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January 11, 2023


Robert Vlach has picked his books of 2022, some of which are relevant to freelancers:

  • This Book Could Save Your Life by science publicist Graham Lawton presents a mind-opening evidence-based look at overall human health.
  • Think Again by Adam Grant is something of a thinking guide for professional knowledge workers.
  • The Last Leonardo by Ben Lewis offers a fascinating and unique look behind the scenes of the art trade.
  • Freezing Order by Bill Browder is the true story of an independent professional—activist who managed to turn the wheel of history.
  • Robert also mentions his book The Freelance Way, which was published worldwide last year by HarperCollins and is now also available as an audiobook on Audible.

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January 9, 2023


New York’s Governor Kathy Hochul vetoed state-level Freelance Isn't Free Law, delivering a major blow to the Freelancers Union’s campaign to protect freelancers against non-payers above the level enjoyed by other businesses. The legislation has been a hallmark of the Union’s effort that was supposed to serve as a model for other cities and states across the U.S.

In her letter, Hochul claims that the new legislation would require an expense of at least several million dollars annually, regulation of private contracts, and a new complaint process that would functionally displace civil courts.

Note that since 2017, the city-level Freelance Isn’t Free Act has recovered ca. $2 million in wages owed to freelancers, according to Graphic Artists Guild.

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January 3, 2023


Are you looking to improve your work habits this year? Andrew Huberman, the Professor of Neurobiology at Stanford Medicine and host of the renowned Huberman Lab Podcast, has a great suggestion for a highly functional schedule:

  1. Sunlight & movement
  2. Task completion
  3. Thoughtful, reflective
  4. Repeat 1-3
  5. Sleep

And of course nourish, hydrate, relate & avoid energy sinks, i.e. don’t mix states of mind across above steps; practice functional compartmentalization.

Obviously, each can be of different duration. The key here is really to learn how to turn on and off different modes of thinking and action according to the multiple demands of daily life. Nothing is worse than someone who can’t frameshift.

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December 30, 2022


Today’s issue of our newsletter included Robert Vlach’s list of personal insights from 24 years of freelancing — also published on LinkedIn and Twitter.

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December 29, 2022

KEY PLAYERS IN GIG ECONOMY has been named among the top growing companies and key players in the broader gig economy by the Industry Research, as reported on Digital Journal.

The top brands mentioned were, PeoplePerHour, HelloTech, Toptal, Appen, Upwork, and Fiverr.

Thanks for the highlight 💙

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December 28, 2022


This Book May Save Your Life is a pretty bombastic title, but thankfully the content doesn’t disappoint. This fantastic book summarizes what science knows about human health in a readable evidence-based form. The author, Graham Lawton, is an award-winning science writer. Highly recommended reading for all freelancers who care about their long-term health and well-being.

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December 27, 2022


Audiobook The Freelance Way has launched as the #1 new release in Self-Employment category on Amazon, coming up 2nd in overall category sales.

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December 21, 2022


HarperAudio has released The Freelance Way as an unabridged audiobook — now available worldwide on Audible!

HarperCollins acquired global publishing English-language rights for Robert Vlach’s best-selling book earlier this year, making it available globally in paperback and e-book editions, newly complemented with the full-length 20-hour audiobook.

The book is also available in several translations and has a top-notch rating of 4.5 out of 5 on Goodreads.

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December 20, 2022


As freelancers, we often take macroeconomic factors as a given. However, the legendary investor Howard Marks suggests in his newest memo Sea Change that we may be going through a profound economic change — only a third one in his 53-year investment career:

“We’re witnessing a complete reversal of the conditions … which prevailed in 2021 and late 2020, throughout the 2009-2019 period, and for much of the last 40 years.”

The memo is also available on Spotify as a podcast.

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December 16, 2022


Upwork has released its annual Freelance Forward 2022 report about the current state of the U.S. freelance economy.

As usual, they used a super-wide definition of freelance work, counting anyone who has “engaged in supplemental, temporary, project- or contract-based work within the past 12 months” as a freelancer. Yes, including diversified workers with more jobs and full-time employees with tiny gigs. All of these categories combined made up 39% of the U.S. workforce. Other estimates focused on full-time freelancers and qualified independent professionals are way lower.

However, some reported findings are remarkable. Here are the highlights:

  • 43% of freelancers raised their rates during the past year due to professional experience (39%), economic conditions (37%), their services being in higher demand (36%), and to keep up with competitive rates (34%)
  • 51% provide knowledge services such as computer programming, marketing, IT, and business consulting
  • 77% feel optimistic for the coming year about their personal income and salary increase
  • 83% freelance “to earn extra money” (perhaps on top of other income as noted above)
  • 91% believe the best days are ahead for freelancing 💙

P.S. Find out more about the taxonomy of freelance work in last year’s talk European Freelancers & Where to Find Them.

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