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Managing Finances as A Freelancer: A BFM 89.9 podcast

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Is your life governed by a never-ending series of deadlines? Do you lose track of all the hats you wear? Is your job description so hyphen-heavy that it barely fits on your (self-designed-self-printed) business card? Then you’re probably that special species of worker known as the freelancer.

Art workers in Malaysia (and everywhere) often moonlight all over the place – as film producers, set builders, graphic designers, copywriters, curators, teachers, activists, bartenders, cleaners… bloggers. For myself, I estimate that I spend about half my professional time just writing grant proposals. There are many pros to this kind of life: freedom to determine one’s own destiny, less time wasted in traffic jams, flying under the tax radar, doing things on your own terms, etc. The flip side of the coin, of course, is money. Unless you’re lucky enough to have a rich patron (although that exacts its own kind of tax) or some other pot of gold, managing an irregular income can be tricky.

When that day job ain’t enough. Moonlighting (definition): Holding down more than one job (the second is done by moonlight). Cartoon courtesy of www.coxandforkum.com

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In ARTERI’s first attempt to highlight pragmatic ‘roti-dan-mentega’ (bread n’ buttah) issues of living a creative life, we present another BFM 89.9 podcast (I heard it live as I was driving home yesterday evening): how to manage your finances as a freelancer with Chan Li Jin. Chan Li Jin is a writer (and dedicated freelancer for the past 20 years!), but I think the issues apply across the board, no matter what you do. She speaks in practical, down-to-earth terms about how freelancers need to approach keeping themselves financially afloat. You may already know all this stuff, but I find it always helps to hear from someone else: just to keep on track, and as a reminder that you’re not alone!

In that spirit, I’m curious: what species of freelancer are you? What’s your relationship to money – is it friend or foe? Advice, tips, experiences and cries of woe are all welcome.

Click on the icon below to listen (9mins 57sec):

You need Flash in order to play the podcast from ARTERI. If you don’t see any of the icons above, you can still stream or download the audio from BFM’s site here.

Podcasts courtesy of BFM 89.9.

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Previous BFM 89.9 podcasts on ARTERI:

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