Are you out the door at the crack of dawn?
Not home until after the kids are in bed?
I’ll take a wild guess and say that gets you down a bit.
Spending all daylight hours away from the people, pets, and home you love isn’t my idea of a good work-life balance.
It wasn’t Amanda’s idea of a good work-life balance either. While expecting a new baby, she made the decision to go all in with her proofreading business. And now she has the flexibility she was looking for!
Keep reading to learn how Amanda became a work-at-home mom!
Q: Welcome to the blog, Amanda! Tell us a little about your background. What did your life look like before you crossed paths with PA?
Before Proofread Anywhere, I was a single mom working full-time, in search of ways to supplement my income to help make ends meet. After losing my husband (and father of our young son) to cancer when he was thirty-two, I transitioned from being a stay-at-home mom to jumping back into the workforce. For the longest time, I brainstormed about and experimented with options to make some extra money. After lots of thinking and searching, I found Caitlin’s Proofread Anywhere course and felt immediately that it would be a perfect fit!
I am now remarried, and in addition to our twelve-year-old son, we have a two-year-old daughter. In the time leading up to having our baby girl, I had been working full-time helping my family open and run their local restaurant, while proofreading in any spare moments I could find (I had completed the PA Transcript Proofreading course). The hours in the restaurant were long and difficult to balance with life at home with my husband and son. There were days I didn’t even see my son; I left for work before he got home from school, and he would be in bed by the time I got home. When I was expecting our daughter, my husband and I felt strongly that something would need to change to improve the quality of our lives as a family unit.
Exclusively working from home as a proofreader would allow me time to be there for my family while also contributing to our household income! With the PA Transcript Proofreading course and a couple of clients under my belt, it seemed like the perfect opportunity to expand my business while still fully participating in my family life. I continued working with the court reporters I had as clients and began the Proofread Anywhere General Proofreading course. I continue to enjoy proofreading court transcripts, but I have also found it exciting to be able to work with writers on their projects.
Q: When did you start proofreading, and what made you decide to learn how to proofread?
I have been proofreading almost as long as I have known how to read, but as a freelance proofreader, I started about three years ago. As I said, I had been searching for a side hustle but hadn’t found anything that rang true for me. Unfortunately, I didn’t inherit my mom’s artistic and creative abilities, and I knew I didn’t want to go the MLM route. I struggled with finding something that I was good at and enjoyed, but that would also allow me the flexibility to juggle my other obligations. I came across the PA Transcript Proofreading course on a blog I was following, and it was an “Aha!” moment.
Q: It’s all about finding the right fit for you! What was the most challenging part of getting started?
It was a big decision to make the initial investment in the course, but it really made so much sense to me. It had cost many, many thousands of dollars to earn my bachelor’s degree, which I had really only used in a limited capacity. Starting the PA courses allowed me to feel like I had something very tangible I was working toward, with guidance and support to help me get there!
Q: A college degree doesn’t create income. Skills do! What was the most valuable thing you learned during the course?
It would be hard to choose one thing! If I had to pick, though, I think what I found most valuable was the confidence I gained from walking through the building blocks of starting my own business. I have never been afraid of putting in the hard to work to reach my goals, but I didn’t really know where to start when it came to dealing with all of the moving parts of venturing out as a freelancer.
Q: How long did it take you to find your first client? And how many clients do you have now?
It took three to four weeks for me to find my first client, and several years later, I still do frequent work for her. I currently have six regular clients; I also have numerous clients that I have done work for along the way who don’t need services on a regular basis.
Here’s What Some of Amanda’s Happy Clients Have to Say!
Q: How long did it take you to recoup the cost of the course?
I would estimate that it took around six months to recoup the cost of the course. Because I started out on a very part-time basis (by choice!) and only marketed to a limited degree, it took me longer than it otherwise might have. It didn’t take longer than I expected it would, but longer than if I’d been able to devote all my energy toward starting the business.
Q: What advice would you give anyone thinking about enrolling in the course to learn how to proofread? Is it worth the money?
If I had the opportunity to do it all over again, I would without a doubt sign up for both of Caitlin’s courses without giving it a second thought. If you have found Proofread Anywhere, you have certainly come across tons of other online courses. With so many options, you may be struggling with whether there is truly something out there that is worthy of your time, energy, and money. I can say with confidence the Proofread Anywhere courses exceeded my expectations and are the real deal. I highly recommend them both!
Q: What does your life look like now as a working freelance proofreader?
I continue to proofread part-time (for both court reporters and writers) in addition to being a stay-at-home mom. I’m grateful every day for the flexibility to make my own schedule, to work at times of the day that suit me, and to take on as much or as little work as I choose. I am doing what I enjoy, building my business, and fully participating in the day-to-day events and activities that define family life. I am so thankful to Caitlin and Proofread Anywhere not only for the skills, resources, and relationships I have gained but also for the change in mindset that it helped me achieve. What once seemed unattainable is now my reality!
Having the flexibility to work around your needs and the needs of your family is priceless. It takes courage to go all in on creating your own business, but the rewards are worth it. Way to go, Amanda!
Looking for a way to become a work-at-home mom like Amanda? Check out our free Intro to Proofreading workshop to see how you can find the work-life balance you’re looking for!