Why Every Freelance Writer Needs a Budget

contributed by Maya Payne Smart

Many freelance writers work without a formal budget. They run extremely lean operations, spending money on little more than office supplies, phone calls, and Internet access and considering the leftover money as profit. Keeping overhead low is their lone strategy for staying in the black, and they see no need to complicate a checkbook-and-calculator operation with spreadsheets and income and expense projections. But by operating without a budget, they’re missing an important opportunity to evaluate their performance, examine their priorities, and identify new opportunities.

Freelance writer Julie Sturgeon says that having a strong grasp of her historical income motivates her to pursue premium clients and keep her spending in check. “I know what my expenses are on a monthly basis, and I’ve been in this long enough to build a pattern of extra expenses,” she explains.

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