Writing Full Time: Early Lessons

champagne

Hello, Dear Readers!

As many of you know, I recently began writing full time, with a combination of freelance writing projects and my own work. It was an incredible opportunity, and I am so lucky to have gotten it. I know that many of you here are also hoping to be full-time writers, and I’m working on expanding the A to Z of Indie Writing to include my path to this – because it is doable. I swear. I hope to survey other authors so that you have an idea of how varied the path is for everyone.

We’re coming up on one month already, which doesn’t seem possible, but I did the math and there we are. So here, without further ado, are some of the best lessons I’ve learned and had passed along to me:

  • Do your own writing first. Or whenever your peak productivity is. If you’re splitting between freelancing and your work, do yours first.
  • You can only do so much. Actually a surprise. I thought I could work 15 hours per day, 7 days per week. But as it happens, that’s a LOT of writing. You’ll run out of brain if you try that. So, you know, take up a hobby. And don’t overbook.
  • Anything you do right now, you don’t have to do later. This is the only rule of freelancing, really. If you do it now, you don’t have to worry about getting it done. You don’t have to stress about it. You don’t have to keep slogging away. What will you do when you get done with it? I don’t know, but get it off your plate, even if it’s a job you want to be doing.
  • You’re going to have to try a few different schedules. I had a grand plan, which was to work on my own work until I burned out for the day, do some chore around the house, work on a client project, take the dog for a walk, work on another client project… And so on. And it turns out that that just doesn’t work for me. Since then I’ve pinpointed that focusing on one thing per day gets me much further, but I’m still trying to figure out how to structure breaks.
  • For reasons that won’t be apparent, you will occasionally discard all lessons you have learned and do things with wild inefficiency. Remember when I figured out that I need downtime and I should work on one project per day? Yeah. Remember when I inexplicably threw that lesson out the window last week? Yeah… Why? No idea. My brain is a mystery to me. You’ll probably do this, too.

Are any of you freelancers? How do you schedule your days? What would you like to share?

-M

 

 

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