I’ve never been much good at the nine-to-five thing. For a start, there are far more hours than that in the day and I am guilty of filling many of them with work.
I suppose it’s both a blessing and a curse that I love what I do for a living – I don’t like saying no to a great bit of story-telling.
And that’s where flexibility comes in. This freelance life of mine means I can work whenever or wherever I choose – or whenever or wherever suits my editors and clients.
I wrote a blog thing for the Guardian a while ago which talked about how I ‘handled crisis communications from a mountain top, filed magazine copy from the beach, and plugged in my laptop in a favourite cafe when home working got lonely.’
That’s all still totally true today, though I do now have a great shared workspace that allows me to hotdesk in places across the county (check out The Vicky and Workspace Cumbria, if you’re up north).
Because of recent family woes, I’ve even been able to work from a hospital bedside or two thanks to the amazing teams at North Cumbria University Hospitals NHS Trust who’ve let me whip out my laptop or smartphone and do just that.
But the greatest thing about flexibility is that my clients buy into it too.
They know I’ll be there whatever time of day they need me and, most importantly, I will get the job done – even if that means I’m filing copy at midnight. It could be that I’d skived off for three hours to get my hair done on a Wednesday morning, or it could be that they had a last minute lucrative project which they couldn’t turn down.
Either way, flexibility works wonders – for me, and the lovely folk I write for.