Working for amateurs
One of the most unnerving things…
Oh, hello! You’re here!
This is one of those posts about the incredibly funny and surreal experiences of one that’s trying to make a living writing – a marketing guru guaranteed I’d get tons of likes and followers by telling you these stories… so!
One of the most unnerving things of working as a freelance is the clients that do not pay you in time, but then point out it’s extremely unprofessional on your part talking about it and pointing your finger at them.
What a horrid lack of class, mentioning money like that!
The first time it happened it was almost ten years ago – I worked through the Christmas period on a very important and very urgent translation, and then the publisher simply did not pay. They ignored my calls and my mails. It took me sixteen months and the intercession of a friend of my father that works in credit recovery, to finally get my sixteen hundred euro. Of course at that point I had already defaulted some payments and my bank was out for my blood, and I had to sell a painting, that was my one heirloom from my mother, to avoid other consequences.
The publisher pointed out that it would have been extremely unprofessional on my part to mention their name publicly about this matter. They did not say anything about the professionalism of sending a guy with a baseball bat to their offices, on the other hand.
Then they went belly-up, burning a 40.000 euro hole in the pockets of their latest partner.
Right now I’m in the same situation, with a twist: my client is not paying the latest translation I delivered, but just hit me with 17.000 more words to translate, urgently.
They appeal to my professionalism.
And professionalism is exactly the crux, here.
A lot of these people happen to be small publishers or indie authors and have an alternative source of income – they or their spouses hold “real jobs”, so that when I call them and I say “Please, I delivered the work, now I need the money because I need to pay my internet provider”, they basically cannot conceive the thought that I actually have only my work to pay for my expenses.
They, after all, have a real job.
Haven’t we all a real job?
Come on, man, where’s the urgency? LOL! Use your salary to pay those bills!
Being a bunch of amateurs, they cannot conceive the needs of a professional. And yet, they appeal to your professionalism.
So now here I am, in free fall.
I’ll keep you posted, as long as they don’t shut down my internet access.