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The life of a freelancer and waking up in the morning

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Sneed, Dec 8, 2009.

  1. Sneed

    Sneed Guest

    So, I love mornings. Love them. To borrow from my grandfather, "Mornings are beautiful. They just come too early."

    Some mornings, I'm up and rolling and cranking out words and interviews and all systems are fully go.

    Then there's mornings like this morning, which usually come after nights like last night, when I decided to stay up until 2:30 in the morning writing. I just can't get going. I hardly want to get in the shower. I don't have any appointments until around 1 p.m. today so I have a few hours, but I hate feeling like I've wasted half my day.

    So what do you other freelancers do to get yourself going in the morning? What do you do to instill more discipline in your lives?
     
  2. rpmmutant

    rpmmutant Member

    As simple as it sounds, I started working for a radio station doing morning sports reports. I have to be up at 5:30 to do a 6 a.m. report. Gets me up, talking about sports, catching up on the previous night's games. Mind you, my reports are all about local high school and college sports. Might be worth seeing if a local radio station in your town would be up for the same sort of thing.
     
  3. Dan Hickling

    Dan Hickling Member

    Plenty of reasons to get up in the AM ... my bladder for one ... from there, I make sure I give Thanx for what I have, and the opportunities I do have ... and if I do have a few hours of down time, I take advantage of the opportunity to go easy, because there are more than enough times when all that urgency is flying around around me ...
     
  4. Liut

    Liut Well-Known Member

    Do you live upstairs or next door? That's Bolt-like from bed sheets to microphone.
     
  5. mustangj17

    mustangj17 Active Member

    Shooot, I wouldn't rollover to turn off the alarm until 5:35.
     
  6. Stitch

    Stitch Active Member

    Luckily I went to school when I did most of my stringing. But my earliest class was at 9 a.m. What are your goals from freelancing? Do you want a full-time newspaper job? Do you want to move? You've heard the advice probably that you need to work as hard to find a job as you work in your job.
     
  7. rpmmutant

    rpmmutant Member

    I call in my reports from home. Pretty sweet deal, at least from a convenience standpoint. I call in once, the station records it and plays it throughout the morning show.
     
  8. SixToe

    SixToe Active Member

    Before you go to bed at night, drink at least 16 ounces of water.

    Watch the sports highlights, read a book or whatever and drink the water.

    You'll get up early in the morning. Then, don't go back to sleep. Go for a walk, make coffee and read the news, shower and get going.
     
  9. friend of the friendless

    friend of the friendless Active Member

    Sir,

    During the summer I get up between four and five a.m. to write, especially on book projects. Half a day of work before breakfast and it's dead quiet. In winter it's between five and six a.m. Around 11 a.m. I start turning over to phone calls for interviews, logistical stuff. Break for lunch, errands. Transcribing, editing, interviews, research, between 1:30 and 4:30. Knock off. Have a nap.

    The earlier you wake up the more you get done without interruptions.

    o-<
     
  10. murphyc

    murphyc Well-Known Member

    I've hardly done any freelancing since last fall, but in five years of freelancing my main problem was staying disciplined. When I had stories to do, things were great. I had no problems doing the research, interviews, writing, editing, etc. But when I was between assignments, I had a hard time pushing myself to find more assignments and more editors to work with. Plus I'm not a morning person by nature, so I found myself waking up whenever.
    Towards the end, I forced myself to get up early to go for a walk. We lived in Iowa City at the time so I would go to the local mall and walk a few laps (walking in -10 degree weather wasn't my thing for some reason) before the stores opened. In some ways I miss those days, but in other ways (i.e. financially) I don't.
    One thing I've wondered about freelancing: with so many papers laying off people, are things better or worse off now for freelancers? Part of me thinks it would be better because papers may be more willing to have freelancers cover items at a lower rate than a FT person used to do. But then again budgets could easily be tighter than ever and laid off reporters probably would get first crack.
     
  11. Den1983

    Den1983 Active Member

    I really need to quit with my late nights so I can enjoy mornings more. It's something I've always meant to do but never do it. I just work really well at night and am more of a night owl.

    But I would like to appreciate mornings more. That's a solid line from your grandfather, Sneed, and oh so true: "Mornings are beautiful. They just come too early."
     
  12. Sneed

    Sneed Guest

    Absolutely. I'm exactly like you -- I work a lot better at night, but then, I'm sure I'd work fine at, oh, 6 or 7 a.m. if I just got the heck up and tried it.

    Someone up there asked what my goals were: truth be told, to make a living as an author -- as in, writing and selling books, for a healthy profit -- and as a freelancer. I'd also enjoy teaching, which is why I'm going to go back to school to pursue a masters, then probably a doctorate, in mass communications.
     
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