Chances are that if you’re a freelance writer, some of the actions that have occurred in the past week have seriously jeopardized or dramatically affected your ability to survive.
Don’t let a single person tell you that your profession isn’t a real job.
No matter how hard it gets, do something every day to ensure that you stay writing.
If you have to take non-writing work, make sure that you’ve set aside enough time for your real work. Stay writing.
Be sure to eat, sleep, rest, and see friends. But don’t slack off. Right now, you’re probably working harder than you’ve ever had to before. Yes, it’s tough. But if you’re a real writer, you’re tough. Just stay writing.
Look to your friends, family, and loved ones and tell them what your situation is. You’ve probably been there for them. Now it’s time for them to be there for you. See if they can do anything to ensure that you stay writing.
Drop a line to other writers and ensure that they stay writing. (If you need moral support, email me and I’ll do my best to respond.)
If you have not been paid for a piece that has been published more than thirty days ago, then pick up the phone, track down the appropriate person, and demand immediate payment. Don’t let them string you along. Don’t accept any bullshit excuses. You are just as much a laborer as anybody else. And this payment will help you to stay alive and stay writing.
If you are an editor, fight tooth and nail for more freelance work in your section. Even if it’s just one extra assignment in the budget, that’s one person who you’ve managed to help stay writing.
If you do not stay writing, then you are not a real writer. Period. Move over, pursue some other line of work, and step aside for someone who is willing to bust her ass every day and willing to write to the best of her ability.
If you are turning in lazy writing, then either improve your work or get out of this business. With so many unemployed writers, with possibly more jobs that are going to be cut, it is now more important than ever that writers demonstrate why writing is important. And that means writing at the top of your game.
Stay writing. And write so well that not a single soul can knock you down.
© 2008, Edward Champion. All rights reserved.