Catherine Jones is a writer for hire within the arts, cultural, tourism and heritage sector. Prior to this, Catherine worked as a newspaper journalist for 25 years, ‘Most recently as the arts editor at the Liverpool Echo for eight years, and before that I was Capital of Culture Reporter, covering the build up to 2008 and the year itself.’ During this time, there was a restructuring within Catherine’s department at work. Due to this Catherine decided to seek new pastures and think about setting up her own business, ‘I felt a mixture of sheer terror and elation – a combination which has continued! ‘
After deciding to take the plunge, Catherine spoke to friends who had followed a similar path. They suggested contacting The Women’s Organisation. Here at the organisation, we set out to support Catherine and make those initial feelings of ‘terror and elation’ disappear. Catherine received guidance from our Business Advisor, Jo Mountfort, to discuss her business idea and to set up a business plan. As well as this, Catherine also attended our courses, such as Planning for Success and our financial course on Tax and National Insurance.
“It gave me confidence that I wasn’t an idiot and could do it if I tried.”
Becoming a freelance/self-employed writer was something that had never crossed Catherine’s mind. Having only three weeks’ notice to leave her job, Catherine felt like ‘Everything was daunting.’ As her life was always her job, Catherine felt lucky in a way that she didn’t have any dependants. Despite this, it also felt like added extra pressure on Catherine to really find success in her business. Catherine has always had supportive family and friends who continually supported her throughout her journey.
Although Catherine isn’t currently earning at the kind of level she was when employed, it has only been two months so ‘In general, I am pleased.’ Catherine has already had interest from various organisations who have either hired her for a specific job or have a particular interest. Success!
For Catherine, the best thing about running your own business is having the opportunity to work with different people and organisations on interesting projects. Catherine is given the ability to choose, to a certain extent, what she wishes to do. Considering that three months ago Catherine had no thoughts about setting up her own business, she has attained a HMRC code, business bank account, accountant and having secured work already. ‘I feel I’ve achieved quite a bit’
Catherine’s advice for anyone thinking of starting their own business is to, ‘Do plenty of research, talk to people who have done something similar, talk to people who might be a potential customer base, and ask for help from professional organisations who can guide you through the process.’
“While becoming self-employed came as quite a surprise, now it has happened I’m determined to keep doing what I love best, writing – and hopefully lots more of it!”
If you are interested in the services Catherine offers, you can contact her on:
And if you would like to start your own business or are thinking about becoming self-employed, then get in touch with us! You can email us on firstname.lastname@example.org or ring us on 0151 706 8111