Saturday, March 10, 2012

More on Working from Home

If you hope to earn a living by working on the internet from home, there are a few things you're going to need:
  • You need your own computer
  • You need to devote a lot of time to any part-time or full-time jobs you take in (initially)
  • You'll need a quiet place where there will be few disturbances, if any
The first probably won't be too difficult. Computers are much cheaper than they've ever been and they're getting cheaper still. Which one you buy will depend on what type of work you want to do. If you just want to write, a not-too-high-end notebook will probably do. I'm only giving this advise if you can't afford a high-speed, high-memory and high-priced computer. If you have the funds, don't skimp. I'm actually thinking of getting a cheap notebook with WiFi, Bluetooth, at least 2GB of on board memory and at least 250GB of disk space for writing and a desktop for the more complicated stuff.

If you plan to work at home part-time, you'll have to spend at least four hours a day working on your part-time job. Note the word, "initially," at the end of Item 2. Depending on the job you've taken up, four hours may be the minimum. There may be jobs out there that you can spend less hours on, but I haven't found any at this time.

I once tried taking a job as a content writer. I enjoyed the work but I could only complete one to three 200 word articles per day instead of the required 10. It wasn't that I couldn't type fast enough (I can type fairly fast) but I only gave myself two hours per day to write. I would research the topics and write and rewrite until I was satisfied with the story before submitting it. There was also the problem with Item 3.

Writing is a job that requires concentration. It's difficult to work in a noisy environment and nearly impossible if there are interruptions every now and then. This is probably one of the pitfalls of working at home. Kids playing around you, kids asking you for help with homework, your wife wants to discuss what she's going to cook for dinner, neighbors coming around for a chat, it's worse than being at the office. If you don't have a quiet, private space for working at home, you can rent a small apartment or office space somewhere just to get work done. Else, you can wield an iron hand and tell everyone, "no one makes any noise while I'm working!"

I'm going to be eligible for early retirement in two years. I've got two desktops and one laptop. My daughter, who's studying in another city about 90 kms away, is using the laptop. I'm using one very old desktop (sharing it with my kids, 12 and 8 years old). I have another desktop but it doesn't have a monitor and a mouse yet. I'm planning to send that to my college-age daughter and donate the laptop to her cousin. I still get to use this clunker of a desktop. I hope to earn enough from my part time writing to buy a small notebook for my personal use.

I don't have much choice with time, unfortunately. I've got a full time job and need to share computer time with my kids. Homework takes priority over my writing.

Privacy is the big problem. Our house is small so there isn't much I can do about having some peace and quiet. The computer is up against the wall near the dining table and I get an occasional bump as people pass by. I'm thinking of using the garage as an office but my wife wants it for another bedroom. I may have to rent an apartment or office somewhere.

It's challenging but there's not much to do about it for now. Keep on keeping on. (",)

No comments:

Post a Comment