Being a Freelance Superhero

Just the other day, I wrote on my personal blog about a career move I was considering. One of my readers — neonfoxtongue — commented on the moves she herself was thinking of making, mentioning her worry that she might not be taken seriously in the field because of her…newness. “Maybe this is something you could address on Freelancedom?” she asked.

An excellent idea! (Who needs an editorial calendar when you’ve got such helpful readers?)

All of us, after all — at some point or another — have to go through that intimidating rookie period. When you’re a freelancer, the pressure can be doubly heavy, as one has to constantly self-market, proving oneself anew to each prospective client.

As a newbie, how do you maintain confidence in yourself, and then engender that same confidence in your clients?

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How To Find Clients Without Cold Calling

Experts such as Peter Bowerman of The Well-Fed Writer write that nothing beats cold calling. When you’ve exhausted your list of prospects, however, and your calendar of networking events, it’s still possible to find the odd job via job ad.

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Unpaid Internships: Something White People Like!

My buddy Christina recently sent me a link to Stuff White People Like in response to my most recent post.

Despite being a comprehensive blog-catalog of things I actually do like, I’ve never read the blog. Shame on me! Because they just-as-recently posted about Unpaid Internships.

They totally reveal the utter ridiculousness of the internship concept but, truth be told, everything I wrote previously is still true. It’s one messed up world we live in, that’s for sure.

How To Make It Big While Working for Free

After completing the weirdest college internship ever (writing adult content for the Phoenix Media/Communications Group), I thought I was done providing free labor in order to cement my career success.

Faced with a long, drawn-out period of unemployment one year out of college, however, I was forced to consider the benefits of a post-college internship.

I ended up interning for the editorial department of the Feminist Press, an incredibly idyllic period in my life. It led to an eventual full-time job within the academic book publishing world.

And so, when I was considering a career change two years later, it made sense to embrace the short-term detriments of a low-income internship as a means of working toward longer-term benefits.

So I’m a huge advocate of the post-college internship. Do you remain unconvinced that such a situation could be worth it? Here are the reasons that I champion temporarily unpaid labor:

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How To Get Your Guy, and Look Good Doing It

My pretty pretty website.

After reading a post on website stickiness over at ProBlogger, I spent a good amount of time this past weekend implementing Darren’s tips, in order to make this blog more inviting to readers.

As I uploaded plugin after plugin, and asked my husband to make design tweak after design tweak (I may be his most demanding customer), it occurred to me that a first impression post was in order.

After all, despite our having the ability to wear bunny slippers and fuzzy pants for the bulk of the day, first impressions with prospective clients still count for a lot.

So…what did I learn from the changes I implemented?

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He Said/She Said: How To Launch a Freelance Career

me and mike.

As I’ve hopefully established by this point, I’m a full-time freelancer, earning the bulk of my income with blogging and proofreading. My husband, on the other hand, juggles both a full-time copywriting job and freelance web design.

Unsurprisingly, he’s the practical one in this set-up, while I’m the one who just loves taking risks with her career.

As two people who are both pursuing the freelance life — each in their own, special way — our day-to-day requires quite the balancing act.

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Giving Notice: How To Make That Final Leap


Photo: ‘Derek J’ by Phil Watt

It’s been almost a year since I left behind a viable book publishing career for the terrifying uncertainty of freelancedom.

A questionable move considering that, three years before, I had been applying to just about any full-time staff job I could conceivably be considered qualified for.

To make an excruciating story less excruciating, let’s just say that I wasn’t feeling quite right within the corporate environment.

Now I work a number of freelance gigs, most of them from home, and I’ve never been happier. So, of course, I want everyone else to try it, too!

But as much as I advocate trying out new career paths, jumping blindly isn’t the smartest way to go.

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