Becoming a freelance writer

Becoming a freelance writer — I’m sharing this guest post by Laura-Jane Koers, who previously wrote about leaping out of your comfort zone. In addition to leaving the West Coast to remodel a house on Prince Edward Island, Laura-Jane has decided to become a consultant and freelance writer. Here’s part one of her story about the transition.

Becoming a Freelance Writer: Embarking on a New Career as a Consultant

I had a normal childhood in most respects. But while my friends had television and Nintendo, my parents armed me with a worn library card and a well-stocked bookshelf. So perhaps it’s no surprise that I’ve always been driven to become a writer.

Choosing a Career Path

Plagued with self-doubt, I tried to ignore my inclination toward making a career out of writing. I did my best to quell that little voice that whispered, “You must write”.

Instead, I went to university and studied political science. After graduation, I worked in a number of offices, all the while telling that little voice to keep its opinion to itself.

But after a decade of non-fulfilling work, I began to question my career choice. Why had I spent ten years ignoring the inner voice that hissed, “You should be writing”? If my life had suddenly come to an end, would I have regretted spending years achieving my boss’ goals instead of my own?

Scared to Take Risks

If a friend had told me that she felt a strong desire to change careers, I would have told her to jump in head-first. I’d have cheered, “Go for it! You can do it!” But when it came to my own career, I was oblivious to the fact that I’d been ignoring my own goals while encouraging others to try theirs. 

Why was I scared to try writing as a career? What was I afraid of? Becoming a writer had been my dream ever since I could remember. I was afraid that if I tried to achieve my dream, I might realize that I wasn’t as skilled a writer as I thought I was. What if I gave writing everything I had, and I failed miserably? Oh, the humanity!

But then I asked myself what was worse, trying to achieve one’s dream and failing, or not trying at all? At least if I tried my hand at professional writing, I had a chance at success. If I didn’t try, my failure was certain.

Taking the Plunge

So there I was. I’d convinced my inner fears that everything would be all right no matter what happened.

I could ignore my inner calling no longer. I owed it to the little voice, and I owed it to myself. But what I didn’t know was how to get started.

See part 2 and part 3. Laura-Jane Koers is a freelance writer currently living on Prince Edward Island, in Canada. Since writing this article, she has gone on to become co-founder of Brightflock Consulting.