Monday, January 18, 2010

Top Reasons You Might Choose To Be a Freelance Writer?

I've been racking my brain for the blog topic today, trying to come up with something unique and different that could give you, my readers, some special insight into what it is that I do (and what you could do to if you felt inclined to become a writer).  I had the idea for a review of an eBook I purchased recently.  It's not ready yet because I haven't read it yet.  Watch out for it though; it's coming soon.

Today's topic, I'm glad to report, is a part of my Freelancing Basics Series.  I want to outline a few reason why any of you might choose to be a freelance writer.  For those of you who've already taken the plunge, great.  Tell me why you choose to be a freelance writer?  I'd love to hear from other writers.

For those who haven't yet, but who may be thinking about it, I will now list a few factors that may come into play when you're making a decision about this career path.


Now, this is the big one.  If there is one common reason cited by many freelancers for why they do what they do, it is freedom.  I'm using the word freedom in a broader sense.  I think you know what I mean by that, but I'll explain it for those who want to know more.

1. You choose where you work. It doesn't matter where you are people.  You can work all day in your pajamas at home or you can go mobile with a laptop and set up in the local coffee shop.  Who hasn't heard the stories about successful freelancers working while they're lounging on a sunny beach somewhere.  (I know I'd love to be where it's warm right now.)  The point is that you don't have to be anywhere specific.  You have the freedom to choose your work environment.

2. You choose what sort of projects you take. Again, you get to make all the decisions when you strike out on your own.  This includes the kinds of projects you do.  All of this is negotiable.  You can stick with a few topics that you know the most about, or you can take on the challenge of writing about whatever a client needs you to write about.  Every project becomes a learning experience as you research the appropriate content.

3. You choose the schedule you keep and the sort of workload that you carry.  This makes sense right?  Depending on the sort of income needs you have, you can pretty much set whatever schedules and workloads you like.  Obviously, if you're in the game to make serious money, then you'll have to set a serious schedule to do that.  In fact, you will probably worker harder for yourself than you would have working for someone else.  The payoff is that you are only answerable to yourself.  There is nowhere else to shift the blame.  (Are you ready for that kind of responsibility?)

The Possibilities

When you enter the world of online freelance writing, you must remember something very important if you want to make a serious attempt at being a freelance writer.  It is so true that the possibilities for work are endless one the Internet.  Unlike some traditional professions that may be undergoing cutbacks and layoffs due to the condition of the economy, web writers are always securing some sort of gig.  Content is king on the web, folks.  Creating unique and valuable content can lead to many job possibilities.  You must learn how to interact with people online.  Take advantage of social media like Twitter and Facebook.  Contact businesses who may need a pro writer's touch to freshen up their current web content.  Always, examine the possibilities.  They are there waiting for you to grab them.

If you can see that there is a need for something, let others know that you have a service for it.  In many cases, the buyers will find you if you know what you can to increase your visibility as a freelance writer.  That's why I mentioned social media.  You want to build relationships with other writers and, more importantly, potential clients.  If you don't play games but rather make the effort to be genuine and you offer legitimate solutions to their problems, you will get work.  I know all of these things; but, I'm still learning as I go.  All that I am saying to you, I'm trying to apply myself.

What It Comes Down To

There is a learning curve involved in the freelance writing business just as there is in other industries.  This fact should tempered with another one: the environment or medium we are attempting to work in is always changing.  The outlets for valuable content will constantly evolve to meet new needs or purposes.  As a writer, you will have be able to adapt if you want to survive the changes and keep working.

That's what I want to do; I hope you feel the same way.  Thanks for reading.  If you have any comments please post them.  If you'd rather e-mail me personally, use the contact form.  Later, everyone.

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