Celebrating a work anniversary - Nikki Young Writes Image via Pixabay

A copywriting milestone

I’m celebrating a work anniversary – five years at Nicola Young Copywriter.

Celebrating a work anniversary - Nikki Young Writes

Image via Pixabay

That’s according to LinkedIn anyway and the lovely followers who sent me a message of congratulations on the day.

This milestone passed me by because I’ve been copywriting for much longer than that, but it wasn’t until my youngest son started pre-school five mornings a week that I set myself up as a freelancer proper, with my own website.

I’m thankful that after five years I’m busy most weeks with regular work. When a big one-off contract comes in, it can get super busy, but the nature of freelance work means I get breathers in between.

The downside to that, of course, is the irregular pay. As a freelancer, I never know how much I will earn, which makes it difficult to rely on this type of work as a way of life. That can be tough, but there are perks that make it all worthwhile:

I get to work from home

With three children in three different schools, I can’t tell you how much stress this takes away from my life. I need the flexibility of being able to fit in my hours around my children or I don’t think I would survive. I believe very strongly that more employers should give their employees the option of homeworking. To take away an element of pressure from those with young families would increase productivity and employee satisfaction no end.

I get to set my own hours

I’m efficient and I always get the job done on time. No one I’ve worked for can complain about that. I don’t charge by the day though, because I don’t work a nine to five, but that’s not a problem as charging by the job works out better for not just me, but the client too. It means we both know where we stand up front and there are no hidden charges.

The benefit of having flexible hours is that I can make sure the children get to and from school, walk the dog and even catch up with a friend for coffee. As long as I get my hours in during the day, it doesn’t matter when I do them. The downside is that I’m never fully in ‘work mode’: an example of this is when I went to a meeting the other week about a project. When I came home, I quickly made a batch of cookies before picking my son up from school. You might find me in Sainsbury’s doing the weekly shop after I’ve just finished a few hours at my desk. It’s multi-tasking at its finest!

It’s taken some time, but my hard work is paying off as more people contact me via my website asking for my copywriting services. I’ve just ‘Googled’ you, someone said to me the other day and on that basis alone, asked me to do some work for him. My website is such an important part of my job as without it, I would be invisible. With testimonials from previous clients, examples of my work and a straightforward, no nonsense approach that says, this is what I do and this is who I am, people tell me they’re happy for me to do the work for them on the basis of this alone.

So thanks, LinkedIn, for alerting me to this milestone in my copywriting career. Without you, I wouldn’t have taken the time to reflect on how far I’ve come in the last five years. I’m always telling people how I love to write. You only have to look at the evidence – two blogs and a soon-to-be-published novel – to see this. Writing isn’t everyone’s thing. They find it difficult, tedious, time-consuming. That’s where I come in. Putting words together is a creative process that tells a story, no matter what business you’re in and I find immense satisfaction from being able to do this. I’m lucky to be able to do something I love and I hope to be able to continue doing so for many years to come. Here’s to the next five years.


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Comments (14)

  1. maddy@writingbubble 20th September 2016 at 9:42 pm

    Congratulations! Sounds like your hard work is paying off. The ability to work flexibly is a massive bonus as a parent, and I think it’s great that you’re able to go to a meeting then be baking cookies shortly afterwards. Is having a meeting WHILE baking cookies the next step? Thanks for linking to #whatImWriting

  2. Marija Smits 20th September 2016 at 10:17 pm

    Congratulations Nikki – I agree that freelance work is really good for parents who have young children or children at school, though of course there is the problem of irregular work (and therefore payment). Although my freelance work doesn’t really bring in enough it helps to pay a few (smallish) bills, which, for us, is a blessing. Wishing you the very best for the next 5 years. Exciting times ahead! 🙂

  3. turningupindevon 21st September 2016 at 2:49 pm

    I echo the congratulations. Freelancing can be stressful but is also a great way to work around having children. I know I’m grateful for working at home even though there days when i want to tear my hair out – i’d feel the same in an office. I hope it goes from strength to strength for you. Is your novel due out soonish?? #whatimwriting

  4. suz 22nd September 2016 at 7:03 pm

    Congratulations! It’s nice to hear a success story. Hope the next 5 years are as successful.

  5. Alice @ The Filling Glass 25th September 2016 at 8:22 pm

    Well done on achieving this milestone! I think you are right to celebrate it, especially because you have built it yourself. It sounds like you have definitely got a very good family/work balance from it is well. I’d love to know what work you did before you set up as a freelance? Hope that’s not too nosey. Xx

    • Nicola Young 26th September 2016 at 3:57 pm

      I was asked to help write the content for a website. It was at the time when websites were becoming more important for companies than something you just needed to have because everyone says so, and people were just starting to think about seo.

  6. sophieblovett 26th September 2016 at 2:28 pm

    Congratulations! I so agree with you that employers need to think much more creatively about the flexibility they can offer, especially to parents but to anyone who wants to be able to fit their work round their life more effectively to be honest. It sounds like you’ve found a really great balance xx

  7. Kamsin 27th September 2016 at 7:19 am

    Congratulations! Having a job you can work around kids is the ideal for me. And the traditional work day of 9-5 seems increasingly irrelevant. Getting the hours done is definitely more important than when you do them.

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