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Will a Recession Affect Freelance Writers?

on January 20, 2008 in Freelance Writing

Falling Economy - Credit:

There was an interesting question posed over at ChrisBlogging about the effect a US recession might have on freelance writers here:

"Are you worried that things will slow down across all industries, including freelance writing?"

Of course any major economic swings are going to affect us as freelance writers, but personally I'm not worried in the slightest about the potential of an upcoming recession. Why not?

  1. The US dollar is still weak. That makes the services of US writers more attractive to buyers in other countries (I can't begin to tell you how many more clients I've picked up between Canada and the UK alone with the dollar down, from new clients to past clients willing to order far more work).
  2. If you know anything about freelancing (and you'd better if you want to be able to market yourself effectively), you should know that it's often much less expensive for a company to hire freelancers than actual employees. When you get into a situation where people have to lay off employees, hiring freelancers is often an ideal solution - as long as you know how to sell yourself on the point of being cost-effective, you may very well find more work during a recession rather than losing work.

Even without the US dollar value being lower these days, #2 is enough. As always in the freelance world, it comes down to whether or not you can market yourself effectively given the circumstances around you. So if there's a recession coming, I say "Bring it on!"

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Jennifer Mattern is a professional blogger, freelance business writer, and indie author. Through her company, 3 Beat Media, she operates All Indie Writers,,, and numerous other blogs.

Jenn has over 15 years experience writing for others, over 11 years experience in blogging, and 9 years experience in indie e-book publishing. She is an Active member of the Horror Writers Association.

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  1. Mark January 20, 2008 Reply

    No. 1 is great. No. 2 gets offset slightly by the fact that those who are out of work will increase the number of freelancers (not all of them will start independent copy writing businesses but some will).

    But, No. 3, a recession is not going to stop people from trying to make a living and there will be, in that activity, a continual place for writers.

  2. Jennifer Mattern January 20, 2008 Reply

    True, there may be an increasing number of freelancers. Keep in mind though that just because someone can work as a copywriter or any other type of writer as an employee, it doesn’t mean they can make it as a freelancer – most fail and fail relatively quickly. Experienced freelancers should have a pretty big edge in that they should have a good portfolio in hand already from freelancing and stronger skills in marketing their services and knowing what their edge is already over the majority of new freelancers just starting out.

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