Year One in the Books
Updated: Jul 16
One year ago today I took a leap of faith and bet on myself. I started my business as a health content writer. I've had some quiet dreams of being my own boss. I've always known some things about myself when it comes to working and, because I viewed these traits as "unpopular," I have tried to suppress them for a long time. To be frank, working for others has been such a challenge. I never believed in the "9-5" life. I remember getting my first job that didn't include nights and weekends (long before I became a nurse) and I was excited initially, but the excitement wore off because I wasn't fulfilled.
When I landed my first nursing job I thought I had finally made it. I was taking care of people in the way I thought I was destined to. I really enjoyed spending time educating my patients on their health conditions and what they should do to manage these conditions when they go home. I like to think that I got through to some, but many don't have the resources needed to take care of themselves properly from home. So it wasn't surprising (albeit heartbreaking) to see so many of them return to the hospital within a few days or weeks after being discharged.
While I loved the work schedule flexibility (3-12 hour shifts per week), I again felt like something was missing. And I was tired of working 12 hours straight with no breaks. I started thinking about what else I could do with my nursing license that wouldn't break my back and have my feet in so much pain when the shifts got too busy.
I started brainstorming ideas for a business. I had several of them on my vision board: legal nurse consulting, CPR instructor, and nurse writer. I remember thinking the legal nurse consulting would be fun because I always thought that law would've been my next choice if a career in healthcare wasn't the end game. But I was met with resistance here because I was too inexperienced as a nurse to provide any real value to a legal team. I moved on to thinking about being a CPR instructor. I found some nurses on social media who have businesses teaching other nurses how to become CPR instructors and business owners. I reached out to them and they were incredibly helpful. But, at this time I was also enrolled in a Nursing PhD program, and I realized that starting this type of business would cost both more time and money than I could not afford.
I had one option left on that vision board: content writing. I didn't understand much about this field, just that there were nurses out there who wrote health content for companies like WebMD and CNN. I took some courses from nurses to help me get started in the business, and I loved it. I had no idea that nurses could write any content for any business willing to pay them, not just healthcare businesses. I saw the potential here to do something I love for a much larger audience and immediately started my business, Authored by AJP on July 8, 2022.
I completed by PhD studies in December 2022, and am continuing on with pursuing a career in research. Splitting my time between work, school, and growing my business was tough. But I'm so glad I did it. These last few months have really been transformative. I landed my first several clients, one of which has become an anchor client. I have a growing community of other nurse content writers who I can reach out to now. And I love the work I'm doing to grow this business. I can't wait to see where the next year will take me.
If you are a nurse at the bedside who isn't sure where to turn for additional work opportunities, pick up my e-book on Amazon, Beyond the Bedside: Ignite Your Career in With Health Content Writing. When I started my business I was burned out at the bedside. If I had even been exposed to content writing sooner, I may have stayed at the bedside a little while longer and scaled back from full time to part time. This is an option as a health content writer. You can reclaim so much of your time, while educating others on topics you're passionate about. This e-book may help you or someone you know weigh their options.
There will be more content on how to start your own health content writing business coming from me soon. In the meantime, follow me on social media. Instagram: @authoredbyajp. Facebook and LinkedIn: Authored by AJP.