Welcome to #FreelanceLife!
This regular blog series has been created with freelancers in mind, whether you’ve been one for decades or just starting out, there's no-one better to tell you about the real life of a freelancer than a fellow freelancer. We hope this little feature will serve to build connections within the community, not only between Freelancers and us, but between all of you; the readers. Maybe you’ll read something that sounds familiar, makes you laugh or teaches you something you didn’t already know.
This is your blog series as much as it is ours; By Freelancers, For Freelancers. So if in reading this you feel you want to contribute or think there are areas we could improve on please do let us know! You can reach us at email@example.com
So without further ado let us hand you over to our first contributor, Senior Copywriter, Marcus.
Hi. I’m Marcus Efstratiou (that’s eff-strer-dee-you – it’s Greek).
And since autumn 2009 I’ve been crafting potent copy and elegant concepts for some pretty first-rate brands.
In fact, I’ve been asked back by every single agency or client I’ve worked for; so whatever the brief, I’d say I’m a safe bet.
1. What is your favourite thing about being a freelancer?
The freedom, basically. As a freelancer you get a much greater level of control over how you want to live your life. And as a Copywriter, the variety that comes with freelancing keeps the work interesting, and you learn quicker too.
2. What is your least favourite thing about being a freelancer?
The quiet periods! Sometimes, for no good reason, the work dries up. Cue a sense of dread and looming financial ruin – especially tough to deal with if like me you have a family to support. But something always turns up in the end. Touch wood it’s happening less and less often these days...
3. What skills are essential for a freelancer?
Resilience. You need to cope with a lot of extra baggage as a freelancer, from hustling for the next job to juggling multiple clients without batting an eyelid. You also need to be self-motivated and pretty bang-on with your time management skills. And perhaps most importantly, you need to have courage and faith to help ride out the inevitable difficult periods.
4. On average, what time do you start and finish work? What does your day map out?
I work pretty regular office hours to be honest. Unless I’ve got a ton of work on in which case I can work late, or get into my studio office early. Most days I’m there making the first coffee of the day from 8.30am.
5. How often do you work remotely?
I work remotely 99% of the time – entirely by choice. I live in the Cotswolds and as a copywriter it simply doesn’t make sense to travel into an office to do what I do. I definitely need my own space though, so I rent a studio office in some beautiful woodland just around the corner. It’s an absolute joy to work in and I consider myself very lucky indeed.
6. What do you wish someone had told you when you were starting out?
It’s a technical detail, but an important one. If you’re serious about freelancing, use a limited company route to handle the money side, not an umbrella PAYE solution. In exchange for bit more admin work, you’ll increase your take home pay by A LOT.
7. Would you ever consider going for a permanent position?
Never. Freelance til I die ;-)
8.What is the standout memory from your Freelance Career?
I really don’t mean this in a self-congratulatory sense at all, but I won’t forget winning my Freelancer of the Year award in a hurry. It made me pretty damn emotional at the time – which believe me isn’t my usual look! As freelancers many of us work alone and often have to tough out some pretty harsh situations alone too. It was totally unexpected and incredibly humbling to be recognised in that way.
9. And a silly one .. because we had to! What song best represents your Freelance state of mind?
Get Real Paid – Beck
To find out more about working with Marcus, talk to our Freelance expert Clare. Check back for Episode 2 of #FreelanceLife with Designer, Tim and of course we would love it if you gave this post a share on social.
See you next time,
FreelanceLife Team x