Even during the best of times, there can be slow periods for freelance writers. Work tends to run in cycles and those times when we seem to be buried are often followed by periods of the doldrums. When these slow times hit, you can sit around wringing your hands and worrying, or you can see this as a chance to get some truly remarkable things done.
Slow Time Work
- First, take the time to make a thoughtful list of all of the things that you’ve wanted to get done but just haven’t had the time to do. As much as possible, try to confine the list to things related to your writing, but don’t be afraid to throw in a household chore or maybe a fun outing or activity.
- Do some writing for you. Have you been ignoring the tug of your partially completed novel? Refresh your writing by diving back in to some of your older fiction writing projects.
- Since I know you read the post on freelance writers having a blog, now would be a good time to write a few of your blog posts in advance. This productive writing will be your Godsend when things get going hot and heavy again.
- Engage in some local marketing. Remember that bumper sticker that goes, “Think globally, act locally?” Well, this applies to your freelance writing too. Get your stack of business cards out and hit the pavement. Cold call some local businesses and offer your services.
- Community Service can go a long way. Contact your church or a local non-profit and offer to put together a newsletter for them. Yes, you won’t make any money directly but chances are your good work will generate future income from patrons or the organization itself.
- Take a much needed break from writing and recharge your batteries. Go on a few local hikes. Spend a day at the beach or in the mountains. Get caught up on your reading list.
- Are there things that you’ve been meaning to do to improve your web site? Now is the perfect time. Update your side bar widgets. Change themes. Mix things up a bit and have some fun with it. Refreshing your web site refreshes your writing soul.
It can be scary to find yourself in the midst of a work slowdown. It is inevitable that these times will come and if you realize this and prepare for it the impact will be lessened. Use the time to be productive instead of standing around freaking out. Know that the busy times will return and that you will make it through the doldrums just fine.
What kinds of things do you engage in when things slow down? What would you add to the list?