Perhaps it is a dilemma for all part-time freelancers who cling to their day jobs for their health benefits or financial stability: when is it worth it – and when is it a really bad idea – to go freelance full-time?

Here are some tips to help you know whether or when you can and should commit to freelance work as your full-time job.

You Should Be a Full-Time Freelance Writer If…

  1. You are this guy and you can bank 6 figures every year (yes, it is possible as a freelancer but probably not very common!). Proof that not all freelance writers are impoverished and starving. But alas, if we all knew we could make 300k/year writing we would not need an article to tell us to quit our stupid day jobs already.
  2. You have actually found a way to get paid to write before. Unless you have the financial security to up and quit your day job (and spend potentially a considerable amount of time with no income) it is probably unwise to go freelance full-time without any experience. It can take time to learn the ins and outs of making money as a freelance writer – start with sites that provide reliable payment to build an online resume.
  3. You can handle some uncertainty with your income. Even the best freelance writers have to be comfortable with the risk of a less stable income than salaried work provides. When you are out making your own opportunities, you have to be comfortable with the idea that you won’t have a steady or reliable figure of income from time to time.
  4. You can effectively be your own boss. Being a freelancer takes discipline, and unless you can be your own taskmaster – keeping yourself honest and committed about the time you devote to your craft – you may be doomed for freelance failure.
  5. You hate your job and/or traffic and you love working in your pajamas. I must say that the perks of freelance writing from home are quite good…If the day job is driving you insane it may just be time to go for the (freelance) gold.

Freelance Work at Home

You Should NOT Be a Full-Time Freelance Writer If…

  1. Your highest level of productivity when at home involves only popcorn and Oprah.
  2. You get exhausted at the thought of being responsible for finding and even competing for 100% of your work.
  3. You don’t know how to write things people want/need/can’t write themselves.

Not exactly secrets to the universe, perhaps, but hopefully some valuable insight all the same…