Disability is one of those things that can happen suddenly. Or it can develop over a period of years. It can also be a fact of life that you’ve dealt with since birth. It’s a challenge for those affected.
From hearing loss, to brain injuries, and degenerative diseases, there are freelancers working with all sorts of disabilities. The good news is that it’s possible to do well as a freelancer with a disability
Learn how freelancers with disabilities can achieve great success by structuring their workflow, using assistive technology, and pushing forward with determination. Whether you struggle as a freelancer with a disability or not, read on, there are some inspiring stories that follow. Continue Reading
This is a tale of what happens when an enterprising freelancer becomes a mother.
Ever tried to teach a toddler how to read? Holding the little one’s attention long enough to get him familiar with the alphabet is quite a task.
Julie starts Syver Rustad out with alphabetical flash cards. She’s disappointed to find that Syver’s flash cards show images of narwhals, unicorns, and other creatures one doesn’t encounter in Arizona. So, she puts her artistic skills to work and makes flash cards that feature native wildlife. Continue Reading
Every year, legions of writers start a blog with the idea of turning it into a moneymaker through ads, ebooks, or other passive-income strategies.
But there’s a faster way to use your blog to earn. It doesn’t require that you build a huge audience, either.
You can use your freelance blog as a portfolio sample to get freelance blogging gigs. That’s what UK-based freelancer Tom Ewer discovered — quite by accident — shortly after quitting his job and starting his blog Leaving Work Behind in mid-2011. He quit his full-time job in early 2012 to work full-time on his blog. Continue Reading
It’s easy to say that you’re a coach. Way too easy.
You’ve probably met these folks at networking meetings. As you exchange business cards, you’re wondering how they could guide you through anything more complicated than hard-boiling an egg.
Then there’s Nick Usborne. If you’ve been in the copywriting world for any length of time, you know that Usborne is The Guy. He deserves the same status in the freelancing world, because he’s been doing it for over 30 years. He’s written numerous books and written both online and off for top companies, such as Citibank, Fidelity Investments, New York Times, Reuters, AOL, MSN, WebEx, and others. Add to that lengthy resume, the word “coach.”
Let’s learn more about the Nick Usborne approach to helping freelancers unlock their potential and reach new heights with their businesses. Continue Reading
Many creative freelancers struggle in their businesses because they don’t do enough promotion.
Face it, promotion doesn’t have the greatest reputation. It’s as if you’re supposed to don a promotion hat that turns you into one of those overly gregarious car salesmen.
Well, here comes Alex Mathers from a help site for creatives called the Red Lemon Club. His advice for the rest of us? Promote less.
There are many freelancer stories that start with the wonderful day you stomped out of your full-time job and became self-employed. Or maybe the boss beat you to the punch and said “You’re fired!”
Then there’s Ross Hudgens. You won’t talk to him for very long before you realize that Ross is a Man with a Plan.
In a recent post on his blog, Ross announced that he’d be leaving the best job he’d ever had to become an entrepreneur. And this job had it all – fat paycheck, interesting work, even a comfortable desk chair!
It was a wonderful environment for Ross to use his digital marketing expertise. Visit the Ross Hudgens Digital Marketing blog and you’ll see that he really knows his stuff. Plenty of long, chewy posts on achieving high search engine rankings by adding the right keywords to your site, improving your site’s link popularity, and developing quality content.
In short, Ross is the kind of guy a company would really want to keep on the payroll.So, why was he leaving his great job? Especially in this crummy economy? Continue Reading
Ever dreamed of hitting the road and picking up interesting freelancing gigs along the way? Imagine it. Finishing a client project in Rio. Or landing one in Paris.
This is one of those stories that I love to write. Because I’ve lived a similar dream. For 12 years, my life revolved around bicycling in all 50 of the United States. Some of my travels happened when I was between jobs. Others took place while I was vacationing from the last full-time job I had before becoming a freelancer.
My All-American Bicycling Experience made me very aware of the notion that there’s more to life than staying in one place, climbing a career ladder, and amassing a pile of possessions. It’s my pleasure to introduce three kindred spirits to the FreelanceSwitch community.
This is an article about a trio of freelancers who aren’t just dreaming, they’re doing. Meet Jessica and Kobus Mans, and Jessica’s brother, Jared McCaffree. Continue Reading
It’s always nice to hear a good success story. That’s what struck me when I read about Andrea Wren. The UK-based freelance journalist successfully made a career out of freelance writing with no previous experience or training. Andrea is proof that as long as you can write well, you can start a thriving writing career at any time.
Q: Give our readers your “story” in a nutshell.
When it came to my higher education I was a late starter, enrolling for my Bachelor’s degree once my son began school. I graduated with a First Class Honors in Applied Human Communication in 1999, working in several jobs before getting recruited as a specialist drug and alcohol worker within a youth offending team in 2000.
I loved this job for a couple of years but after the personal crisis of my son’s father dying in 2002, it became stressful. I ended up having to take time off work with anxiety in May 2004. I was so desperate to change my work-life balance and live on my own terms, it was at this point I decided “I want to be a writer” and follow my childhood dreams.
I began researching exactly how I could make it happen for myself, then started making connections, building a portfolio and contacting editors with ideas. Once I’d returned to work two months later in July, I’d received my first paid freelance writing commission, a travel feature, and was over the moon! Continue Reading
Around here, Thursday Bram is best known as the one who answers questions sent to Ask FreelanceSwitch.
But did you know that she’s been writing since high school? That she came from a family of entrepreneurs and has always expected to run her own business? And that the deal-breaker between Thursday and the employment world had to do with shoes?
Thursday took a job right out out of college – and it lasted a week and a half. “I can’t wear shoes all day!” she says.
Nowadays, Thursday enjoys her shoeless freelance freedom from her home in a rural area between Washington, DC and Baltimore, Maryland. She hails from a town so small that it’s not even incorporated. There isn’t much more to the place than a post office. Better yet, “There are cows three miles from my house!”
If you could define a beat for Thursday’s article writing, it would be small business and personal finance.
Not what you’d expect from one of the most densely populated areas of the United States.
In addition to handling Ask FreelanceSwitch and contributing well over 100 articles to this site since 2008, Thursday’s writing and blogging credits include CNET, GigaOm, Grow Smart Business, Lifehack, Matter Network, OneVoteMatters.com, Web Worker Daily, and Wise Bread.
If you could define a beat for Thursday’s article writing, it would be small business and personal finance. She knows of what she speaks. Thursday finished her undergraduate degree with a third of the debt of the average student. And she expects to complete graduate school with no additional debt. Continue Reading
Sometimes, the freelance world can seem like one big sea with too many fishes. There are plenty of designers, writers, crafters–but then there are a few that stand out. You know the type…you look at their work and you know they are the real deal.
Courtney Mason is that type of illustrator. With a glowing portfolio full of inspiring work and Lemonaid Illustration as her agent, Courtney’s career has gotten off on the right track.
It started with two degrees in graphic design, but it’s her real-world experience and clients such as Hyundai, Ford and Sony/BMG that have helped her carve out her own unique niche. And with a business name like Punky Chicken, well, how can you not be intrigued? Continue Reading
Every freelancer out there has a bag of tricks they wouldn’t want to do work without—whether it’s their computer, useful software, or their favorite radio station. Find out what sorts of things help FreelanceSwitch.com contributors during their workday.
Perhaps their advice will inspire you to try something new, or reaffirm that what you currently use is the best in the biz.
I can enjoy a huge screen at home for digging into some in-depth work, and take the super lightweight MacBook Air on the road. My iPhone never leaves my side, and I’m constantly amazed at how much work I can get done on such a tiny device. –David Appleyard
Nicole Ouellette’s journey from full-time employee to small business owner isn’t atypical of many other young entrepreneurs. But it’s her perseverance and success that makes for an interesting story.
Nicole, a native of Fort Kent, Maine (as far north as you can go without being in Quebec, Canada) was working at a weekly newspaper in Ellsworth, Maine, when the idea for her small business took root.
When she took the job as a web content editor, she took a huge pay cut. She started a blog about personal finance where she wrote about how she was learning to live on less money in September 2007. That blog, breakingeveninc.com, started out as a fun project and turned into something she really cared about. “I started caring that people were actually reading my blog,” Ouellette says. “That’s when I started marketing it and trying to find a way to publicize what I was doing.”
It wasn’t until someone came into her office at the paper and asked Ouellette to help her start her own blog—and told her she would pay her to do it—that Ouellette thought there might be a market for her skills. “No one in the small, coastal Maine community where I lived was doing what I did—helping small business owners learn how to blog, improve their search engine rank, and leverage social media to their advantage,” she says. Continue Reading