Happy first Saturday in August! I want to again apologize for my disappearance from this blog. Life and its various demands and obligations called me away, and I needed to prioritize them for maximum productivity.
Many times we need to engage in modifying behaviors and reigniting motivation to accomplish all we want to do in order to reach our goals. One of my goals is to blog consistently; joining a new mastermind group, the Power Affiliate Club (PAC), helped me realize I needed to simplify my life even more and cut back from the 8 (yes, EIGHT) blogs I was trying to maintain, to only TWO. Those two now include this one and my Words of Encouragement blog.
Another strategy I decided would help me blog consistently is using writing prompts and ideas from various blog groups and challenges, such as the 30 Day Blogging Challenge. (Honestly, with all the other demands on my time and creativity, I often experience “brain drain” or “brain fog” and just have difficulty coming up with new ideas to blog about!)
So one of the ideas from the awesome couple, Kevin and Sarah Arrow of Sark eMedia and the 30 Day Blog Challenge, was to share “the story of me and how I got into this freelance career.” It has been awhile, I think, since I mentioned this. It’s actually a timely topic, because I am into my 8th year as a professional freelance writer and educational consultant, and things are really improving with even greater opportunities than in previous years.
I would have to back all the way up to about junior high school (MANY years ago!) when I first realized I loved to write. That passion for writing stayed with me all the way through college (the first time around, between 1976-1980), into the years I was married, and raised and homeschooled four children.
Then, when I had an opportunity to go back to school and pursue graduate degrees, I found I enjoyed writing, research, and ongoing studies even more. Funny thing is, I never thought of writing as a career path until I “came home” to work back in February 2008. This was after a short-lived career as a speech-developmental therapist, which I thoroughly enjoyed, but what began as a nearby office therapist position became a traveling therapist position of 350+ miles/week. It was too much for me to handle, due to some health issues, as well as the sometimes dangerous winter travel on back roads here in Maine!
I’m actually not sure when it dawned on me that I could write for a living, but eventually I discovered a whole new world of freelance and telecommute opportunities. Over these past several years, I have added an M.Ed. degree and have attained doctoral candidacy with my Ed.D.-ABD (All But Dissertation) status. I am now offering writing and educational consultant services. These include such specialized writing services as instructional design, course and assessment writing, and curriculum development.
I have also stopped settling for pitiful minimal pay–we’re talking less than 1 cent per word or less than the equivalent of minimum wage–from clients and companies that, honestly, take advantage of freelance writers. Now, depending on the client or company, I often receive as much as $30 – $50/hour or thousands of dollars per project. I have found that the more education and experience I gain, the better my opportunities are. I’m looking forward to achieving my ultimate goal of becoming Dr. K. Lee Banks, hopefully within the next couple of months, and seeing what new career doors will open to me.
I’ve lost track of the exact number, but I have somewhere around 3,200 published articles online and have two books published; one I authored, Fatherly Reflections, and one I co-authored with Dr. Christine Mason of the Center for Educational Improvement (CEI) entitled Heart Beaming. I have also authored, co-authored, or reviewed numerous courses. These projects varied from creating individual sample lessons, to entire courses, from scripts and storyboards to full online course content and instructor guidelines.
I also write ELA reading passages and assessment/test items and content for various clients, mostly for middle through high school students. I have also served as an English Language Arts Subject Matter Expert.
My goal, once I become Dr. Banks, is to add online instructional facilitation to my services.
So there you go – “the story of me and how I got into this freelance career.” 🙂
What about you?
Do you write for a living or just for fun?
Do you have a job outside the home?
Have you thought about pursuing additional education or training to improve your career opportunities?