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"Make a Living Writing is the only blog I read religiously. It's always on top of the news and advice writers need RIGHT NOW to earn more from their writing." —Linda Formichelli, The Renegade Writer

Freelance Writers: This Will Make You an Instant Tech Genius

Young writer conquers tech problemsIt’s ironic that I ended up finding my greatest success as a writer through a blog-based, online writing business. I am one of the most non-technical people you’ll ever meet.

Technology makes me cry, honestly. I have been known to assume the fetal position and moan softy for prolonged periods when I can’t get some widget to work right.

Or to think seriously about flinging a computer out a window.

So I feel for writers when I get questions like these:

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What to Do When Your Writing Sucks

Freelance writer worries her writing sucksWe all know what it feels like to read brilliant writing. It draws you in, awakens your emotions and leaves you feeling alive with personal revelations. Most of all, it changes you for the better.

So what happens when you read your own writing, and it doesn’t quite rise to that level?

Some writers will say, “I know I can do better.”

But too many will say, “This isn’t good enough, and never will be. I should just give up.”

This is the moment when self-criticism becomes unhealthy and debilitating to your career. Your writing is going nowhere because it can’t get past your toughest critic — you.

As a writer and new blogger, I’ve been there. I know negative thought patterns will always creep their way into my consciousness and threaten to shut me down. In order for my career to survive, I’ve developed a few techniques to help turn my harsh self-criticism into constructive learning and growth.

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Why Hating Your Day Job Won’t Make You a Successful Freelance Writer

Furious worker wants to quit day job.

I hear every week from aspiring freelance writers who despise their cubicle life. You hate your boss. Working for the Man is unfilling. It’s boring. Certainly not how you ever planned to spend your precious days.

So you’re thinking about quitting to become a freelance writer. Maybe you’ve been writing on the side in hopes of building up your freelancing until it’s time to quit. Or perhaps you’ve recently taken the plunge.

If you’ve been in Corporate America a long time, here’s my forecast: You’re in for a rocky ride.

There’s a popular myth that if you hate being a cog in a big corporate wheel, it’s a sign that you should quit your job. Your hatred of the paycheck world indicates you will be a super-successful freelance writer.

But in my experience mentoring thousands of writers, that ain’t necessarily so. Here’s why:

 

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How One Freelancer Broke in and Earned Big Writing E-Learning Content

E-learningMy freelance writing career didn’t begin with a bang. In fact, it didn’t take off until I stumbled into the uncharted territory of e-learning.

I honestly didn’t give much thought to writing course materials, because I thought online courses were always written by professors, subject matter experts, or a company’s staff.

I was wrong.

As the e-learning industry grows, corporations are seeking out talented writers with a knack for creativity to help them provide engaging, well-written, and easy-to-understand content.

Depending on the length of a course, the amount of research and writing time needed, and other factors such as client management, a writer can start charging anywhere from $1,200-$5,000 per project, for the writing portion alone.

After all, according to Global Industry Analysts, Inc., corporate training is a $200 billion business — and e-learning is a growing chunk of that. There is definitely money for writers to make in this industry.

For writers interested in diving headfirst into writing e-learning content, here’s how I started from scratch and broke into this niche:
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Is This Insidious Affliction Shrinking Your Freelance Writing Income?

Multitasking freelance writerWhen you start out as a freelance writer, there’s a lot to learn. I know when I got back into freelance writing in 2005, I subscribed to dozens of email newsletters and spent hours every day, reading, watching videos, and attending live events.

But learning how to be a successful freelance writer is a bottomless pit. There’s always more you *could* know that *might* help your freelance writing career.

And often, new writers fall into this pit, and forget to get any clients. They get a creeping learning addiction that eats up all their time and prevents them from moving forward.

It’s devilish because it’s easy to rationalize that you’re doing something productive with all this studying. But if you never take action, it’s just another form of procrastination.

I see these writers leaving loads of comments on the Freelance Writers Den forums, or on LinkedIn’s writer forums, or commenting on every single blog post on popular blogs.

They ask arcane questions like these:

Should I create a mirror site to protect my writer website in case it’s hacked?

What’s the best SEO keyword tool?

Should I do marketing on autopilot with email autoresponders?

What are the best apps for coordinating writing projects with clients?

A year later, these writers sometimes quietly confide to me that they’re flat broke and had to take a day job. They were so busy learning everything about how to be a succcessful, 21st Century freelance writer, they fell victim to analysis-paralysis — and forgot that the top priority is getting clients and generating freelance writing income!

How can you focus, learn what’s essential, and move forward to earn as a freelance writer? Here are my tips:

 

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One Writer’s Fear-Busting Journey to $1,500 a Month in Blogging Gigs

freelance writer walks a tightrope to better payAs a new mom trying to juggle a toddler and run a household, I blamed the busyness of life for my lackluster freelance writing success.

But that was a total cop-out.

Fear was the true culprit. It stifled my creativity, filling my head with “what ifs” the way only a failure mentality can.

I’d like to say I faced those fears strategically, or that I faced them head-on. But in my case, it was more of a happy accident. But that accident netted me $1,500 a month in new blogging gigs. Here’s how:
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