101 Guide to become a Freelance Writer
Do you wish for a life that involves much more than being stuck in a cubicle, meeting deadlines, and still not making an adequate income. And somewhere in your heart, you feel that your creative side can be put to work to live a life which is a lot more exciting and satisfying. If you are eager to become a freelance writer to earn a higher income from home, this post is for you.
Imagine being your boss, having an income potential that entirely depends on your skills, and along with the perks of working from home. Instead of working in an office all day, you can rely on your creative insights – and your work ethic to achieve your dream life.
With no employer to answer to, you’re free to take as much time as you desire.
Who is a freelance writer?
A freelance writer is one who is self-employed. You can work for a magazine or write for several different publications at a time. You could be writing on your blogs or provide content for other people or organisations. The more diverse and adaptive one can be with their creative content, the more likely you will get paid for your work and get it published.
Why try freelancing?
By now, you know that freelancing is a gateway to freedom and a source of income, which truly depends on your creativity and outreach. Being self-employed as a writer helps you give more time to yourself and your family. Especially if you are a parent, working from home gives you ample time to spend with your kids and play a more active role in their upbringing. Many people agree that writing helps you develop and express yourself and is one of the most satisfying things to do.
Some other benefits include-
- Freedom from the daily 9 to 5 job as your working schedule.
- Have the freedom to choose who they work for and develop content in the field of their choice.
- Save money on travel as most freelance writers use their home as an office.
- Can tailor their work environment and deadlines.
- Can take holidays as per their convenience.
How to get started?
Being a freelance writer, along with its huge benefits, comes with a few risks. To get started and earn a living out of it, you must be able to produce content that is worth reading, and it should be put out in such a way that it could have a reach.
1. Seek out training:
If you’re just starting, you’ll likely want to be equipped with basic skill sets to get started so that you can produce quality work from the get-go. Nothing to get worried about; you don’t require a university degree to become a freelance writer.
If you don’t have the money or time to get a degree from a university, an online writing course can work for you. They’re generally more affordable than formal degrees, and you can complete them while being at home.
If you’re planning to go to college or are still studying, you can consider formal studies to help you achieve your goal.
Language major jobs can be very profitable, and the same is true of other writing-intensive professions like creative writing, communications and journalism.
Studying humanities builds your rhetorical skills, which will make you a much better writer and develop your marketing reach, and can give you a better insight and understanding of your topic of interest.
2. Pick your field
Choosing what you want to write about is an essential first step. Selecting a niche you like and are excited to work on, you’ll find you can write better without spending a lot of time on research, and you can come up with content that is raw and interesting. You can pick one of the following areas or a favourite hobby or interest of your own:
- Diet and fitness
- Health and wellbeing
- Family, relationships, and parenting
- Yoga and meditation
- Cooking and nutrition
- Finance and budgeting
- Leadership and careers
- Creative hobbies
3. Building a website or blog
Having an online presence can be very helpful and can help you become a more dedicated writer.
Writing your blog is a simple way to build your online platform and gives a space to write, share, and get genuine feedback on your content. You can create a blog for free using WordPress or Wix or post on an outlet like Medium. You can also set up your website to serve as a platform for blogging and an online resume and portfolio to share with your customers. You might also consider learning the basics of website development, which can help you customize your work and save you money from hiring professionals.
4. Write great sample content
This is one of the most crucial steps to keep in mind as you grow with your writing career. Before you can progress any further, you’ll need to create sample work to serve as your portfolio. Many writers publish online on their blogs or as writers for other blogs and online magazines. Sharing your content with family and friends at the beginning of your career will help you get feedback and develop a reader base.
When you start to send out pitches for paid work, you can use the sample work as a resume to show what you’re capable of, and these sample works will give a clearer insight into you and your work.
5. Pitching Yourself
Once you’re ready with a portfolio and have started to build readership in your chosen field of interest, it’s time to start looking out for more work. You can find a job in some organisations or magazines. Some may be without payment or may produce only small cash. However, for many new freelance writers, it could serve as the right way of building your resume further and reach a broader audience — so it's well worth considering.
6. Network, network, network
While you don’t necessarily have to network with people in person, as an online freelance writer, you have a lot to learn by connecting with other writers and website owners in your field. The more people you know and interact within the field, the more opportunities you can learn about.
It's always suggested to create portfolios on websites like LinkedIn and join online freelancing groups. You can try various platforms such as EarnMoreWriting.com which share tips and job leads.
A word of Caution
Variable income, irregular hours, working for yourself is strange and sometimes dangerous work.
At the very least, you should prepare yourself financially for things like managing income and your expenses, paying your bills, buying your health care, and saving for your retirement. And for even the best writers, clients come and go, so be sure to build up a significant source for those hard times.
Building a work schedule and keeping yourself motivated, along with making sure you don't get saturated in ideas, is very crucial for any freelance writer.
But once you have decided to go ahead with your creative talents, you will find a way to a better life, and it will undoubtedly be rewarding in the end.
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