Passive/Aggressive: Finding Work as a Freelancer


Despite all my preparations, when I finally went full-time freelance, I was clueless when it came to finding new projects. As I had always done before, I scoured the job ads, dutifully sent out cover letters and resumes, found a part-time freelance gig that gave me the feeling of stability and, otherwise, waited for the work to come to me.

And for at least a year, it worked. I eventually ended up with two regular, moneymaking gigs, and additional projects continued to come my way via friends and former colleagues. Within only six months, I had matched my previous corporate salary.

Then the publication I was copy editing for folded and, about six months later, the web magazine I was writing for decided to switch things up, leaving me with a lot less income. And it occurred to me: I had been coasting!

I know I’m not the only one. Other office workers looking to go freelance are often surprised to find out that job-finding tactics are wildly different when you’re in business for yourself.

After the jump, some passive and aggressive ways to find work, and why it’s essential that you cultivate a mixture of both:

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My 5 Favorite Things In: The Well-Fed Writer

well fed writer.

When I first read The Well-Fed Writer, it terrified me. Promising to aid me in gaining “financial self-sufficiency as a freelance writer in six months or less,” author Peter Bowerman then went on to sing the praises of cold calling.

When I was growing up, my parents used to collect magazine clippings of articles with such titles as “What To Do When Your Child Doesn’t Speak.” Since then, the state of things has only improved marginally. I’ve only recently stopped taking anxiety medication, and my shrink still insists that it’s okay to use alcohol as “a social lubricant.”

Perhaps I should pour a nice big glass of pinot noir before ringing up prospective clients…

After the jump, the reasons why I find this book invaluable to any freelancer, despite my abject fear of cold-calling.

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