I just got an email from a editor that I write for and the publication will cease publishing shortly. Bummer right? Well, not necessarily.
It's par for the course. As a freelance writer, know that gigs will often end. This one ended on a good note. I was notified in advance. I will still get paid for all work submitted. I have the experience of writing for a company that has several other publications - that could lead to other opportunities.
When a gig ends it's disappointing (well sometimes it's a relief), but there are a few key things to do before you wrap it all up with a bow:
-Make copies and backup your work for them. If it's a Web site or online newsletter, make a PDF copy of all your work, that way when the archives no longer exist you still have it.
-Wrap up any outstanding payments due. No need to elaborate on that.
-Finish any outstanding work with the same vigor and professionalism.
-Keep in friendly touch with the editors and publication. Update them on what you are doing, inquire about what they are doing. Contacts go a long way in this biz.
-Get back on the horse - if you fell off. Get back on the job boards, contact editors, let people know you have wrapped up a project and if they want your services to get on now while the gettin' is good. Notice I didn't say write everyone you know and beg for a job because you got fired or laid off or the publication folded. Keep things positive, plus desperation just scares people away.
-Finally, take a close look at your budget, trim the fat if you need to until you get the next gig in.
It's a good idea to keep a plan in mind for if and when regular gig end. My granny always said "Don't count money until it's in your hand."