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Get Paid to Write: 5 Must-Read Tips to Become a Successful Freelance Writer

freelance writing

Freelance writing is a fantastic way to make a little extra money on the side or even replace your job as a full blown work from home gig. I’ve been freelance writing to make extra money on the side for 5 months now and I’m so happy with my decision to start. Not only does it provide extra income, but it also provides flexibility in my work schedule.

Whether you’re a talented writer who doesn’t know how to find paid writing work, a stay at home mom who’s looking for a way to turn her writing skills into a flexible career, or a blogger who’s looking to supplement their income, freelance writing is a great choice to make money from home.

If you’re serious about getting started as a freelance writer, I highly recommend this completely FREE freelance writing workshop that jumpstarted my success at a freelance writer. When you click this link, you will first see the option to enroll in Holly’s paid course, but if you scroll down past the first section, you’ll see a link to enroll in the FREE workshop. The free workshop will provide you with 6 key tips the course author, Holly, used to grow her freelance writing income to 200,000/year, and her top tips to land freelance writing gigs while increasing your income over time.

In addition to Holly’s freelance writing course, I learned a few tips along the way that jumpstarted my freelance writing success. Freelance writing can seem a bit frustrating at first when you’re not sure how to get started or how to land the jobs you’ve been applying for. These tips will ensure you get started on the right foot and know the best steps to take when starting out as a freelance writer. 

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This page contains affiliate links, but I would never recommend something I don’t love and use myself. If you want more information, please visit my disclosure page.

My Top 5 Tips To Get Started as a Successful Freelance Writer

1. Create an Online Portfolio:

When pitching to potential clients, they will likely want to see samples of your work so they know what to except from you. If you’re a blogger, you can of course link to posts on your blog if they fit within the niche (or similar to) what you’d be writing for the client. If you’re not a blogger, you can either create a blog as an online portfolio or link to other published work of yours. The key is most clients will always want your work examples to be published, so if your content hasn’t ever been published, a blog or some other published platform may be necessary.

2. Become Active Online:

Networking is important in the online work atmosphere. You can’t expect clients to come knocking on your door without getting your name and services out there first. Joining freelance writing communities on platforms such as Facebook and LinkedIn will not only give you opportunities to learn from your peers, but will also allow you to connect with potential clients.

3. Write a Cover Letter Outline

Once you start applying to freelance writing jobs, you’ll see that many clients will ask for a cover letter as part of your completed application. I found that it was helpful to keep a cover letter outline that I could then personalize for each client. You never want to submit a generic cover letter to every client you apply to because they can spot generic from authentic a mile away. Instead, create an outline that you can easily edit to fit each client and the type of work you’d be doing for them.

4. Create a Freelance Writing Resume

After I began applying to freelance writing jobs, I realized my education resume didn’t have the least bit to do with the work I’d be providing for my freelance clients. So instead of submitting that resume, I got to work on creating a resume that catered to my writing experience and abilities. Include any courses or classes you’ve taken that would benefit you as a writer, references of companies or publishers who you’ve worked for in the past, and anything that would boost your legibility as a writer.

5. Create a Schedule

The biggest myth when it comes to freelance writing is that you’ll be kicking back on the couch watching T.V. all day as a stay at home writer. The truth is, freelance writing is hard work because you get out of it what you put in. If you laze about and don’t work hard to get jobs, you’ll be earning a whopping $0.

You must stick to a schedule if you want to make this a successful side gig or career. Obviously, as a side hustle you won’t need to put in as many hours as you would if it was your full time job, but you’ll still need to create a dedicated schedule of some sort. I suggest creating x amount of time to apply to jobs, x amount of time to further educate yourself on how to become a successful freelancer and/or further your writing skills, and of course x amount of time on actually producing freelance work.

And those are my top 5 tips to get started as a successful freelance writer!

Once you get the hang of the freelance writing business and educate yourself by taking courses that take the guess work out of the job, you’ll be on your way to making a substantial income from home in no time. If you found this article helpful, please give it a share to Pinterest using the images in this article or by using the share buttons at the bottom of this post. Thank you so much for your help in growing my blog, your support is appreciated!

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