Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Doggie Journal | AMF Typing Services (Est 2001)

Doggie Journal | AMF Typing Services (Est 2001)

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Gaynor Paynter - a short bio

Who is the person behind Typewrite Transcription and Typing Services CC?
Gran and I (1975)

Gaynor Paynter – a short bio

I was born on the 21st of March 1975 in Kensington, South Africa, and, with the exception of a few years after I was married in 1996, I’ve lived here my whole life.
I went to school at Leicester Road Primary School and Jeppe Girls High where I matriculated in 1992 with a university exemption and half colours for chess (I was the captain of the chess team and was on the tennis team too).

After studying graphic design for a year, I decided it wasn’t for me and did a secretarial diploma at the then Germiston Technical College (in which I obtained a distinction in Information Processing, a fancy name for typing).

 I always had an entrepreneurial flair. During school I sold artwork through advertising in the Top 40 Music Magazine, for R5 a piece! (Lots of drawings of Michael Jackson were done at the time!) I also worked part time in the local Checkers.

At Rhodes Park in Kensington about 1988A lot of firsts

My first full time job was at a company called KMI in Heriotdale in 1995 where I did reception and admin – and where I was exposed to transcribing for the very first time, transcribing notes made by one of my bosses on a small microcassette recorder!

Damian and I 2012

In 1996 I married my first, only, and still current husband, Damian, and my first son, Andrew, came along in 1998. During this time the development of technology was moving fast. Our first cellphone was the Nokia 2110 and it was an amazing phone which we shared. The very first time I went on the internet was in KMI’s showroom, during a lunch break (I surreptitiously snuck in to go on to say I’d been on!)

Getting older and getting experience

My babies Andrew and  Brandon about 2002The company ran into some difficulty and I was retrenched in the year 2000. I advertised to do typing work and did some temp jobs. I then fell pregnant with my second son, Brandon – but one employer took me on ‘semi permanently which became permanent’ – at a recruitment company, where I prepared CVs and interviewed candidates.

 The birth of Typewrite

By 2005, the internet had progressed enough for me to ‘birth’ Typewrite Transcription and Typing Services CC. For three months, I worked at the recruitment company during the day, and on Typewrite by night, all the while with a husband and two little boys.

The 1st of April 2005 was the first ‘official’ day of Typewrite, although it didn’t come to be registered at CIPRO (now CIPC) until 2009.


Brandon and I 2016Various milestones flag this journey. When I started I still had dial up internet. I had to soldier on with this for about a month until our ADSL was installed. You also have to have a back up internet and I’ve been through various of those, until my current ‘back up’ – my MTN cellphone. (I’ve had the same number since 1995, by the way!) Services provided have also grown and diversified – starting out with typing, adding transcribing, adding proofreading – and just recently, adding sub-titling.

Becoming an author
In 2009 I wrote my e -book  “Working From Home as a Transcriptionist in South Africa” which is a great resource for those starting out today – as I found when I started out, there wasn’t much if anything in the way of support!

The same year my friend and colleague Alison Fourie and I founded TAVASA – the Transcriptionists and Virtual Assistants of South Africa.

The future

Today, going into 2018, the company is still in existence – we’ve been married 21 years, and those little boys are now 17 and 19.  I’ve had the support of my husband, parents, children – and my two dogs, Scooter and Shadow.  I’m looking forward to seeing what the future holds.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Who needs a professional editor?

The question of who needs a professional editor is one I've come across a number of times. I decided it would be beneficial to post the answer here.

It's important to note that in this instance I'm referring to a WRITING editor. Not a music or video editor.

Firstly, a preamble: What is an editor?  An editor is more than someone who simply checks your grammar. An editor will make suggestions regarding content (when applicable) and style. He or she will check your formatting and lay the document out for publishing whether it be online, as a thesis or scholarly paper, a magazine article, journal, etc 

Who needs an editor?

Anyone writing a document for publication - students, authors, business people.

The reason for this is simple. Even though English may be your first language, it's very hard to spot your own mistakes. And a published document is a representation of you and / or your employer. A published mistake is a slur on your or your employer's reputation. It's no discredit to you to admit you've used an editor - in fact, anyone who knows this will appreciate your professionalism.

Someone who is writing in a language that is not their first language.

It's important to ask a first-language speaker to assist you to check that you've got all the nuances and idiosyncrasies correct. 

Someone who doesn't consider language or writing to be their strength.

We all have different strengths - I have to hire a plumber or a mechanic,  I just can't do those things. Therefore, if you are not confident in your language skills, using them to market your business might not be the best idea.  A recent example I've seen is someone advertising Christmas signs. The signs say (for example) "Christmas at the Smith's". It makes me want to ask "what smith? The blacksmith?

Have a look at my new website, Check My Writing.  Should you still have questions, or feel that YOU need an editor, contact me.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Online marketing and other bits

So, it's been a while since I posted here .... but I met with a friend of mine today who has recently begun working in a start up (they do furniture and woodwork), and being a 'veteran' of being self-employed, I (annoyingly, probably) dished out advice.... but it was a great conversation and got me thinking. There are a number of things I did when I started out, marketing wise and also discipline wise. These things tend to fall by the way side as we go along and sometimes it does us good to remember them and do them again. Also there are things we learn along the way that are good to keep in mind.

1). Take it one day at a time. Sometimes things can get very overwhelming when you've just started out, you're used to having a salary, and suddenly month end is coming and there's no salary. Try to make plans before you start out and cover a few months' rent, medical aid etc. But spending all your time worrying about tomorrow impacts on how productive you can be today.

2). Take marketing breaks not tea breaks. This is something my friend and colleague Alison Fourie of AMF Typing told me. I haven't always followed this, but when I do, my sales esclate.

3). Set up a website. This may not sound like rocket science, but sometimes people are daunted by the whole idea of a website. The advent of things like WordPress, however, make setting up a site much less daunting than it needs to be. You simply register your domain with a service provider, and go from there. If you have funds available you can also employ a web designer. And something I learned after a while is that it's much better to have an email address with your own domain name than with a generic provider.

4). Social media. Social media can be a full time job if you do all the things there are available. There are so many outlets. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Linked In, Google Plus. My feel is that it's better to stick to a few of these and do them properly than go all out with too many and get none of them right. My personal favourites are Facebook, Twitter and Linked In. I feel that they all have different benefits. Linked In in particular is a great place to showcase your experience and skills. But make sure that your profile is extensive and detailed otherwise it may work against you. Facebook is simply the most popular platform. And Twitter has a wide open reach which gives you great exposure.

5). Your work is your reputation. Provide a good quality service and your work will sell itself.

6). Print and distribute brochures, brand your car, put up posters and signs on community boards and in local libraries. Do everything you can to get your name out there.

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Send a file from a cellphone to a computer using Whatsapp

More and more people use their smartphones as a means to record and use Whatsapp as a method of communication. 

It often happens then that once the recording is done, they wonder how to get the recording sent to the transcriptionist. 

In a climate that is relying more and more on cellular technology (and where cellphones are used to access the internet more than computers are), I thought it would be worthwhile to explain that it is possible to send audio via Whatsapp to a computer. 

All the client has to do is send the file to your cell number as they would normally send a Whatsapp message. 

You then do the following:
1. Go to settings in your Whatsapp account on your phone. 
2. Click Whatsapp Web
3. Go to web.whatsapp.com on your computer and scan the QR code
4. You will see your messages on the left hand side. 
5. Click on the relevant message and you will be able to download the file. 

You obviously need a good internet connection to do this - I recommend wifi for cellphone and ADSL or wifi for computer.