In an earlier post, I wrote about the benefits of travel for a freelancer. Now, I’m going to completely contradict myself.
While I do think it’s healthy to get out of one’s environment now and then, I spend the vast majority of time at home sitting in front of my laptop banging out blog posts and other pieces of written content like this one. Sure, it’s great to get up, go out for some fresh air, and recharge the batteries. But, if you’re happy where you are and doing what you’re doing, who says you need to travel to some far off destination?
The following Facebook status from legendary copywriter and author of The Copywriter’s Handbook, Bob Bly, made me laugh because I related to it so much:
“”The writer’s volume of accomplishment depends precisely on the ability to sit alone in a room,” said Susan Sontag. It’s yet another reason why I view travel as an unwholesome chore to be avoided at all costs, do not go to meetings, and infrequently leave my house. And I’m as happy as a clam.”
People tell me all the time that they cannot understand how I possibly stay in my apartment all day in front of my computer and maintain my sanity (arguable whether or not it’s been maintained). They have no comprehension how I can be happy doing that. And, yet I’m totally content.
This is probably why I never really understood the “digital nomad” lifestyle that so many writers and other freelance creatives romanticize. Sure, it’s cool to be able to work from anywhere and I relish that privilege, but I’ve traveled while working. It kind of sucks!
You have to constantly worry about where to get wifi, time zone differences can make deadlines and client communication problematic, and you have to pray you don’t suffer a technical issue in a country where they don’t speak your .native tongue. Plus, if you’re really working, you don’t have much time for sight-seeing and then you feel bad that you’re not taking advantage of what your destination has to offer. I’m fine just writing and working from home. There’s nothing “out there” I need to do right now.
I keep in-person meetings to a minimum, stay inside my apartment most of the day, and rarely travel despite its potential benefits.
Other people tell me they’d go crazy. I guess we writers are a weird breed of human and I’m alright with that.