• Shea Simmons

What Does A Freelance Writer Do? Here's A Day In My Life

A freelance writer may seem like a dream job, and honestly, it kind of is. I'm extremely lucky to do what I do, but there seems to be a lot of mystery around what a freelance writer actually does. I'm here to clear that up a bit (at least when it comes to me).

While you may think the life of a writer isn't very structured, that's a common misconception. In fact, my life is scheduled pretty much down to the minute, and I thought I'd take you through a typical day in my life (at least during week days) to show what life's like as a freelance writer.


I am useless without coffee, and I'm sure there are other writers out there who can attest to the same. I rarely eat breakfast (I know, I'm terrible), but I always make time to make coffee. During the week, coffee starts at home, and going to my local Starbucks (which is less than a mile away) is a treat for me, so I'm all about a bag of ground Pike's Place, and my Target-bought coffee maker. Of course, my trusty cat mug that looks like my fur baby doesn't hurt.

Also, it's cream and two sweet-n-lows for me.

E-mail + Social Media Scan

After making coffee, I take time to sit down and check my e-mails from overnight as well as social media. Currently, I'm a freelance writer for three different blogs (two businesses and one traditional blog) as well as a part-time fashion + beauty writer for Bustle. This means, I've got a lot of correspondences coming in to my inbox. I keep different labels for the different sites I write for inside my inbox to stay organized.

Once I've checked my e-mails, I browse social media for news including the political and fashion, beauty, and books news. As a writer, it's my job to stay on top of what's happening in the areas I write about and care about. This is my time to relax, finish my coffee, and read up.

Getting Ready

Do I do my hair and makeup every day? Of course not! If you do and you work from home, I'm so impressed. However, when I don't sleep through my alarm or spend too much time on the internet, I try my best to put on a bit of makeup and make my hair look presentable. Why? For me. Sure, I don't see anyone during the day except my husband (and he truly doesn't care in the best way possible), but I feel more productive once I've gotten ready.

Don't worry. I promise I at least brush my teeth and shower every day. Sometimes, there's just more dry shampoo involved.

Work Hours

When it comes to my work schedule, Bustle is the only hard and fast hours I have. Typically, I'm online writing for the site during most companies' business hours. I begin in the morning and end about mid afternoon. However, Bustle isn't my only job. This means that I have to schedule times to write posts and run social media for my other freelancing writing jobs.

Typically, I work in an extra hour before my Bustle shift to update the social medias of the companies I work for and publish any posts I have already written that are ready to go live. If, for some reason, I miss this time before my shift for Bustle, I'll do it right after that shift ends. See? Everything is very scheduled.

Down Time

After work, I've done a lot of writing. While I may have a blog post to write for Hey Shea Shea or photos to take, recharging is always my priority. My job certainly isn't physically demanding, but it does take a lot of brain power. To unwind, I usually grab my young adult book of the moment and a cup of tea or coffee. This time can last however long I need it to, and once I feel refreshed, it's usually time to start dinner (or head to the grocery for dinner).

While it may appear that working from home gives you tons of flexibility, it's actually a super structured career, at least for me. To stay on top of stuff (because I'm a procrastinator like whoa), I keep a plan. While that plan can go out the window when I turn off my alarm out of frustration, this is what works for me, and hopefully, it gives you a peek into the life of a freelance writer.

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