
I feel so much better! I got into Companies House (Company Registration in the UK) and did a ton of changes. If you didn’t know, the company used to be called Astralless Interactive. However, after talking with several people, it became clear that no one could actually pronounce it or even spell it. So I changed the name about a month ago and now I’ve finally changed it on the filing. I also did the Data Protection application which I’ve had conflicting advice about. Some say you don’t need to do it but the threatening letter I received said I did. I went with the letter’s advice.
I also tried to set up a social media automatic posting program… That went… terribly. If you know about Monday Marketing, my condolences, but who in their right mind wants to spend an entire month learning how to use the automations and another month configuring them when I could just drag and drop with another program? It seemed like the better choice because it has project management,
which I thought, “Hey, this will be great! I will be working with a lot of groups at once so this will organize it.” HA!
I quickly went to the fridge to get a large glass of Pepsi (my third glass I believe) and Luke had a look at it. He figured it out in minutes but he’s a visual scripter so of course he would! So I decided to scrap that 14-day free trial and try Buffer… Another bad decision. It’s not terrible, and a lot closer to what I wanted, but it had no analytical tracking in it. So I have landed on Later. A very simple, calendar based, automatic, social media posting platform. It has all the analytical tracking I’ll need and I’ve used it in the past.
If you have used stuff in the past, don’t dismiss it. I only wanted Monday Marketing for the project management and automatic posting. But it was not at all what I was expecting. For now, the automatic posting will be enough to help me free up time and I can look at a project management program in the future. But I’ll probably use something like Agantty because that is just, “What are you doing? What’s the time scale?” and Viola! A calendar view of your project.
Friday - 29 July 2022
Today I started later than usual. I stayed up really late playing games so I decided to sleep in (till a late time of 8 am) and had a nice breakfast. As you can probably tell from the sections above, I’m writing the blog post right now which is my main goal for today. I will be editing it all day and adding in images before I post it. (btw, if there’s anything specific you’d like to see on the Social channels, please drop a comment and let me know! Behind the scenes, clips of me working, gifs, quotes, anything within reason!
I don’t have a lot planned for today because we still have to clean around the house and get the storage fixed and sorted. I also don’t have plans for the weekend but I’ll probably play some games with my brother and maybe try and get a group together to play Golf With Friends or Among Us. And I might try and drag Luke out to The Range for some art supplies (he needs a notebook for sketching). Maybe we’ll go out and try Urban Sketching or practice and do some warmups! I don’t know but I’m excited.
I hope this has given you some insight into my day-to-day. It really does change every day and I’m hoping to make a practical schedule once I have the social media and blogs ready. This week was very dull compared to what I usually do but I’ve committed to posting this. Please don’t let this be the one to bore you and keep you from reading in the future.
As always, if there’s anything you’d like to know further or want to hear about in the future, just let me know below. (Also, do you prefer the images within the text, or the images to break up the paragraphs?) Thanks for reading, I’ll be back next week with an interesting post that will be sure to fry your brains about what Game Art is.