The freelance lifestyle is a glorious thing—except for that niggling little need to keep the money coming in and the onus of paying self-employment taxes. The answer? Employment agencies.

A temp gig helps fill in when things are slow, gets you out of your PJs and decreases your income tax liability (since you’re an employee of the agency, they pay half of the employment taxes). But be forewarned: There is absolutely no guarantee that an agency will have work for you. To improve your odds, register with at least three agencies and check in with them regularly—but not so often it’s annoying or you come off as desperate.

There are several creative staffing agencies in Chicago. Many have offices across the nation; some span the globe.

Don’t live in Chicago? A simple Web search (I prefer Dogpile) for “creative staffing agency” + Your City should bring up a list. Meander through their job listings and see if there’s anything you like. You can also check out reviews of the various agencies on Yelp to find the highest-rated agencies in your area or help you choose which to register with first.

Did I miss any? Let  me know in comments.

*I am currently registered with this agency.