I don’t advocate quitting anything if you truly love it and feel you can make a good go at it but I also believe that some people just aren’t cut out to be freelance bloggers. If you’ve been trying for a long time to get blogging jobs and nothing is working you may think, “I have rotten luck” but it’s far more likely that you’re doing something wrong or you just don’t have the stomach to blog for a living.
Signs you should quit trying to blog for a living…
You hate blogging. I’m guessing all bloggers get tired of blogging once in a while. I get sick of blogging sometimes, but at the end of a bad week I always come back to the fact that deep down I love my job. I loved blogging when I made squat and I love it now. If the thought of having to log in and write a post is filling you with dread then you have a big problem.
You hate querying and it holds you back. Bloggers who make a living blogging for others are good at applying for jobs. You don’t have to like applying but you should be able to fake it. I actually hate querying. It’s not much fun and it’s so ongoing (boring). However, it’s part of the deal. If you want to blog for others you’ll be applying and querying for the rest of your career so you should at least get comfortable with it. If applying for gigs makes you upset or you hate it so much that you fail to apply for enough gigs then blogging for others is probably not going to work out.
There’s other stuff you could do. Freelance blogging or writing is hard, hard work. Seriously if there’s something else you could do, by all means go for it. And by could do I mean “could do and be happy doing it.” I could go back to social work or write for businesses again but I wouldn’t be as happy. If you’re always thinking about the good old days when you did something else then maybe you should go do it.
You still can’t stomach rejection. Rejection is so commonplace in freelance writing and blogging that you absolutely need to be able to deal or you will go insane. Not only will you get rejections from potential clients but readers and other bloggers too. Rejections should get easier for you at some point; you don’t have to be born with a thick skin, but you should learn to develop one. At this point potential client rejections don’t even phase me, and while mean reader comments do get me down once in a while, overall I just don’t care much what people think of me, and that’s an asset in this job. If you can’t ignore rejection or learn to live nicely with it blogging is a very hard career to manage.
You’re not on board with social media. Social media is such an integral part of blogging now that you should like, or at least be able to handle social media.
You get fired a lot. Blogs close down, clients switch gears and loosing a job isn’t too uncommon. However if you lose more jobs than you keep there’s probably a reason why.
It’s been years and you’re still making zip AND you have obligations. If you make very little money and the only person it affects is you then fine but when other people are involved you need to consider them too. It’s all good if you feel like writing is your life, but if your kids need clothes and groceries and you could make more money another way then you should do it. I’ve been at forums and seen writers who’ll say things like, “I’m still not making any money after 3 years” then they’ll complain about not having money for their kids or say that their spouse is cranky about the lack of cash. If you have responsibilities and are making very little money (after years of trying) it’s smart to look for a new career.
Not to be a killjoy but not everyone can blog for a living. If you’re dealing with the above issues it may be time to throw in the towel or consider another type of writing work. Coming up we’ll look at some time-lines – i.e. how long is too long to be looking for blogging gigs without a hit before you consider quitting. We’ll also look at some ideas that could help you score blogging gigs before you decide to quit. Sometimes just a few changes to your routine is all it takes to turn things around.
When do you think it’s a good idea to throw in the blogging towel and why?