Even though I loved being a high school English teacher, for years I daydreamed about quitting my job to write full time. But I thought it would always be exactly that — a dream.
To be clear, I’d been a full-time writer in the past. Before I started my career in education, I was a staff reporter for a weekly paper in Louisville, Kentucky. But my tenure there just showed me that I wanted to write on my own terms. I wanted to be a full-time freelance writer. But I thought there was no way I could do this unless I was willing to eat PB&J for breakfast, lunch, and dinner every day. I was convinced living a comfortable lifestyle as a full-time freelancer was impossible.
Then one day I decided I was going to give it a shot anyway!
Let’s talk about your BIG, HAIRY, AUDACIOUS WRITING GOAL!
A BIG, HAIRY, AUDACIOUS GOAL (or BHAG) is a concept developed in the book Built to Last. A BHAG is a goal that’s clear and compelling and once that requires building for the long term and creates a sense of urgency.
So what’s a big, hairy, audacious writing goal?
I think it’s that writing goal you have that’s so big it scares you. The one that’s so ambitious that you’re afraid to tell anyone about it because you think they’ll laugh at you. Or maybe when you think about the goal you laugh at yourself.
That was me less than 2 years ago. I secretly wanted to quit my teaching job to be a full-time freelance writer. I have other BIG, HAIRY, AUDACIOUS GOALS and I knew that being a full-time freelance writer would give me the flexible schedule I needed to pursue them. But I was convinced that there was NO WAY I could make enough money to pay my bills and maintain a comfortable lifestyle on freelance writing income.
But guess what? I’ve done exactly that for over a year — in spite of cancer and in spite of a global pandemic that has rocked our economy.
There are three things that I think helped me achieve this goal.
Whether you like it or not, to be a successful writer you must also be an entrepreneur. You must market your book, your blog, or your brand as a freelancer as if it is a business because that’s exactly what it is.
It’s time to get serious. It’s time to write like a boss. My hope is that this new blog series will help you do exactly that.