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Tempted to Quit Freelance Writing?

quit freelance writingI don’t know a single writer who isn’t tempted to quit freelance writing at least once in a while.

While there are all sorts of reasons people quit freelance writing my hunch is the two biggest are:

(1) consistently not making enough money and

(2) boredom with the business and the writing they are doing now.

Not consistently making enough money

The big problem is writers tend to be creative types and (including myself here) we don’t really like marketing much. The other part of this is we’re not particularly good at consistency in business – writing is our strength and what we love to do. The other stuff not so much.

This is usually curable. Assuming you write reasonably well and can follow most of the advice you find here and elsewhere, you too can learn to run your business and do your marketing well enough to survive quite nicely, bringing in not a fortune usually, but a decent living.

There is absolutely no shame in discovering that you can’t keep all the balls in the air that are required to make your business a success. In fact, if this is you the quicker you discover it and accept it the less agony you’ll go through.

Boredom with your business and your writing

Writing and creating and running a business can get old. It’s a lot of work. And much of that work is fairly repetitive. In fact, a good deal of the business side is rinse and repeat over and over again. Which means we do have a chance to really master it, but we also can get bored out of our skulls with it.

Our writing can get boring too… if we’re not writing about things we care about. The cure for that is often a change in topic or niche. Over my career I’ve covered everything from addiction, through sports to writing about freelance writing. I’ve branched off in all sorts of directions.

Another way I’ve brought life to my writing is to become willing to tell more and more of my own, personal truth.

Feel free to experiment with your writing and see where that takes you.

If you decide to quit freelance writing

There may come a point when you discover you really don’t want to earn your living writing anymore, at least while you’re working for yourself. Maybe a regular 9-5 job would suit you better, at least at this time of your life. Maybe you want to throw it all over and cruise the south Pacific. I did that once for five months equipped with only paper and ink. It was lovely and I highly recommend it. Today, with computers, you can take your business with you if you choose.

The decision to quit freelance writing is yours to make. Quit or continue, change up what you’re doing or the way you’re doing it. Experiment, try new things or bringing new energy to old things or something in between. Life is to be lived and some tell us our real job is to be love and be happy.

Write well, and often, if that’s your choice.

Anne Wayman, freelance writer



Photo by Javier Allegue Barros on Unsplash

{ 10 comments… add one }
  • Nice that you’re combining blogging with your passion.

  • Thanks for this article! It’s so close to home with me. I quit freelance writing last years for the same reasons provided plus more. I didn’t want to write forever so I needed a change. I’m a formulation chemist (food, personal care, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, etc) and consultant and I LOVE it! I have work that’s never boring and money’s always rolling in. I also have time for self-care. Quitting was the right choice for me. I still blog for myself because I do love to write, not just as a career. Thanks!
    Dr. Krystal recently posted..Can You Really Find a Great Formulator or Cosmetic Chemist on the Cheap?My Profile

  • And I’m feeling better again about writing about writing. It comes and goes.

  • You must be reading my mind today, Anne. Definitely not feeling the job right now. It’s all sameness.
    I love what I do, but even the things you love can be boring sometimes. Plus, I’ve been going through a bunch of edits with a favorite editor and for some reason, we can’t find the right place where he’s happy with my articles and I’m clearer than mud. 😉 I’m so fortunate he’s this patient.

    But I’m going through a medication switch, which often leaves me feeling out to sea and weepy or depressed briefly. And can I just say I need a vacation?

  • Interesting… so you’d have a bookkeeper and a marketing person as part of the group? And they’d what, get paid to do your bookkeeping and marketing? I like it. Tell us more.

  • I recognize that.

  • Well said.

  • Hi Anne,

    If you like writing but you feel you’re not good enough, don’t give up. The more you practice something the better you become, everybody knows that. Writing isn’t an exception to this rule. Write and read as much as you can and you will become the writer you always wished you were.

    Awesome post
    William Denver recently posted..CommentLuv Blogs Search – Better than a ListMy Profile

  • I can totally understand the frustration. Sometimes I feel like I work in a bubble and writing and sitting in front of a computer all day is not inspiring. If I don’t go deeper into my own personal truth it feels like a waste of time. It is a beautiful thing when someone reaches out and shares how your words have changed your life and then in that moment it all feels worth it!
    Misty Summers recently posted..The Power Of Focus And Imagination – Daily InspirationMy Profile

  • Claudia Previn

    It’s the business end that I feint and flail and fail at despite the best of intentions and periodic renewed enthusiasm. I just plain hate it and avoid it and was finally admitting it to a friend (who runs his own successful business) who suggested finding friends or colleagues who like to do the business-related processes I resist and perhaps create a partnership of sorts in which we support each other with the skills we do well while helping the other(s) with the stuff they don’t. I’m feeling some more wind in my sails, considering that idea.

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