Friday, August 19, 2011

Freelance Files | Week One

soy latte, workspace, the best $7 iron ever, Lucky Charms, inspiring reads, and my new favorite color
I've completed my first week as a freelancer! What does that mean, you ask? Honestly, I have no idea. I didn't pitch anything, nab any assignments, or make a single penny.
So what exactly did I do this week?
  • Set up my work area. There's not much in this apartment yet, but that's part of the problem...we only have one flat surface to use for everything. This kitchen counter is a workhorse.
  • Set a schedule.Breakfast at 9, lunch at 1. Email breaks at 11:30 and 3. Catch up on my RSS feeds around noon and then again before bed. Errands before lunch if needed. Self-discipline is good.
  • Set the stage for work. Since I've been MIA for the past month, I sent out some quick emails letting folks know I'm back and ready to work. I also got the ball rolling this week on a personal website and researched good publications to pitch to.
  • Bug my movers. I say bug, but I'm super nice on the phone. I don't want to know what they do when they don't like a customer. Our stuff is on its way!
  • Baby my blog. Updated blogroll, more Facebook posts, new features (like this one), and a new URL on the way.
These were all things that needed to be done, even though it doesn't look like much progress has been made. Truth be told: I have stage fright. It's sometimes paralyzing. So I work away at research or my blog or my apartment to be productive in the meantime. Problem is, all that filler work adds up and leaves no time for the work I want to be doing and have to spend time to get.
I hate silly excuses, but I've been using this one a lot lately: I'm waiting for my stuff to come. I'm hesitant to make any commitments for new unknown projects and deadlines because I'm afraid the whole delivery process might be as drawn out and time-consuming as the setting up, moving, and waiting process is. And I want my desk. ETA: Sometime Monday-Wednesday.
Freelancers—What kind of preparations did you make to get started?
Freelance Files is a new recurring feature that will follow my foray into freelancing (and its associated alliterative opportunities). I am not an expert. Do not try this at home.


  1. It'll take some time before you get some projects but I think they'll arrive in your inbox before you know it. I actually have a full time job and the blog is my side creative gig so I can't really give you any tips on setting up shop... Have you ever checked out ladybloggers? They do have freelance writing opportunities.

  2. I'm not a freelancer, but I do work from home. This is sounding very familiar. Setting a schedule is a must, and so is getting dressed (with shoes) every day. But I'm sure you'll have no problem with that. :)

    What in the world kind of cereal are you eating?

  3. Another non-freelancer dropping in with hopefully helpful tips. Good job on setting up the office and making a schedule.

    In case you haven't heard, what you are doing is H.A.R.D - seriously, esp in the transition part. So please remember to be kind to yourself.

    I read My So Called Freelance Life (the book) and just googled the blog.

    Do you already know about/have read?

    Looking forward to reading more Freelance Files - love alliteration!

  4. I usually started my day with reading my e-mails, then having breakfast, pouring myself a cut of tea, making a top-knot and started work)) That's pretty much it)

  5. Sounds like establishing a routine is actually a good first step.

  6. It sounds like you are trying to make sure you get settled a bit more before adding pressure of work deadlines. I totally understand.

  7. @ Tami - thanks for the rec...I haven't seen that blog before! Definitely following it now.

    @ triskelos - nice! I usually put off my emails because most of my contracts and work contacts are on the west coast. gives me a nice chunk of the morning to myself and coming up with some new projects.

    @ terri - i think so. baby steps. :)

  8. I love this new feature, and I'll be coming back for updates! Good luck! (I think much of success is preparation, and if your organized and clean work space is any indication you're going to succeed!)

  9. I highly recommend networking for freelance jobs. I found more gigs from a person who knew a person looking for a writer, than any resumes I submitted. I'd also recommend Craigslist and Ed2010 to find some good gigs. - Katy

  10. @ Vanessa - Thanks! I agree...preparation is an important first step, and I do find a clear workspace helps clear my mind. :)


Like this? Leave a comment!
Comments with emails attached will receive emailed replies; otherwise replies will be added below the original comment.