Freelance Writing for Dummies

I don’t regret my choice to be a freelancer. While some people might stress out about an unpredictable schedule and a lack of structure, that is exactly the part about this job that makes me so happy. I don’t have to report to anyone if I don’t want to. You always want to be nice to your clients, but if someone is a complete jerk I have no problem telling them to go find someone else. That’s the advantage that a freelancer has over the average worker. Today I’m gonna teach you how to get started as a freelance writer and make your own money!

Find a Niche

There are a few ways to get started, and some are easier than others. You can broadly divide them into two paths: content writing, and creative writing. Content writing is writing for ads, websites, and brochures. Creative writing is writing for ebooks, journalistic articles, or short stories. The path you choose depends on you as a person.

Content writing is the hardest to break into, but it is arguably the easiest to do well. The basics of content writing can be summed up this way: Less is more. The shorter your web copy is, the more it will be read. A quippy 4-word headline does more than a descriptive 20-word headline. And your content must grab the reader right away; most people never read past the headline and the first paragraph. https://peakstriker.com/ has great examples of this quick and efficient writing style, and they use it to highlight the benefits of different sports racquets!

Creative writing is easier to get into, but it is much harder to do well. In fact, I would say that you either have a gift for this type of writing or you don’t. Just try your hand at writing ebooks or short stories for someone and see if you have the knack!

Where Do I Get Work?

So you have the skills and you know what path you want to take… How do you start writing? Who is going to hire you? You feel like someone who has the best badminton equipment, but no one to play with. I recommend that you start with Upwork and Fiverr. Fiverr is the easiest, but it also has much cheaper clients. You will get a lot more rude people there. Upwork is better in my opinion because most of the clients are more professional and know what they’re doing. Just create a portfolio of work and start applying. If you don’t have a portfolio, create some content just so you can demonstrate your writing style. You will almost never get hired if you can’t prove yourself.

Don’t be afraid to work for very little at first; you may feel like you’re almost working for free. That’s ok for now; you’re learning! Think of it like school. But after your first 3 gigs, you need to up your prices. You’ve proven yourself; now people need to pay up if they want your services!