Wanna hire me?
Note: I’m less hireable these days as I’m working full time (and will be taking a maternity leave starting around August). But sometimes people are capable of talking me into doing stuff outside of my day job or usual boundaries. If the opportunity is fascinating and exciting, you never know–try me! I do all sorts of things. My hourly and weekly rates range wildly, but we can discuss what your budget is and figure out a scope that works for both of us.
Public speaking and event hosting
I’m relatively new in my “giving talks at conferences” career, but here’s my public speaking page with my first big conference talk! I’ve also been MCing various events for ages, from indie fundraisers to corporate trainings. I’m strangely easy on the microphone (digitally or in person) with little preparation, and I loosen up tight audiences effortlessly.
And yeah, I’ll probably be on your podcast. (What’s it about?) (Please don’t send me one of those form letter requests to guest, though. Nothing turns me off more than an impersonal form letter.)
Freelance writing and editing
I’ve freelanced everything from guest blog posts to snappy marketing copy to highly technical 1,000-word briefs on actuarial science. These days, I tend to gravitate towards projects that are good fit for my voice, which you’ll get a feel for here on the blog. Please reach out if you have a project in mind for which you’d like me to write!
I’m familiar with many style guides (but prefer Chicago) and am good at spotting most errors, but I’m not seeking big editing projects at this time. Again, though, hit me up if you think you have a project that’s right up my alley.
I generally avoid free writing work for “exposure;” I expect compensation of some sort unless your publication provides some wildly amazing benefit to me. This compensation doesn’t always have to be monetary, so please reach out if you’re dying to hire me but can’t afford to pay me in a traditional fashion. If the project is a good mutual fit, we’ll work something out. (But you should really pay women and marginalized people for their work, ya know.)
I’ve been consulting with more and more companies about their product’s user experience, and I’m happy to weigh in on ways you can help make your product better suit your target customers. Former clients in this category are confidential, but include major apps and major companies, both inside and outside of the online dating industry. Please reach out directly for more information.
Small business marketing and social media help
I’ve started helping small businesses with their social media and website issues, mostly because I can’t stand a janky website or an email newsletter that’s just a PDF attachment with no bcc’d addresses. *shudder* Navigating the ever-changing world of different networks and passwords and images and accounts can be exhausting, and I’m great at helping businesses focus on what they ought to be doing based on their market and brand.
Here’s a quote from Kittie in SF, a happy jewelry maker I assisted with marketing advice:
Virginia has that rare gift of being able to tell you the straight-up truth (even if it stings) while remaining incredibly kind. Her confidence and enthusiasm is a necessary antidote for anyone who gets caught up in the rat race of their own worries and fears. She and I talked for less than an hour, and yet if something were to go drastically awry in my life, she would be one of the first people I’d think to call for advice (or a shoulder to cry on.)
Virginia’s practical experience and keen insight into the world of The Techie 30-Something extend far beyond dating advice. Wondering how to walk and talk during an interview? Or need three excellent ideas for promoting your website? I bet she’s got you covered.
Thanks, Kittie! Seriously, I love being able to help, and sometimes people find chatting to me more effective and practical than chatting to a self-proclaimed “marketing professional” who tells them to spend money and make decisions in ways that don’t feel right for them. Talk to me if you need help in this arena; we’ll figure out pretty quickly if I can assist you.
Online dating coaching
My former company, The Heartographer, was primarily how people hired me for about a decade. I’m fantastic at guiding people through all aspects of online dating, from figuring out which site to use and how to perfect your pictures and messaging, right on down to figuring out how soon to do the deed and how to broach becoming exclusive. All that good stuff. I’m a heck of a great coach, guide, cheerleader, writer, and general helper-outer when it comes to finding love online. I’m really happy to not be doing this anymore, tbh, but for special pals I make exceptions. Maybe. You can always ask (and I can always say no, I swear I can.)
I’m fluent in Spanish, Catalan, and French, and I have years of experience working with these and other foreign languages. I’m primarily experienced with linguistic testing and proofreading, but I’ve also worked in localization, translation, and interpretation. There are loads of issues and pitfalls in the digital world, many of which are language-specific and more of which are universal. I’d be happy to help guide your project or team so that your foreign language text is polished and professional, and your team works efficiently to meet this goal. Former clients and employers include Microsoft, Amazon, Nintendo, NCsoft, Swype/Nuance, and many smaller companies.
While I prefer to focus on linguistic testing, I’m also an adept manual tester of various use cases, settings, and environments for software products, websites, apps, games, and so forth. I do not do test engineering, such as scripting/automation, but I’m happy to create test plans to develop an overview of all areas that need to be reviewed, and I’m happy to train testers in conveying issues with the correct detail and severity level to ensure that bugs are reported and addressed as efficiently as possible. Please reach out directly for more details.
I’m a former EFL (English as a Foreign Language) and Spanish instructor, and I’m happy to teach these languages as well as Catalan. I’d prefer not to teach spoken French, but I’m happy to review written French for errors. If you’d like language instruction, please reach out directly and indicate your needs (i.e. business travel, expertise in a specific field’s vocabulary, etc.)
If you recently started a job at a tech company, but you come from a non-technical background, I can help ease the transition. I’m great at translating confusion over acronyms and jargon into meaningful feature requests, questions and answers, and I can often help point you towards resources your company offers that you didn’t even know existed! (I have experience at both Amazon and Microsoft, but this type of assistance applies to any tech company. Sometimes you just need to know how to ask for something.)
If the way people talk at your company or organization is stressing you out, let’s see if I can help. This is something I’ll do free for 15 minutes to see if we’re getting somewhere; then we can discuss payment if you decide to book more targeted help.
Maybe you have someting else in mind. Let’s hear it!
If you absolutely must see my résumé, it is here. But I’m already quietly judging you for clicking, because come on, that’s no way to get a feel for a human being, you dork.