Uncharted Traveller

Tag - Content writer

Chasing deadlines and eating frogs

airport

“Sometimes you’re flush and sometimes you’re bust, and when you’re up, it’s never as good as it seems, and when you’re down, you never think you’ll be up again, but life goes on.” Fred Jung, Blow.

Today was just awful. Nobody died, I still have my health, things will get better but today really sucked ass. I just had this nagging feeling all morning that something was wrong and it fed into absolutely everything I tried to do.

Deadlines: The bain of a content writer

I slept in this morning for the first time in weeks, I’m not sure why, and just knew it was one of those days. I tried to shake it off; took a shower, contemplated shaving, got dressed and went for breakfast in the usual spot – a small cafe on the corner nearby. My to-do list was pretty ambitious for the day but that was nothing out of the ordinary for a travel content writer.

Immediately after breakfast, emails and messages, I sat down to start writing the first of four articles. But absolutely nothing would come. Not one sentence. I was suddenly incapable of writing and of course the irony in all of this, is that I am writing about this now. In the end, I spent the most part of the morning and afternoon getting nothing done and as a writer with tight deadlines, this is such a horrible feeling to have.

Eating the Frog

Frog Eyes

Then I remembered something an instructor told me while training to become a travel consultant in Calgary. Brent was telling us that some days we’ve just got to eat the frog. What is the green frog? Well, I’m not sure how to describe him exactly but he is basically that little shit who was sitting in front of me all morning. He was watching me get out of bed, he was eating my breakfast, and he was the very first article along with every one that came afterward. But there was no point ignoring him or doing something else, as he was never going away until I ate him. So I did – I ate him four times.

I guess it’s true, that when you’re up, it’s never really as good as it seems, and when you’re down, you never think you’ll be up again, but life does go on and no matter what happens, you’ve still got to eat the god damn frog.

Is it worth the risk for online writers?

train digital nomad

When I first began searching for a way to sustain my travels around the world, the prospect of becoming an online writer didn’t seem very realistic. After all, I had no experience with writing of any kind and no real idea of how to get started either. However, I would find out over the course of the following year that my aspirations were actually quite modest and not as far out of my reach as I first anticipated.

Becoming an online writer

Laptop

You see, everything seems so damn hard when you have no experience but at the same time, it is often the process of trying in which we gain the experience in itself. For me, this was most certainly the case and although the very first time I wrote an article for a paying client ended in disaster, it was only a matter of time until the writing became natural and I realized exactly what worked.

And then there was the question of talent. Was it really possible for someone with so little writing talent to be successful? Ironically, yes it was. I would learn many valuable lessons over the course of the first year trying to make it as a content writer but none more so than that it was possible to do anything with enough practice. I may not have been writing articles worthy of the Huffington Post but I was certainly improving and doing it nonetheless.

Morale of the story: If you work hard enough at most things, talent and experience just does not matter.

The modern day writer

Another aspect of becoming a writer which seems to be largely ignored is how we live in an age where it has never been easier to become a writer online. As outlined in a recent article by Greg of Prescott Papers, “People are more mobile these days. They often have to spend time on public transport such as the bus and the subway, getting to work or wherever it is they need to be. With smartphones and tablets comes the internet, where any type of online writing is located”. In the very same way, I began my career as a content writer sitting on trains, in airports or at the back of the bus with a small laptop and a head full of ideas. I was fully realizing how the internet had opened up an avenue for me which would not have been there fifteen or twenty years ago.

Changing attitudes and changing roles

Digital nomad in the city

I feel it’s entirely natural to be afraid when it comes to pursuing a new career. Stepping outside of the comfort zone is one thing but when you find yourself surrounded by people telling you it’s not possible, that makes it even more difficult. An honestly, it is like this for most people who go to school. We are told what to dress, how to act, what popular looks like, what is right, what is normal. In the end we have this general perception for how everything is supposed to be and it becomes so hardwired that we are unable to think outside of the box even when we leave those days behind.

I guess what I am trying to say is that most things in life (like becoming an online writer) are not really as far out of our grasp as we believe. We just learn to think in this way having being led by the hand since a young age and then we fear the oncoming change or risk because this is naturally a scary thing to do. But what will it be; to live a safe life with little adventure or to be bold and live to the full?

Well, I made my decision, have you made yours?

Save

Save