By Greg Foot, Freelance Science Presenter on TV, Online and On Stage.
The sand between your toes, a cool cocktail within arm’s reach, the copy for that Wired feature flowing easily in the sun… Ah Freelance Life. Perfect huh?!
Yer right! But with more and more of us contemplating going it alone, what are the realities of Freelance Life and what Top Tips would freelancers give to get closer towards that holy grail combo of ‘do what you love’ and ‘work/life balance’?
This is a distilled and condensed summary of the ‘Going it alone’ session I had the pleasure of pulling together a panel for and chairing at the Science Communication Conference this year.
Joining me on the panel were Ed Yong (a freelancer who writes features for Nature, Wired, Scientific American, New Scientist & blogs at Not Exactly Rocket Science hosted by National Geographic), Timandra Harkness (a freelance radio journalist, contributor to various newspapers, & also a live show presenter) & Ellen Dowell (a part-time employee at Imperial College’s National Heart & Lung Institute, a part-time employee at University of Surrey, plus a part-time freelancer whose work includes curating Einstein’s Garden at Green Man Festival).
The audio from the full session is below, courtesy of Julie Gould at the brilliant Speaking of Science. It’s well worth a listen – as well as giving the story of each of panelist’s route into freelancing it was also a real laugh and included tips that didn’t make my list below such as the genius suggestion of Skyping in a clever mash-up of neat shirt and PJ bottoms… Winner.
As we covered so much in the session, and time is of the essence for a juggling freelancer (juggling work not juggling… oh you know what I mean), I’ve pulled out The Top 5 Perks of Freelancing, The Top 5 Perils of Freelancing, and The Top 5 Tips For Making Freelancing Work For You.
If you only have time to read one quote, make it this one:
‘Freelancing is like the final scene from Braveheart…
where he’s on the table screaming FREEDOM while being disemboweled’
Ed Yong Continue reading