People usually grow weary within the circle of a 9-5 regimented job routine, resulting they want to do something new. This is the prime reason why Freelancing is emerging as one of the most appealing career choices among the millennial. But… yes there is always a ‘but’ when you plan to try something new like becoming a freelance writer. You are likely to get arrested by a few of myths that aren’t true. Grass is always greener on the other side. Many consider freelancing as the best way to make quick cash or do a less tiring job. So before you switch to freelancing from your 9-5 job, you need to get few things straight. To ease your journey from the beginning, we have brought a first-hand account from established freelancers who have come a long way in freelancing.
So, if genuinely interested in starting your freelancing career, consider reading these myths and the truth behind them.
Myth 1 Lead a stress-free life
Many think they have the whole day to do their job. In between the tasks, they can take short naps or fall asleep when they feel like. People feel relaxed that there is no Big Boss who keeps a constant eye on them. They can finish the work according to their feasibility.
Come out of your ‘dream’ world and experience the reality. When you are working for someone, there are a few regulations you need to maintain like working hours, workload, meeting deadlines, etc. It can be super stressful sometimes when you have to meet tight deadlines while the requirements are too high. Apart from writing, you might have to send numerous mails to your clients and seniors in order to keep them in the loop. You might have to converse with your clients regarding negotiation of prices or the number of projects. And the problem might get bigger when you have to handle a difficult client, who constantly keeps in touch with you.
Myth 2 Cannot make a full-time career out of freelancing
Many consider it as a mere side job, not a full-time profession. So just after completing graduation degree, many would take up freelancing gigs for earning extra money while seeking full-time opportunity in their fields. It is hard for them to believe that freelancing can help them in starting a professional life and earn money for survival. Many doubt whether they would get enough tasks for making money.
In this tech era where things have started revolving around the internet and digitalization, freelance writing is one of the most demanded career options. Right from small to giant companies now have digital presence on the web world and they want their products and services to be promoted in front of the target market. To do so, they want creative minds; people who have flair for writing and capability to write something appealing to seize the readers’ attention. Thus, the demand for freelancers is escalating with days and the number of tasks is increasing too. So if you have creative bent and want to demonstrate your writing skills to the world, you can easily choose freelancing as a full-time career opportunity.
Myth 3 No fixed working hours or schedule
Many picture freelancers doing the tasks in PJs any time of the day. They mainly think freelancers do not have to go by any fixed schedule or working hours, they are their own boss. They start the work according to their feasibility and submit when they feel like it.
Reality is very different from this. When you are working as a freelancer, you should always be ready to get bashing from the clients if the task is not delivered on the promised date. On the other hand, it is true that freelancers can choose their working their hours and week-offs and holidays. But after choosing them, they have to stick to their commitments because clients expect professionalism from you no matter you are a freelancer or full-time writer. Freelancers also have to work with deadlines and meet each one of them.
Myth 4 Run out of money when there is no work
There is a myth that freelancers have to drink whisky and search for nickel at the end of the month. All thanks to films and TV shows, many people project freelancers like this. When there is no job or less job, they struggle to survive on their own.
Yes, needless to say, it can be hard in the initial stage. One needs to market oneself in order to make his or her presence prominent to the potential clients. But once you survive the initial stage, you start earning a decent amount of income every month. On the other hand, paucity of work can happen in your freelancing life, but it does not mean you would be broke. Clients continue to release money as you complete the work, so you are financially secured.
Myth 5 Make Good Bank Balance Within a Month
Adversely, many people think freelancing as a short-cut to earn money within short period of time. If you lose or quit your job, go freelancing! It will keep you afloat in your financial crunch. According to some people, freelancing is one of the highest paid jobs and it is less stressful compared to other full-time jobs. So it is only matter of time that you start earning money in dollars.
Again, this is not a fairy tale nor we are living in a fairy land. Every job description needs sincerity, dedication and skills. Freelancing is no exception. This job forte also requires its applicant to be knowledgeable, expert in area of interest and possessor of excellent writing skills. And the skills are sharpened through practice. So it is foolish to think that freelancers start earning millions right after joining the industry. It takes time to climb the ladder and win the tag of ‘preferred’ writers. It happens when you meet the clients’ requirements in a perfect manner, and they start liking your work.
Myth 6 Receive amounts of payments decided by clients
Many fear to join this profession because according to their knowledge, freelancing prices are decided by clients. And freelancers’ perspective is not considered. Clients’ words are the final because client has certain budget and the company has to go by it.
You need to understand one thing that you are the service provider, so you need to decide the services charges not the other way round. The decision should be mutual, because it is true that your clients have to maintain certain budgetary constraints. But you should be the one who makes the proposal. Then your clients might send you a quote which would not match the demand; it is your responsibility to convince them. If you are good at that, there nothing to worry about it; if you are not, you need to prove that you are worthy.
Myth 7 Stay at home and work in accordance with your will
Who does not want to work at the convenience of their home? Everyone. So the idea of working from home is getting popular with freelance writing gigs. People assume that they don’t need to wake up every morning hastily, make breakfast and leave for the job. Adversely, one can wake up with time in hand, take the morning tea or coffee, take some time to adjust and then start their work.
When it all seems too good to be true, you taste the reality. Imagine yourself working in the same house, sleeping in the same house, spending major part of the daily life in the same house. Eventually, you get tired when you have to stay put in the house all the time in order to finish your work and do necessary house chores. Yes, it is true that a writer has to enjoy by yourself, but remember that you need to get out of the house in intervals in order to rejuvenate yourself.
Myth 8 Choose tasks according to your suitability
Many prefer freelancing as they freelancing is a better than conventional 9-5 job because you need to work with colleagues you despise or do every job that your boss instructs you to. However, you will be responsible for choosing projects as a freelancer according to your knowledge and capability.
There is no called subject expertise in freelancing. Freelancers have to try their hands in everything. Clients may not have work for area interest, like, you have joined a company to write travel blogs, but your client needs you to write food columns as well. You cannot say ‘no’ your client. So you have to adopt every style of writing, starting from formal to informal writing to interactive writing. When you choose to work in a certain area of interest, you actually limit your chances to get more works. So it is not advisable to say ‘no’ just because you do not like a part of a project.
Myth 9 Get to wear pajamas in working hours
This is one of the prominent myths of freelancing. You would have heard many people commenting that you have an easy life, you don’t need to dress everyday and merge in the crowd of office goers. You can work in your pajamas and do whatever you want throughout the day. All thanks to the stereotype projection of writers in pajamas and drinking whisky for lunch in films.
As freelancers operate from their home, they are likely to enjoy the homely environment. But you will mostly have to attend Skype calls through the day. So it is not feasible to wear pajamas while interacting with your clients although they know you are at home (even you are wearing blouse or formal shirts and wearing pajamas.) It is advisable that you shower and dress properly because you never know when your clients want to have a video conversation with you.
Myth 10 Get found by the clients not the way round
People, who want to switch to freelancing profession, think only telling you are interested in freelancing will get them immense of projects. They do not need to market themselves and projects start rolling in. It feels amazing to think that you do not need to make much effort to get started.
Without projecting yourself as the potential candidate, possibilities are thin to get projects. Clients in the market want to how eligible are you to handle jobs and how you manage to complete the tasks within deadlines. In order to do so, you need to get registered with different freelance writing sites like NerdyTurtlez, Upwork, Elance, and upload a few of your samples to demonstrate your credibility and writing skills. Alternatively, you also can contribute to various websites as a freelancer in first to make your base strong.
Myth 11 Anyone can be a freelance writer
By seeing the perks of this industry, many prepare to be a freelancer. Signing up with different sites and contacting different clients are the first steps of all. Many start calling themselves freelancer just after deciding to join this industry. They think writing can be anyone’s cup of tea. If they are able to converse their thoughts, they can put them on the papers too.
The reality is very different from the thought. Anyone cannot join as a freelancer, it requires special kind of person to make the writing thing works for you. Anyone can write, but it is questionable how worthy it would be. To succeed in freelancing writing gigs, you need to make yourself stand out in the crowd and remain consistent with your performance. If you have bent for creativity and flair for writing, this is an ideal exposure for you.
Despite all obstacles in this field, it can be a rewarding experience as a freelancer. Working as a freelancer gives you opportunity to control your career, leading you towards the freedom that you always wanted in your life. The truth is we understand how tough it is to get started with freelancing. But eventually when you get into the system, it becomes easier for you to get more projects and work with the employers that you dreamt of. Thus, understanding the difference between myths and realities help you set real targets.
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