As the weeks of (f)unemployment go by and I’ve been unable to find a job that fits my need for flexibility, I’ve been looking more and more at contracting and freelancing type jobs. I would take a part-time retail job, but since we may only have two and a half months left in the states and finding an out-of-home job overseas will be next to impossible quand je ne parle pas francais, I decided that the best use of my time will be in figuring out something I can do from anywhere that pays.

That has led me down the rabbit-hole of data entry and transcription. It looks like either of these will be my best bet, although there is a little bit of a learning curve. My office jobs for the past five years have pretty much just been data entry, so I’ve got that down, but transcription is new and scary.

Still, from the forums I’ve read so far, it looks right up my alley. I just need to actually let myself go through the learning curve instead of getting scared away at the first sign of failure. I’ve noticed with anything really “new”, I get all excited about it, but as soon as I realize I don’t know everything ever and am not completely ready, I just… don’t do anything about it.

So instead of flailing – which is what I’ve been doing when I haven’t been editing lately – I’m going to put effort into making this happen. Already, I’ve found transcription software and have been practicing. Next is a foot pedal, more practice, honing my resume, and applying, applying, applying. I am, if nothing else, absolutely stubborn, but I have to actually focus and harness that to get anywhere.

Have any of you done at-home work of any kind? Especially transcription? Any and all experiences, tips, etc would be appreciated. 🙂



Filed under France, goals

7 responses to “Freelancing?

  1. I haven’t done any transcription work from home, but I did a little bit when I was a law clerk to help out the legal assistants. I actually really enjoyed it!! I think the keys are accuracy, and letting a potential employer know you are reliable and can return the product in a short timeframe. Good luck, I hope you like it!

  2. How about English tutoring and/or conversation once you get to France? You’d have flexible hours, you’ll meet interesting people, and you can charge more per hour than for data entry, leaving more time for writing!

    • I’m not ruling this out, but Montpellier has a 14% unemployment rate and there are quite a few ex-pats in that community, so tutor work may be hard to come by. It would definitely be preferable, tho.

  3. I have no advice, but freelancing sounds like the perfect solution! Good luck!

  4. I was a freelance designer for many years. The hardest part was lining up the gigs. I never felt like I could relax, because I was always thinking of the next job and making sure I had income lined up for the next few months. Having said that, the freedom was great! Getting to shape my work schedule around travels and the more important things in my life was amazing. I do miss that aspect of it now that I work in an office full time.

  5. I have a background in evaluation, which is a rapidly growing field, and now that qualitative evaluation as well as mixed methods (qualitative & quantitative) are becoming much more prevalent, I’d say transcription is an excellent skill to have. There is so much transcription required for interviews & focus groups, which are the main qualitative evaluation methods. Marketing yourself to evaluation consultants as a sub-contractor would be something to consider~.

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