What’s your game plan as a freelance writer for unexpected events and expenses? Do you have an emergency fund?
Imagine buying same-day international plane tickets to flee political violence with a toddler. It happened to me while I was freelancing in Nicaragua. And those tickets were expensive.
What about an unexpected medical bill? Could you take time off if a family member got seriously ill…or if you were ill yourself?
If your house burned down, could you put yourself up in a hotel and restock your toiletries, underwear, clothes, and food before an insurance payout?
Most people don’t like to think about all the possibilities that could turn an ordinary day of freelancing into a need for fast cash. But it’s bound to happen.
And when it does, being prepared can make all the difference between being stressed out and desperate or nothing more than a minor bump in the road called life.
Here’s how I built an emergency fund as a freelance writer:
There’s a basic freelancing question that mystifies many writers: “How do I get paid, exactly?”
When you’re used to an employer handing you a paycheck every week or two, it can be intimidating to realize that as a freelancer, you’ll only get paid if you figure out a method — and make it happen.
That’s probably why many writers gravitate to content mills and mass platforms that act as intermediary. Then, you know your payment will come from the platform.
Of course, once you see how tiny that payment is after the platform takes its cut, you’ll likely be looking to cut out the middleman.
Fortunately, there are several reliable ways to get paid directly by your freelance clients.
First, I’ll go over payment methods — and then, I’ve got a few quick tips on how to structure your contract to ensure you don’t get stiffed.
I didn’t plan on leaving my job to become a freelance writer with next to no money and my 6-year-old laptop.
I had a 5-year goal to become a “real” writer, but my plans had to change. I was too tired and burned out with my career in addiction services — my stress level reached a point where it started affecting both my physical and mental health.
When I talked about quitting my job to write, people thought I was crazy. Maybe I was. I had less than $500 in my savings account, a house, a car payment, and three kids. My husband was a year into his business and barely turning a profit.
The time seemed anything but right, yet I made it work. My kids didn’t starve, my car wasn’t repossessed, and over a year later, I’m still writing full time.
Here are my tips on how to become a full-time freelance writer without a safety net:
It’s that time of year again — the autumn leaves are spectacular…and come November, it’ll be time to figure out your healthcare coverage as a freelance writer.
It’s healthcare plan renewal/signup time, or — if you’re just contemplating making the leap into freelancing (and don’t live in a country with national healthcare) — time to figure out how to keep your family protected as leave the corporate world.
I’ve heard from more than one writer in recent weeks who’s hesitant to go freelance because the healthcare issue makes them nervous. And hearing that makes me sad.
Don’t let this be the issue that stops you from pursuing your freelance writing dream! This. Is. Solvable. Especially now, in the U.S., where I’m thrilled that there are more options than there were when I started my most recent freelance stint in 2005. (If you’re elsewhere, check out these emerging alternatives that help freelancers limit their risks if they become ill.)
Here’s a rundown of the ways you can get healthcare coverage as a freelancer — and some of my personal experiences with them):
I meet a lot of writers who say their goal is to become a six-figure freelancer.
You may find some ‘experts’ online who’ll tell you they earn six figures freelancing and hardly work — that they’re vacationing all the time, driving luxury cars, and enjoying the good life…and I’m here to tell you, they’re lying.
I’ve been a six-figure writer since 2011, when I hit that number entirely from my freelance gigs — not counting any blog or Freelance Writers Den revenue. At this point, I’ve had a few years to experience what this lifestyle is really like…
By Abby Hayes Are you saving for retirement? Without employer matches and helpful HR departments to rely on, we freelance writers are on our own for retirement planning. No matter what your personal situation looks like, a smart freelancer needs…