Building My Freelance Writing Empire
As soon as I became a mom, I knew I wanted to stay at home way more than I wanted to go back to work as a lawyer. If I had loved my job, it had paid well, or there were opportunities for advancement, I may have stayed, but none of that was there. It was a great time for me to rethink my career path and spend some time with my family.
Almost two years ago, I left my job as a full time attorney to stay at home with my daughter. The day I was packing up my office I got a call from a legal marketing company. I had applied to a position as a freelance writer for them two years previously when I was looking to make a job change. The timing could not have been more perfect. The position offered extreme flexibility in writing several legal blog articles a month for the company’s law firm clients.
I started off slowly and just wrote about 6 or so articles a month. I would scramble to write them during nap times and after my daughter went to bed. After a few months, I knew I was ready to take on more. I told my husband, “I am ready to build my freelance writing empire.” This was half-joking, half-seriously. What I really wanted to do was build up my freelance work to the point where I could pay my half of the expenses and even put some money away for savings.
Finding part-time, professional level work is tough. Freelance writing is tough. It is tough to find work. It is even tougher to find people to work for who will respect your talents and skill level. People tend to really undervalue freelancers. They think that there are so many people who will take the job that they can pay low rates and make extreme demands of their workers. Know that there are companies out there who will value you and the job you do for them. Yes, there are many people looking for freelance work, but companies value quality product and dependability. If you can deliver on both of these things, there are opportunities out there for you.
I looked for freelance work across the internet. I started out on job boards like indeed.com and linkedin.com. Then I signed up for flexjobs.com. I never found a job that was the right fit for me on flexjobs.com, but I think it could be a valuable resource for others looking for flexible work schedules.
The real turning point for me was upwork.com. It took consistently applying for 10+ freelance writing jobs a day, but I eventually got a few different clients to work for. One of the biggest things Upwork showed me was the real demand for freelance writers. I had no idea the demand was so great. This is what got me thinking about skipping the Upwork middle man, and trying to contact the people that needed this kind of work done directly.
I turned to google. I searched Law Firm Marketing Writers. I went through the results one by one. Sometimes the law firm marketing company had a direct job post searching for freelance blog writers. Other times, I sent an email to the company offering my writing services. It turns out, most were always looking for reliable blog writers even if they were not actively posting job opportunities for freelancers.
I have gone through working with several different marketing companies and have narrowed down my client base to about three different wonderful companies to work with. These are the companies that seem to really value freelancers and respect the work that they do. They pay well and do not make outrageous demands.
Freelancers of the world, I commend you. It can be a tough, thankless job. If you are making it work, that’s awesome. You deserve all of the flexibility and other benefits that come with creating your own job!