Many freelance writers get bogged down with the day-to-day business of managing their own career.
Writers have to invoice clients, chase down payments, look for new work and then churn out enough work to keep the bills paid and keep everyone happy. It’s easy to get into a rut and get stagnant. The following tips will help freelance writers give their careers a boost and take off in a fresh new direction.
Dig Yourself Out of That Rut
The regular costs of just existing can make freelance writers feel like they have no choice but to take whatever work they can find and churn it out quickly. The electric company and the mortgage holder don’t care that you are feeling overwhelmed and burned out. Looming deadlines can make you feel like you have no choice but to keep chugging away at the assignments you have been assigned.
You can’t live like this forever, though. Take a step back from everything, analyze where you are and where you need to be, and figure out what it will take to give your career a fresh start, while still keeping the bills paid.
Look for New Opportunities
This is another area where freelance writers can go stagnant, as they are more focused on the easy assignments that they can find right now. However, you can’t rely on one client for the rest of your career. And I’ve told many writers that when you lose one client, a better one is there to take the place of the one you lost. Schedule a block of time each day to look for newer, higher-paying writing opportunities.
Always wanted to see your byline in a print magazine? Research publications that are looking for submissions and get cracking. Want to write a book? Start working on your outline, get your book written and figure out where you can get it published. New opportunities aren’t going to hunt you down and beg you to take advantage of them; you have to reach out and grab them yourself.
Take a Break
This is another piece of advice that I give to freelance writers that are suffering from burn-out. When you get into a rut and your writing is starting to be affected, take a break from what you are doing. Yes, I get it – we all have bills to pay. But when it’s taking you five times as long to write as it used to, because you are so burned out you can’t focus on getting the words out, you aren’t doing yourself or your family any favors.
Take a break and do something else for a while. This can be in the form of eBook writing, educational writing, or even something entirely unrelated to writing. Once you clear your head, you can go back to what you are doing now, if that’s what you really want to do.
Maggie O is an active duty member of the United States Air Force, who attempts to keep a freelance writing career afloat in her free time. When she’s not writing or serving her country, she spends her time with her family, her dogs and her growing empire of Mazda vehicles.