Free of the Golden Handcuffs

Writer/photographer Brian Palmer tells The Digital Journalist why he decided to go freelance.

Now my professional life is a smorgasbord. I write book reviews for newspapers and magazines. I shoot stills and video for my own projects and for media outlets, big and small. I do occasional field producing. I blog (infrequently, I must confess). I do all of these things because I must to pay my bills. But in a big-picture sense, I do it because I am compelled to. I made a decision three years ago to be both a journalistic juggler and to be an independent operator in the media world. Not only did I want to be my own assignment editor, I needed more control over my work. I needed to build the context for my own words and pictures after years of slipping them into established frameworks.

Independence is a bitch, financially and emotionally, and I have rough moments when I kick myself for leaving corporate comfort (rent day, for example). But I made the right choice. I have grown as a storyteller and journalist.

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