Thursday, November 28, 2013

Giving Thanks to Fellow Writers

This Thanksgiving, Writer Abroad is grateful for the many writers, editors, and authors who have critiqued her work, offered support, or in some other way been extra great. Because writing is a lonely job (especially when you live abroad), it’s nice to have fellow writers among us who understand that. It would be impossible to list them all, but here is a start.

Lizzie Harwood
Lizzie Harwood, a writer and editor living in Paris, edited Writer Abroad’s collection of essays about life in Switzerland. She meets deadlines and is detail-oriented. An expat herself, she’s the perfect editor for expat-related projects. She also offers very competitive rates.

Kelly Jarosz
When Writer Abroad needs a critique, Kelly Jarosz is always there to offer one. A fellow American in Zurich, she’s offered complete writing companionship since 2009. Along with Emily Lacika, Writer Abroad and Kelly Jarosz co-founded the Zurich Writers Worskhop, which provides support to English-language writers living in a German-language world.

Janet Skeslien Charles
Writer Abroad met Janet at the Paris Writers Workshop several years ago and since then this award-winning author of Moonlight in Odessa has taught at a Zurich Writers Workshop, critiqued part of Writer Abroad’s novel, and also recommended various editor friends. Merci, Janet, for all of your support. 

Susan Johnston
Writer Abroad feels like she’s known Susan Johnston forever even though they’ve never met. The blogger behind The Urban Muse Writer, Writer Abroad has been inspired by Susan for years (and learned a lot about writing in the process).

Jill Prewett
Jill is one of those writers who always has about ten writing projects going—The Woolf Literary Journal, Words with JAM literary magazine, Nuance Words projects, and she still manages to run writing workshops and organize independent author meet-ups. She’s an expert on self-publishing too, having published several crime novels under J.J. Marsh. A fellow Zurich-based writer, Writer Abroad is grateful to have Jill’s support.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Are you a writer moving abroad?

Recently one of Writer Abroad’s fellow writing bloggers e-mailed her with a bunch of questions about moving abroad. They were really great questions, so Writer Abroad thought she’d post some of them here to help other writers considering moving abroad.

Are there rules that would prevent me from working for freelance clients in the UK while on a spousal visa?

Probably. But Writer Abroad can’t speak about specifics regarding permits and work in other countries. Every country is different and within each country there are very different rules depending on the type of permit you receive. Writer Abroad recommends you do your research so you know exactly what to expect before you arrive.

Have you found that clients in Switzerland are pretty receptive to working with you or do they prefer working with locals?

Clients in Switzerland are very receptive to working with Writer Abroad, but that is because English writing is practically a requirement for businesses everywhere in the world these days and Writer Abroad has a skill the locals don’t. She’s not sure if it would be as easy to find writing work in an English speaking country as a foreigner. But Writer Abroad believes that whatever you want to do, you will make it possible. 

Should I tell current US clients that I am moving abroad or should I not tell them right away? I don’t want them to get hung up on the potential barriers of working with an expat and decide to end the relationship.

You're right to be concerned; some Americans (family included!) are very resistant to mailing or calling overseas. Something about it scares them or makes them think it's too much work. You can get yourself a US-based Skype number so clients don’t know (or don’t feel) like they are calling abroad, but there is still the time difference to deal with.

Before she moved to Switzerland, Writer Abroad told the alt weekly she was writing for that she was moving. And she wrote for them for another couple of months after moving abroad, but honestly, the distance did make a difference—on both sides. That being said, Writer Abroad writes for publications around the world now, and a unique location can be an advantage for certain kinds of writing—especially travel writing. Also, if you are living in an expensive part of the world like Zurich or London, where the dollar isn’t worth as much as the local currency, you may find yourself naturally seeking out local opportunities if your permit allows it.

Anyone else have questions (or answers) about living abroad as a writer?


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