Can You Really Make Freelance Writing Your Career?

By on November 23, 2015
Can You Really Make Freelance Writing Your Career? - Writer'

Deciding to pack in your day job and go freelance, whatever field you are in, can be really daunting, and the writing world is certainly no exception. However if you have a passion and a drive to do it, there is no reason why you can’t be successful, and make a decent living while you are at it. Of course if you do decide to bite the bullet and become a full-time freelance writer, there are certain things that you can do to give yourself the very best chance of doing well.

One of the most important ways to find work, and to keep it coming, is to develop strong relationships with editors. When you first start out you should research which publications you would like to write for, and approach these publications with ideas and samples of your work. However in the future you ideally want this to happen the other way around, where editors chose you as the person they turn to for assignments. To do this you need to ensure that you always, without fail, complete any work assigned to you on the required deadline. If you can deliver completed pieces well before the deadlines, all the better. The easier you make an editors job, and the more you can prove yourself as a person who delivers quality pieces of writing, the more they are going to appreciate you. This will lead to you hopefully becoming their go-to person when they have further work. Remember it is a two way street, many publications rely on a group of trustworthy, proficient writers to manage their content - if you can become one of them then you will have a steady income, and feel a lot more stable as a freelance writer.

Another really important tip is to be flexible. You may love and be brilliant at writing fashion articles, or completely into cooking so feel your writing would be best placed there. While it is important to write about what we love, if you can prove yourself to be a good all-rounder and adapt your tone and style depending on who you are writing for - the topic, the target audience, the brand voice, and so on, you will open up many more doors in terms of who you can work for, and more work of course means more money!

It is actually a great time to be a freelance writer. Sure the competition may be fierce but there are still plenty of magazines and newspapers in existence who are all looking for content. Researching almost any topic is a piece of cake thanks to the internet, and your queries can be answered quickly, so even if an editor rejects your pitch you can move onto the next one almost instantly.

Being a full-time freelance writer isn’t a walk in the park. You may have visions of yourself tapping away at your laptop while sipping a fancy coffee in a cosy, upmarket cafe. The reality however is that you have to work really hard. You need to put the hours in, pick yourself up when you have a slow week (and try not to panic about the mortgage), get savvy with your money - remember you still have to pay tax, and if you want to take a day off you won’t be getting paid for it! However it is amazingly flexible, you can do it from almost anywhere in the world, you are your own boss, and if you are willing to put in the hours, and keep coming up with fresh and interesting ideas you can end up earning a great living too.

Bethany Cadman -contributor

Bethany Cadman -contributor

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