Are we a match made in freelance writing heaven?
Look, not everybody is meant to be. I’ve been in unrequited love and people have been in unrequited love with me, and the same is probably true for you, and it’s definitely true for the client-writer relationship. I’ve worked with clients who I can’t stand but who love my writing, and I’ve worked with clients who I love to bits but who can’t stand me. And then sometimes everything aligns perfectly, which either means we both hate the other or we both love each other.
This is kinda how it works here, too. We may be a perfect fit. Or, maybe one of us is going to go to sleep tonight wondering if it was me, not you.
To start, let me just say that, somewhere deep inside, I really do love all of my writing brothers and sisters. I may not like everyone’s motivations to become a writer, I may not like the actual words you put to paper, and I definitely don’t love egotism of any sort, but if you’re a person who puts pen to paper (or fingertip to keyboard) and you feel like you have something that has to be said, then on a very raw, primitive level, we are alike, and therefore I love you.
That said, I’m not here to teach anybody how to write. There are a lot of sources out there for that, but I’m not one of them. You may have natural talent that doesn’t need any tweaking, you may have natural talent that could benefit from some tweaking, you may not have a drop of talent at all right now but you’re an excellent student and can learn… I don’t know. I don’t even know if a person without a gift for writing can learn to write. That’s not for me to decide.
Here’s what I do care about:
- First and foremost, you have some positive track record of producing copy that clients like. You’ve had clients return to you for more work; you’ve had them refer you to other clients and then those clients have been happy with your work; you’ve had direct positive feedback that went something like, “This is exactly what I wanted!” or “This is great, I didn’t even have to make any changes to it.” You’ve experienced something like that, even once, in your freelance writing career.
- That positive feedback has come from someone who knows what they’re talking about and who doesn’t have a reason to sugarcoat it. So, your aunt doesn’t count, and neither does that person who you just wrote a rave review for so they have to be nice to you. Also, if you have a nagging feeling that the “professional” who you wrote website copy for can’t put an English sentence together themselves, I would take their praise with a grain of salt – we write because others can’t or don’t want to, but there still should be some level of literacy we expect from the clients whose opinion we trust.
- You understand that being a freelance writer has a lot – a whole lot – of admin and customer service and un-fun, sometimes stressful business-y things to it, and you’re okay with that and also dedicated to finding the best, most professional and fastest ways to get through that so you can get to the actual writing that makes your heart sing.
But if you don’t, please don’t go away just yet. I may still be able to help you. Let’s chat to answer some of your questions, like:
- What does it mean when a client seems happy with my work – like, because they didn’t ask for a first or second round of revisions – but they’re giving me the silent treatment?
- I think I did excellent work for a client, but they’re not actually running their business so great, so how does this impact me and my portfolio, and how much should I care about their feedback?
- I’m totally up for anything and everything that comes with being a freelance writer, but…what does come with being a freelance writer?
If any of those questions are banging around in your head, reach out to me – I don’t know how or if we can work together, but I do know I can answer those questions.