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Hello Chicagoland EFA,

For our April 28 meeting, we hosted our first sold-out event! Many thanks to EFA member Chris Morton, who presented “The Six Ps of LinkedIn Success.” A total of 121 people either registered for the event or joined the waitlist, with 58 able to attend. The presentation was chock-full of useful information on how to utilize LinkedIn to attract clients, especially the importance of being both discoverable and interesting. As Morton said, “People buy personas.”

Our next meeting will be held May 26, starting at 5:30 p.m. We will talk about red-flag clients, or how to tell if a prospective client (or project) will be a problem, followed by general discussion and networking. The meeting is free with registration and is open to EFA members only.

We hope to see you there!


Kandy Hopkins, Amy Spungen, and Tamaal Rodgers
Chicago Chapter Co-coordinators


Freelancing can be a dark and lonely road—but you don’t have to navigate it alone. Join our Slack chat group, which is open to both EFA members and nonmembers alike. Channels include chat, marketing, and job opportunities.


  • Better Broadband? The FCC launched a speed test app to measure broadband availability across the nation. The goal? More reliable and accurate data on broadband performance, which will hopefully lead to better broadband for all. To participate, download the Android or iOS app.
  • Newshound Book Club. If you love both journalism and books, the National Press Club has created the virtual reading group for you! The first meeting will be May 13 to discuss the book Susan, Linda, Nina & Cokie: The Extraordinary Story of the Founding Mothers of NPR. The group is open to all.
  • Free Stuff. Got vaxxed? You can get free stuff for getting fully vaccinated against COVID-19, because being able to hug your mom, friends, and random strangers again just wasn’t enough.


eCommerce Development Program

SOKONI (a 37 Oaks platform) and the Illinois SBDC at the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce have teamed up to offer an eCommerce Development Program. The 3- to 4-month cohort-style program includes four 37 Oaks University courses, monthly 1:1 coaching sessions, and administrative, marketing, operations, and logics support that will teach small businesses about selling products online. Classes will begin the end of May and go through September (dates are subject to change). Scholarships are available for those who qualify. Apply here.

Chicago Home-Business Ordinance

Aldermen approved a rewrite to Chicago’s home-based business ordinance. The new rules allow home businesses to use “accessory structures” or dwelling units for business or storage, increase the allowed square footage of your home used for the business to the larger of 35% or 300 square feet, and expand the hours when home businesses can accept bulk shipments.


On April 1, Healthcare.gov subsidies and eligibility were expanded. Existing enrollees need to sign in and update their applications to get the higher subsidies. Enrollees and the uninsured have until May 15 to change or sign up for plans.

PRO Act Update

At our June meeting, Jen Singer will share the latest news on the PRO Act. Singer is a writer, speaker, and cofounder of Fight For Freelancers USA. Meeting registration will open June 1; see the chapter website for the link.

In the meantime, stay up to date through the Fight For Freelancers website or Facebook page.


The “Editor Life“ podcast wrapped up its first season in January, and two episodes especially worth revisiting are Editorial Ethics Part 1 and Part 2. We’re looking forward to the next season offered by DeVore Editorial!

The Editing Podcast“ announced its lineup of shows for its upcoming sixth season, including

  • Should editors and proofreaders specialize?
  • Effective networking
  • LGBTQ+ editing: In conversation with Nick Taylor.

Meanwhile, you can find podcasts from the first five seasons conveniently divided into topics on Louise Harnby’s website, including freelance Editorial Business Tips.


Have chapter news, suggestions, or interesting articles, books, apps, or tools you’d like to share? Let us know.


Selected events are listed below. For many more, see our public calendar of media- and publishing-related conferences, webinars, and other events of interest to freelancers and the self-employed.

Editorial Freelancers Association events are shown in boldface.


3–28 – American Society of Business Publication Editors :: National Conference & Azbee Awards [online; $50 members, $100 nonmembers]

7 – City of Austin Small Business Division :: Determine Your Business Structure, 1:00 p.m.–4:00 p.m. CT [online; free]

10–14 – National Press Club Journalism Institute :: Career Connection: Defining your digital footprint, 12:00 p.m.–1:00 p.m. ET daily [online; $75 NPC members, $100 nonmembers]

11 – PEN :: What Is Book Coaching? 1:00 p.m.–2:30 p.m. CT [online; free]

12 – Shasta-Cascade SBDC :: Introduction to Microsoft Excel, 1:00 p.m.–2:00 p.m. CT [online; free]

13 – EFA :: Creating a Persuasive Website for Your Freelance Business, 7:00 p.m.–8:30 p.m. ET [online; free, EFA members only]

18 – SBA North Dakota District Office :: The Art of Negotiation, 10:00 a.m.–11:00 a.m. CT [online; free]

19 – EFA :: Diversity Initiative Meeting, 3:00 p.m.–4:15 p.m. ET [online]

20 – American Society of Business Publication Editors :: B2B Freelancer Networking, 5:00 p.m.–6:00 p.m. ET [online; free, ASBPE members only (free to join)]

21 – City of Austin Small Business Division :: Social Media Best Practices, 9:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m. CT [online; free]

24 – EFA :: Advanced Line Editing for Fiction & Creative Nonfiction, 4-week class [online; $240 EFA members, $300 nonmembers]

24–27 – Society for Scholarly Publishing :: 43rd Annual Conference [online; $505 SSP member, $615 nonmember]

26 – EFA Chicagoland :: Red Flag Clients, 5:30 p.m.–7:00 p.m. CT [online; free, registration required]

27–29 – Indexing Society of Canada :: Indexing Unlimited [online; $75 members, $100 nonmembers]

Note: Inclusion of non-EFA events does not denote endorsement by the EFA or the Chicagoland Chapter. Submission of an event does not guarantee its publication on the calendar. Events are collected from many sources; any errors or omissions are purely accidental.

Office Closed Monday April 8.

The EFA Offices will be closed Monday, April 8, 2024. We will reopen on Tuesday, April 9. Job postings, discussion list subscriptions, and other customer service requests may not be responded to until then.

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