I lost a client. This happens all the time, and there's usually nothing personal about it. Needs change, projects end. The nature of having clients is that they come and go, and often they come back again. The loss of this client was a little more impactful than usual: I've been working with them for about three years, the last two of which, completely offsite. They've gotten busier, which had meant more work for me for a while, but a new manager was installed and decided a full time, onsite copywriter was necessary. My feeling is that writing is a solitary act, and that more doesn't get done in an eight-hour day than a two-hour sprint, and that having a communicative offsite resource is a cost-effective way to get high-level copy without paying a person to sit and use Facebook 40% of the workday – along with covering their taxes, health insurance, vacation/sick time, etc. That's my angle, and of course, there are factors in any office situation of which I am completely ignorant, being on the outside. In this case, they'd already decided they needed a person and hired someone. So that's it.
This gig had been very steady work – and the income from it alone was enough to cover my basic expenses every month. Losing it is a shame. The bright side? I get a chance to rethink the way I want to work. Unlike the majority of my project-based work that I can schedule out over a month, this was an on-call client. I'd receive emails throughout the day of things that needed to get done, and I'd charge an hourly rate. So I had to be accessible, all the time. Monitoring my email throughout the day, even on vacation, prioritizing on their projects when I'd already scheduled time to work on something else. I was happy for the income, so I never said no, but now, if I can avoid it, I'd rather not work this way anymore. Save for the occasional last-minute addition/print deadline, writing copy doesn't have to be a down-to-the-wire task – I'm not an ER nurse or a breaking news journalist. The rest of my clients, who've been onboarded more recently than this one, are acclimated to a 30% rush fee on deliverables due under one week from request. I don't always charge it, but it dissuades them from not looping me in sooner.
Anyway, it's been a relaxed week with far fewer Trello notification emails coming through. I'm excited to figure out what I'll do with that time. I have quite a few ideas. When things get quiet, that's when I start to hustle and the really cool stuff starts to happen.