26th January 2014

Going freelance is tough

So trying to sell my skills off my own back hasn’t been easy. I spent all of 2013 ‘learning my trade’, going to night classes and spending long periods of time  doing online learning on Treehouse. So I now feel I have enough skills that I can sell myself and my ability to make websites but I’m struggling to find work.

So far I’ve got two clients and I’m really enjoying working with them (not for them – Yeah theres a Big Bang Theory joke in there) but I wonder what happens now. In my head I make some great websites and suddenly other people/business owners recognise my skills and suddenly the phone won’t stop ringing and I have sacks of money. But I doubt this is going to translate into reality

Another thing that makes it harder is that it feels like my family(with the exception of my brother) don’t support my decision to pursue freelance work. I believe they think its a ‘phase’ or maybe an excuse and are waiting for me to get a ‘proper job’ related to my degree or masters degree. I’m not earning shed loads of money (yet!) but I really love what I do (to the extent that I’m writing this post and editing code instead of playing on my xbox or watching TV at 9pm) so this must count for something.

That said, its not going to deter me. I’m still learning new skills through Treehouse, the newest being WordPress, and I’m still eager to find ways to implement these new skills. I will continue to develop my portfolio and just see how it goes.

I find the web really interesting and I love the web community. An example of this community was demonstrated when I launched this site. I posted on twitter about the launch and within 4 minutes @studionashvagas replied letting me know that my home link button wasn’t working correctly. Knowing this I could quickly fix the fault. Its this support that I think is fantastic. A guy from the other side of the world took a few minutes to post feedback on my site. Its something I have experienced before in the web community and its what makes this community amazing.

Regardless of anything I’ve said above, I’m not looking forward to going back to M&S after this weeks holiday where all I’ve done is coding. But for the time being it tops up my bank account. Its not a long term scenario, its just knowing when to quit and be able to support myself financially.