What Does Living the Writer’s Life
Mean to You?

Living the writer’s life means different things to different people …

Making money doing something that you love … spending more quality time with your loved ones … peace of mind and financial security …

And over the past few months we’ve asked people who are currently living the writer’s life to share with you what it means to them.

But today, it’s your turn!

Whether you’re living it now, or planning to live it one day soon, we want to know what living the writer’s life means to YOU.

Read the excerpts below from some of my favorite writer’s life stories …

And then when you’re ready, I’d like for you to share what it means to you by posting comment here.

The Writer’s Life – Livin’ it Up!

“Some mornings I have a table tennis game at 8:30. I’ll play until 10:00, or, if it’s a hot game, 10:30.

Some mornings I’ll linger over the several daily newspapers I get. (If you’re a professional communicator, you don’t subscribe to just one paper.)

Some mornings I’ll jump out of bed and race to the keyboard to immortalize the brilliant idea I had in the middle of the night, before it evaporates.

Some mornings … but not many, because this is the least-active of my preferences … I’ll sleep in. No problem, because if the phone rings I’ll answer it, and any e-mail will be there when I decide to check the messages.

On any morning, I can choose from these options, plus limitless others. I’m master of my own universe.

Can office-bound employees match that splendid schedule?

For anybody who hasn’t been born to great wealth coupled with indolence, this lifestyle is a classic dream come to life. Those of us who enjoy it day after day can look down from Mount Olympus and say to those stuck in lesser life-niches, “Too bad. You should have been a writer.”

Read Herschell’s entire submission here.

What if There Really Isn’t a Catch?

“My first year, I made $21,763. My second year, I just about doubled that and took two months off to have a baby. (And, on that note, I’ve got to say it was incredible to be in command of my own schedule while pregnant. My last job certainly wouldn’t have let me take long afternoon naps, every day!)

Now, like I said, I’m on track to make six-figures — and it’s only my third year. Plus, working from home means I don’t have to leave my son in someone else’s care for long stretches of time.”

Read Mindy’s entire submission here.

8 Years and 2,600 Miles Later …

“I just realized the other day that I am living, breathing proof of every single promise AWAI’s letter made to me.

I live where I want to … I make my own hours … I indulge in my hobbies … and have plenty of time left over for friends, family, travel, and taking care of my health and fitness.

And the good news is, I’m nothing special. I don’t have any special writing talents or anything like that.

Which means if you want it too … there’s no reason why you can’t have it.”

Read Guillermo’s entire submission here.

Fish Funerals and Free Caribbean Vacations: The Joys of A Flexible Schedule

“This morning I refereed an argument over whether or not Yoda could make a whale levitate. Over the years, I've been summoned from my desk to host fish funerals, build Lego towers, examine worms, wipe bottoms, wipe tears, sing to stuffed animals, slurp pretend soup … You get the idea.

These interruptions are rarely convenient. Yet, they're one of the things I appreciate most about "the writer's life." My friends who are physicians, teachers, and partners at law firms simply don't have the flexibility I do. They feel guilty about "missing out." I feel lucky my three kids think of me as being "around." (Never mind that the sentence they'll swear they hear most out of my mouth is, "Just a minute honey, I'm nearly done with this paragraph … ")

I take generous advantage of the fact that I control my schedule. And you should, too.”

Read Jen’s entire submission here.

Tips from the Trenches: If I Only Knew Then What I know Now …

“You want to know my favorite thing about “living the writer's life?”

It's freedom.

I'm the kind of gal who jokes that she could never have a “real job.” Being a self-employed SEO copywriter has allowed me to travel the world (often on someone else's dime), work the hours I want, and make some pretty good cash. For a self-described “highly stubborn” woman who requires total flexibility, I can't imagine doing anything else.”

Read Heather’s entire submission here.

How the Writing Bug Caught Me, and Never Let Me Go

“While I was young, single, and without any real commitments, I just enjoyed the total freedom being a freelancer gave me. I really did take extended vacations, whenever I felt like it. It was great.

For the next stage of my life — married with children — the value of being a freelancer changed somewhat. It was no longer about total freedom, but it did give me the freedom to be at home while my kids grew up.

It gave me the freedom to never miss a ball game, or a school play.

And, it also allowed me to teach and show my children what work was about.

I wasn’t just some dad who disappeared after breakfast, and reappeared at suppertime. Instead, they got to see me working, and learned about the relationship between work, income, and lifestyle at an early age. I think that was a hugely valuable lesson for them.

Looking back, I have also moved around a lot over the years. From London, England to Toronto, Canada. Then to Calgary, Alberta. Then to Vancouver Island, British Columbia. And now in Montreal, Quebec.

I could never have done that if I had been dependent on an employer for my income.

As a freelancer, I can choose to live wherever I want. It makes no difference. If I have a power outlet and an Internet connection, I can work anywhere.”

Read Nick’s entire submission here.

A Life Without Chains

“In the early months and years of my writing career, the best things about living the writer’s life were all the things most people would assume …

 … not having a boss to answer to.

 … creating my own schedule.

 … being able to work in pjs, shorts, sweats, and jeans.

 … making good money.

 … being able to choose the niche that I worked in.

But, some of the things that I like most about living the writer’s life have changed over the years.

For instance, now I love being able to give a “voice” to those who can’t or don’t want to write for themselves.

I also love creating my career as I go along. As my passions and interests evolve, so does my work.

What I know now that I didn’t define when I first got started as a copywriter is that there are many types of freedom. There’s time freedom, location freedom, creative freedom, personal freedom, and the opportunity to earn your worth.

I enjoyed personal freedom in the early years of my copywriting career. But now that has expanded to include every type of freedom that I dreamed of.

So for me, living the writer’s life is always a work in progress. And I wouldn’t change that for the world.”

Read Krista’s entire submission here.

Naps & Toast & Rock ‘n’ Roll

“One of my favorite quotes is by Henry David Thoreau and it goes like this:

"To affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of arts."

I'm grateful every day that I get to watch my kids grow up before my very eyes. Grateful for the uncommon amount of time I get to spend with them. Grateful that, as a result, they prefer The Beatles to The Wiggles.

It's an unbeatable way to live. An unbeatable quality of life.

Thoreau buddy, I'm feelin' ya.”

Read Pete’s entire submission here.

Free to be ME, 24/7: 10 Ways to Stay on Track with Your Goals so You Can Live – and Keep on Living – an Authentic Creative Life

“To thine own self be true.”
– William Shakespeare

Freedom is feeling like “me.” I like to wear flowers in my hair. I sometimes feel “jazzy” and wear colorful prints. I like to wear my hair down. All the things I couldn’t do in any of my old job.

I cherish that I can express myself now as a freelancer. I’m free to be me, and that makes me a healthy, strong person and wife.”

Read Catherine’s entire submission here.

What does living the writer’s life mean to you?

Whether you’re living it now, or plan to one day, I’d love for you to share your version of the writer’s life by posting a comment here.

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

The Professional Writers’ Alliance

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Published: October 12, 2010