I landed my first freelance writing job over 3 years ago. In that time, a lot has changed in how you find a freelance writing job as a beginner. I was able to start as a new mom to twins and with no experience blogging, and I was able to land my first profitable gig in just a couple of months. Here are some materials and personality traits you need to become a freelance writer. Aside from the tools you need, here are some personality traits you need to succeed as a freelance writer. This is the simplest way to get your writing online and one that can help you land freelance writing work.
Check out my post on how to start a blog for your service-based business and make sure to watch the video tutorial! When you think about it, when your parents wanted to start a business, they had to spend a lot of money to get business cards and an ad in the local newspaper.
You can get paid to guest post or land a free guest post spot. When I started guest posting to build my freelance writing portfolio , I relied on free guest spots with high authority like Psych Central for example. Click on a link and read the requirements. Some blogs want the whole draft, while others want several topics. Contently is a content marketing blog, but also has a platform to showcase your portfolio. Here is what mine looks like:.
When you register, you fill out your information. If you have a sample, Contently will populate the title most of the time and information, but will not populate an image. If you are a Mac user, you can get Skitch and take screenshots easily. But, you can create a Facebook page for that purpose. Many solopreneurs have a Facebook page to promote their freelance service. Go here to create your page. I chose Artist, Brand or Public Figure. From there use the drop-down menu and choose, writer.
When you have your Facebook page all set up, you need to start following blogs and brands you eventually want to write for. To gain followers, you have to share valuable content as well as personal content. Some examples might be:. There are some easy and obscure ways you can create samples. The easiest is to draft a blog post. I learned quickly the best ways to create a blog post for my portfolio.
But for many of us, we have a personal blog and then your freelance writing blog. For me, Twins Mommy is my personal blog, and Elna Cain is my freelance blog. While the topics on this blog are for freelance writers, I have landed jobs from this blog alone. The thing to remember though, creating a sample is different than creating a blog post for your personal blog.
For example, if you have a personal blog about parenting, a post on YOUR blog could be:. Do you see the difference? Medium is a great platform as you can really grow your presence on there and get seen by top editors as well as find freelance writing jobs! You can have a portfolio page or a blog if you created a blog post as your first sample. This is what I did when I was learning about freelance writing jobs.
I emailed a few top writers and asked questions like how to set my rate or some ways to guest post. A lot of freelance writers are helpful and want to offer their tips. According to Oberlo speech writing and CV writing will be big this year.
The other type is more general like with commencement speeches or those you hear at conferences. What this tells you is that more small businesses will cater to these niches online, making more projects for content and lead generation.
As a new freelance writer, go offline and check out magazines, shop at stores that cater to these niches like Baby R Us or PetSmart. See what types of products are out there and then do your research online to find those eCommerce sites that cater to those niches. You have to be a better writer than everyone out there, and that means upping your business savviness! With Facebook Live being so popular now, more and more apps and tools are being created to leverage this new niche.
As a freelance writer, you can market video script writing, or you can blog or do more content marketing writing for new apps that cater to video marketing. One of my long-time freelance writing clients asked me to do an ultimate guide for email marketing.
I decided to up my freelance writing game and created a video for that post! And you know what? If you can start offering more than just freelance writing — like video script writing or videos — you will generate buzz and income.
Start as a video scriptwriter. This is anything from an online course to eBooks to printables or guides. You can market yourself as the ghostwriter for those eBooks or lead magnets. You can even ghostwrite courses. Here is an inquiry from a client of mine that requested coursework writing.
These projects usually take months to do and are very lucrative, and something new freelance writers should embark upon! How to find land that first freelance writing client in Check out this post for an insanely fast way to find freelance writing jobs. You can quickly scroll down the list for new job listings or use the search function to find relevant jobs in your niche.
Most good quality jobs ask for recurring content and understand that freelance writers have different skill sets. You can also look at markets for paid submissions.
All Freelance Writing has a directory of paid markets. Finally, you can look at LinkedIn Jobs to see what is available. With LinkedIn jobs, it is based on your location. For me, LinkedIn is finding gigs in the Vancouver area, which is cool.
If you want more freelance writing jobs, check out this post with my best 5 freelance writing job boards. Your freelance writing website can be a strong marketing tool and can help you land amazing and high-paying freelance writing jobs.
You can get started with a free theme. If you need more help starting a freelance writer website, check out this! You do this effectively by promoting your website in your emails and guest posts. But, it totally works. Think of clients that have products or tools. You know that they can pay a freelance writer.
Or, female financial authors. From there you do your search. Read their about page, mission statement, blog, and any other pages. Find out who to email usually editors or those in charge of marketing. To find clients to cold email, go to Angel List and scroll to the bottom. Another place to find companies to cold pitch to is Manta. Manta is a small business directory. Scroll to the bottom to get a list of businesses. The best places to guest post on are high authority sites. These are sites that everyone knows about or sites that rank in Google when you search a term.
When you land a guest post on such a site, it will open the doors for freelance writing clients. Writeto1k student landed a guest spot on Lifehack! Another strategy for guest posting is to guest post on niche blogs. When I first started freelance writing, I decided one of my niches would be autism behavioral therapy. Since this is in my background and I have extensive training in this application, I thought a guest post in that niche could help me in the future.
Whether you pitch a guest spot or a content job, you need a strong pitch. I suggest you develop your own pitch that shows your credibility in your niche. But, you can use a template. Your ad on ProBlogger caught my immediate attention. I exclusively write in the digital marketing niche by providing content on email marketing, content marketing and social media marketing.
Please check out my portfolio for samples. Many will come back with more information about what they are seeking. This is a great year to become a freelance writer! More and more businesses are starting online, more digital native brands are popping up and more and more opportunities are here! If there is the internet and if there are businesses, you will be in demand.
I help people just like you become a profitable freelance writer. Within 6 months of starting my freelance writing business from scratch I was able to earn a full-time living as a part-time freelance writer while taking care of my twin toddlers. Check out my free email course Get Paid to Write Online and learn the steps you need to take to be a freelance writer.
This post had been amazing!! I have a question. Do you have to start a buisness to be a self-employed freelance writer and to have buisness cards? I already have an LLC for publishing, an author website with a short blog page for advice to other authors, author newsletter, Facebook groups, etc.
I plan to start freelance writing soon to financially support my transition as it is going to take awhile to do that as an author. Do I need separate platforms for freelance work vs my authorship?
I feel they need to be separate as your clients will be different than authors. After reading this post, I have a lot to work on as a first-time writer. I think the ghostwriting idea is the most challenging one for me. But I love everything you talked about. This information is definitely pushing me in the right direction. Thanks so much mama! Ghostwriting is a lucrative niche but I like bylined content. If you need more help, remember to find me on Facebook!
Full of usefull facts backed up by supportive responses made by people who have taken your ideas and suggestions, tried them by putting them to work and voila success. I am a 53 year old ex high school teacher and basketball coach who spent his life, until , working his butt off trying to get drafted to play professional baseball. I was less than 3 weeks from attaining that goal when a back disease surfaced which ended all sports playing and eventually my ended my sports related career.
Thank you for your help! Sorry to hear that but glad you can find something else to be successful at! Freelance writing is great for those with chronic illness or mental health issues like depression or anxiety. Yes, my twins are five and this is the last day of school! Noise and mess here I come! Should pay well too. Science-Fiction Writers of America, which I use as a guideline, advocates for no less than six cents a word as professional rates.
Most good clients who hire freelance writers will pay considerably more. Most of the content mills I have seen pay about three cents a word. Just saying…again, it trying to be rude or mean. I wish the best of luck to you! I too, am trying to get some writing gigs, and just starting out.
I have no idea where to even begin. With that said, I think constructive criticism is a good thing, that if we take need to, can help us out in the long run.
If anyone has any constructive criticism or constructive advice for me, please comment. Hi Donna and others, The online writing lab at Purdue University has resources on the Chicago Manual of Style and the APA manual, as well as many articles related to English grammar usage that are user-friendly!
Just type owl purdue university in your fave search engine and it should appear as a result. I got a fairly good rating but not tops. Glad to have joined this particular thread and sooo thankful for the supportive content on here. Smiles to all, David. And hopefully a movie.
It is called Zombie Revelations and has the old with a real touch of reality. I hope it can save some writers from going through the penny-a-word phase too many of us went through at one point! I would add staying away from Yahoo! Good for you for approaching businesses directly! Thanks so much Kelly for taking the time to research and put together this list. It will get some good use here! Your skills and time are worth far more, and there ARE clients out there who will recognize and honor that.
Hold out for the good ones. I am so glad to run across fellow writers who value what they do and will stand up and say so. I tried ODesk and was not only appalled by the pay rates, but by the attitude of many clients.
Well now, I posted a response that I cannot quote in polite company. So, thank you, your voice is much appreciated. One client said that he already had words. When I looked at what he wrote, it was on a sixth-grade level.
No research, statistics, compelling copy, SEO keywords, etc. So I had to start from scratch. I ended up acting like a tutor. Another client loved my work but kept disappearing. I asked for her website address, information about her company, etc. She let another week go by then disappeared again. I could go on and on. I think that clients who use the content mills do believe that they can get stellar writing for peanuts.
I believe these incidents are blessings in disguise. I follow top-notch bloggers and copywriters and hone my skills continually. It is up to the freelancer to determine his standards and ultimately his worth. Hello Denita and others, I am thankful for this site, thread and continued posts including yours.
At present I am an IC with Textbroker International, and try to look at most the jobs as blessings in disguise. Generally, I am a better conversationalist since starting this in late September, agree with you about developing writing skills, and have kind of found my subject niche as it were. The big picture tells me I have it pretty good, given local opportunities and employment services for those of us who have a handicapability are inadequate in my place of residence.
I hope your experience is dynamically different, but you sound quite capable and willing to improve where need be which says a lot favorably concerning what you bring to the proverbial table. All the best to you Denita, enjoyed the chance to talk shop!
Avoid sites like Researchwritingcenter. I think the better question is, what kind of writing do YOU want to do? What topics interest you? What style are you most comfortable writing in? Freelance writing is a huge industry, and you could be everything from a lifestyle blogger to a marketing copy writer. You need to determine what niche fits your skills and interests best; that will make it much easier for you to locate specific, nitty-gritty advice.
I am based out of India. I would like to write short stories. Could anyone guide me as how I should go about it. Please recommend sites where I should register myself. I have registered myself in Freelancer. You can find them here: This article was quite helpful and the comments were too. I am just about to finish my English MA and I am broke as joke, living at my parents, and finding writing work online is my priority for the time being. Best of luck to everyone trying to survive out there!
Thank you for this post. I just recently got into freelance writing and I feel so stupid already. I feel so cheated. Should I even complete the job? Is it possible that the work she is doing for oDesk would at least provide a portfolio for her future use? I am brand new to the writing game.
Love your words of encouragement to stay true to writing and get properly paid for your talent. I love writing and have been caught up in content mills since I decided to write online about a month ago.
I must admit the pennies I have received for my time, talent and dedication has been great to encourage me to seek something better.
Are there any books or articles you recommend for beginners looking to earn a living writing online? The Write Life has actually put together a great list of resources to check out. You can find it here: This article was an actual eye opener. Once again a big thank you for now I know what to expect and whom to deny. Thank you for the tips.
I am handicapped and a fairly new mom at 41 to our 9 month old first and only son. Can anyone give me additional tips on the best way I could start a blog aside from wordpress or blogger please? First of all, congrats on your new baby! Second of all, my thoughts are with you and all your friends and loved ones — are you located in the Philippines yourself? Third, The Write Life has put together a great list of resources you can check out.
First off, congrats on your 1st son! Sounds like you come central Visayas too like me, am from Bohol Phils. Yolanda Haiyan and the quake that hit our country — and the economic woes they brought are really challenges we need to hurdle. You see, I am more comfortable in writing articles than blogs. Also, writing websites that work like a vendo machines like Xoobiz, in , but now seems closed where writers can draw writing jobs from a queue — will also help, as we need not waste time in pitching for jobs.
Thank you for the great tips. I also get money writing for Bubblews and I I also write for sendmeglobal where they only give award to a writer each month. I was able to win it once. You have opened my eyes to other relevant targets. There is soooo much info out there and this article has saved me from contentmills, not to mention wasted hours-thanks very, very much!!
I guess you your words of wisdom are meant for US-based writers, knowing how much it costs to live there, this makes sense … well, kinda. If you were writing for a while before delving into the freelance world, i. However, taking those low-paying gigs is what you really need if you got no clue what your niche is, and want to get experience.
Since I write for my own amusement and because Jennifer Oh dear Jennifer who gave me my first writing gig! At least for the sake of getting good at your craft before pitching to high-paying clients.
Speaking of High-paying clients, I stumbled upon your post as I was looking for them, but all I could find is advice, and advice only.
It just takes time to sort through and separate the wheat from the chaff! I vehemently disagree with you here. Content mills horribly abuse writers and make it difficult for people who have spent years in this field to get a fair wage due to the expectation that companies can pay less to get more. All around bad news and not recommended for anyone who wants an actual career in writing. Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Alicia. To each their own opinion — some people, like Talal said, enjoy using sites like oDesk because it works for their needs and goals.
The pay is sustainable and you are able to begin your career well. Being a young, I started on Elance some weeks ago while at the same time trying oDesk. What is your advice for me?
I think Elance is good for building some portfolio and acquiring experience, but naturally I want to move on to something bigger and better. Hi Matteo, thanks for your comment! We actually have a post coming up on what to look out for when using outsourcing sites like Elance and oDesk. Keep an eye out for that in the next few weeks!
Usually to make a change in life its quite scary but your post is so straight forward and well written that it makes anyone feel ready to take on the world! Thanks for this post and some of the other ones as well about freelance writing.
Thanks for the kind words, Grace! I hope TWL can help motivate and support you in your career change. I will be graduating with a Professional Writing degree in May. I just signed up to write articles on Hire writers. I was a technical writer before becoming a s-a-h mom.
Whatever you do, when first out of college, it can take a long time to build up your experience. It can be a long, frustrating climb, but do have patience and try not to get frustrated when you keep hearing that you need experience to get the job. So where can you find freelance gigs? Journalism Jobs While most of the postings are you guessed it again!
FlexJobs One of the top job boards for telecommuting, FlexJobs enables you to create a custom job search profile to meet your specific needs. Morning Coffee Newsletter This weekly e-newsletter provides a nice compendium of freelance writing and editing jobs of all shapes and sizes from around the Web with competitive pay rates.
ProBlogger Job Board Created by Darren Rowse of ProBlogger, an authority site on blogging, you know jobs listed here will be from serious employers who have an idea what good writing is really worth. Freelance Writing With exclusive job opportunities as well as posts pulled from sites like Indeed and Craigslist, this board consolidates a variety of gigs for everyone from newbie to seasoned freelancers.
Featured resource Earn More Writing Learn how to find freelance writing jobs that pay and earn the kind of money you deserve. Featured resource Creative Class Move from irregular client work and crappy pay to being a freelance leader in your field. September 23, at 3: September 27, at 8: March 29, at May 11, at 5: December 17, at June 4, at July 15, at 3: October 19, at 7: November 21, at 3: February 7, at 9: August 15, at 9: January 3, at 4: February 9, at 1: April 3, at 9: February 27, at 3: May 30, at 7: October 29, at 9: October 29, at November 4, at 8: December 3, at 2: April 1, at 6: May 1, at June 1, at 4: October 1, at 7: November 17, at 1: November 17, at 9: August 6, at 9: August 12, at 7:
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