I’ve given the Freelance thing a hearty try on a couple occasions. The first time was successful. I had a couple good clients that provided steady work, and eventually went to work for one of them full time. But, the itch to develop iOS Apps was so strong I made another attempt at Freelancing. That second round was an unmitigated disaster. I took on too much work for too little reward, there were other factors in the mix as well.
Doing Freelance work, or studio work, is like being a hamster in cage on one of those wheels. You work your tail off and go nowhere. I know some folks are really good at it, but I failed at it because you need to hustle work all the time as well as work on your current obligations. It’s a tough balancing game.
All that to say I’m doing it wrong. That became apparent when I read Brent Simmons weblog post about resigning from Q-Branch. In his post Brent says that he resigned because he is not working on the software he is passionate about.
I decided to leave because I wasn’t working on the software that I’ve been obsessed with for more than a decade.
That makes you think, doesn’t it? Why do something your heart isn’t really into? Paycheck aside. If you need to work on something at night and on the side it should be something you are deeply passionate about.
John Gruber followed up with these words, this really drives the point home.
Nights-and-weekends time is for your passions, not for obligations.
They’re right. I’m 47 years old, and closer to 48 as of this writing. Why should anyone spend time working on something they’re not absolutely passionate about?
I’ve been going about this all wrong. I’ve wanted to do a large project for years. My dear wife has been encouraging me to pursue it, for years. It’s time to reflect and make a choice; pursue that dream, or let it die, stop killing myself for others and just enjoy what I have.
Oh, and I need to read a book for fun once in a while. I started Stephen King’s 11/22/63 two and a half years ago and haven’t finished it. I have a stack of books beside my bed, just dying to be read. I should read them.