This was kind of a rough week for me professionally. It started out alright on Monday with everything rolling along as normal, but then on Tuesday I realized that one of my contracts had run out. I talked to my editor and he told me that due to budget problems, he couldn’t for-sure send me another contract right now. This particular gig is actually one of my bigger sources of income as well as regular work. One of the good things about freelancing for so many different places is that even if something like this does happen, it won’t completely ruin me, but it definitely messes with my head. Will the contract get renewed? Will it get changed? Sure, I was told that it was a budget thing, but is it REALLY? How am I going to make up that fairly hefty chunk of change I’ll be missing out on? Do I suck?
Those are the questions that plagued me this week. I know I should just take things at face value and move on, but I get kind of obsessive and sensitive about things related to my writing abilities and especially the income I bring in for my growing family. Knowing that we’ll have another mouth to feed in five to six months weighs on me pretty heavily, even though I know how valuable it is to be able to stay home and raise our child while still making money by freelancing.
But then I realized that I had plenty of avenues I wasn’t fully taking advantage of. See, one of the problems with having so many set assignments is that I get set in my ways, but my new found lack of work shakes things up a bit. Without a set amount of work, I’ve got to be more of a hustler and pitch like crazy. I started talking to some of my other editors, said I was up for more kinds of work and pitched some ideas that got accepted. Right now, those things don’t quite make up for the potential loss of the aforementioned contract, but they definitely help and anything that brings in more work is a good thing. Plus, you never know how working with one person will help you out in the future. So, after a few dark days, I’ve come out on the other side feeling a lot better and feeling a little rejuvenated when it comes to my writing. I also set up shop at the dinner table when working at home instead of the couch which feels a little more legitimate and makes me feel like less of a bum for sitting on the same couch cushion most days.