Thursday, December 23, 2010

A Day in the Life of a Freelancer

After 25 plus years of doing what I do, if you asked any of my family members what I do for a living, they would probably say, "She writes" and that would be it. To be honest, even though they share this house with me daily and hear me rant loudly and frequently, they have little of idea of what I actually do. It is just too hard to explain.

For example, take yesterday. I spent about 10 or 11 hours working. I researched how lighthouses were built for a book I'm writing in a few days . . . wrote a bunch of college level questions for a course on educational technology planning . . . revised a book I recently wrote about Afghanistan . . . applied for three new jobs . . . and interviewed two people by email for a book I'm doing on ancestry. . . . filled out an instructional design document for a college course . . . . and that isn't even everything (I am guessing your eyes are glazing over by now so I will stop here.)

Most of the time, I love my job. It's hard and demanding but it's also diverse and I can do it at home in my pjs. Today is different. I was contacted by a company six weeks ago about a project. Was I available? Sure. Ok . . . assignment coming any day. . . . soon . . . . pretty soon . . . just hold on. It came through on Tuesday. I got a call saying we need you in on a conference call in 30 minutes . . I couldn't make that was I was in the middle of a store when they called. Ok, we will send you all the documents you need. They did . . . OODLES of stuff that was incredibly confusing to piece together. Then, here's the kicker. They gave me 48 hours to get it done. Yes, the week of Christmas, new project, no training and I was given 48 hours. I stayed up late last night and got up early this morning and worked on it. Skipped my morning coffee run with the hubby. Sent it. Now guess what? It came back. I did it all wrong. I rewrote it. Sent it. Guess what? Still wrong. Talk about frustration for everyone involved. So, after more than EIGHT hours of working on it, they gave the assignment to someone else. I don't get paid for a single word.

Today is NOT one of the days I love my job.


Ami said...


Only because the f word is at home on my blog... not so much on yours.


Michael said...

Indeed. That isn't right. But, as I keep trying to teach my son, when they have the gold, they make the rules.

Anonymous said...

As a freelancer, a little more professionalism is warranted here while accepting projects. Never work on them (even the samples) without signing the papers.

WritingGoddess said...

Hey there. Thanks for leaving a comment. I would like to point out, however, that I am a professional. I've written for this company many times in the past and they've always been on the up and up with me. When they called me for a project, I had no reason to doubt them. To be honest, in this business, if I didn't start writing until I got the contract, I'd have a lot less work. In 25 plus years, I've virtually never been burned like I was on this one.

Gary & Bev said...

So sorry that you were surprised and betrayed by this company. It truly is a betrayal.

Can you send them a letter from your lawyer? Get Ami to write it. I am sure she would do a GOOD job. :D:D

Love you!!