Knowledge, wisdom, and guidance for building an income online and having fun doing it.

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Freelance Writing

Laptop and notepad

You don't have to be a professional writer to start an online career in freelance writing.

Obviously the more skilled you are at writing the more opportunities you will have in the writing industry.

If you are anything like me; you enjoy writing but struggle with producing professional level content.

Good news!

There still are opportunities for you in the freelance writing industry. Freelance writing is another versatile online income strategy that spans every subject including what you are most passionate about.

The idea behind freelance writing is simply writing content in any of a variety of forms for clients. The content can range anywhere from a simple short add to an entire book.

People hire freelance writers for a variety of reasons; maybe they don't have the time or maybe they don't have the skill, no matter the reason, you have opportunities.

There is another form of freelance writing that is less talked about, it is called ghostwriting. Ghostwriting is still freelance because you are writing for someone else, but you will not get any literary credit for it. The client puts their name on it and they own all rights to the content.

Ghost writing has some controversy surrounding it.

Certain people view it as unethical to pass off someone else's work as your own.

Ghost writing is a contract between a writer and a client/publisher to exchange content and all its rights for payment. This contract is perfectly legal and the ethics are for other people to worry about.

If you don't mind someone else taking credit for your work, then ghostwriting is a viable income strategy in the field of freelance writing.

Getting Started

Freelance writing is a field that is more heavily marketed by the writers than by clients which makes getting started slightly more challenging.

Don't get discouraged, there is still plenty of opportunities out there and like every online career, when you build your reputation, getting clients/customers generally gets easier, you may even need to turn some clients down because you are just to damn busy.

Some people may tell you to check out the micro task sites like fiver when you are first getting started. Carefully weigh the risks and benefits before taking this route.

Some of the micro task sites might be a decent place to get your name out there, but be careful not to undersell yourself and get known as the freelance writer that works for spare change.

In my opinion, there is nothing wrong with doing a few small jobs for small money in the beginning or even late in your career as long as you do not build a career or reputation around it. Check out what Ali Luke has to say about content mills and freelancers. Ali is an absolute must read and follow if you are even remotely curious about writing for a living.

There are job boards and businesses that are dedicated to freelance writing where you can get your feet wet and begin to build a reputation. Depending on your skill level, some jobs might be low paying for what is required of you but eventually you will be able to command a premium for your services.

Job Boards

The above is a small sampling of the job boards you can check for writing opportunities. Some job boards are free and open, some job boards will require payment of some kind. Take your time, do a little research and make your decision.

Doing guest posting is another great way to break into the industry. Guest posting does not come with upfront financial gains but it does help build your reputation and market your services. If you can publish a great article on a popular site, the benefits can be enormous.

You should have a website for clients to view your offerings and contact you.

You are definitely going to need a platform to display your work. Setting up one or more of the free sites like WordPress, Blogger, and Medium is an excellent way to get started.

Publish some work on a single site or if you are able to keep up with multiples and your freelance work, publish work on multiple sites to build a presence.

Professional freelancer rates vary greatly depending on type of project and skill of freelancer. Rates can range from a few cents per word to over a dollar per word. Some rates are billed hourly and can start around $10+ and reach north of $200 per hour. Your skill and reputation will have a lot to do with how much money you can earn.

Some projects are paid by the page, some by the word, and some by the hour, but most online freelance writing you will be doing should be charged by the word or by the page.

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