Hustling for Fun and Profit as a Technical Writer: A Freelancing Starter Kit




The work of a tech writer requires skills, knowledge, and a love of technology combined with constant learning, which is very similar to a developer job. But unlike developers, we, as writers, often hit the career wall while working in the same position, for a single employer, on the same tasks, using the same tools, release after release.

Often, we hit a glass ceiling in terms of salary, too, as there is nothing new that we could bring to the table while toiling away on the same things, with no practical experience with other tools and approaches. Even with a dream employer, repetitiveness leads to fatigue, hopelessness, and burnout.

This talk is about changing the mindset from only working for a single employer to successful freelance side-hustling for the sake of growing one's expertise deeper. It is about becoming a T-shaped tech writer by turning to freelancing in various forms, from consulting to writing, editing, managerial and strategic work.

The talk covers:

  • ethical side of side-hustling
  • legal side (contract agreements, non-compete clauses, NDAs)
  • financial side (invoicing, payment systems, budgeting, taxes)
  • effective time-management (scheduling, working with distributed teams, dealing with scarce communication)
  • self-care (optimal work and rest times, setting boundaries, routines & rituals)
  • specific tools for dealing with all the points provided above

The author is a serial side-hustler with years of multi-client freelance experience under the belt.

  • Conference: Write the Docs Prague
  • Year: 2021

About the speaker

Karen Sawrey