Pros of Freelancing
They can choose from a variety of projects instead of working on a designated one. If you are a freelance writer, you can choose to write on various styles (research-based, social media, or PR), instead of sticking to a particular style. There is a lot of exposure, opportunity, and creative freedom with freelancing.
You can charge your client as per the project, there is no fixed salary and have multiple clients and several projects. Experienced freelancers often choose their own hourly rates, and you may earn much more than a regular job. You can negotiate, take more clients without fear, and charge more (with quality).
If you don't like a client, you can him and look out for another, unlike a regular job where you have to work for a client and your boss, no matter what. You also make a lot of contacts and establish professional bonds with experienced freelancers. If your work is good, you'll find it easier to acquire more clients.
You don't have to cater to anyone's demands about how to work; you're your own boss. You can choose the manner, time, and style of working. You don't have to suck up to your clients for a raise, you are not tied down to a single employer, and no one can technically hire/fire you. Cherish the independence and autonomous feeling!
You can deduct reasonable expenses from your taxable income (office, travel, insurance, etc.), and buy retirement plans with tax benefits as well. You have to decide on a certain estimated amount, and pay the same directly to the IRS.
Cons of Freelancing
You may find 5 or 6 clients at once, and be working 24x7 to fulfill their demands, or you may find no clients at all for a few weeks. Also, getting your choice of work may be rather difficult at times.
For a freelancer, no work means no money. Also, you may not always get the kind money you want; your client may pay lesser, may not pay at all, or there may be a delay in payment. And then it can become difficult to handle expenses without any income.
Starting out with no clients, especially during recession, is even worse. You have to be the compulsive problem solver - you don't have immediate colleagues or seniors to help you, and you may experience a loss of corporate identity. You also have to work as and when the clients demand.
One has to don the hat of a manager, director, and employee, and tasks would include accounting, sales, marketing, bookkeeping, business developer, one's actual niche (writing/designing/translating), negotiations, legal issues, tax problems, and project management.
You get distracted by household chores, there is lesser time management and you are pushed into isolation, since you are not a part of a corporate team, do not have coworkers to bond with, gain support, or discuss important points. You may even be dropped by your agency if your work is sloppy.
Freelancers miss out on health insurance, unemployment insurance benefits, labor law protections, debt liabilities, workers' compensation, retirement benefits, bonus, paid vacations, sick leave, federal/state law protection, etc. There is no safety net. Makes you wonder if freelancing is worth it, isn't it?
They do not own the work, they do not have a long-term value; One may not even have the right to add his own creative opinion about something. It's akin to a hired help, doing the same work on a contractual basis.