Although I’ve written several posts about freelancing and how to survive the world as a freelancer, I’m not sure that I’ve ever written candidly about what exactly it is that I do. It’s strange because I always assume that what I do comes across really well online but that’s not the case at all! I suppose I don’t really have an official job title aside from Director of my own company. In short, I’m a freelance copywriter that works from home and, on the side, I run my own fledgling clothing business that I’d love to be able to take full-time one day. I write anything from product descriptions to press releases to blog posts to full-length features for fashion and lifestyle brands in the UK, US and Hong Kong. Need words? Hit me up.
So, today I’m going to bring you along with me for a working week with Michelle!
On a Monday, I get up at around 8am and prepare breakfast for both me and Milo. Now that it’s warmer, I tend to take 15 minutes to eat breakfast in the garden and get some fresh air before coming back indoors to set up my office space. I always like to pop outdoors (whether in the garden or to do an early bird dog walk) before working to jog my brain!
Mondays from there are usually email-heavy in the morning. I respond to emails, sign off or make changes to Honey + Chai product samples and make a note of anything outstanding to work on, prioritising in my planner for the week ahead. I like to confirm meetings and take some time to get up to speed with my Hong Kong clients who’ve already been in the office for 8 hours by the time I reach my desk! Most of my conference calls fall in the late morning and then it’s time for lunch! Oh, and if you were wondering, all of my Honey + Chai orders are packed upon receiving the order and sent during my lunch breaks!
My afternoon is then spent working on writing static copy and blog posts for one of my finance clients. Whilst I’d describe myself as a freelance fashion writer, I also take on other clients just to boost income and keep my writing style diverse, varied and fresh. I usually finish up at around 3.30pm on a Monday, and spend the rest of my afternoon taking the dog out with my Dad, working out and just having some me time.
Tuesdays are infamously a day off for me. I’m lucky enough to be able to set my own working days and hours and for the most part, I can have Tuesday off to spend with Harvey as he has Monday evenings, Tuesdays and Wednesday afternoons off work. I’m especially thankful to be able to freelance and work from home as it means I can prioritise spending time with loved ones, something I definitely struggled with when I worked full-time. I’ll still spend about an hour or so keeping on top of emails and making sure things are ticking over.
I spend Wednesday morning and afternoon with Harvey. We usually take walks around our hometown, head out for food or drive into London to explore.
Once Harvey is safely ferried back to work, I knuckle down to work from 6.30pm until around 10pm. Right now, my Wednesday evenings consist of writing product descriptions for Honey + Chai and getting product listings up. I also work on subbing and uploading SEO content for an international client, followed by press release writing and then I tend to churn out any longer blog posts for Daisybutter. I always get into a great writing groove after my non-traditional weekend.
Now Thursday is where my week gets really busy: I’m up at 8am to get a yoga workout in (the Asana Rebel app is my newest obsession) before tackling emails again. I then plan the week ahead (Thursday-Thursday) for Honey + Chai’s editorial calendar before hopping in the car and heading to Barrecore for an hour.
Once my workout class is done, I shower and hit up my portable desk. I’m obsessed with this. I always feel guilty for spending too much time in my home office (where Milo isn’t allowed!) so like to spend a Thursday in the living room with Milo. Portable desk and cushion set up, I also pop something on Chromecast so I can double up productivity. A Thursday afternoon looks like scheduling social media posts for Honey + Chai and creating batches of fashion and activewear product descriptions for up to two clients per week. I can usually get this done by around 4pm, before moving on to writing and/or editing copy for collection launches, splash pages, lookbooks, house style guides and editorial features for my UK and US fashion clients until around 6/7pm. Often after dinner, I’ll then work again from 8pm until 10pm.
My Fridays are often devoted to accounts and admin. I start the day off with emails before hopping on several calls to my Honey + Chai suppliers in Hong Kong and Seoul. Nice. (God bless Skype.) Once that is done and dusted, I write the weekly Honey + Chai newsletter and blog post and have them scheduled in to send/post. I file all of my receipts and paid invoices of that week to my HUGE accounts spreadsheet and keep a note of anything outstanding, ready to send those oh so fun follow-up emails. I also have to conjure up pitches for next week’s articles and features to my editor by 5pm.
On a Friday, I tend to work from about 10am ’til 4pm. Glorious.
Often just a weekend 🙂
On a Sunday, I tend to spend it partially relaxing with work on the backburner. I like to work slowly on uploads for a client to get ahead of deadlines and also devote some time to the blog. I mentioned earlier in the year that whilst I do not blog full-time, I’d like to build it up to a point that sponsored content and blog advertising brings in 25% of my total revenue for the year. Honesty is the best policy, eh? I also pack weekend orders from the shop in the evening whilst watching YouTube videos.
I hope this post was somewhat helpful for you! My weeks constantly change – such is the freelancer life! – especially if I happen to have external meetings and I’m lucky enough that I can move things around to fit in hospital appointments, vet check-ups, dog walks and hanging out with pals. I’m finding it so great to be able to be so flexible and prioritise my mental health, personal wellbeing and relationships; after all, money comes and goes but your happiness should always come first.
Photo by Elodie Russo.