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remarks of the Buddhist pandita Shantideva: “If there’s something to be done about it,
why worry? If there’s nothing to be done about it why worry?” These words guide Carol’s
work “If you need to get out there and hustle some contacts—then hustle some contacts.
If you’ve hustled everybody you know to hustle then you need to chill.”
Mutable Sustainability
Kate Farrell, an executive producer, is now working full-time with WE-tv in New York City
after working for decades as a freelancer. She is extremely versatile and has fluidly moved
through many types of work configurations with ease and on a wide array of projects. In
many ways, Kate is an exemplary model of being a great work improviser. She also is at a
generative time in her career when she recognizes her own value and competencies but is
willing to share her projects and expertise with other folks. When asked about her
sustainability she replies:
Oh yeah. What happens is that you’re not necessarily the hired gun. In the past, I
would go on the road to do pieces, edit them on site and then participate in putting
the live show together. I do less of that these days. I am interested in developing
ideas with people I think have an interesting angle on a show. I am currently working
with a science institute on a potential project, a friend is doing a personal
documentary, I know a farmer who would be great on a series and a friend who is a
great southern chef. I would like to develop any of those into something. Freelance
is sustainable as long as you are willing to shift what you do. I worked for a not-for-
profit and built websites. I didn’t know anything about building websites. Now I
know what wizzy-wig means.
When asked what would help grow her freelance practice, Kate notes, “I prefer to stay on
the east coast but a lot of series shoot in L.A. But I will travel, I will relocate temporarily and
pitch myself as someone who can make an idea have legs.” The kind of flexibility
expressed by Kate is essential if one is to freelance and it becomes more of a challenge
when raising a family and comments:
I think you may talk to people who feel differently because they are putting kids
through college or have a big monthly nut. I’m lucky enough that the kids in my
family are not using me as their financial support. I don’t have college bills. People
who are raising a family will give you different answers. But for me, it’s worth it
because you can make a lot of money in TV in my opinion. It’s worth it because you
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