When I was working a full-time job, let’s be honest, the people were nice and the stability was great, but the 12-hour days (including my commute) were getting in the way of my life.
Right now I am back to freelance, if only for a little while, and I am finding that it is also getting in the way of my life.
The problem with freelance, at least with freelance in film production, is that you have a schedule that changes all the time and overall is very unpredictable. For the project I am working right now, I have two weeks of pre-production and then we shoot for a month. Because it is really not enough time to fully be prepared and on top of everything, while still having a few minutes to myself, this is what happens:
I schedule a lunch or coffee or even a doctor’s appointment, and then a meeting, location scout, or some random thing pops up and there go my plans. I of course have to cancel because if whatever it is does not get addressed, it will be a problem down the road. My position is the one that has to deal with any issue that might occur on set and still make sure we get everything done for the day. When you are in production, you DO NOT exist to the rest of the world until that project ends. You are working at least 14 hours a day on a location that you cannot leave for even a moment, and there is never any down time. At the end of the day, all you have the energy for is to shovel some food in your mouth before falling into bed and hope to be able to fall asleep because your hours are not predictable and you might be working a 7 a.m.-7 p.m. one day and then move to 7 p.m.-7 a.m.
Therefore, by canceling whatever plans I had, that means that I cannot make it up for at least a month.
Obviously it is great to have work, and clearly when I am in between work I have all the time I could want, but you and I both know that is exactly when nobody is available to do anything.
I am planning on pitching to my wife the benefits of having me as a full-time housewife :)