Monday, October 31, 2011

freelancing, whoddathunkit!

Like most women with children, my professional career took a backseat to my little Miss Em duties the minute she was born (probably the minute she was conceived). Women tend to do that, pick family-rearing over their current jobs, take a sabbatical, temporary maternity leave, permanent maternity leave, etc. That's why the business world  tends to promote men over them. And no, it doesn't work like that for men, unless they purposefully choose to be their family's Mr. Mom.

It's unfair, it sucks, we should change it as a society, yeah, yeah, I agree. But not quite so boisterously as before I became a full-fledged member of that demographic, because my mom-job is the most important and the best job I have ever had, and likely ever will. So I'm not complainin'. I'm just sayin'!

Now if I could only be there for my kid (flexible hours) but have a fulfilling job nevertheless (flexible hours) where I wouldn't be penalized for wanting to prioritize differently (flexible hours)?

But aha! <cue in the aha music>

the magic panacea to my career problems.
(Seriously, they should be paying me for this.)

If you are a writer or blogger, you can totally pull this off as a steady paying gig. Here's how it works:  
  1. Sign up: fill out a profile, write a little intro about yourself, throw in some contact info. Be sure to list credentials you can substantiate once people ask to see your portfolio. Can't say "I am good at writing about astrophysics" when really, you have no clue, because they will ask to see a writing sample about it at some point.
  2. Check out the job offers: Here's where it's really cool, you get to pick your own assignments. You don't have to get stuck performing a task that you hate because it's part of your 9-5 package. Each assignment is your choice, and furthermore...
  3. Pick your price: It's completely up to you how much (or little) you charge, if you can get away with it. The system works on competitive bidding, but honestly, I was passed over on a job for someone who charged considerably more than me. So it's not always the fee the clients take into consideration, though it IS a big factor.  
  4. Work at your pace on a project that you chose for a fee that you set: This is the sweet deal. You can work in the middle of the night, you can wake up at the crack of dawn, it's totally up to you. As long as you submit the work within the deadline (or slightly before to impress your client), they don't really care how/when you did it.
  5. Get paid: This is the best part. It's automatic, more or less. Elance has this nifty escrow system for fixed job prices (and payment verification for hourly jobs) where the client who posts the job commits to the budget ahead of time. So when you are done, you just mark your job as complete to send a bill and presto, you get paid. Of course there's always some asshole who will find a way to cheat you, but I have yet to come across any. It seems that the system is fairly secure in its conception and delivery.

I know I saw something on the Elance site about referring people and getting points, or money, or some sort of incentive, but I don't care to look for it right now. This blog is not for peddling stuff to my readers. But if you think this is up your alley and you would like to give me credit for telling you about it, let me know so I'll figure out how to do it. 

You can always send me a Veuve Cliquot as a token of your appreciation. 
I think I can put that to better use :)


At 11/2/11, 2:00 PM , Anonymous Christine said...

OHh.. this is interesting. Going to bookmark this page and come back to it when I have time to do a bit more writing. Thanks for sharing this!

At 11/2/11, 10:22 PM , Blogger Unknown said...

Christine, last week I saw a job proposal for writing a foodie newsletter. Some of the contracts up for bid are for really cool stuff (and this one was right up your alley, especially with those gorgeous pictures you take).


Post a Comment

This blog has been moved. No need to leave comments, they will not show...

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home