I posted a while back about how great my freelance editing job was. The sad thing is, the writers I was working for are now working on a project with its own editor, so they don’t need me for the time being. I don’t know when I will be needed again.
Since then, I have been applying to one or two freelance jobs per week. I only apply to jobs I feel well qualified for, but I have yet to hear back from any of them. Well, there was that one guy who wanted me to edit his website. He emailed me back asking for rates for proofreading and a heavy edit, and I gave them to him. Then he said he’d do the html part, and I wrote back asking if that meant he wanted me to do the rest. He never wrote back.
I’m beginning to wonder what the freelance market is like. Do most people start freelancing after their careers are well established? Are most of the people competing against me editors with over ten years of experience? Are my rates too high? Am I missing out on jobs simply because I’m not local (even though the ads say that telecommuting is okay)? I know my resume and cover letter are strong for someone of my experience. So why does no one want to hire me?
I kind of suspect it’s that I’m not local to many of the jobs I apply for. Some jobs explicitly say they need someone to work on site, and these jobs are always in New York City or Boston or Washington, DC. I have to wonder how many freelancers there are in these cities. There must be enough that companies can say they want someone local and actually get it.
And that makes me wonder if trying to get several hours of freelancing per week is foolish for someone who lives far from any major publishing city. Maybe I should give up and go work for the gym my friend told me about. They hire mothers to watch other people’s kids while they exercise, and you can bring along your own kid. Thing is, it pays dirt. But dirt’s better than what I’m getting from the freelancing I’m not exactly doing right now.