The Downside of Working From Home As A Freelance Writer
I have been drawn to write this hub due to a recent bout of illness which left me so incapacitated I could not write a single word. It made me think about the negative aspects of writing for a living particularly if you are a self-employed writer whose income is dependent on your output.
Fortuntely I still made a passive income from my writing directory hubs and articles but was unable to make a cent from my private work, which makes up approximately 65% of my income. If you don't work you won't get paid. It's as simple as that.
Therefore, I realised I have to have some sort of back-up-plan in place for such incidents. But what could I do? After researching I came up with these solutions which I am going to have in place if and when I fall ill again and cannot write.
- Create future contracts, whereby I submit my work a week in advance. If I am always ahead of the game a week's illness should not have such a serious impact.
- Pay another writer of a high calibre to write my hubs/articles and contract work. (i.e. share a percentage of my income for another person to complete particular piece of work) The Fiverr site comes in handy for this type of emergency as there are many excellent writers who can do my work only for $5.
- Insure my employment. There are various insurances available that cover you if you cannot work due to illness. But I will have to check whether this is a viable option as the premiums tend to be very high, and they impose many restrictions that it may not be worth insuring.
- Create a partnership with a fellow writer (someone who you know is the better option) whereby if either of you is ill or away on holiday the other will fill in and do the absent partner's work. I like the sound of this one and as it is under a written agreement there should be no arguments as to how much the the share for covering should be as you will have negotiated this before you sign the partnership.
- Contact the hirer, explain your position and offer to deduct a percentage of the fee to compensate for the delay in completing the work.
Cons of Freelance Writing
If you decide to write for a living you must take into considration the cons about being a self-employed writer. Whilst being a writer sounds wonderful and gives you the freedom to work on your terms it is not always as glamorous as it is made out to be.
Be sure to research this form of employment as well as consider the following cons before you decide to take the plunge and become a full-time writer:
- Isolation - Working by yourself is difficult and full-time freelance writing is hard and may not suit everybody. There are long periods where you are alone and this could hinder your drive and limit your productivity. Working from home in your pajamas sounds great but the reality is far from wonderful.
- Discipline - Because you do not socialise and interact with others you have to be more focussed, determined and self-motivated. Most of all you have to be disciplined so that you can stick to time schedules. If you set your start time for writing as 9.a.m. make sure you start at 9.a.m. and not 11.am. If you decide to set the number of articles or hubs you intend to write per day at 3, make sure that within 24 hours you write 3 articles/hubs. You have to be disciplined.
- Work Not Guaranteed - When you work as an employee you know you are guaranteed work but when you work for yourself you have to find work which is not always guaranteed. Sometimes there are plenty of opportunities but other times there could be less.
- Find Your Own Work - When you decide to become a full-time freelance writer you have to find your own clients and work, which is completely different from being employed when the work is provided for you.
- Monthly income inconsistent - In conjunction with inconsistent incoming work there is the inconsistent monthly income. Sometimes the work will come rolling in and you will make lots of money but on the flip side there may be some months where the work will not be flowing in so easily with the result that you do not make as much money as you did during the preivious months.
- Accounting - If you are employed you don't have to be concerned about accounting or paying your taxes as this is taken care of for you. But as a full-time freelance writer this will be your responsibility as you are self-employed. However, if you are not good at this type of thing you could always mploy an accountant to do it for you.
So if you want to become a full-time writer you should take the aforementioned cons into consideration, and weight up whether it is the right route for you.