One trap with freelance work is that it can be so difficult to take time off.
What if my client finds someone else? What if I miss out on that big, exciting job?
These days we find that most of our clients close their offices between Christmas and New Year. But many translation agencies do operate 365 days of the year, regardless of holidays.
If you are a recently-established linguist, getting a foot on the ladder, why not make yourself available? Send a short but clear message (title – I am available for work during the holiday period – or similar). Don’t add in any other caveats or exclusions. If you are sitting at the table for your Christmas dinner, or you’ve ended up under the table, you can always say you’re working on another project (hic) and won’t be available for 24 hours!
Then remember to check your e-mail and phone on a regular basis so that you can accept any suitable assignments. I can tell you that most of our suppliers are not working over Christmas – so if you are available and you work for agencies who are open as usual over the festive period, you can pick up new clients.
Consider adding an urgency fee to your usual rate if the work is on a bank holiday or particularly urgent. Don’t work for less than your usual rate!