Blog Archives

Freelance Writer Fairy Tales: Do You Believe These 3 Myths?

Freelance writer fairy tales: Do you believe in these 3 myths? Makealivingwriting.com

When you’re a freelance writer, it’s easy to go on for years clinging to magical thinking about how your career will work.

It’s like believing in fairy tales. Usually, when you grow up, you realize there is no enchanted frog or beast that turns into a prince.

But with a lot of writers, these myths persist for years and years, leading to lots of wasted time and low earnings.

What are the big fairy tales freelance writers tell themselves? Here are my top three:

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How Freelancers Get Hired Online: The Essential To-Do List

How freelancers get hired online. Makealivingwriting.comIt’s summer.

Wouldn’t it be great if you could get terrific new freelance clients without having to do anything?

Well, you can — if you know how freelancers get hired online.

For starters, you need to be easy to find and contact and you need to make a good impression. Unfortunately, most writers aren’t so easy to peg and connect with on the ‘net.

If you’re a freelancer who’s never gotten an inbound lead — a prospect who calls without your contacting them first, or applying to their job ad — this post is for you.

Even if you have a modest portfolio, a strong online presence can make a big difference, both in the number and quality of prospects you attract.

Let’s go through the to-do list of important items I ask writers to check off:

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Avoid Bad Freelance Advice With These Simple-But-Important Questions

Avoid bad freelance advice. Makealivingwriting.com

Have you noticed that many people online would like you to pay them to teach you how to freelance — even though they just started doing it themselves? Yes, it’s spring, and bad freelance advice is in the air.

Maybe it’s because I recently hit 15 years as a freelancer (and about 10 years as a coach), but this is a trend that worries me. If you read a lot of new bloggers’ About pages, they often gush that they’re excited to be starting a freelance business…but 10 minutes later, they switch to teaching you how to do it. Before they really have time to succeed at freelancing.

Do you smell a rat? I do, too.

What raises my hackles here, as an advocate for fair writer treatment and pay, is that I’ve had a chance to check out a lot of the advice offered by newbies — and the quality of it ranges from marginally useful to wretchedly wrong-headed.

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Readers’ 2015 Picks: Most Useful Posts for Freelance Writers & Bloggers

Top 10 Most Useful Posts for Freelance Writers & Bloggers - Makealivingwriting.com

Need a shot of freelance writing knowledge to start the New Year off right? I’ve got it for you right here — our annual list of the most popular new posts that went up this year here on Make a Living Writing!

That’s right, the all-time most populars you see over in the sidebar from past years are out of the running for this fresh list.

Winners here must have been published for the first time in 2015.

You, my awesome blog readers, voted for these by coming and reading them.

The posts that got the most traffic clearly had the most compelling topics, and are ranked below in order of the views they got.

These are your picks for the most helpful posts this blog put out in the past year.

Without further ado, here are your picked for 2015’s top 10 best posts:

  1. Websites That Pay Writers 2015: These 79 Websites Offer $50 and Up by Jennifer Roland — This one’s coming up on 20,000 readers to date! And reminds me that the top thing I can do around here that’s useful is provide job leads. Which is why we’re laying plans to present market lists more often in 2016.
  2. Writing an Article Vs. Writing a Blog Post: What’s the Difference? by Carol Tice — The raging debate over what makes an article different from a blog post, and how to charge for each as these two forms increasingly converge, made this a lively topic.
  3. Think You Can’t Earn $100 an Hour on UpWork? This Writer Does by Megan Williams — While I spend most of my time warning people away from sites like this, clearly, success tips for profiting from the bid sites are appreciated.

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Think You Can’t Earn $100 Per Hour on Upwork? This Writer Does

How to Earn $100 per Hour on Upwork. Makealivingwriting.com

UpWork.com is one of my favorite places to find long-term, higher-paying freelance writing clients. Crazy, right?

The site (the new combined brand that’s the result of the oDesk-Elance merger) really is one of the best places to go if you want to be severely underpaid as a freelancer. But it also can be a great location for finding good prospects who are lost and confused in the never-ending search for quality writers — if you know how.

I’ve pulled clients who pay $100 per hour (and up) from this bidding site, and regularly use it to find strong new prospects. That’s despite the fact that I only check in once or twice a week, for a few minutes at a time.

You can find great pay on UpWork, too, by changing the way you approach a few elements of the site. These elements can help you avoid cheapskates and save you the time and frustration that usually goes along with navigating bid sites.

Here’s how I do it:

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