What is it that you do all day? This is a question that people who work from home get asked quite often. The short answer to that question is “a lot.” Being a freelance writer takes discipline, skill, and a willingness to buckle down and do the work. Being a freelance writer is only about 10% getting to be creative. It’s not like in the movies where writers are depicted as having lives of leisure. Still, while being a freelancer has its ups and downs, there is something to be said for not having to work a 9 to 5 job to make ends meet.
However, in order to be a freelance writer, you have got to be productive. While there are many freelance productivity apps on the market to help you, it really comes down to how much willpower you have and your determination to get the job done. If you find yourself distracted and unable to focus on your freelance writing career, try the productivity tips below to get yourself back on track.
One of the biggest issues reported by freelance writers everywhere is that they have a hard time being productive because of daily distractions. Whether it’s the ringing of the telephone or the UPS man delivering packages to the door, something always happens to shift the focus away from writing and work. Of course, you can’t just leave packages sitting on the doorstep until you finish that article or the chapter you’re working on, not with the state of the world today. One option is to ensure package security by looking into smart lock options in your area. This way you can get your work completed then head out to pick up the package you’ve been waiting on.
Schedule Your Workday
Plan your day as if you were going into the office. Get up in time to eat breakfast, get dressed, and be ready to work at the beginning of the workday. For some, just the act of changing into jeans and out of their pajamas is enough to shift the focus from home to office. Scheduling your workday and sticking to that routine will help you remain focused, which means you get more done.
Organize Your Task List
Creating can be exhausting. Organizing your task list and breaking it down into blocks of manageable goals can be a lifesaver. For example, schedule research, interviewing, and administrative work in one block, brainstorming, note-taking, and writing in another and so on until your task list is complete. A task list gets derailed easily with a difficult chapter or a rush order, but try to stick to that task list as much as you can.
Keep Up with Industry Trends
You’re never too old to learn something new. The publishing world is always changing, so if you’re an author, it behooves you to keep up with industry trends. Amazon ads for authors is another trend well worth looking into to generate some extra pennies. Even if you’re a freelance writer who doesn’t write books, Google and other industry leaders are always changing, so keeping up with the times can only improve your work and your productivity.
Know When it’s Quitting Time
As a freelance writer, it’s hard to shut the door to your office and reenter home life. Time is money and when the office is only a few feet away, it’s easy to fall into the mindset of feeling like you have to work all the time. Don’t let it happen to you. Burnout is the quickest way to defeat in the freelance world. When the day is done, close the office door and leave work behind until the next morning.
These are just a few tips to make life as a freelance writer easier and more productive. Choose which ones work best for you and leave the others behind.