Review: The Weekend Writer

Not all freelance writer are in a position to go full-time, a fact that Denene Brox’s ebook, The Weekend Writer. In fact, the number of people who freelance on the weekends makes up a huge percentage of freelancers — and many don’t plan to eventually move to freelancing full-time. It’s a question of what works for you, and making sure that you have the resources in order to write on your own terms.

The Weekend Writer walks you through each step of starting a part-time writing career, from pitching an article idea to making sure you get paid. While much of the information isn’t so very different from freelancing full-time, Denene includes some very important information on issues like maintaining a work-life balance. Part-time writers face challenges beyond what a full-time employee or a full-time freelancer might come across. Not only do you need to balance your day job with your other obligations, like your family, but you’re adding several more hours of work to your week, on top of your normal 40 hours. That requires impressive time management skills, which Denene provides, even down to discussing how to keep interviews on schedule.

The ebook also covers a major issue for part-time freelancers: whether to tell your boss about your work on the side. While there’s no universal right answer — some employers will think that it’s great, while others won’t want you to freelance at all — the ebook goes through your options and offers some advice to make sure that you avoid landing on the wrong side of a human resources policy.

One of the greatest resources in The Weekend Writer is the last chapter: it’s made up of three profiles of ‘weekend writers,’ who share their experiences in getting started as freelance writers. They each talk about what markets they found to be particularly successful for part-time freelancers, talk about the challenges and offer a little advice.

If you’ve been considering moving into freelance writing on a part-time basis and you’ve got some questions on the topic, Denene has agreed to do a Q-and-A in the comments. Just leave your question in the comments and she’ll post her response.


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  5. Jennifer Roland   •  

    I’d love some tips on speaking to potential clients about your availability. Do you let them know you have a full-time job in addition to freelancing? Just let them know when you are available to speak during the day (during your lunch hour and scheduled breaks)? Not address it at all?

  6. DeneneWrites   •  

    @Jennifer Roland, I wouldn’t bring it up. I have never been specifically asked by a client or article source. You can give out blocks of time that you are available e.g. 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. for an interview. If a situation came up where I had to mention my limited availability, I would phrase it like “I have other meetings…” Try to be the one to initiate all calls so that you can be in more control. As for editors, I don’t think they care if you write your article during regular biz hours or at 2 a.m. — so long as they get the article on deadline. 99 % of my interactions with editors have been through email, not phone calls. Hope that helps!

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