Alice Lemee

🌲 The "Wrong" Choice Doesn't Exist | Internetly Vol. 58

publishedabout 1 month ago
4 min read

Hi, I’m Alice (ah-leece). This is a Wednesday bi-weekly newsletter to help you take advantage of the internet, one idea at a time. Don’t hesitate to reach out if something piques your interest.

Hi there,

After sixteen days sauntering around Mexico, I’m back in NYC.

Over the weekend, my friend Sooji and I meandered around Mexico City. We rode bicycles through Roma Norte and chatted about the spontaneity of life over sour mezcalitas. “I truly believe you can have it all,” Sooji preached at dinner.

Can you really have it all? Sooji's remark reminded me of Slyvia Plath’s contradictory metaphor:

“I saw my life branching out before me like the green fig tree. From the tip of every branch a wonderful future beckoned and winked. One fig was a husband and a happy home and children, and another fig was a famous poet and another fig was a brilliant professor.
I wanted each of them, but choosing one meant losing the rest, and, as I sat there, unable to decide, the figs began to wrinkle and go black.”

Sylvia argues you can’t have it all because one decision eliminates hundreds of other possibilities. This idea plagued me when I was 22, back at an age where one is paralyzed by both their own potential and indecisiveness. I was lost in life, unable to dedicate myself to one career path, and as a result stayed underemployed and dissatisfied.

The only way out of the haze is to pick something, because as Deepak Chopra says, there is no such thing as the “wrong choice” — the universe doesn’t have a fixed agenda. It won’t “punish” or “reward” you for life works around your choices.

I decided to start writing online, which unlocked a repertoire of possibilities — new clients, friendships, speaking gigs. Unlike Sylvia, I believe you can have it all, for decisions aren't some kind of dead end — but rather, each unfolds a dizzying vine of new possibilities. Your options will keep growing, as long as you don’t stop moving.

So with that, my question for you this week is:

“What figs are laid out in front of you, and which one would you like to pick first?”

Beautiful Cenote in Merida, Mexico.

🖼 On Becoming a Prolific Creator

This Week: Reading Fiction Does Your Creativity a Favor

Back in my productivity-junkie days, I didn’t read anything other than self-help books.

I was convinced squeezing every minute with a “productive” activity would enhance my quality of life. But forcing myself to be constantly optimizing proved mentally exhausting and creatively depleting.

This year, I switched out self-help for fiction and it’s been a game changer. New research shows reading fiction enhances our decision-making skills, empathy, and creativity. ✨

"If you don't have time to read, you don't have the time (or the tools) to write,” says Stephen King. He’s damn right. A good book with compelling characters and an intriguing storyline is inspirational. You’re able to see professionals in action, and how they use the written language to craft something beautiful.

If done well, a good story will inspire awe. This feeling is what gets us to want to start creating in the first place — so we can have a shot at creating something that beautiful, too.

My "Beautiful Phrases" Notepad, where I keep phrases I love for writing inspiration

🥒 Content Diet

📚Breasts and Eggs by Mieko Kawakami - A weighty book that dissects the unseen forces keeping women down, from beauty standards to reproductive rights. As a woman, it's a validating read (despite not much happening plot-wise).

🕊 Influencers Have No Influence by Fadeke Adegbuyi – Just because you have millions of followers on TikTok doesn’t mean you actually hold any influence. This thread is a fascinating theory on why TikTok is killing the influencer as we know it.

And now, a Philippino charcuterie board:


✍🏼 Freelancing Journey

This Week: Unexpected Freelancing Scenarios

When you begin freelancing, everyone prepares you for the predictable scenarios.

A client ghosts you. A client doesn’t go for your work after seeing your proposal. A client doesn’t pay you back after two months of chasing them down (yes, this is happening to me as we speak).

But, in my 1.5 years of freelancing, there have been scenarios I couldn’t have prepared for. Here’s three of them so you know what to expect in this bizarre career field:

1. The client pays you in full…but you never complete the work.

You can’t complete a project without your client.

You’ll need their edits, media assets, and overall cooperation. But certain clients won’t put in this work no matter how much you bug them to get going. This will happen to you at some point, so make sure to include a clause in your proposal for either a kill fee, or requiring the client to pay you in full even if the project doesn't get finished.

2. The client loves your work…but never uses it.

You submitted the deliverable. The client loves it and pays you shortly after. You’re stoked to publish the article and add a fancy byline to your website, only for weeks to elapse, and…silence.

Sometimes, distributing content is at the bottom of their to-do list. Many clients think they want content marketing, when it reality, it's not their priority.

3. The client excitedly plans an exuberant strategy…and it never happens.

The client is super passionate about working together. They begin to schedule weekly meetings, ask you to take on additional work, and invite you to Asana and Notion. But after a few months, they disappear.

Hey, clients are human too. They run into unexpected roadblocks. No matter how excited a client may seem, always protect yourself just in case they drop off the face of the earth.

Have you ever run into an unexpected freelancing scenario? Let me know! 🤨


That's it this week, folks.

Thank you so much for being here, and if you liked this newsletter, share it with a pal!

Otherwise, I hope you have a beautiful week, wherever you are.

Stay creative,

Alice 💌