How to Start a Freelance Writing Career
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Freelance writing is an interesting career if you have a liking for writing. Contrary to assumptions, it’s not difficult to start a freelance writing career. What’s great is that you can pursue this career as an part-time option while having a day job and supplement your monthly income! If you’re still confused about how to start a freelance writing career, then here are the initial basic steps you need to take to get yourself going. ~ Ed.
The world of freelance writing is really exciting and offers an ocean of opportunities to writers, students, stay-at-home parents, and seniors.
Along with complete work flexibility and decent pays, freelance writing also delivers the satisfaction of creativeness and versatility.
But, the biggest problem facing beginner freelance writers is how to kick-start their career!
Are you interested in exploring the prospects available in freelance writing? But you’re clueless and don’t know how to start a freelance writing career? Are you apprehensive about taking the first steps in the world of freelance writing?
No problem, here’s the solution to your queries on how to start a freelance writing career. It would help you take one step at a time towards establishing yourself as a successful freelance writer.
7 Steps to Starting a Freelance Writing Career
Here are seven easy steps to start a freelance writing career:
Learn the Nuances
As you embark upon this journey of freelance writing, it is important to develop and update on your writing skills.
There are several online courses available on websites like Coursera, Khan Academy, and Edx that are specially designed for writers.
These courses help not only in enhancing writing skills but also all the other nuances needed for being a successful writer.
These websites offer different topics like – Creative Writing, Lyrics Writing, Business Writing, Writing for Social Media, Research Writing, and Technical Writing which will help enhance your writing skills.
Some of these courses are college-level programs offered in association with world-renowned universities like MIT, Harvard University, University of California—Berkeley, and the University of Texas – Austin.
Choose a Niche
There are many fields in freelance writing. They may be creative, social, technical, research-based or simply copywriting.
If you have no idea about a particular field, you may avoid writing in that space. Researching about unknown topics and genres is time-consuming. Furthermore, you may not be able to create compelling articles due to a lack of knowledge of that field.
It is essential for freelance writers to identify and develop a niche field of writing. This helps in developing expertise in a particular field.
Your expertise in a particular niche will help you to create impressive content with minimum effort and in less time. This would lead to happy clients and greater work opportunities.
Create Your Portfolio
After you have identified your niche category, it is vital for freelance writers to create and publish an online portfolio.
One of the best ways to showcase your impressive work to the world is blogging. You may even upload your write-ups and articles on your Facebook page, LinkedIn profile, and WordPress.
According to experts, you may use websites like LinkedIn Pulse and Medium to highlight your talent and give tangible credibility to your writing skills.
A lot of freelance employers are scouting for great talent on social media and blogging websites. By posting your portfolio and blogs, you are sure to find a prospective client easily.
Pitch and Market Yourself
In a world of cut-throat competition, it is utmost important to market your work and also to market yourself.
As a beginner, one of the biggest challenges that you may face is a lack of experience and lack of contacts. Even if you’ve exceptional writing abilities, it will be difficult to get good work! It is simply because no one knows about you.
Pitching through different mediums will help you generate interest in your work and also new opportunities.
Pitching on online websites like Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Twitter will help you seize the attention of people from across the world. You may also join online communities related to writing and freelance work to improve your network.
It is also important to market yourself among friends, family, business associates, and colleagues. You may also reach out to famous bloggers, magazines, and online websites by sending an email that expresses your intent to work for them. Make sure you send some samples of your work!
Explore Freelance Writing Job Posts and Boards
There are many websites that connect people from the same profession. They cater specially to connecting freelancers with prospective clients. There are several options that recommend websites to freelancers and also provide details and guidance about them.
Online platforms like Freelance Switch, Upwork, Guru, and Absolute Write are especially popular among freelancers. Most such websites are free or may have a nominal registration fee. They literally connect you with thousands of clients looking for writers like you and open up a world of freelance writing jobs.
Always remember to complete your profile on the website. Also, posting your sample work is very important.
Leverage Client Testimonials
In an extremely competitive field like freelance writing, good testimonials from existing clients often help prospective clients to choose you over your competitors.
A good testimonial should contain details about your creativity, professionalism, ability to meet deadlines, and versatile work.
You may post your testimonials on social media and along with your work portfolio to highlight your work achievements. You may also ask your client to post the testimonial on social media for greater effect.
Use Smart Searching
Freelancers should also learn how to search for freelance work on the internet. There are so many resources and websites related to freelance writing on the internet.
It is important to use the correct keywords and terminology when searching for freelance work on Google.
Some of the keywords that you may use to search for work opportunities are – “Online writing jobs”, “writing jobs online”, and “freelance writer jobs”. Using such keywords helps you narrow down on appropriate work opportunities easily.
You can even use the Advanced Settings while doing a Google search. For example, just make sure that you update the location settings accordingly when you’re searching for freelance opportunities in your city. This helps to eliminate irrelevant and extraneous content.
Freelance writing may seem difficult and challenging in the initial stages. Always remember the Greek philosopher Aristotle’s advise, “Well begun is half done.”
Confidence, creativity, and determination are the pillars of freelance writing. Always be confident about your work and skillfulness.
Along with creativity, the ability to analyze in-depth research is also a very important ingredient for building a successful career in freelance writing.
And always remember that persistence is the key to developing a sustainable career. Keep trying and you are sure to succeed.
Hope this article helps you get all the answers to your question how to start a freelance writing career.
Over to you
Are you a freelance writer? Have you done anything special to give a boost to your freelance writing career? If you have tips for becoming a successful freelance writer, please share your views in the comments.
Photo credit: Michael Traitov
Disclaimer: Though the views expressed are of the author’s own, this article has been checked for its authenticity of information and resource links provided for a better and deeper understanding of the subject matter. However, you're suggested to make your diligent research and consult subject experts to decide what is best for you. If you spot any factual errors, spelling, or grammatical mistakes in the article, please report at [email protected] Thanks.