Get the word out to the following networks that you are available for independent work:
- Previous employers (my first contract was with the old law firm Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman I worked for several years back)
- Social Networking websites: LinkedIn and FaceBook.
- Job websites: Dice, Monster, CareerBuilder.
On job websites, I have found it very helpful to set up daily search agents for the skillset keywords I'm most interested in. Not only does this provide leads on which companies or industries to start looking into, but the daily listing also provides a general indication of the matching opportunities and which way the market is trending. These daily emails were a major factor to determine that the move independent consulting could be a sustainable transition from full-time work. Do sign up for multiple jobs sites. Due to cost, most companies will not cross-post their openings on multiple sites.
If you've got a strong resume, you'll end up getting contacted by many recruiters. Keep in contact with just a handfulof recruiters that you have been able to establish a good relationship and feel very comfortable with. Most recruiters will do the bare minimum to make a match simply based on keyword matches on your profile without really understanding your goals or the clients' needs.
If you are in between clients and have some cycles to spare, volunteering or nonprofit work is a great way to network and heighten your overall karma. I'm helping a friend who started Connect the Dots (a nonprofit helping "green" nonprofits) by volunteering and providing technical advice.