I have lost count of how many times I have been asked about freelance writing, and blogging in particular. Everyone wants to know how I got my start, and I have gotten a fair few others involved in paid writing in the last couple of years. It is so rewarding to help people find a source of income done in their own homes.
The problem is that getting into this line of work isn’t done a single way. I have had my own experience, but I have spoken to plenty of freelancers and they took their own path. It is as versatile as the work we all do, and who we end up working for. So my way isn’t the only one, and in the end what it really takes for all of us is determination, time and effort.
How To Get Started
There are a few steps that are going to make the way a bit easier. The first is to get writing your own content. It is important to have well written, published samples to show potential clients. Without them it is very difficult to land a gig, even if it isn’t impossible.
You can do these on any topic you like. But it might help to focus on niches that you are both well versed in, and have a passion for. That is because you will be sure to produce better content if you are interested in the subject. I reject any advice that says to right based on trending niches. You will never produce anything quite as engaging that way.
The number of posts you should publish is hard to say. I would suggest three, at the least, so you can use them as your initial samples. An average sized article is between 500 and 700 words, which is a standard sample sized piece. As you write more, you will have a larger pool of samples to choose from so you can specify certain articles for certain job types.
Where To Find Work
You can find freelancing positions all over the place. Depending on the site, you can find both high paying and low paying positions, of varying difficulty. Some will require a full resume, and others will as only for samples of your writing and some details about yourself and your past work.
Some common places to find posted writing jobs are:
The price you will charge will be up to you. I can tell you that I started out at a very low rate until I had gained some experience and had a collection of happy clients who would vouch for me. Then I slowly raised my rate over time.
Industry standard is a tricky subject, and some writers charge as little as $0.01 a word, or as much as $0.10 a word. You can work out the details with your clients.
The Place Of Guest Blogging
If you want to gain some visibility and build a network of bloggers quick, a great way is through guest blogging. This is especially great to do in the beginning, when you need a reliable site to host your posts for samples.
You can usually contact blogs you read to ask about contributing. Or, you can use a site like MyBlogGuest to more quickly and easily find opportunities.
All of this is obviously a summary of my journey into freelance writing. It can be incredibly difficult to increase your rate, find steady work and make a living. But many of us have done so, and it all starts with what was mentioned above.
For those writers out there reading this, what was your experience? Let us know in the comments.
Image Credits: 1, 2.