A career in freelance writing can be exciting and rewarding. When you take proper steps to get off on the right foot you can begin to see how your goals will become reality. There are thousands of opportunities out there, so you want to prepare yourself the best way possible. You need to consider how you want clients to view your abilities and what you have to offer as a freelancer. The following steps can help you get started on your writing career.
1. Define your purpose for wanting to be a writer. Which areas of writing (such as fiction or non-fiction) do you want to contribute to? Do you want to be a freelance writer to earn extra money or to make a living? What attributes will support your aspirations? In other words, what makes you qualified and how will you stand out when competing for writing jobs?
Set goals. Have certain times of the day devoted to writing and looking for jobs. You can learn about your aspirations as work to set them. You may have interests to get published in a magazine or cross over into another genre to gain more work opportunities. Whatever your goals are they can help you set a foundation to build on as a freelance writer.
Know your approach for applying for writing jobs. You need to have good communication when connecting with potential clients. Have a proposal you can use and tweak every so often. A good query letter with brief experience and why you qualify can be a good tool to have. You need elements that will sell your skills and ideas to potential clients.
Self-discipline is a must! Have systems in place to help you with day to day operations. This includes work and financial aspects. Have tools in place to help you stay organized with your income such as invoices and expense sheets. Have a designated area where you will do your work that allows you to remain focused. What system will you have in place to meet deadlines? Stay in communication with your client and follow up with potential clients after submitting a query letter. Establish balance with your time and know when you’ve spent enough time on certain tasks. In other words, don’t take on too much work.
Decide writing jobs you want and learn where to apply for them. You can decide to create content for a print publication or produce content for online reading audiences (online writing). Think about your interests and how they will help you develop a portfolio. There are websites with writing jobs and related job leads for freelancers. You can connect with bloggers and writers via writing boards and forums for leads.
Make a list of writing jobs you want to apply for. Have query letters and proposals ready to submit to potential jobs. Have other writing tools handy such as a thesaurus. Examples may include a school newsletter or submission of a children story to a magazine for publication. Such opportunities help build your portfolio as a writer and may lead to bigger lucrative opportunities. Know the type of audience you want to reach with your work and explore different types of writing (ghostwriting, technical writing, article writing, blogging and etc.).
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