Charlotte Lorimer interviews fellow freelancer Anna Codrea-Rado about writing, podcasting, campaigning and her newsletter, Lance.


“The reality of freelancing in 2021 is that we all wear so many hats,” says Anna Codrea-Rado, a journalist, podcaster, campaigner and author of the upcoming guide for freelancers You’re The Business. Anna, 33, has been a Starling business customer since 2019. 

“It’s really important to figure out your purpose.” For Anna, it’s always been about fighting for freelancers’ rights and telling their stories, a purpose she distilled when rebranding her newsletter, Lance. “I really believe in the power of journalism - it’s an important function of our democracy and society and a powerful way to bring about change for the freelance community.”

In Lance, Anna brings together the various threads of her work in a single publication and community. Anna wears many hats, but each exists for one clear purpose: championing the self-employed.

The journalist: Lance

Lance includes advice for the self-employed, as well as opinion pieces from other journalists and investigations into freelance injustices, for example on late payments. 

“The pandemic is showing us just how vulnerable self-employed people are. In so many ways, freelancers and members of the gig economy have been let down by governments, institutions and businesses. And these struggles aren’t getting the airtime they deserve,” she says. “The newsletter is a place to champion self-employment and talk about the realities of what it’s like to work for yourself.”

Anna’s investigative journalism is backed up by advice from a media lawyer and builds on her experience as a reporter. Before going freelance unexpectedly, she spent 10 years working for major newspapers and publications.

The podcaster: Is this working?

When Anna started Lance in 2017, her subscribers were mainly fellow writers. Now, her audience includes self-employed people across many industries. Growth has been aided by her podcast, Is this working?, which she co-hosts with freelance writer Tiffany Philippou.

‘Is this working?’ podcast artwork
The podcast Is this working? helps listeners navigate the world of self-employment

The podcast addresses topics relevant to anyone who doesn’t work a traditional 9am-5pm job or receive all their earnings from one employer.

The campaigner: #FairPayForFreelancers

In 2019, she launched an online campaign to highlight why freelancers needed to be paid fairer, better and faster. Her petition, #FairPayForFreelancers, was signed by more than 1000 journalists, each calling for an end to payment on publication, greater respect for late payment fees and updates to outdated payment systems. Anna has since given evidence to a select committee in the House of Lords on the future of journalism. 

With Lance, she’s practicing what she preaches. The journalists she commissions are paid 50% of their fee on signing their contract and 50% once the final draft is completed. She also aims to be completely transparent when it comes to the business finances.

“The newsletter is sustained by the subscribers who pay for the premium option and I want to show them how their money is being used.” The premium subscription includes additional content and events.

The author: You’re the Business

Anna’s first book, You’re the Business, is out in March. “It collects all my personal advice in one place - it’s what I’d like to imagine freelancers having a copy of on their desk, so that they can turn to it for a confidence boost or to answer a certain question.  It’s written for all types of freelancers and covers both practical business skills and emotional resilience.”

In the chapters on taxation and budgeting, Anna recommends Starling Bank. “I like that it’s a mobile bank as so much of my money management gets done on the go. I’m a very happy customer,” she says. 

“It can be a nightmare to budget as a freelancer being paid irregular amounts each month when the rest of the world operates on a monthly system.” Her solution is to put a percentage of income into Spaces, the Starling feature that enables customers to separate money from their main balance. “Every time money comes into my Starling business account, a percentage goes into my pension Space.”

Anna manages all the different parts of her business through Starling - a business account designed for all freelancers, whatever their industry, whatever their purpose.

Subscribeto blog updatesarrow-rightGrow your businessHelpful free business guidesarrow-right

Related stories

Latest posts

Help