Sunday, June 12, 2016

How to Become a Freelance Writer

In the past week I've been asked twice about how a person gets into freelance writing. Through the years I've had at least four others ask me through Facebook, and a few in person.

This is the kind of question I love and hate. I love the instant connect writer-to-writer. I hate that answering this type of thing is time-consuming, non-paying, and generally like welcoming competition into my sphere.

It reminds me of a lot of life coaching inquiries I had after becoming a certified life coach. Most coaches offer 20 minute sessions no charge, but I also got a number of email inquiries. After a while I realized it is my right to refuse to answer people who are more-or-less snooping about the career and have no intention of working with me.

Some freelancers and life coaches make a lot of money. Others of us don't. My first word of caution to those asking is to say if they need the income, packing up their day job to become a freelance writer is the wrong choice.

Other than that, would-be freelance writers need to write regularly and they need to dig.  All freelancers dig for work. We all dig for research. We all dig for new clients. The internet is our playing field.

No one will hand work to you. You will have to keep developing, take risks, learn to accept rejection and criticism, and be humble enough to be corrected on improper grammar.

I still don't have it all down perfectly. I know I hyphenate at times I shouldn't. I've taken courses and have guidebooks, but when writing, like a quick blog, who cares? I don't. This is how I practice, vent, and develop.

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