by Sarah Moore on The Write Life:
I wish someone had given me a list of don’ts when I first started freelance writing, then stood over me with a yardstick and rapped me on the knuckles every time I made a stupid move.
Alas, there was no Miss Trunchbull to guide me through those brutal first few years, and I made a lot of stupid moves.
Some of these stemmed from being young and entitled, others from dealing poorly with clients.
But far and away the most common mistake I made was to compromise my true passions in pursuit of money.
I became “The Jill of All Trades”
I know, I know. That story has been told…but not in the way you think.
I’m not talking about sacrificing my morals or anything. I’m talking about picking up the odd jobs every writer is asked to do: A little research here, a few social posts there, NBD, make the client happy, right?
And before you know it, you’re a Jack or Jill of all trades, at your clients’ beck and call for every “quickie” task conceivably related to writing.
Problem is, even if you’re happy with this arrangement, new clients won’t be.
They come to you for expertise, not for your Renaissance Man repertoire. If you don’t specialize, they’ll find someone who does. Which makes it imperative that you start saying no to those little tasks, and start saying yes only to writing work.
Without further ado, the five jobs you should absolutely, positively, under no circumstances, even on pain of death, ever do.