Freelance Writing - What You’ll Give Up to Get Paid Big
Courtesy of Jared Heath
We always hear about how freelancing can be tough, and it’s true. It’s tough to get your business up, it’s tough to keep business up, and it’s tough to grow. But beyond the business aspect of freelancing, it can be hard to sell something you created. Something you put your heart into. This post is my experience as a freelance writer, but you can substitute “writing” with carpentry, sewing, iron works, or whatever it is you do to keep food on the table.
Perhaps it’s just sentimental to treasure your writings so much—I mean, it’s not even ink on paper anymore. One glitch and everything is gone. Fire couldn’t destroy Shakespeare’s works as fast as a crashed computer can consume creativity. But then again, it’s more than words on a page, isn’t it? You create something every time you grab a pen or sit at a computer. You are responsible for a genesis with each keystroke—right?
Any of you who have done freelance writing know that it’s not always that glamorous. Sure, we all like to dream that our blog is suddenly going to explode with followers and comments next month, but by and large, the writing we do is not exactly the same caliber as Leaves of Grass. Even though we may execute the article, blog post, or website quite masterfully, I don’t remember any college courses on great works that had any number of the subjects I’ve been asked to write on in the anthologies.
But that’s not really the point, is it? It’s not what we’re writing about. Sometimes writing posts about storage units, carpet cleaners, medicare, or anything is exactly what we thrive on. “Write about a storage shed,” your client says. “And make it cool!” And you do. Time and again. When you don’t want to. When you don’t feel like it. When your inspiration is dead. You still do it, even if it takes you a few rounds to get it right.
When you count the cost of what you do—what we do—you have to ask yourself what the cost is of not getting your name out there. Forget the fame; you have to be willing to put your name on each piece you submit to every client. Suddenly your writing leaves that dark corner of the internet where it feeds off itself and only your mother and your old high school friend read it (sometimes). Now you have the pain of visibility. The shame of a bad post. And more importantly, the thrill of a sentence that works like you never knew it worked.
What’s the cost of selling your writing—or anything else? Your pride, perhaps. It’s a heavy toll, to be sure, and it’s one that most of us haven’t learned to pay. What’s the worth? Well, that’s something we each have to decide.
Joan here...it's a deep topic, one I find myself asking a lot now-a-days as I give up just about every leisure activity as well as most self care needs to get in all my writing as well as the promotional requirement I deem necessary for the growth and development of FEVER.
So what do you think? In your opinion, what is the line for you? What is too much to give up for that goal you're striving for, (if not writing)?
One lucky commenter will win a copy of FEVER upon release, Feb 28, 2012,
eBook or print, worldwide.
eBook or print, worldwide.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Jared Heath is a freelance writer who writes for 203kready.com and lives for his two passions: his writing and his family. It’s not always easy, but doing what you love for the ones you love is worth it.