Monday, April 13, 2015

Walking Old Paths, Seeing Those Same Old Trees

For several years, I was doing a lot of freelance writing. I wrote articles and blog posts for various companies, and I made a pretty good hourly wage that was directed into my PayPal account. I mostly used that money to buy plane tickets and shoes. One of my clients paid for me to attend an international writing conference. It was a good life, but it also had its frustrations.

I got tired of the hustle of finding new work all the time and wanted to spend more of my creative energies on writing fiction, so I accepted an editing position at a local company that hired remote workers. It was a bit of a paycut if you look at hourly wage, but the work was steady and I still worked at home. I have a 401K, vacation time and a paycheck that goes to my checking account, which unfortunately goes to groceries and bills rather than Zappos and airlines. 

I had thought I would freelance on the side, but I haven't, until now. 

I've been getting emails from one of my old haunts. They are making changes for writers. I wonder if they are making things easier, better, taking out the hustle, perhaps. I still have accounts at several hubs for work, and picked up an article that I was particularly passionate about. 

I spent a Saturday afternoon writing this article that should have taken me less than an hour. The actual writing and research was easy, it was a subject I know well and had a lot to say. I had to check guidelines that changed in the last two years and find the format for references. I felt completely drained after sending it off, and remembered feeling like that every single day. I waited weeks for that article to be reviewed, which was new. That company used to have a quick turnaround time. After three weeks, I nearly gave up, and then I got an email with a lengthy rewrite request, one that would compromise the integrity of the article. And then I remembered that annoyance too. 

I don't like to burn bridges. I like to keep all doors of opportunity open, in case I need an escape route, but I am pretty certain I won't be opening the freelance writing door again unless an amazing new opportunity falls into my lap. Those old clients were great for me once, but they are not a fit anymore. I've seen those trees, I've walked that path, I remember now why I moved on. 

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