How to survive Xmas
'TIS THE season of compulsory holidays. But how are forcibly underemployed freelances supposed to survive the Christmas period?
Use the downtime to sign up to the Authors Licensing and Collecting Society (ALCS: www.alcs.co.uk) if you haven't already. The ALCS licences - for example - libraries to make photocopies of articles, and the fees from this are distributed to the articles' authors: that's us. Some LFB members earn sums approaching four figures from the annual "distribution" of income from re-uses of our copyright work.
If you're already an ALCS member, now's the time to update your ALCS records of articles you've written recently, via the ALCS website member's area. If you've forgotten your password, ring them on 020 7264 5700 - before they close on 23 December - to be reminded of it.
Photographers can do the same for their photos illustrating books or articles that are likely to be photocopied or otherwise re-used, via the Design and Artists Copyright Society (DACS: www.dacs.org.uk).
And while you're at it, does your NUJ Freelance Directory entry need updating? (If you're not on the Freelance Directory, it's free to NUJ members: www.freelancedirectory.org/register.php).
The holidays also leave you plenty of time to ensure your tax return is filled in online (www.hmrc.gov.uk/sa/file-online.htm) and sent by 31 January to avoid a fine.
More freelance Xmas survival tips are at www.londonfreelance.org/fl/1012xmas.html