April 2, 2014 Leave a comment
Sometimes I wonder if I’m losing it. Not the proverbial “it” like my sanity and my health and my raw charisma – that’s never going to leave me. But sometimes, when it’s 11:45 at night, and I’ve heard from yet another opportunity that they’re just not interested in my brand of me, I lie in bed and ask myself why I think I can still get away with calling myself a writer.
Let’s be honest, I haven’t produced a ton of original content in the last few months. It’s been a lot of lighter weight pieces that are image and quip heavy rather than thoughtful or provoking.
Freelancing can suck. If you’ve never done it, here’s what you learn your first day and then continue to learn for the following months and sometimes years: There is no money. There is no money for your stories. No one wants to hire you.
And here’s the biggest lesson:
They want your content. Oh yes. They will take your content, and they will give you a byline, and you should be grateful that you have the opportunity.
I’ve been freelancing for 3 years now while I work a full-time job. That means writing, researching, editing and posting all in my free time and on my own dime. There are frequently still deadlines. There is also a lot of self-management. The stuff I write goes on the internet and I try to take a really positive spin on things in general so I don’t get a lot of blowback but when I do, it tends to be vicious.
God forbid a girl have an opinion about politics or comic books. That is simply not done.
But I digress.
I’m having one of these moments right now – a moment when nothing seems to be working out. It’s all I can think about. It’s all I can talk about. My friends are sick of it – I’ve probably alienated a number of them at this point. And yes I know that I’m reaching that precipice where I will actually be able to be productive in the very near future. But right now, everything is hard and embittering.
Now I’m going to go and slog up my hill with my boulder on my back – all of my own making I might add because I am fully aware of the privileged place from which I speak – and I’m going to get my shit together and write the ideas that I’ve been sitting on for two weeks. Because even if I’m not getting paid, I’m getting a byline. And maybe someday that will be edible.