Over the past few months I have embarked on the journey to become a freelance writer. I had a full time paid internship during the day and at night I would write. You can see some of my work in my “Professional Work” section to get idea of what I’ve been doing, but mostly I’ve been taking gigs here and there, along with a standing gig at PCWorld, writing Android app reviews.
Starting next week, I transition into a full time freelancer. I have to admit I am nervous and a little scared. Questions dance around my mind when I try to fall asleep: will I make enough money to pay my bills? Will I go nuts always working from home? Can I make it as a freelancer and emerge will a great portfolio that will hopefully land me a more permanent job?
While I don’t know the answers to any of these questions, it hasn’t deterred me from giving this a shot. After all, I have wanted to be a writer for some time now and this is my chance to really chase that dream. This is the best time in my life to be a freelancer; I am young, unmarried, and don’t have kids. My only vital responsibilities right now are to take care of myself, pay my bills, and be a good girlfriend. What better time then to try to work as a writer?
I was talking with a close friend the other night, a girl I went to high school with. When I told her that I was going to write full time she was so happy and excited for me, remembering the times when we were younger and I said that I was going be a writer someday. She told me that she was proud of me for going after my dream and making it a reality. It helped me see that I had accomplished a lot and that I still have a lot to accomplish.
So, how will I fend for myself as a freelancer? I guess I will have to wait and see. There is so much to think about; taxes, health insurance, time management, which can be daunting. This feels like a part of life that I will just have to figure out as I go along. As I go, I’ll post my experiences and (hopefully) tips that I learned along the way. If you have any advice, leave it in the comment section–I will be grateful!
2 thoughts on “Welcome to the Freelancing World”
I salute you for embarqueing on your adventure, so many people have gone before you, and perhaps even more will follow in your footsteps. as a famous dutch politician, Pim Fortuyn, said once: remember that it’s not about the goal itself, but about the things you do and the people you meet along the way to reach your goal. Make a journal of every week you complete in this adventure, so you can read back the moments of joy and frustration. If you work with outlook, i suggest you get a hold of an Outlook plug-in called Avidian Prophet, so that you can conduct CRM. It’s very important to be able to measure, regardless the set up or size of a company or being self-employed, in more, it will help you focus on the things that make money, rather than on time-consuming non-profitable activities in your business. It will also show you who your ”real friends” are in your business after a while. give it six months and the history will give you tangible information with which you can set out your course of action.
Get a very good bookkeeper, go small, don’t hire a very expensive one, but get a book keeper that knows his stuff and sees the importance of your growth and helps you make the right financial decisions, usually a good one doesn’t advertise, and doesn’t have a website or anything. They can be found often by referrals through friends and relations.
other than that, remember that there is no such thing as free time. no weekends, no weekdays off. Every hour that you can bill, should be billed, right away. NEVER, EVER, say no to an assignment, especially in the beginning, every assignment you can get should be accepted. regardless if you’re interested or not. You can’t afford to decline. It’s very important to build up a good name. Never ever accept disrespect, fight for your integrity and your good name. it’s all you have when being self-employed. Be prepared to receive no as an answer. you’ll get them plenty, but continue until you hear a Yes. it takes about 100 no’s before you get a yes, so ask 101 times before you give up. keep knocking the doors from whom you heard a no, they might eventually say yes. make sure you read about selling. and get active on marketing and sales, and guerilla tactical marketing and sales. there are plenty free possibilities, it just takes effort. The energy you put in, will generate a result, so the more energy you put in, the more result you’ll get. Don’t expect queues at your doorstep. You have to go and get it yourself. From now on, think, act, move as a navy seal. Never give up , don’t take no for an answer, if one way doesn’t work, try it another way. but never shift your focus.
darn, i could go on and on…
Wow, thanks so much! There is so much to think about and I already have some jobs lined up. Thanks for all the helpful advice. 🙂