How To Become A Freelance Writer Today: Full Step By Step Guide

Have you ever dreamt of making a full-time income while traveling to exotic places all over the world? Have you ever dreamt of being your own boss, setting your own hours, setting your own pay, and living a life of freedom that few are privileged to experience? Do you enjoy writing as a medium of expression? Can you do it almost every day without getting tired? Great!

I started freelance writing while I was in my junior year of college. For some reason, the thought of spending a 35 year slog slaving away in a cubicle for an unappreciative boss and disinterested coworkers filled me with dread. I wanted to find a way to both enjoy my life and support my future family at the same time.

I had previously done internet marketing and had a fairly good handle on how to represent myself, but at the time, I didn’t have the guidance that was necessary to transform my life. Luckily, in this day and age, it is both much easier and much harder to become a freelance writer than it was in the past. Before, you’d have to rely on getting lucky with a connection or endlessly contacting webmasters for guest posts. Today, you can literally begin a lucrative career in as little as a month with the right preparation.

Truthfully, there are more opportunities to become a freelancer today than there ever were before; especially after the recent pandemic. The subtle art of becoming a successful, established writer isn’t realized by putting out endless streams of mindless, untargeted content that doesn’t help anyone. You MUST become the master of your niche and give your readers great content that they will flock to time and time again.

Read more

5 Things I Wish I Knew Before Becoming a Freelance Writer

When I first started freelancing, I was a wide-eyed 25-year old with the world at my feet. Women wanted me, men wanted to be like me and every night ended with fish and chips down by the pier (no naan).

“Damn this is easy”, I thought as I cashed the cheque from my 8th assignment in as many weeks. “I can do this all day.”

Nearly a decade later, it turns out my dream career might have more than its fair share of pitfalls. In fact, I might even dare to say that I’m not even sure if it’s a dream job anymore (gasp!).

Freelancing can sometimes be a tough gig. You have to be your own boss, keep up with deadlines, and find good, consistent work. As a freelance writer, I get asked this question all the time: “What do you wish you knew before becoming a freelance writer?” The truth is that it’s hard to answer because we’re all at different stages in our careers. However, if I had known what to expect when I first became self-employed, I would have made a lot fewer mistakes. Here are some of the most important things I wish I knew when I started out.

Read more

4 Simple and Effective Techniques to Improve Your Writing Immediately

It’s a well-known fact that writing solid content can be a laborious task. However, there are several things you can do immediately to help you improve your writing. In this blog, we’ll cover four simple yet powerful techniques that will improve your freelance writing right away.

First Technique: The easiest way to win over your readers is by Provide Real-Life Examples

It’s not enough anymore just to expect that you can earn a reasonable living by writing generic content mill pieces; we must be aware that our words may end up in front of a real human being. For this reason, our writing must be specifically tailored to their needs as well.

People are drawn in by stories because they can relate to them much more easily than facts or figures that they do not understand. If you want good freelance writing jobs, you’ll need to provide content that will engage your audience—that means moving away from generic “writer-speak” and towards passages with a bit of individuality behind them. So keep track of all those great things you’ve experienced through freelance work! Did something interesting happen at a

Read more

The Unofficial Freelance Writer’s Guide to Overcoming Procrastination

I used to have a blackbelt in procrastination when I first began my freelance writing career.

I’d often find myself having to write more than 1,000 words in the last few hours of a deadline. In fact, I strongly suspect that cramming all of our work into a few hours is the primary source of burnout in our field. Do you ever get that sick feeling when you remember you reaaaalllyy need to work on something due tomorrow? That’s what happens when I procrastinate, and once upon a time, it seemed inevitable.

I got together with my peers and we started sharing what we’ve learned about overcoming procrastination in order to help more freelancers in our field to overcome this problem once and for all! We’ve compiled tips throughout the years that we feel confident applying to any assignment (and life!) and I’m excited to share them with you. Here are my tips for overcoming procrastination that I personally used to create a healthy work/life balance once and for all:

Read more

Using Synonyms: Creating Literary Gems With Rich, Varied Word Usage

I have a confession to make: when writing any paper, I have a dedicated tab open on thesaurus.com to help me come up with ways that will help my ideas flow seamlessly together. Indeed, a good writer is supposed to come up with their own ways to creatively express themselves. However, I suffer from a common problem: word repetition.

Every author that has ever tried to string together a comprehensive text eventually runs into a problem; we sometimes tend to write in a way that more closely reflects how we speak, rather than in a way that creates an easily readable and enjoyable text. There’s an important difference to note here.

Whereas documents are (supposed to be) written in a style that entices the reader to keep going, spoken language is an entirely different beast. When speaking, it’s common to use certain phrases repetitively – in such situations, we have the advantage of inflection, body language, and facial expression to helps to emphasize our ideas more clearly.

Writing doesn’t have that advantage. The closest tools we have in English to an indication of sentiment are emojis and they are rarely appropriate in anything except the most informal settings.

To counterbalance this, a good writer tries to use varied words with more or less the same meaning in his or her texts. Searching for synonyms is important when writing anything. If you use too many of the same words or expressions, you can get into slight trouble.

Read more

How To Handle Criticism From A Client

Receiving negative feedback from a customer can be such a difficult aspect of freelance writing, it can make someone want to quit. I know because I’ve been there.

You finish a large assignment, thousands upon thousands of words, and you’re excited to pass your work off to your client and see what he or she thinks about it. You did your best and felt like you covered the full scope of what was required. You’re ready to take on more work and in the back of your mind, you may even be smugly impressed with your writing skills.

Suddenly, out of nowhere, you get a dreaded negative response to your article. I had just finished some work for a blog owner when I got this email from him (this happened just a couple of months ago):

I’m not very happy with your article, to be honest. This sounds childish. I don’t feel like you put any love into it. It needs a more personal touch and as well as a more professional tone overall.

I was livid. Didn’t put any love into it? WTF?!, I seethed to myself. I had just spent the better part of three days writing a pillar post for his blog, doing endless research about an obscure company almost nobody had ever heard about and had cross-referenced every single point I made.

Read more

Writing Gripping Introductions: How To Command Attention From The Very First Sentence

Have you ever wondered why some authors are able to capture their audience’s hearts seemingly instantly while others struggle to keep their readers’ eyes open page after page? The secret lies in the introduction; simultaneously the most and least interesting part of an article.

Unless you’re writing heavily technical work for scientific publication, EVERY writer needs to know how to write an introduction. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a copywriter, a book author, or a weekend freelance blogger, if you don’t know how to captivate your audience within a few sentences, you’re not just losing money – you’re losing the potential to connect with an otherwise interested party.

Writing an introduction isn’t easy. I know this because I stare at the dreaded white emptiness of a blank page almost every day. Fortunately, I’ve been able to perfect the art of “getting into it” and I rarely suffer from writer’s block (my personal weakness is always the conclusion). However, before I created a creative formula, I had moments where it would take me up to a week to conjure some arcane way to introduce an idea.

READING an introduction isn’t easy either! Just look at your own reading habits: do you ever relish the idea of reading an introduction over and over? Probably not. In fact, if it feels too dreary, I usually skip right past the intro and dive right into the first chapter. Sometimes I even speed read the first chapter – I want to get to the good part as fast as possible. It seems like after a lifetime of being inundated by tiresome intro after intro, most readers hate reading the very first portions of a literary work. There are some exceptions to this that I will go over to perfectly illustrate the value of a well-written beginning.

Become the exception to the rule. Learn how to write the introduction well; in fact, make it your strong point. When you entertain your readers, arouse their curiosity, and spark their imagination, you begin having a conversation with them that can open doors.

Read more

Raise Your Freelance Writing Prices in 2021

2021 is finally upon us! 2020 was quite an….”interesting” year, to put it lightly, and I’m already feeling like a new man. I wanted to write a mini-pep talk for my writing friends who want to make the best out of this year. As Coronavirus (hopefully) starts to wind down, I think massive opportunities are growing in our industry that should be seized.

You see, I had an epiphany when I woke up this morning that I wish to share with you:

It’s time to raise our prices.

The first thing I did this morning when I started working was to immediately increase my current rate from 10 cents a word to 15 cents a word. Why do I feel deserving of a self-imposed raise?

Because I’m worth it. End of story.

I’m actually worth much more than that, but I’m fine with working for $0.15 per word.

Over the last year, my writing skills have improved. My vocabulary increased. I read a lot more; not just about my niche, but a whole collection of books which broadened my perspective. I got feedback on my work that helped me to increase my skill in my craft. I work more but simultaneously feel happier. I am better today than I was yesterday, and I think that my fees reflect my personal growth over the course of a year.

Read more

Does Your Blog Need A Niche? Spoiler Alert: YES

I received an email a month ago from one of my readers who seemed a little bit distressed:

Hey Anta, I wanted to start a new blog for 2021 but I was kind of stuck. You see, I have a bunch of different stuff that I like. I like go-karts, space travel, cooking, and budgeting. Is it possible to make a blog around all of these or can I build one website for everything?

Jon K.

I wanted to answer this question in-depth because it actually comes up a lot and I wanted a link I could just send to bloggers when they are just starting.

People are multi-faceted beings. Very few people only have one particular interest and nothing else holds their fancy. I personally struggle with trying to accommodate all of my interests within my working day and I rarely do. Additionally, our interests change over time. I’m sure my younger self would have been heartbroken if he knew his older self doesn’t really feel like collecting hot-wheels anymore, or that having a level 99 necromancer in Diablo 2 is the pinnacle of existence. It’s perfectly okay to have many interests; that just means you’re normal.

If you’re making a blog to be a personal journal to explore yourself, sure, go right ahead. Nobody will stop you. Creating a space to collect one’s thoughts probably something everyone should do. If you’re making a blog to make money, it’s a bad idea and in order to understand that fully, it’s important to examine what drives traffic to websites in the first place.

Read more

How To Get Paid More Than $0.05 Per Word

When it comes to earning a dignified, living wage from freelance writing, a few common-sense rules need to be applied, especially if you want to do this long term.

Before we even begin, let tell you about a scenario, and please tell me if it sounds familiar:

You’re interested in making a little extra money, maybe even pay a few bills, maybe even rent if you can manage this month. You heard that freelancing can be a very lucrative way to make a quick buck, especially due to the low barrier of entry. You registered at several popular jobs boards like Freelancer.com, Upwork, etc… and perhaps you even wanted to take your chances on Fiverr. You notice the staggeringly low rates that people seem to be charging for volumes of content. Your heart sinks at the prospect of writing over 1000 words for somewhere between $30 and $50.

Welcome to the world of the content mill: a dystopian hell where writers are forced to use their creativity to compete against an underpaid, overworked global network of desperate workers. Gone are the days of landing clients that will pay you inordinate sums to spin out junk articles.

If this situation sounds like something you’re familiar with, don’t worry, there is much, much more to being a freelance writer than trying to grind out a meager living for substandard wages. If you want to make good money, the kind that can comfortably support a family while working a very reasonable number of hours, there are several things you need to keep in mind.

Read more