Marie Sotelo: Former Lawyer Turned Full-Time Freelance Writer (TFLP 082)

Today on the podcast I’m sharing my conversation with Marie Sotelo, who left legal practice after 10 years and built a career as a full-time freelance writer.

Marie shares how she built her career, and advice for other lawyers who want to make a living as a writer.‚Äč

If you’re one of the many lawyers who dream of making a living as a writer, this episode is for you.

In this episode, marie shares about:

  • How the unwritten expectation that she would continue her education beyond undergrad shaped her decision to go to law school.
  • Not planning to practice law when she started law school, but ending up deciding to practice before she graduated.
  • How a lack of mentorship in law school affected her ability to see what paths were open to her.
  • Being told in her first review at her government job that, “You may be better in solo practice.”
  • Googling “alternative law careers” early in her career and looking at a list of 50 options, but not knowing how to actually transition into any of those options.
  • Quitting her government lawyer job after 10 years because of their resistance to flexible work arrangements.
  • Starting her writing career by volunteering as a grant writer at a local non-profit.
  • How she parleyed her volunteer work into paying grant writing gigs (and how she taught herself to write grants!).
  • The process she followed when she decided to move out of grant writing into copy and content writing, and what she does to position herself for higher-paying writing jobs.
  • Why being a lawyer has been an asset and how it works as one of her “credibility markers” for landing writing jobs.

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