October 6, 2012 at 8:12 am
Twice a year my publisher sends me a royalty check. It’s always exciting, like getting a scratch-off lottery ticket that’s guaranteed to win. You just don’t know how much is waiting for you. It can vary by thousands of dollars from statement to statement, so I have no idea how much I’m going to get each time. I’m just glad I’ve been able to eek out a bit of a living from my writing and I never cease to be amazed by it. As a freelancer, I consider these checks to be like my Christmas bonus.
I am really grateful that my book Half-Assed: A Weight-Loss Memoir continues to sell even four and a half years after its initial publication. I watch what I spend my money on rather carefully, so it’s humbling to know someone (or multiple someones) decided my writing was worth their cash. If you’ve ever bought a copy of the book, thank you! I truly appreciate it. It does directly affect me and my ability to do things like fly home for [...]
March 19, 2012 at 8:10 am
I’m a bit disappointed none of you have emailed me in the last month to make sure I wasn’t dead. It’s been over a month since my last entry, an entry devoted to my chronic illness, so weren’t you just a little bit worried? I could have been trapped under that IKEA desk I didn’t assemble properly.
Fortunately I haven’t been trapped under Swedish furniture. I’ve been trapped under a crippling amount of work that piled up after my working vacation in New York last month. The problem with a working vacation is that you don’t do a very good job of either. When I was working, I was bummed that I wasn’t vacationing. When I was vacationing, I felt like I should be working instead. Freelancing can be great because you can work anywhere, but you don’t really want to work in exotic locations. You want to vacation in exotic locations.
That said, I still had a pretty good time. My friends Zoey and Jasper let me stay in their place on the Upper West Side [...]
July 14, 2011 at 1:57 pm
Photo by LivingOS / by CC BY-SA 2.0
So, you know how I was saying I’ve been working for myself for two years? Yeah, well with that comes periods of time when you’re insanely busy and all non-essential tasks start to fall by the wayside, like blogging. It’s been a crazy week because I was racing to launch Stephanie O’Dea’s new site before I left to visit friends this weekend. (Where?
Here’s a hint. And another one.)
It can be hard for me to go on vacation because I am a one-woman shop. When I leave, the store closes. Yet, I still have to check my work email at least once a day to make sure no one’s site has exploded or been invaded by space weasels or something. I had to work for 9 days straight to get everything done that I needed to get done before I left, and even then I didn’t get it all done. So, yes, freelancing has its downsides but those downsides are a lot less worse than at other jobs I’ve [...]
July 8, 2011 at 8:29 am
Photo by Laughing Squid / by NCND 2.0 CC
It was exactly two years ago today that I said good-bye to my old job working for The Man and said hello to my new job working for The Woman, namely me. It’s been two whole years of designing webs and writing words and I’m still not broke! If I have a freelancing motto, that is my freelancing motto: Still not broke! I should put it on a T-shirt, but that frivolous expense would put me one step closer to being broke, so I’ll skip that. I have adopted that motto because when I first made the jump I wasn’t sure if I’d be living in a cardboard box under an underpass a year later. Nope, instead I’m living in a two-bedroom apartment that was once terrorized by wasps.
Yes, there have been challenges. Trying to find health insurance has been like trying to find Waldo. Right after I moved and bought a couch and a bed, I looked at my bank account and thought I’d be destitute [...]
May 25, 2011 at 7:54 am
Photo by takomabibelot / by Attribution 2.0 Generic CC
When I started freelancing full-time in July 2009, the most challenging problem I faced wasn’t how to get clients, how to figure out taxes, or how to track my invoices. The most challenging problem was figuring out how to get health insurance for a chronically ill, self-employed person. I live in the US and at this time health insurance is typically employer based. You get a job and get to be part of that employer’s group plan. Outside of that, some people qualify for Medicare or Medicaid. I don’t know much about those programs other than I don’t qualify for them, but if you’re old or poor you might.
I faced more difficulty than normal getting health insurance because I have a chronic headache and I’m overweight according to the BMI charts. Typically, the more you need health insurance, the less likely you are to be approved for it. Health insurance companies aim to make a profit or at least break even, so they don’t like to [...]