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  • Writer's pictureLogan Rose

The Wins and Losses of Working as a Freelance Writer

From Late-Night Inspiration to Automated Interviews

My friend Caitlin just called me to give me an update on her status in our writer's group (pictured below), which when I stop to think about it is one of my favorite parts of my life. She has to take a break from the group, but I told her we could keep swapping writing - and that she would always be a part of our special community.

After she shared her news, she asked me, "how's freelancing going?" And let me tell you, it's a mixed bag.

The Pros of Freelancing

This week has been great. Monday was a little iffy because I felt I didn't really accomplish enough, but I wrote 2,000+ words for one of my clients, Betta Source, worked on my Artist's Way readings and tasks, and made an Asian feast from the Ottolenghi cookbook, so I guess I shouldn't beat myself up too much!

On Tuesday, I finally had time to introduce and work on my blog, which has been a major goal for me, so that felt really good. I also made a little bit of money writing for one of my clients and got a new task from another.

Yesterday was awesome, too, because I spent half the day writing and researching for my novel and half the day working for cash. I also had time to explore my spirituality as part of The Artist's Way and learn my lines for an acting class I signed up for.

Overall, freelancing is great because of the flexibility.

If I get inspired on Thursday night and stay up writing (like I did last week), I can sleep in on Friday, and if I really feel like I need a rest day, I can take one. I am totally in control of my own time, which means I can always make the time to work towards my long-term goals or take care of myself. I can also allocate my energy to the things that are most important to me because I don't owe anyone eight hours of my day.

Still, some days are rough because I just wake up feeling unmotivated, like I did today.

Some Cons of Freelancing

Freelancing is 100% self-motivated and requires an obscene amount of discipline.

If you're not working, you're not getting paid, and motivating yourself to work can be difficult without the structure and support of a day job.

Today, I procrastinated loads by watching "The Vow," on HBO, which I guess kind of counts as research for my novel but didn't feel terribly productive.

I also put my name in the ring for some new contracts because so much of freelancing is looking for new clients.

Another thing I did today was spend money on a facial, which was really nice and luxurious and did wonders for the acne I have been struggling with. Still, when you're just getting your bearings as a freelancer, spending money on anything feels bad.

I feel like I work harder than I did at my previous job, but I'm not getting paid nearly as much... yet.

Freelancing requires a lot of hope, faith, and forward momentum. It can be hard to muster this faith when you get excited for a contract only to end up in an automated interview.

My Automated Interview Story

I am dedicating this section of blog to my grandma, Joyce, who upon hearing this story told me I had to write it up and share it with the world.

Essentially, last week I attended two separate automated interviews in the span of two days.

What I mean by this is that I got up early, put on professional outfits, and covered all my zits for Zoom interviews only to end up in two different video chats with dozens of other people - all muted and with their cameras turned off.

Once the "interviewers," had a captive audience, they played promotional videos about their companies and walked us through "onboarding processes" we could have likely figured out on our own.

In both "interviews," I got an "offer" without ever speaking to anyone personally. I accepted one offer and passed on the other. One "opportunity" came with a 5,000-word UNPAID trial, so it was a waste of time all around.

Situations like these can be really discouraging as a freelancer, and we really are living in the future.

I grew up with computers and the internet, but I still find it so bizarre to go through the entire hiring process without seeing a real human face that hasn't been pre-recorded or automated in some way.

Considering my first day with one of these companies is tomorrow, I guess that's just how things work these days. It's so very strange and will definitely take some getting used to.

With that, I think I'll leave you for the day. I'm participating in my first-ever substitute teacher assignment tomorrow, so please check back in for that adventure.

If you want to talk writing, freelancing, the future, or anything, I am always available through my contact form or loganrosereadsandwrites at gmail dot com.

Hope to hear from you soon!

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