Signs of success, and the "I'm a freelance writer" skit

By Katharine Swan On Saturday, February 18, 2006 At 12:47 AM


Not very long ago, I was crowing about the sense that my workload was finally picking up. In only a few short weeks, it seems my monthly freelancing income has already almost doubled! I'm ecstatic about that, because it means that I was right when I felt I was finally starting to get somewhere substantial.

However, it's sometimes hard explaining that to other people. In the four months that I've been freelancing, I've learned to expect one of two reactions from people when I tell them I'm a freelance writer: either they light up and say, "Oh, I used to want to write!" or they kind of frown at me and simply say, "Oh." (The second reaction is more common from people who want my money for some product or service.) It's rather like asking people whether the glass is half full or half empty. The more I hear the first type of reaction, the more I realize how idealistic these people are - they likely have no clue how much time and work it takes to get started as a freelance writer. It's still flattering, though, to hear the envy and admiration. The other kind of people are starting to offend me a bit, however. You can practically hear the disdain dripping from their voice. I want to tell them, "Hey, at least I like what I do - and why don't you look me up in five years and see how disdainful you are then?" Not that I think I'll be wildly successful in five years (well, not that I'm counting on it), but I'm sure I'll be better off than they're imagining!

And, heck, if this doubling trend keeps it up, I could be doing pretty darn well by that time, after all!

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Katharine Swan is a full-time freelance writer with more than 5 years of professional writing experience. In addition to maintaining several personal blogs, she writes a variety of online marketing materials for clients, including company blogs, articles, and press releases. In her free time, she spends time with her horse, reads, and writes fiction.

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