I suppose this is what you might call the feeling you get when you are in danger of losing a client. It’s not pleasant. There is an element of existential dread because your clients are your source of income. And when you lose one, your income shrinks.
I’m a freelance writer. I have currently one main client I am working for, and it’s been a good working relationship for over six years. Sometimes there has been more work, other times less. They’ve gone through changes as well since they’ve been swallowed by bigger companies several times over the years.
But my main contact has remained the same and he always wanted me to stay on board, which I was happy to do.
Last year, in the wake of the pandemic, I had to let go of a client who had become unreachable and only paid my invoices after I had to remind him repeatedly. He always did pay but having to chase my money made me so anxious that I didn’t want to deal with him anymore. Plus, he never explained what happened.
That left me with one main client as well as another one who only sporadically requested content from me. I made it work and ended up getting enough assignments from my main client to keep going.
After the latest change on their end, I received a new contract to work as a freelance contractor and a set new hourly rate, which is what they preferred to work with. That was fine by me and for the last few months, this has been working quite nicely. I log my hours with my main contact, whom I’ve been working with for such a long time now and things seemed to go smoothly.
But now it has been three weeks since my last assignment and I’ve almost completed the work I was given to keep me going when nothing more urgent was coming in. Once I will have submitted that, I am out of work and that does not feel good.
Thus far, I have always received new assignments, even when work was slow on their end. And I am still meeting the minimum income threshold that I have set myself for my freelance work. But I have no security beyond that.
My other job earns me enough to pay all my bills. So that is covered. But since I work only part-time, it doesn’t earn me enough to help save money for the more pleasant things in life. I can make do for a while. But that’s really not where I want to be right now.
I need more work. I need other streams of income. Perhaps new clients. Or, ideally, I make money with my own blog, right here.
It takes time to build an audience, however. And even more so one that is willing to support your work. I want to offer something that is of value to someone. Ideally, to more than just someone but to many people.
Apart from these musings I have been sharing these last few days, this blog is also meant to provide actual content about minimalism, traveling, and photography. And there is the creative writing I ought to be doing.
I guess I’m going to have to stop musing and get started writing.
2 thoughts on “Freelance anxiety”
I totally get your worries about freelancing. Am in the same boat, only I actually don’t want to write for a living, more than I want to make a living out of my writing, if that makes any sense. Pretty ambitious, but it’s looking a bit too lofty for me at the moment. But we’ll see, eh? Anyway, wishing you all the best!
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I get what you mean and it’s totally the same for me, making a living from my writing. It takes a lot of work, but it’ll be worth it. Wishing you the best as well 🙂