The Infinite Wisdom of Others: Katy Lindamood

Hey there everybody! I returneth from a looong day of pigging out with my husband’s extended fam, and man do I feel wiped out. The turkey was divine, but I think the twice-baked potatoes were my favorite. I digress, though.

As Thanksgiving conflicted with my usual Wisdom of Others post, and as I didn’t want to give this week’s purveyor of wisdom short shrift, I held off for a day. Take a peek after the jump for my e-interview with freelance writer/blogger Katy Lindamood.

1. First of all, please explain to our readers what your home business is, and how much of your time you devote to it.

I am a full time freelance writer who works too many hours and still doesn’t get as much accomplished as she wants. Along with my husband Ryan, I work writing web content for many different sites. Some of what we write gets published under our names, while other content is ghostwritten. This is fine for now, but I don’t want to be ghostwriting forever. In addition to the writing, we (mostly me) maintain Trapped in the Office, a blog where we chronicle our experiences and sometimes ramble on about nothing in particular.

2. What led you to freelancing in general, and writing in particular?

It was actually a fluke. When we moved, I decided to make a completely fresh start. I had been out of work for about six months, and was getting restless. Not really certain if I wanted to go get another “real job,” I began paying attention to what a friend of mine was saying about making money through writing. I have to admit, I was pretty skeptical that it was possible but — lo and behold! — it actually worked. I started out slow, just posting reviews and random articles on Associated Content, and then started expanding. I like the fact that I can work anytime and from anywhere.

3. What percentage of clients are regular, and how do you seek out new clients?

Actually, all of my clients are regular. When I look for new clients, I purposely look for long-term work. In this economy, you never know when one of your best paying clients might have to close shop, and that could mean big trouble if you are depending on that money.

When I look for new companies/clients to work for, I generally check out the bidding sites, like Elance, Rent A Coder, and Get A Freelancer. I only bid on projects that truly interest me. I have made the mistake of bidding on projects because they looked easy, only to find myself bored to tears writing them.

4. How do you see your business growing in the future?

I would like to think that in the future, I could move from writing web content to writing articles for magazines. I would like to cut a few of my lower paying jobs for higher paying ones, and am working on that right now. I honestly don’t know if freelancing will be a long-term career, because a part of me really misses working in retail, but until I finish my business degree I will be freelancing, unless a great job happens to fall in my lap…ha!

5. What are your favorite resources for the burgeoning professional in his/her 20s or 30s?

There are so many great resources out there for a person in the freelance writing business that it’s hard to pick just a few. There are so many blogs that I read religiously that I sometimes think I do more reading these days than writing. If I had to pick just a few, I would say Freelance Folder and Freelance Switch. Both provide great insight into freelancing. Also the Work At Home Mom message boards are a great place to ask others about their experiences.

6. What are the toughest aspects of freelancing, and how do you deal with them?

Working from home in any capacity is great, but it has its downside. For one thing, I hardly ever leave the house. Sometimes I think these four walls are closing in on me. That’s one of the reasons I started Trapped in the Office. I have met some great bloggers over the last few months and have learned a great deal.

I think the hardest part about freelancing is actually getting up the nerve to give it a try and then finding reliable companies to work for. If it had not been for my best friend Jenn, I would have been so lost when I started writing for money. Luckily, she had tried out some of the sites and gave me a great foundation for getting started. Once you know how to find reliable work and know how to spot scams, the sky is the limit.

7. If you could purchase anything for your home office, what would it be?

How about a real home office? That would be great. When we moved into our new home at the beginning of this year, I kept saying we needed to buy new desks and chairs, but that never happened. If you look at this picture, you will see the office (before I bought my laptop). Yeah, that’s the kitchen table and chairs shoved into a spare bedroom. Oh, how I long for a desk of my very own and a chair that does not make my back ache. Those are on the list of upcoming purchases.

8. What are some dream jobs you’d consider if you had your druthers?

Well, since my math and science skills are less than stellar, the space program is out. Seriously though, if I could be doing anything else, I would be working in retail. Some people think I am nuts, but there is something about retail. I am working on a degree in business management with a focus on Human Resources, so maybe one day I will have that dream job.

9. What are some of your favorite go-to sites in terms of entertaining or informative content, and/or damn good writing?

I’m admittedly on my computer 99% of the time I am awake. I enjoy reading blogs about freelancing, but I can’t go a day without checking the Pop Candy Blog at USA Today. I also enjoy reading Write In My Journal and about a zillion other sites. If you can’t find me surfing the net or writing an article, I am probably either using Stumble Upon to find random stuff or catching up on one of my favorite shows.


To see some of Katy’s non-blog work, check out her Associated Content page, or her eHow page.

You can also connect with her over at MySpace.

p.s. You can find my story over at her blog!

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