Article by Wendy McCance
Having your own business is an adventure in learning how you personally operate. It wasn’t until I began freelance writing that I was able to grasp what does and doesn’t work well for me. For instance, I am envious of people who can juggle many different types of businesses all at the same time. I have no idea how they can pull off such an incredible feat. The best known person I can think of who is able to do such a tremendous amount of juggling is Richard Branson. How do you juggle getting an airline off the ground while marketing music artists and having music stores all over the world? I think he has to be the poster child for being able to juggle whatever comes his way with ease and a mountain of success.
I, on the other hand am the type of person who gets completely wrapped up in one arena and as long as my focus stays on that one area, I am sure to have unbelievable amounts of success myself. I wish I could be more like Richard Branson, but it is my ability to understand my strengths and weaknesses that has propelled me to a place where I am enjoying a healthy business.
It is this attitude of staying true to what works for me personally that I rely on when I decide which clients I would like to work with long-term. I never take on multiple projects from any new client right off the bat. I will methodically work on a first project and am then able to gauge if there will be a long relationship with the client or if our connection will be short-lived.
I am a writer, a creative, and I take a tremendous amount of pride in what I am able to produce for the people who hire me. What I have found is that the creative process can never be duplicated. No matter how hard you work, the sound of a piece will never have the exact same tone each time it is reworked. It is just something that is impossible to achieve.
If I write an article, I never do a snippet of a rough draft and hand it in. I do a complete piece. If I am asked to rework a portion, I am basically reworking a good deal of the piece so that there is a fluidity that isn’t broken from touching on the article several times. There is never an issue when a piece takes awhile to complete as long as I have my hands on it often. It is the assignments that sit untouched for weeks at a time with no movement while I wait on a client that are hard to recapture.
The clients I walk away from once an assignment has been completed are the clients who take several weeks to reconnect with. The more time it takes between drafts, the harder the assignment becomes. After several weeks, I must go back and review my research to reacquaint myself with the material. I then have to do a complete rewrite because my tone will ultimately be different and the piece needs to sound like a complete thought with one mood attached to it.
Unless you are a creative individual, it is somewhat hard to describe the challenge of mirroring a piece of writing. The same goes for a review and edit of another writer’s work. You can capture their tone to some degree, but to mask that a new writer has taken over, you can’t just tweak a sentence or two unless the writing is weak to begin with.
I take pride in the work I do and I know what it takes to perform at a top level. If what should have been a simple article takes weeks to complete because I had to wait on the client to get back to me, the assignment becomes lengthy like I have started from scratch multiple times. The piece is never as impressive as when I can get a rough draft and rewrite handled within a week or two at the latest. In the end, it isn’t profitable to essentially do an assignment from scratch multiple times to get the level of writing I am looking to achieve. It is also frustrating when you have poor communication with a client solely based on chasing after them to get a piece completed. I wish I worked differently as there are many business people who are seriously hard to reach because of the mountain of work they are juggling. I am just not one of those people who can easily bounce back into an assignment that has taken an enormous amount of time to complete after sitting untouched for weeks.
What are your thoughts on this topic? Have you had a similar experience? Can you muddle through just fine or do you get too caught up in the way the finished assignment will sound? Let me know in the comment section below.
To contact Wendy McCance about a writing or social media assignment, interview or speaking engagement, please email her at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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