If you’re considering starting a side hustle as a freelance writer, you’re probably curious about the pros and cons, right?
Freelance writing can be amazing, it allows you to express your creativity, work on your own schedule, and earn some extra cash.
But, just like anything else, it’s not all rainbows and unicorns. There are challenges and drawbacks too.
That’s why in this article, I’ll take you through the pros and cons of freelance writing. By the end, you’ll have a clearer picture to help you decide if it’s the right path for you.
Pros of freelance writing
Let’s kick things off with the good stuff!
The first advantage of becoming a freelance writer is that you are no longer tied down to any place or location. So if you want to be a digital nomad, if you want to travel and work at the same time, then this is definitely one of the main advantages.
My husband happens to have a business overseas. So being able to just pack up my laptop and pop over there whenever I like is great. I don’t have to worry about requesting leave from work or anything like that. So that’s just one of the great advantages of being a writer, you can work from anywhere in the world, as long as you’ve got a Wi-Fi connection and your laptop.
The second advantage of being a freelance writer is autonomy. You get to set your own schedule, you’re not at the mercy of a boss or a manager. You can collect your work, and then you decide when you’re going to do it.
So if you’re an early bird and you love to get up at 6 am and smash out your work before lunchtime, you can do that. Or if you prefer to be a night owl and work at night time you can do that. The great thing about being a writer is you can work wherever and whenever you want.
Choose who you work with
The third great advantage of being a freelance writer is that you have the ability to actually fire any of your clients that you don’t enjoy working with. That’s the great thing about this side hustle is instead of having one boss, you’ve got maybe five or six clients at any one time.
If you’re not clicking with one of them, then you can simply say that you don’t want to work for them anymore. It’s as easy as sending an email or picking up the phone and giving them a call. Then you can just go out and find a new client to replace them. So that is another great advantage of being a writer is that you’re not trapped in any one sort of client relationship.
No income cap
And then the fourth great advantage of being a freelance writer is you don’t have an income cap! You can literally make as much or as little money as you want.
You can give yourself a raise whenever you like, you can employ what I call the PITA (“pain in the ass”) tax for any clients that are a bit more difficult. But essentially, the amount of money you make is entirely up to you.
So if you just want to work two hours a day and make enough money to cover your bills, you can do that. But if you want to put in more time, say put in a full 40 hours a week, you can make easily five figures a month.
So there really is no income cap, it’s all up to you. You’re not at the mercy of some predetermined salary.
So overall, being a freelance writer gives you greater flexibility, you’ve got a lot more control over who you work with, and what kind of projects you take on. The amount of money you make is entirely up to you.
You can work whenever, wherever. Alright, so now let’s talk about the downsides.
Cons of freelance writing
There are a few that you should probably be aware of!
Lots of clients to juggle
Now, the first downside is that it can sometimes feel like you’ve traded in one boss for like six bosses. Because, if you’ve got a lot of clients on at one time, they’re all emailing you saying “Hey, when’s this going to be ready?” It can get very overwhelming very quickly.
So you want to be careful with you know how much work you take on and the people that you work with.
If you start working with someone and it becomes clear that it’s not the right fit, it’s better to just cut them loose as early as possible. Fire the client and move on because you’re going to save yourself a lot of time and heartache by cutting the cord sooner rather than later.
Cash flow issues
Okay, the second downside is that cash flow can be an issue. Especially if you’re only sending out invoices once a month.
So at the moment, I’ve got a mix of clients where a few of them are only on once-a-month invoices and then a few others I’ll send out invoices once a fortnight.
That just helps to make sure that there’s some money coming in all the time. Sometimes it can get to the point where it’s a few days before your home loan payment is due and you’re still waiting on, a $3,000 invoice to be paid. It can get a little bit stressful.
You do need to pay attention to your cash flow and make sure you’re sending out invoices regularly. You’ve also got to chase up late invoices too (there will be a few clients that will pay you late), especially when you’ve got bills to pay.
Too much freedom isn’t always a good thing
And then the third disadvantage is that too much freedom can be a bad thing, especially if you’re like me, and you struggle with self-discipline.
It’s very easy to get distracted and put client projects off to the last minute.
It’s very easy to slip off track and it does end up hurting your ability to create income if you’re putting things off and leaving things for the last minute. Plus you want to keep your clients happy as well!
So those are the pros and cons of becoming a freelance writer! Please share any questions or comments in the comment section below.
And if you’d like to download my free writing checklist, you can grab your copy here.