Do you personally know any freelance writers? If you do, you must be impressed by their ability to maintain friendships, keep their home in order all the time, spend time with the people they love, travel, and still make enough money for a living.
When you think about it, it seems easy. This is someone who just sits on the couch for a few hours a day, writing something on the computer. They know how to write, so it shouldn’t be too hard on them, right?
So you have some writing skills, too. You’d love to give this profession a try and you feel like you’re ready. Are you really ready? You absolutely need a few essential tips that will prepare you to approach freelance writing from the right angle.
Understand the Challenges
Freelancing is not as easy as it seems. In fact, it’s pretty hard. We’re not writing this to disappoint you or make you give up. It’s just the reality that you’ll inevitably face:
It’s hard to make it on freelance platforms like Upwork, since clients see new writers with doubt. They rely on reviews from other clients, and they clearly want to hire someone with a great reputation. Since you’ll show up with no reviews on your profile, it will take some patience before someone is willing to give you a chance.
The average hourly rate for freelance writers is $24.07. But the popular platforms are highly competitive, so you might have to set a lower rate and work your way up. This means you’ll have to work at least four hours per day if you want to make a decent salary.
Distractions are hell. You’ll try writing something, but you’ll end up wasting three hours on Instagram. You’ll undermine yourself unless you resist all distractions around.
Many people won’t take you seriously when you say you work as a freelance writer. They will assume you just sit at home all day, doing nothing. There’s a certain social stigma around the word “freelancer” and you’ll have to learn how to deal with it.
Start Your Own Blog
If you decide to join freelancing platforms, you have to provide some samples for potential clients to read. You’ll publish those samples on your blog. Fortunately, clients who are looking for writers don’t pay much attention to design, so you can get away with a free WordPress template. WordPress is pretty easy to use. You can start your own blog today and start publishing content right away.
But make the content really good! The blog serves as your portfolio. Before the client hires you, they will want to see how capable you are.
Choose your niche! What types of freelance writing gigs will you apply to? Are you great at writing about politics, economy, religion, beauty, yoga, or anything else? Whatever it is, make the blog very focused. If you’re really committed to it, the blog will become a source of passive income over time.
Apply for Projects You Can Really Cover
Many freelance writers make this serious mistake: they start applying to every single ad for writers they see. They have no idea what they would write for a client who requires news articles, but they apply anyway, just because they are desperate for that first gig.
Don’t do that! Only apply if you’re 100% confident that you can successfully complete the job. Otherwise, the gig would lead to tons of stress, missed deadlines, content that lacks quality, and a low rating on your profile. You don’t want that.
Try Writing Services
Do you have an MA or Ph.D. degree in any area of study? If you do, you’re ahead of the game. You can start working as a college essay writer even if you don’t have previous experience as a freelance writer. This is a great stepping stone since the work as an academic paper writer pays more than average.
You just need to apply for a job at a custom essay service. They will put you through some tests to make sure you can write great essays, research papers, and other types of content on topics from your subject area. When you enter the team, you’ll no longer need to hunt for clients. The service will provide a regular workflow and all you’ll need to do is write.
Here are few writing agencies with a great reputation:
Learn How to Avoid the Burnout Effect
When things start going well, you’ll feel pretty enthusiastic about being a freelance writer. You’ll organize your time effectively, you’ll resist all distractions, and you’ll be happy about making the money you need.
But what happens when you reach your limit and suddenly launch yourself into a full-blown burnout? That’s not a myth. The burnout is a state of being that makes you feel foggy, unwilling to do anything, and even depressed. Gallup estimated that 44% of employees said that they occasionally felt burned out, and 23% felt burned out always or very often.
To avoid this effect, you have to work smart instead of hard. Do not push yourself through 12-hours working days in front of the computer. Organize your time very effectively and accept as many tasks as you can complete in eight hours or less. For the rest of the day, do something you love. Meet friends, take your dog on a walk, talk to your family, read, exercise… just make sure there’s enough time for life.
The Money Is There… You Just Need to Earn It
Content is always needed. Content runs the web, so business owners always need more of it. Students also need to rely on professional writers. You can definitely succeed at this job if you’re good at it. But you need to prepare yourself well and know what to expect.