How To Find A Freelance Writing Job: Five Tips To Follow
The number one rule of writing: don’t give up your day job.
If you’re looking to become a freelance writer, be prepared to go through a learning curve and some lean times before you start to see the payoff for your hard work. If you’re a freelancer, you’re working for yourself. You have to look for and earn you own writing projects, schedule your life around your work and be your own boss. That means you have to keep yourself in line and make sure you’re doing the work you agree to do.
The first thing you need if you want to work as a freelancer is a commanding grasp of the English language (or your native tongue if other than English). You must be able to compose a grammatically correct sentence, spell with impeccable precision and put together a paragraph or more in a cohesive, fluid manner. If you can’t do this, freelancing is not for you. Once you’re confident in your abilities, then begins the search for gainful work.
To help you get there, we’ve put together five tips you can follow:
- Samples of your work. Put together samples of each category of writing you would like to do for potential clients. Whether you’re wanting to write scripts for movies and ghostwrite for ebooks, or journalism jobs and marketing are more to your liking, get some sample work together. If you haven’t had any paying jobs yet, make up some samples that you can use to showcase what you’re capable of doing.
- Create a resume. Dust off your resume and make a few tweaks to it. For freelancing, a functional resume format may work better than a chronological resume. You want your resume to highlight your skill sets and your experience in each.
- Blog it. Create a blog or website that showcases your portfolio and/or writing clips. Include a biography and a professional picture of yourself. No selfies, please! Keep your blog up to date, as it can be a real-time reference you can point to should someone request to see your work.
- Offer your services through freelance job lead websites. Apply for jobs that fit your skill set and meet your income requirements. This is how you can build up a network of clients and references as a freelancer. Beware of websites that ask for huge fees or large membership fees up front. There will be some cost from the website, in most cases, but they are businesses that must turn a profit to remain functional. So don’t begrudge them a reasonable fee. Most reputable clients will pay the website fee, however. Keep that in mind when negotiating jobs.
- Network. Never underestimate the power of social networking. Make use of it; it is a powerful tool in your arsenal.