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A Spell Upon My Pen: Why Am I a Freelance Writer?

John is a poet, creative, and freelance writer who also foundered a multi-author website with a group of his peers.


A Spell Upon My Pen: Why am I a Freelance Writer?

Here I am, my pen in hand,

Writing random words.

Where it leads, let's see shall we,

Or toss it to the birds.

Today I checked my email

And much to my surprise,

A project I've been working on

Was suddenly declined.

A writing gig, almost complete

Deadline two weeks to go,

Was cancelled saying it was late.

But why? I do not know.

I can't contact the buyer

For reasons most unclear.

it says they aren't available.

My face it forms a sneer.

Freelance writing can be good,

But problems can be fraught.

If you are not paid in advance

Your efforts count for nought.

This was a series of ten poems

Of which I'd finished eight.

The hours I'd spent now wasted,

A scenario I hate.


Unfortunately, this work

Was very client specific.

It's doubtful I can use these poems

For another demographic.

This project was quite lucrative

If it had come to pass.

For me, a lesson has been learned

Don't put the cow before the grass.

So, although I started with no plan

My path came clear again,

A situation troubling me

Put a spell upon my pen.


© 2018 John Hansen


Lawrence Hebb from Hamilton, New Zealand on June 04, 2018:


So sorry to hear the project got cancelled.

As you said, a lesson learned, here's hoping you can salvage something from it.



John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 24, 2018:

Thank you Dianna, I greatly appreciate your comment.

Dianna Mendez on May 24, 2018:

Sorry it didn't work out for you, John. Your poetry is quite good and will benefit many others.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 20, 2018:

Audrey, thank you for the kind and encouraging comment. I have already moved on, and I am sure an opportunity will present itself so that I can use these poems elsewhere. Blessings.

Audrey Hunt from Idyllwild Ca. on May 20, 2018:

Awww John. Sorry that this gig didn't work out. This is typical for those who are most creative and talented. Even the great tenor Pavarotti was told he had no talent at one time. He turned out to be the greatest tenor of his time.

Keep submitting with greater determination. This poem is one more confirmation of your gift as a poet.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 15, 2018:

Thank you for the kind and encouraging words, Nithya.

Nithya Venkat from Dubai on May 15, 2018:

So sorry this happened, freelance writing is dicey. But on the bright side you have wonderful poems that you can publish elsewhere. Looking forward to reading many more of your poems.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 15, 2018:

Thank you, Devika. Much appreciated.

DDE on May 15, 2018:

You said it well! Do what you like best.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 13, 2018:

Hi Cris, it's always a pleasure to receive a comment from you. So glad you liked this poem and the accompanying music video.

CrisSp from Sky Is The Limit Adventure on May 13, 2018:

Oh, how I love this one John. Maybe because I can very much relate. And, the accompanying music/video is so divine.

Keep on writing.

Love from the sky~

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 12, 2018:

Thank you MsDora,

I will take your advice and keep the poems. You never know. Thank you for reading.

Dora Weithers from The Caribbean on May 12, 2018:

Jodah, thanks for sharing your experience and how it affects you. I'd keep those poems. You may be surprised that they come in handy at some other time. Continual better luck in the future!

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 10, 2018:

Mike, thanks for reading and for your comment. I am not sure who is really to blame here. The client suddenly ceased as a member of the service provider I sell my work through so they cancelled the order and refunded the money. I don't know that the buyer requested that. I feel in that instance the money paid should be forfeited in favour if the seller. Also, I asked for 30 days to complete the work and could have finished in two weeks. If I had done that I would have bee not paid.

mckbirdbks from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas on May 10, 2018:

Hello John - I can feel the angst. Not sure I would remain silent about the organization that hired you. It might save someone the trouble of accepting work from them. Interesting poem, for such interesting times.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 09, 2018:

Hi Yves,

Thank you for that Yves. Yes, I should be thankful for the work I do get. I admit this isn't a regular occurrence for me so I am grateful for that. Thanks for reading and commenting.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 09, 2018:

Thank you for your kind words Chitrangada. Yes, I think I have moved on already. Hopefully, I can use these poems in some way. I will put it down to a learning experience.

Yves on May 09, 2018:

Hi Jodah....In truth, the fact that you are qualifies for various writing gigs is an impressive feat in itself. Keep on doing what you do. We're all rooting for you.

Chitrangada Sharan from New Delhi, India on May 09, 2018:

It’s amazing to see, how creative your mind is! Turning everyday happenings or troubles into a nice poem, is a rare talent of yours.

I am sorry, for what happened to your project, but I am sure you will soon recover from this disappointment.

Appreciate your poem, and your spirit.

Thanks for sharing!

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 08, 2018:

Thank you Missy. I agree totally. We have a lot to be thankful for as writers.

Missy Smith from Florida on May 08, 2018:

I find that all of us who write, write out our disappointments. Instead of getting completely gloomy or angry, that pen in our hand, and our own reasoning, makes us feel better. I think that is a gift we can be proud of. I really do.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 08, 2018:

Thanks Rasma...I will keep on writing

Gypsy Rose Lee from Daytona Beach, Florida on May 08, 2018:

Ah, yes, the world of writing I know it well. Write on, write on, write on. Enjoyed this.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 07, 2018:

I find the best way to release my frustration is to write a poem about it, Natalie. This seems to calm me and stop me from ranting for weeks. Thanks for the encouraging comment.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 07, 2018:

Hi Linda. After sitting and thinking about it, I may be able to use the other poems at some stage. I may just have to make a few alterations to suit the situation. Thanks for reading.

Natalie Frank from Chicago, IL on May 07, 2018:

While I am sorry for your experience, knowing full well what this feels like, the way you turned your troubles into a poem to express your frustration is quite constructive and adaptive. Many people would just rant and rave but you did something positive. Kudos to you!

Linda Crampton from British Columbia, Canada on May 07, 2018:

I'm sorry about your experience. John. Even though you say you won't be able to use the poems for another purpose, I hope you do eventually benefit from their creation.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 07, 2018:

Thank you, Flourish. I hope things start to look up now.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 07, 2018:

Thank you, Marlene. Glad you enjoyed this. Hopefully, down the track, there will be another client with a similar requirement so that I can use these poems.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 07, 2018:

Sean, thank you for that great poetic comment.

Yes, I need to use this as a learning experience and move on to better things. Much appreciated, my friend.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 07, 2018:

Hi Shauna. I had turned over three of the poems to see if I was on the right track with what she required. She replied that they were better than she had hoped.

Then suddenly disappeared and can't be contacted. Thanks for reading my rant.

FlourishAnyway from USA on May 07, 2018:

You are due for some good news. Sorry that happened to you.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 07, 2018:

Haha Larry. I like that...it is a bit like that girl. Thanks.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 07, 2018:

Yes, that is true Eric. It does feel like the stole a piece of my soul. But what goes around comes around they say. Cheers.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 07, 2018:

Yes, Bill. you are so right. It's not the first time I have been bitten either, but this was the biggest loss so far in time and money. Maybe I'll be able to use the work somewhere in the future, who knows.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 07, 2018:

Li-Jen, thank you for the encouragement. I guess this happens to most of us at some stage.

Marlene Bertrand from USA on May 07, 2018:

What a wonderfully crafted poem and the lesson is so clear. I hope you are able to re-purpose your work and use it elsewhere. You never know!

Ioannis Arvanitis from Greece, Almyros on May 07, 2018:

If you can write so easily

for such annoying theme

I think that you, of poets, are

among the best of them

So let your magic poetry

create the world you dream

and all the wealth and happiness

will find a better stream.

Much Love, my friend!


Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on May 07, 2018:

John, what bummer! I hope you hadn't already turned over the eight poems you'd completed. No explanation from the client, huh? Not only is that inconsiderate, it's bad business. I'm sorry you had to go though this, John.

Larry Rankin from Oklahoma on May 07, 2018:

Why write? It's that girl that never has loved me back.

Great read!

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on May 07, 2018:

Dirty dogs that do that to an artist. Bummer. And more bad news, for the bad guys, it will come around and bite them in the arse.

When things happen like that the work seems almost secondary to that weird concept of stealing a bit of your soul.

I pray for your continued strength of character.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on May 07, 2018:

Yep, been there, done that, probably will have it happen again. The joy of working with customers!!!!!

Hang in there buddy!

Li-Jen Hew on May 07, 2018:

Hello Jodah, thank you for your poem. I can see where you're coming from..Don't worry! This means better opportunities will come hopefully! I wish you all the best! :)

Frank Atanacio from Shelton on May 07, 2018:

bless you bro...:)

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 07, 2018:

Yes, Frank, it really happened. The year can only get better, right? I hope. I'm hanging in there.

Frank Atanacio from Shelton on May 07, 2018:

wow, if this really happened, then that sucks! You had a 666 year so far.. so buddy you got to turn it around...make lemonade.. wait with your luck so far you may not have lemons... just be strong and the force will find you..yea? LOL

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 07, 2018:

Thank you Venkat. At least these experiences can be used as a warning to others. Try to get paid first before doing the work. Glad you you saw the lesson here and enjoyed the poetry.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 07, 2018:

Thanks, Linda. This year hasn't started off well for me. The car, this, and one of our dogs going missing (it appears she was stolen) but we did get her back after five days when someone reported seeing her and said it looked like the photo we shared on Facebook. At least it's giving me material to write about.

Venkatachari M from Hyderabad, India on May 06, 2018:

Your disappointment and frustration weaved such a nice poetry turning it into a cool expression with some lesson for all the writers.

Thanks, John, for sharing your experiences. But, very sorry for the miss.

Linda Lum from Washington State, USA on May 06, 2018:

Oh John, first the car, now this. My goodness. How disappointing. A lesson there for all of us. Thank you for sharing.

John Hansen (author) from Gondwana Land on May 06, 2018:

Thank you, Mark. Yes, it can be a frustrating profession, but what goes around comes around I guess. One missed opportunity opens the way for another.

Mark Tulin from Palm Springs, California on May 06, 2018:

Nice poem without getting too anger. You captured our frustration beautifully.

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