new writers

4 Top Obstacles Young Writers Face — and How to Beat Them

Young writers make these moves to overcome obstacles. Makealivingwriting.com

When you’re trying to build your freelance business in a sea of young writers and seasoned veterans, there’s a good chance it feels like you’re floundering. I know I did.

When I first started writing, I spent a ton of time worrying, procrastinating, and making excuses for why I couldn’t make a living doing what I loved. I wanted to break free from the corporate world and find success on my own terms.

For the first 6 months, I let my fear of being underqualified hold me back. As one of those young writers, I thought it might take me years to earn well as a freelancer. But I desperately wanted to find a way to speed up success.

I took courses, read freelance blogs like this one, and tried to learn everything I could about being a successful writer. The only problem was that I didn’t know how to get out of my own head and actually do the work.

Today, I make six figures, have a full client list, and teach other young writers how to overcome the same roadblocks I struggled with. As I’ve coached students in my Earn Big as a Young Writer course, I realized that my obstacles were very common.

Here are the top 4 obstacles young writers face (including me), and how to overcome them.

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How to Become a Freelance Writer: My Best Resources

How to become a freelance writer: My best resources. Makealivingwriting.com

Every day, writers email me and ask how to become a freelance writer. Where is the door that you go through where you can start earning a living as a freelance writer?

Well, I’ve created a door.

There’s so much to know when you’re getting started as a freelance writer — how to find and approach clients, what to charge, how to negotiate, and more.

But now that there are nearly 900 posts on the blog, it’s increasingly difficult to find the most useful posts that answer your particular question. Sure, I’ve got those categories in the ‘we talk about’ sidebar, but it’s still a lot of slogging given how many posts there are, and you end up looking at the most recent posts on the subject, not necessarily the best ones.

My best new writer resources in 1 spot

That’s why I’m finally getting my act together and creating resource pages that bring together the very best Make a Living Writing posts of all time on popular topics. The first page is now up, which offers my best resources for new freelance writers:

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Young Writers: Earn Big With These Vital Mindset Changes

Young writers: Make these 3 vital success mindset changes to earn big. Makealivingwriting.com

I quit my corporate job in February 2015 with $300 in the bank. I had no idea what I wanted to do besides make a living writing. I was 25 years old, and a total newbie in the writing world. There wasn’t a lot of demand for young writers, I thought.

The extent of my experience was winning a third-grade writing contest and getting a book published for my school library. I was motivated, but didn’t exactly have a plan or success mindset to build a profitable freelance business.

I didn’t have a degree, any experience, or, if I’m being completely honest, any idea how to get someone to pay me to write. Call it crazy. Call it youthful enthusiasm. Because it was.

I wanted to build a successful freelance writing business, but I wasn’t sure how to make it happen. Sound familiar?

After a rocky start, I realized that when you approach freelancing with a success mindset, it can have a big impact on growing your business and your income.

Fast forward two years, and I’m making over $100 an hour. And I’m constantly booked out two months in advance.

Here’s how I made that happen…

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6 Basic Steps to Score Your First Freelance Writing Gig

6 steps to score your first freelance writing clients. Makealivingwriting.com

The biggest problem I faced as a new freelance writer was wondering when I’d ever feel ready to make the leap to marketing myself effectively, and getting that first freelance writing gig.

I took me some time to realize that I’d never feel 100 percent ready. But if I wanted to make real progress, I’d have to start taking consistent action to find that first client.

Sometimes we just need a shot of inspiration to send us down the right path, and mine came from Bamidele Onibalusi’s recent Earn Your First $1000 as a Freelance Writer challenge.

My strategy and email template are adapted from his articles, and used here with his permission.

Here’s what I did:

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What IS Freelance Writing? Answers to the Awkward Newbie Questions

What IS Freelance Writing? Answers to All of the Awkward Newbie Questions. Makealivingwriting.com

I post a lot of tips here on Make a Living Writing for writers looking to earn more. But recently, a look at my Google Analytics revealed a surprising phrase writers commonly search on:

“What is freelance writing?”

This makes me feel I should back up and start at the very beginning. Clearly, I shouldn’t assume every reader knows what this career is about.

Apparently, some folks know that term well enough to search to find out more about it…but they don’t yet know how freelance writing works, exactly.

So let me fill in the blanks today with answers to some of the most basic questions about the world of freelance writing:

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How One Freelance Writer Found a $3,000 Gig — On Twitter

Landing a $3000 freelance writing gig... on Twitter. Makealivingwriting.com

I thought Twitter was dead. I had pretty much abandoned it for the bright colors and changing landscape of Instagram. I mean, Instagram pretty much has a built-in Snapchat feature and allows for way more than 140 characters. So what else do you need? Certainly not Twitter.

But then I was inspired by a post from a fellow freelancer to give it another shot. I went back and updated my Twitter profile. I made some specific changes to market myself as a freelance health and fitness writer. And I have to admit, I was a little skeptical that simply updating my Twitter profile would have any impact. Then it happened.

Two days after updating my Twitter profile, I received an email from a prospect (who found me on Twitter) about a $3,000 project writing about exercise. Boom! If you’re trying to grow your freelance writing business, making the most of Twitter is a smart strategy that can help give your marketing efforts a boost.

Want to tap into the power of Twitter to find more clients in your niche, book more work, and grow your business? Do it right, and it’s a form of social media marketing that can help you grow your business. Follow this step-by-step process to turn your Twitter account into an inbound marketing machine.

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