This is such a big part of why I can't wait to stop working. At one point I had a fantasy about what life would be like after chucking my corporate job (it's only part-time, but it's still a pain). I had this idea to do freelance voice work (I'm in radio). Sounded good to me--I could call the shots, take or reject clients as I liked, work on my own time, not have to work in an office or deal with people, etc.
But I got a taste of how even something like this can go wrong. Recently a former co-worker who has an on-hold message company tapped me for some work. The mechanics were easy--get the script, read and record the messages, convert them to mp3 and email them to the guy. For months it was great--a real gravy train for me at about $200 a project and four or five projects a month (especially compared with my $12/hour* part-time job at the station.)
But the company owner suddenly started paying me more and more slowly. His demand for my services didn't decrease, however. I said whoa, what's going on, and he just gave me a bunch of promises and then emailed me another script. He rejected a contract I sent him (my mistake was in not getting the contract first, I see that now), and it was so nuts I had to get out of the situation.
So the other day at work, yet another guy stops me and wants to know if I want to do some on-hold stuff for his roommate, who is starting an on-hold messaging company. I like this guy, Mike, so I said sure, I'd email him my rates...and added that if we agree to this, I'd be getting him a basic contract.
So it's been days and I haven't heard back. But I think Mike got in touch with the other guy, who probably said something negative about me. So all this negative stuff is swirling around me all over again. And I'm not even the one who initiated this stuff to begin with! I feel humiliated. Now I'm afraid of running into Mike. I'm wondering what excuse he'll give me for changing his mind about me. There's a bad taste in the mouth with all of this. Right now I'm feeling like people are crappy to work with no matter what the situation.
I'm asking for advice here: do you think I should contact Mike again and ask him why he hasn't communicated since his initial offer?
Should I attempt to tell my side of the story with the other guy? I'm wondering what he might be saying about me to others...the voice work thing is so tight in this town, I'm afraid I've been put on some sort of black list. But I didn't do anything wrong.
Should I just write this guy off and move on?