Friday, April 21, 2017
Hi. My name's Zack Burt. 10 years ago I wrote a lame Facebook app that ended up being a viral sensation and I started getting offers to do programming as a contractor. Consulting's been the #1 income channel for me over the past decade, and despite no CS degree, it's also led to full-time stints in individual contributor and leadership roles at hot startups in San Francisco and NYC. Yet, it's by far my favorite income channel because it enables me to have a much freer lifestyle so I may work on other projects as I choose. I charge $150 hourly and regularly turn down work because I like protecting my freedom. I met someone named Jay El-Kaake via reddit a few months ago. He posted in a Rails thread about how he was looking for help with a project and I replied. We set up a billing agreement and really enjoyed working together. As we got to talking, we compared our shared experience of telling fellow developers how we do consulting and them telling us how interested they are into breaking into that field. So in addition to collaborating on webapp projects for clients, we wrote a book about it. True story: we made thousands of dollars together before we ever met in person. He took his girlfriend to NYC for Christmas and we met up at Artichoke Pizza in the East Village. Anyway, the book covers client hunting (in-depth descriptions of the 15 channels that have worked best for us), nonpayment resolution, communication, and best practices that we've learned from over 20 years in the field.