Online Freelance writing demands Hardcore Persistence, (Christine’s Story)

This is not my story. It is about this girl that I would want to call crazy due to her hardcore persistence in looking for online jobs. Her kind of spirit needs to enchant many who desire online freelance writing. To indwell the hearts and minds of those who want to earn a decent living from the online platform.

This spirit is in those who know for sure that they are not looking for cannabis-high like effects. Those who know that they don’t know so much but with the little they know, they can learn and serve the world. Now, that is Christine Kiume for you.


She is drop dead gorgeous with a squeaky high pitched voice. Her tiny eyes have a glare that drill a hole through your brain to read your question. Above all, her positive attitude is infectious without apology. She refers to me as “Auntie”.


Now, that is not what makes her a great in online freelance writing or even an awesome blogger. What stands out about her is her weird determination to wade through the murky online waters. Her uncompromising desire to get her skills out to serve the world.


Christine heard about Ajira Digital training after the intake had closed. She definitely could not apply for the training. (Freaking fate!)


Having cleared Form Four in 2015, she had managed to join campus at the USIU. This was short lived. She had to leave the campus early this year due to some unavoidable circumstances. When I told her that I had attended the training, she immediately asked if I could help her learn the ropes.


As a business mentor, I assist people convert their ideas into profitable businesses.


I took one look at Christine and thought, “She is only 19, and has a awesome attitude towards work. When her age mates are bugging their parents for some cash to go out and have fun, this girl wants to earn it the hard way!”


A girl who wants to learn the entrepreneurship ropes at such an early age? That’s a girl worth mentoring. Her passion for online freelance writing wooed me to mentor her.


Our first meeting was tough. We met at 2pm in my home office to create her Upwork profile. (I work from home and being an ambassador at it for that matter.) Ever heard that great things don’t come cheap? This was the case with Christine’s account.


Her story didn’t go so far from my own experience with the acceptance in Upwork. I was first introduced to online freelancing by Walter Akolo of Freelance Kenya.  My Upwork account got rejected over seven times throughout April 2017. I felt out of place with bidding sites; loathsome to be particular.


My desire to carry on with freelance writing resurrected on a different perspective. I got an offer from EveWoman digital magazine to write nine articles throughout May 2017. This was in celebration of motherhood. I used the knowledge I got from Walter’s mentorship to do the work. The pay was beautiful?


The problem with Christine’s issue was that she didn’t have an offer elsewhere like I did. I feared that if Upwork continued to reject her profile, she would end up giving up. We parted at 8.30pm; exhausted and disappointed. All we had to show were the pile of rejection emails and an aborted deal! Six and a half hours of turmoil wasted; my heart wept for this sweet girl.


The Hardcore persistence for Online Freelance Writing


This girl never gave up. As agreed, she continued to edit the profile in different ways as we shared on text messages. Every edit gave the same response. FAIL. FAIL. FAIL!


Tough luck for her, I got bad allergy from a pesticide I had purchased from the supermarket. It left me with an inflamed throat, a nasty cough and a running nose. I could not host her for another lesson; at least not when she most needed it. This was a double crash! What kind of a mentor was I turning into?


Would you have expected her to carry on? Well, she did, and now here is her story.


  1. What made you persist in trying to get your account approved?

I wanted to do something with myself during all this free time I have. Online writing is what I settled for because of my love for writing. I knew that is what I wanted to do once I started my blog and did not let the rejections I got stop me.


  1. Were you scared when I asked you to create a blog so that you begin writing anyway? What came to your mind?

Yes I was scared. I did not know if my writing would be pleasing to read and if I would get an audience. What came to mind was to write about issues happening in society today. Those issues that have direct impact in our lives.


  1. Without a mentor, how did that go for you?

It was not easy starting out something new without a mentor. But I decided to go online and do research about blogging. I vowed to learn every bit of it.


  1. What was your reaction the day you found out that Upwork had approved your account?

I was so excited! I danced around the house. After so many rejections finally the acceptance meant I could start looking for jobs.


  1. How long did it take you to do get your first job after the acceptance of your Upwork account?

It took me one week to get one proposal accepted after sending eight proposals.


  1. What is your current experience with the clients you are writing for in Upwork?

It is amazing working with clients. I love how they are willing to answer any questions I have. It helps me nurture my freelance writing skills through each of the experiences I get.


  1. What is your advice to other young people on these online jobs that seem so tedious?

Online jobs are not as hard as you think. All you need is passion, commitment and persistence. With that, you are good to go.


  1. What do you think about the ‘Quick Cash Syndrome’ that has caught up with the young people? I’m sure you have seen them fall prey to pyramid schemes online?

The quick cash syndrome is going to be your downfall. Hard work pays; and nothing good comes with ease. Before you sign up for anything that looks appealing, take time to do thorough research. Learn what it is all about.


  1. What is your biggest regret about your online freelancing experience?

I wish I started doing this earlier. (Heck! Why did I start so late- Where was I?)


  1. What is your parting short!

Online jobs are the way to go if you want to make the extra coins. Get paid to do what you love.


Between Christine and I is a relationship beyond mentorship. She qualifies for a partner; one that I want to do a collaborative writing assignment with. She has proved herself as devoted to research and service. What are you waiting for?

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Jennifer Fernando


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