It’s no secret that freelancing has a lot of use cases and applicable features in 2021. Major freelancing sites are helping students work off student loan debt in college, professional adults transition from one job to another, and teens explore different skills they can sell in open marketplaces. The sky is the limit when it comes to this kind of decentralized working arrangement, which is why it should come as no surprise that active duty service members in the U.S. military are leveraging freelancing sites for their own version of the side hustle.
Designed to be the kind of job a freelancer can do for X-amount of hours per day, power down, and then forget about while they travel or do something else, the very structure of freelancing has unknowingly lent itself to being a lucrative option for individuals fulfilling military requirements and demands.
In fact, one U.S. Army Soldier serving in the WI Army National Guard, Mikaela Bolker, is the perfect example of what can be done with a site like Fiverr while also dedicating her life to protecting the country and establishing stability around the world.
At just 24-years old, Mikaela has been serving for nearly 7-years in the Army, approaching the end of her current contract in January 2022. Within the last year of deployment, Mikaela has explored the power and potential of freelancing her writing services while she is off-the-clock, even launching her own email newsletter: the Deployment Diaries. As more and more people subscribed to read about her adventures and experiences as an active duty service member, Mikaela began to realize she could make an actual paying career out of her passion for writing.
“For every person serving in the military, planning for that next step when our contract is up is of huge concern. I know I can speak honestly when I say that we all wonder what we are going to do to make money,” said Mikaela. “Especially in the midst of a pandemic, there needs to be a plan B. After discovering a passion for writing and sharing my experiences with those closest to me, a sort of lightbulb went off in my head that I could be selling writing as a freelancer.”
The Down-Time Freelancer
As a SPC (specialist rank) in the National Guard, Mikaela falls in the area of part-time civilian and part-time solider, unless deployed overseas or activated stateside. Presently, Mikaela is serving the country from the Middle East as part of the MEDEVAC unit, currently attached to the 28th Expeditionary Combat Aviation Brigade. Although her daily tasks can be demanding, Mikaela still has off-time she can spend advancing herself halfway around the world. It is during these fleeting moments that Mikaela began to learn about the copywriting industry and how lucrative it can be.
By using social media to explore different accounts teaching and sharing about copywriting, Mikaela stumbled upon the ‘Freelance Fairy’ and Fiverr millionaire Alexandra Fasulo’s TikTok. Using her videos, Mikaela set up a profile on Fiverr and began to establish a portfolio that showcased her work.
“The beauty of freelancing is that it can work at different speeds for different people. I don’t have 40-hours per week to dedicate to it, and that’s ok. I am moving at a pace that works for me, and amazingly, it’s still working! I am building a client base while dedicating my life and soul to my job in the Army,” said Mikaela.
Mikaela presently offers book editing, e-book writing, blog writing, college essay and personal statement evaluation, press release writing, and product descriptions through her Fiverr profile. She is also exploring virtual teaching in the world of theatre, continuing from her undergrad education in Theatre Arts & Theatre Education. Hoping to build up a beginner’s K-12 acting studio, it’s Mikaela’s dream to teach virtual acting and singing lessons.
As a woman who goes above and beyond, constantly exploring her options, Mikaela doesn’t just stop at serving in the Army, managing a newsletter, and freelancing on Fiverr. She also volunteers to write newsletter segments for her brigade’s Public Affairs Office, with her most recent article being published on US Army Central. And, as someone with a penchant for music, Mikaela is a dedicated violinist and singer, who had a recent video of her playing violin in an aircraft hangar go viral on Twitter.
Freelancing Breeds Freedom
So, what’s next for the Army-serving, Fiverr-freelancing, and virtual educating hopeful? Mikaela plans to return home to the Midwest this summer after her deployment is up to see her friends and family. Afterwards, she hopes to move to Los Angeles to pursue her freelancing endeavors and audition for TV/film.
Mikaela’s story should remind people everywhere that in the world of digital connection, technology, and freelancing, no dream is too big or complex to work into your life. In the case of Mikaela, she is dedicating her time to keep us free, protected, and safe, while establishing a fruitful career as both a teacher and freelance writer.
The beauty of freelancing marketplaces is that there are no rules. Certainly, no one understands that better than Mikaela.
To view Mikaela’s Fiverr profile and writing store, visit: https://www.fiverr.com/mikaelab123?up_rollout=true.
To contact Mikaela directly, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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