Want to get paid to write personal essays?
It’s the romantic version of being a freelance writer.
Take a vacation, and write about your adventures. Survive your toddler’s terrible-twos and share your advice. Dabble in online dating and tell others the good, the bad, and the ugly about your experience.
Sounds pretty good, right?
If you have a unique perspective, experience, thoughts, or advice from your side of the fence, you can get paid to write personal essays…in just about any niche.
But you need to know where to look to find these gigs, and how to pitch an editor when you do. Note: There are still plenty of opportunities to write personal essays, but not all are well-paying assignments.
Have something to say? Check out these 16 markets for places to get paid to write personal essays:
When you’re looking to earn a living as a freelance writer, there’s one important thing to know: Not all freelance writing jobs are created equal.
Some types of writing offer terrific pay, while others always seem to pay peanuts. If you focus your efforts on better-paying opportunities and avoid wasted time on niches that don’t offer pro rates, you’ll improve your odds of building a serious freelance income.
Recently, I’ve had quite a few coaching students announce plans to focus on niches where I believe there is little or no paid opportunity. So I think it’s time to call these out, so writers can avoid them.
Wondering which types of writing are unlikely to pay the bills? Here’s my list of the five worst types freelance writing jobs:
Are you a college graduate who loves to write? If so, you may be drawn to the many, many websites that offer ‘academic writing’ opportunities.
You’ve written scads of school papers in the past, in your academic career. You might wonder if there’s an opportunity in getting paid for that skill.
There is — though it doesn’t pay a lot. From what I’ve seen on the bigger sites, $15-$20 a page for college essay writing is typical.
If you’re fast and want to put in a lot of hours, you might earn a few thou a month.
There’s only one catch: Academic writing is unethical.
I want to be super-clear on that. It’s not a gray area. It’s not sort of mildly naughty. It’s wrong.
As a writer who’s on a mission to bust scams and help writers find good pay, I should have tackled this topic long ago. But let’s get to it now.
First, let’s visit some essay sites and see how writers get sucked in.