The print world chopped more jobs last week and the stock market continues to tank. This is a frightening time to work as a freelancer.
To help GalleyCat readers cope with this ongoing crisis, we caught up with freelance guru Michelle Goodman, author of the brand new book, My So-Called Freelance Life: How to Survive and Thrive as a Creative Professional for Hire. Every week she offers career advice at ABCNews.com, and her new book may become required reading for a new generation of struggling writers.
According to Goodman, all freelancers should do one simple task: “Diversify, diversify, diversify, she explained. “Have your two or three beats or niches, sure. But make sure that if you’re a health and fitness writer, you’re not just relying on the health glossies and lifestyle section of newspapers. Worm your way into online media outlets like Yahoo! and iVillage. Write for trade and alumni publications. And don’t turn you nose up at writing newsletters for the wellness and medical industries or writing marketing copy for companies selling vitamins, fitness equipment, or any other products in your area of expertise.”
She added: “Even if you just do one trade pub article or copywriting gig a quarter, it’s a foot in the door with another type of revenue stream should the bottom fall out and you lose all your MSM or newsstand work. Also, capitalize on (or beef up) any writing-related skills you have. If you can edit, project manage, broadcast, podcast, design, code, or teach, you’ve just greatly expanded your marketability and income-earning potential.”