I have now been away from Australia for 4 months and have managed to keep working, first from the UK and then from a small village in the south of France. The only ‘tools’ I brought with me were a few reference books and my laptop, but I found during my 3 months in France that I couldn’t manage without a printer, so had to buy one (which I gave away in exchange for a bottle of wine and some fancy tea-towels when I left the village). Internet access has been great — much faster than I’m used to in Australia.
There have been a few issues in being away from home. The first was the time difference, which made it difficult to exchange emails with clients in Australia during their working day. I eventually solved this by getting up at 6 am, dealing with work emails and then going back to sleep until a more civilised hour. Another problem was finding time to work on the business; for example, this blog fell by the wayside during my stay in France. However, now that I’m in the less enticing surroundings of north London, it’s easier to focus on admin tasks and I’m getting myself organised.
There have also been benefits to being in Europe. I’ve found some new clients and earlier this week I attended the annual conference of the UK’s Society for editing and proofreading in Oxford, where I met lots of interesting people, learnt a few new tips about working with MS Word and PDFs, and got some ideas for marketing my business.
Overall, the experiment of attempting to work from anywhere has been successful, and I will definitely be back in Europe next year.