I have a few friends who work traditional 9 to 5 style jobs. This is not to say that their hours are precisely 9 to 5, but that they basically show up early to work Monday through Friday, have their evenings and weekends free, and that is all they do. The life of a freelance musician is…somewhat different.
Not to say that many other people don’t have flexible schedules (and I should clarify that this generally means I have to be flexible to the client rather than the other way around lest you get too jealous) but that most seem to work more “traditional” hours. A colleague the other day pointed out how “boring” it must be to have all your evenings and weekends free and constantly being in search of entertainment to quell the boredom. I’m not sure that’s the case (though thank goodness, as your search for entertainment helps make my chosen profession possible!), but what I really wanted to write about was my calendar.
As a freelancer, one of the most sacred pieces of information at my disposal is my calendar. With smart phones and online calendars, life has been greatly simplified. Before online calendars, of course, we all had to carry our calendars around and handwrite everything. What a pain!
Lately I’ve seen a few bloggers saying they are going back to traditional style calendars for various reasons. I say, probably they aren’t freelancers trying to limit their load of what to carry (phone is already with you, why add another book, especially when you already have a bag of music, a music stand, and an instrument) or accepting a lot of email invitations to events (it’s SO easy to add events from an email directly into your google calendar!). Maybe that’s what got me thinking about my calendar. While I’m sure there are some freelancers who still write their schedules by hand, I am simply not one of them. To me that would be like consulting an atlas to figure out my route somewhere rather than finding out online.
So enlighten me, readers. What do you use to keep your schedule straight? Do those of you with “real jobs” even NEED a calendar? I suppose you still probably have meetings and appointments—do you obsess over it just like we freelancers do?