Freelancer Breaks Down How She Makes $8K Working Only 15 Hours A Week

freelancer on computer

No other profession is as romanticized as the life of the freelancer.

Workers stuck in the 9-to-5 slog dream about cutting ties from their employer and changing their career to become a freelance writer, artist, or pickle artisan. If that’s your thing. 

Zulie Rane had those dreams. 

“God, I was so afraid during that first week of being fully freelance.

I was afraid I’d cut my income in half. I was afraid I’d run out of time when working freelance. I was afraid I’d overwork myself and burn out.

But you know what I found? That when I wasn’t spending half my brainpower and time on a corporate job I kind of hated, I was actually much more effective at making money.

I didn’t need forty hours a week, scraped from the margins of my evenings and weekends, to make a living. I could do it in 3 hours a day.”

Zulie breaks down how she maintains a 15-hour workweek while “still making enough for a very comfortable lifestyle” into 6 basic steps.

The first step is to quit a full-time job that you hate.

Next, Zulie suggests religiously tracking your time to see where people waste the most minutes each day.

“It helps me know how I’m spending my time, what pursuits are worthwhile, and balance my obligations and commitments. It also lets me know what my time is worth so far, which helps me when I am bargaining with new clients.”

The third step is creating an online course. Zulie created her course in 10 hours and promoted the course to her email list. Ironically, the course explains how to make money on Medium.

The fourth step is to pay people to complete the tasks that take the most time or which she’s not very good at doing.

The fifth step is creating a streamlined “to-do” list that stays the same each week and prevents her from wasting time.

And finally, Zulie stopped sending out freelance pitches.

She said pitching publications was a waste of her time and nothing much ever came of the pitches she sent out to prospective clients. She feels her best advertisement for her work is her work and instead updated her LinkedIn profile and networked to find new writing clients.

Overall, Zulie’s advice is well-intention and helpful.

Freelancers must keep track of their time, outsource arduous processes and streamline the daily tasks. However, as a full-time freelancer myself, I’m imploring people to keep a few things in mind before quitting their job to live the writer lifestyle.

First, Zulie’s background is in Biology, and she’s a self-proclaimed “Psychology nerd.”

Those credentials explain her $250-per-article fee. Clients in the medical and legal fields pay significantly higher rates for freelance work because the subject matters require research and a strong understanding of the material.

Please don’t think you’ll be able to quit your job and start writing for Bleacher Report and demand $250 for articles about the best hot dogs at different NFL stadiums.

Second, Zulie mentions the amount of money she makes writing on Medium.

The Medium royalty program can be lucrative, but she fails to say that she already had over 23K followers on her Medium page before quitting her job.

She started freelancing with a large platform. Not every writer is so lucky, and not every writer will have the time to build that size audience while still cranking out articles.

The final point, and possibly the most crucial, is that every good thing must come to an end. Freelance writing jobs come and go, as do companies, funding, websites, Facebook traffic, editors, and hundreds of other factors that could lead to freelance money quickly drying up.

Medium could fold up their royalty program at any moment. Much like everything in life, putting all your eggs in one basket is a gamble.

To read Zulie’s article on “How To Earn $8K Per Month While Only Working 15 Hours Per Week,” check out her page on Medium

Chris Illuminati

Chris Illuminati is the author of five books and has written about personal finance, wealth, debt management, and entrepreneurship for numerous outlets including Wise Bread, Grow or Die, and Bankrate.