Time to Write

| December 1, 2012

Reason for WritingWhether I want to or not, I think it’s for me to get back to writing. It’s no secret that my income has dropped significantly. My monthly income for the past few months have been hovering a little over the $1000 mark. I really can’t complain because it is residual income, but it’s a far cry from what it was before.

Food prices have not gone down and neither has the price of gas. Kids still want to eat and utility bills still have to get paid. In other words, I need to earn some cash.

Traditional Job Market

I made a halfhearted attempt at finding employment. Being out of the work force for so many years my intent was to find a part-time gig that was not too taxing. In my downtime I would do a little writing and work on upcycling furniture. The part-time job would make a dent in replacing my long lost income while I build a client base for my new venture.

Transition from Blogging

The Sound of My Dropping Income

Do any of you remember the childhood game of Ker Plunk?

Completing a job application when you haven’t worked in 10 years is a pretty interesting task. It’s especially interesting when the reference section requires a listing of job associates. One application specifically said, “Do not list friends or relatives as references.”

When you work from home as a blogger, most if not all of your relationships are friends or relatives. Additionally, the minimum wage that I would collect for the few hours that I’d work would be partially offset by the cost of gas it took to get there.

Coming Full Circle

I’ve been on this merry-go-round before and decided to let past experiences dictate my future action. Instead of going out to look for a part-time job, I decided to use the skills sitting in front of me to earn money from home.

So, I guess I’ve come full circle. It’s time for me to beef up my online writing in an attempt to stop the free fall of my residual earnings. Already having a base of online articles, I’m going to approach it differently this go ‘round.

I don’t have the wherewithal to sit and write articles hours on end. And, true to my personality, I’m not going to use the social media route (too noisy for me). Having said that, I’ve just made my task more difficult, but I believe it’s doable.

After re-reading that last sentence I couldn’t help but think of Jim Rhon’s quote, “Don’t wish it were easier, wish you were better.”

What Next?

Well, I’ve got to take inventory to see where I am, decide where I want to go and then plot a course of action. Once the Me plodding alongcourse is plotted, I’ll plod along until I reach my goal.

The online writing arena is different now than when I did this 5 years ago, but as Loretta so eloquently pointed out in her blog post, we’ve got to adapt to change.

Wish me luck!

Tags: , ,

Category: Working from Home, Writing

About the Author ()

Felicia A. Williams is a freelance writer and blogger. She spends the majority of her time with her family and writing. If she's not writing or commenting on NJFM, she's either outside smelling the roses or writing articles for one of her other sites.

Comments (27)

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  1. Dear Felicia:

    Welcome back!

    I hope you revisit my Linkedin group that you joined when it was very new — it now has over 2,000 internet content writers eager for your wisdom:

    Freelance Writers Working for Internet Content Mills

    http://www.linkedin.com/groups?gid=2827548

    Here’s a second Linkedin group — I don’t run it, but I am a member — it’s a good group — “Freelance Writing Jobs for All Levels of Experience”:

    http://www.linkedin.com/groups/Freelance-Writing-Jobs-All-Levels-4296428

    Cordially,
    Robin

  2. Well, it will be good to read your inspiring posts again assuming that you will be writing here more often. But sorry to hear that it is out of necessity. Nevertheless, I have to agree with those that figure you will be able to accomplish whatever you set your mind to.
    cashflowmantra recently posted…Hoping the Rental House Refinancing Works OutMy Profile

  3. Santhi says:

    Looking forward to learning with you as your career evolves in this next chapter…

  4. Joni says:

    I have been considering doing some babysitting since my disability check does not quite cover my house payment and utilities. I finally became eligible for Medicare (you have to wait 24 months after getting disability) this month so it won’t be a choice between meds and food…LOL. Just seeing you back is thrilling!!! I’ve pretty much always been a “follower” (don’t like the spotlight) and you are a good lady to follow (how about “President Williams). Seeing this post was an answer to prayer.
    Take care,
    Joni

    • Felicia says:

      Joni, I’m so glad your Medicare was approved. That was a long 24 months.

      Someone very close to me was rendered unable to work as a result of a disability too. It took him 24 long, very long months before disability payments kicked in. I’m breathing a sigh of relief for the both of you.

      Oh and as far as the President thing goes…you guys would be in BIG trouble if that were to happen. 🙂

  5. Terr says:

    Felicia,

    First, let me say that I know it’s hard to consider going back to work in order to make ends meet. After all, your blog is called No Job For Mom.

    But one thing I’ve learned this year, is that sometimes we have to take steps backwards in order to take steps forward. On that note, I’m in the process of doing something I NEVER thought I’d do again. I’m filling out online applications in order to perform call center work.

    Like you, I’m considering my stack-o-bills. Unlike you, I’ve never had a time where my writing sustained me. Your situation isn’t your fault, nor is my situation my fault. You could even say we were both hurt by Google this year. So, we both are faced with making choices we’d rather not have to face.

    Felicia, have you thought about call center work, particularly insurance call center work? Plenty of call center want to hire insurance industry professionals. You could either work outright for an insurance agency as a work from home agent or you could work for a general call center on a dedicated insurance project. Just some thoughts, since you have the experience and the education for the tasks.

    Finally, try not to be discouraged. One thing I tell myself is that I don’t need to be depressed about going back to call center work, because I have career skill sets I didn’t have before. I didn’t know about internet content writing when I last worked for call centers. I had no other career options before, but now I do.

    I certainly didn’t know about blogging, affiliate marketing, PPC revenue streams, e-book production or how to pitch freelance articles to publications. Wow, I amaze myself with how much I’ve learned since I last worked for call centers! So, I can do what I need to do in order to get financially solid. I don’t feel that I’m throwing my life away or that my dreams can’t come to pass. But it’s time for me to dig my heels in and get on some financial solid ground, so I’m doing anything legal that will allow for me to do so, lol.

    Best of luck and let us know how things go!
    Terr recently posted…Happy Red Tails Day!My Profile

    • Felicia says:

      Terr, you’re inspiring. I love your attitude! I especially love your pragmatic approach. I always say a gal’s gotta do what a gal’s gotta do and that’s just what you’re doing.

      Right now I’m still in the process of seeing exactly where I am as far as my various blogs. When the income started to plummet, I stopped tracking the individual blog earnings. Now I’ve got to clean out the dead wood and administer CPR to the blogs worth saving.

      I’m not so sure I’m ready to get back into insurance. I always seem to run far away from that industry, but it keeps catching up with me.

      Yesterday I started looking through the NJFM database and realized how out dated it was. I cleaned out some of the companies that went out of business and am attempting to add new companies that are looking for freelance writers. There are a lot of opportunities out there, it’s just a matter of finding the right one.

      Regarding No Job for Mom, you touched on an interesting point. I named this blog No Job for Mom because deep down inside I didn’t want a traditional job, but we’ve got to make ends meet. I might be able to dodge the bullet this time if I go back to writing for Demand Studios until I build my residuals back up again. In essence, I’m starting over again. But, just like you, I’m starting over armed with knowledge I didn’t have the first time around.

      This is going to be an interesting journey.

      • Grandma says:

        LOL Starting Over – seems like I am doing that every time I turn around!

        True, the world of work is changing and will never be the same again. If you can knock out an income online, you are ahead of the game. It seems like everything is heading this way, online. Look at publishing, newspapers, magazines, even television – all the websites, blogs, etc.

        A person needs to adapt. If you can do that, you win. Many traditions are gone forever, with more going down daily. Go forth and prosper…online.

        • Nida Sea says:

          Terr and Grandma have some great inspiration and advice. I’m glad you’re coming back to the writing scene, Felicia.

          I’ve had ups and downs as well, but when I try browsing local jobs the long 9 hour days, no paid time off, and grouchy boss horror returns. I end up putting more work in to my writing and marketing. Best of luck to you!!

  6. Ignatius says:

    Best of luck, Felicia. I think the odds of making a reasonable amount of money working for yourself are far better than anyone’s odds in the job market today. So, welcome back. The game is now a little bit different, but there are still going to be winners. I’m pretty sure that you will find a way to be one of them.

    • Felicia says:

      Thanks Ignatius. I agree with you regarding the making money part. No matter how many hours I put into a job, I’m limited in my earning potential. With online writing, if I weather the ups and downs, I can make much more than I can at a part-time job. Getting back into online writing is going to be interesting.

  7. Grandma says:

    Put some old Suite articles into an eBook and sell it at Amazon and Smashwords. Do some up front pay if you have to; I went back to some of it and managed to reel in an extra $300 or so last month.

    Yes, Textbroker does now have expert status teams that pay a lot more. The orders are managed by TB, and you just need to be a 4 or 5 star writer. The managers will find you according to what you have included on your profile, so it needs to show your expertise/experience.

    • Felicia says:

      I’ve only written one article for Textbroker so I’m still at a level 3 and wouldn’t qualify for the special team.

      Your ebook suggestion is a good one. I have to slowly warm myself up to get back into full writing/ebook swing.

  8. Reena says:

    Hi Felicia,

    Good to see you back! Have missed you. The other day, when I went to Suite101, I could not even recognize the site, forget about understanding it. I was hoping you’ll be back and explain us how the website works now 🙂

    I have been writing a lot of news articles for Examiner these days. Their articles are a breeze- usually within 200 and 250 words and paying around $6/1000 views. If you can tie something hot, you can make some decent money there.

    Many have been putting articles for residual income too, but, I haven’t – especially, after seeing how fickle the Internet can be. One in the hand is better than two in the bush.

    If you aren’t already there, you may want to consider it. If you want, I can send you a link so that I can get referral too.

    • Felicia says:

      Hi Reena,

      I tried Examiner a while ago but opted not to write for them because of the requirement to write several posts a week. That was about 2 years ago and I’m not so sure if that’s a current requirement.

      At Diane’s suggestion, I put in my application for Demand Studios, but I’m still hesitant to take the plunge. I really like making the residual income, but as you say, one in the hand sure beats the heck out of two in the bush.

      Oh and Suite…boy have things changed there.

      • Grandma says:

        If you used to write at Suite 101, check out the FB page that the former writers have going. Very current information and lots of other writing information. It’s not a place created to slam Suite, but many former writers are very concerned about the changes and find answers among themselves are better than what they get from the website now.

        There is tons of information about writing projects in general, with about 250 members now. It is called “Suite 101 writers, past and present” and was started by two writers, one of whom was rudely outsted from Suite 101 last year.

  9. Loretta says:

    I was overjoyed, Felicia, to see your blog link in my emailbox and to read that you are coming back. The online community needs you, you have so much wisdom to offer. Know that I am wishing you all the best of luck.

    And thank you so much for the shout out.
    Loretta recently posted…Resistance to Change: A Baby Boomer’s Perspective on Computers and the InternetMy Profile

  10. Maria says:

    Hi Felicia,

    Our residual earnings are very similar — mine fluctuate a bit above and a bit under the $1k mark each month. It’s a far, discouraging cry from the heyday of “easy” online writing income, no?

    I wish you the best as you return to this and know that you will find success. The rules of the game have changed, but the substance has not.
    Maria recently posted…Online Writing Burnout HappensMy Profile

  11. Crystal says:

    I’ve also been out of the writing-for-upfront-pay arena for a while but just read a blog post by Textbroker about Expert Teams. Seems the Finance Expert Team includes insurance. Unless things have changed since the post was published, they pay .20/word. If you want to know more, see http://www.textbroker.com/blog/content/expert-teams.html
    Crystal recently posted…How to Save Money on Christmas GiftsMy Profile

  12. Diane says:

    Demand Studios pays $25 and up for finance / insurance topics. Two titles a day might help that dent in earnings to disappear. I write mostly small business titles and they are basic knowledge. It helps me to have a steady cash flow with the seasonal clients I usually have (gardening, etc.).

    • Felicia says:

      Thanks Diane. It has been quite some time since I wrote for Demand Studios. I have to think long and hard about writing for them again.

  13. Crystal says:

    Welcome back, Felicia! And I do wish you luck but I’m sure you won’t need it – you’ve proven time and again that you can (and will) flex and persevere until you find success.

    Seems like change is in the air for us both. I’ve been procrastinating on getting my quilt patterns (maybe even a book?) written and published but a series of unrelated incidents that occurred during the making of my most recent memorial quilt have finally pushed me over the edge. Here’s to a successful 2013!
    Crystal recently posted…How to Save Money on Christmas GiftsMy Profile