MeHi, my name’s Michelle Goodman and I’ll be your tour guide today. But before we get started with our romp through the cubicle-free life, let me tell you a bit about me:

I fled the cube in 1992 to become a freelance writer and have yet to look back. In 2006, I decided to cram as much detail as I could about flexible, boss-free, and otherwise nontraditional careers into a book: The Anti 9-to-5 Guide: Practical Career Advice for Women Who Think Outside the Cube, which Seal Press published in 2007. In 2008, I wrote (and Seal Press published) the sequel, My So-Called Freelance Life: How to Survive and Thrive as a Creative Professional for Hire.

I now write a workplace column for and a startup finance column for Entrepreneur. For nearly four years, I wrote Nine to Thrive, a Seattle Times work/life balance blog. My articles about careers, entrepreneurship, money, health and relationships have also appeared in,, Salon, Bust, Bitch, The Bark, American Express OPEN Forum, AOL, Yahoo! and many more.

My essays have been anthologized in P.S., What I Didn’t Say: Unsent Letters to Our Female Friends, Single State of the Union: Single Women Speak Out on Life, Love, and the Pursuit of Happiness and The Moment of Truth: Women’s Funniest Romantic Catastrophes, also published by Seal Press. In 2006 I was a writer-in-residence at Hedgebrook, a dreamy women’s writing retreat in Washington state that receives hundreds of applications from around the globe each year. This article explains why I want to move there.

My umpteen-year freelance career has given me the chance to work with everyone from book publishers to high-tech empires to peddlers of new-age products, wrangling text on pet accessories, video games, voice recognition software, marital aids, home colonics and just about anything else that can be sold. One of my favorite projects entailed writing captions for this adorable puppy journal filled with photos by pet photographer Emily Rieman.

As a frequent speaker on the freelance writing life, I’ve sat on panels and given talks at events sponsored by Mediabistro, Biznik, Seattle Women’s Commission, the University of Washington and more. I also teach classes through the Editorial Freelancers Association and Richard Hugo House in an effort to help aspiring cubicle expats avoid the same mistakes I made early in my own solo career.

I was born and raised in the Garden State and got my B.A. in journalism from George Washington University. In my former 9-to-5 existence, I worked as a community newspaper reporter and bureau chief, a New York book publicist, a high-tech book editor and a Microsoft web community editor. I live in Seattle with a man, a dog and a cat.