Since school days I was the go-to person for written assignments. Unlike my classmates, I looked forward to dissertations. Putting together the right words and building a coherent narrative is an immensely satisfying exercise. My first attempts at writing included trying to pen a book where you are the hero, lengthy forum posts and fanfiction.
Years later, after getting a degree in business management and colliding with the reality of the job market in Morocco, I started to look for other ways to make a living. The first time I made money was when I helped a Ph.D. candidate fix his messy, typo-infested thesis. I knew then that I was onto something.
Baby Steps for a Freelance Writer
My first writing gigs were on Fiverr. The pay wasn’t particularly exciting, but as a beginner freelancer, Fiverr was a valuable experience. I learned to communicate effectively with clients, understanding their needs, adapting my writing to fit the required voice, meeting deadlines and dealing with unreasonable demands.
That said, one bad review on Fiverr can ruin your reputation and the ranking algorithm feels arbitrary at times. I needed other ways to make money by writing. But that would have to wait because I managed to land a job at a consulting company.
Managing a Day Job and Moonlighting
Writing at night was painful; I was tired and creatively drained. This led to late deliveries, less-than-stellar work, multiple revisions and, sometimes, refunding unhappy clients. I’d often stay up late at night to finish a gig and then wake up a few hours later to go to work.
A year and a half later, my day job was becoming increasingly insufferable due to an unhealthy work environment and an almost constant crunch time. On top of that, a visit to the ophthalmologist revealed that staring at a screen for 8+ hours a day was taking a toll on my eyesight. That’s when I decided that I’ve had enough.
Granted, with no debt to pay off or children to provide for, leaving my day job and going freelance full-time was not the most difficult choice. In fact, I was thrilled. Referrals and persistent cold emailing allowed me to expand my work opportunities beyond Fiverr.
Embracing Freelance Writing and My Experience with Iris Content
A couple of months ago I reached out to Iris Content and was met with a prompt reply. Now I’m part of the writing team and I love it. While it’s not my sole source of income, getting a consistent stream of work from Iris Content means I don’t have to worry about feast and famine cycles. The team is responsive and explains in clear terms everything I need to know about the tasks I’m assigned.
Thanks to freelance writing I learn a lot about a variety of topics and tackle different challenges. I also love that my work is being read overseas. And most of all: I can free up time to delve more into my passions, mainly writing fiction.
Being a freelance writer is not exactly as glamorous as it is often presented. That image of gleefully typing on a laptop from a beach rarely if ever materializes. But taking this path is extremely rewarding if you’re passionate about the written word and don’t want to spend your life doing something else. Just know that you should get comfortable with uncertainty, facing rejection and solving problems on your own. You can’t just go through the motions and receive a paycheck. Hunt for opportunities relentlessly and stay keen on honing your skills. The online possibilities for writers are endless.
Here at Iris Content, we would like to believe we are more than just another copywriting agency. We are a well-balanced team of creators. Coming from different walks of life, our experiences set us apart as individuals, but we are brought together by an overarching passion for the written word. A passion for research and content writing, a desire to help our clients achieve their goals. Aiming for excellence, we are stronger together, as a content team. Starting this May, every month, you will find out in this blogging section what our writers have been up to, what their take on the content world is. Because our content is not automatic and soulless, because our team members have their own voices and their own expertise that you can now benefit from directly.