If you missed the big news this past week: The Huffington Post (now officially known as HuffPo) ended its free-contributor channel, which had over 100,000 participating writers. Many writers online have bemoaned the death of free HuffPo posts, but I have a different reaction.
The end of unpaid HuffPo articles is part of a trend we’ll likely see more of this year — and I think it’s a good thing.
Yes, a tiny handful of writers seemed to get good clients through their unpaid HuffPo bylines, though the value of HuffPo exposure declined over time.
And quite a few writers were earning good money ghostwriting free HuffPo posts for thought leader/speaker/CEO types who didn’t have time to write their own authority-building pieces. So it wasn’t all bad.
But in the main, hordes of writers writing for free isn’t good.
Whether you’re happy or sad about the end of free HuffPo content, it’s important to understand what this change signifies in the marketplace. There are plenty of ways writers can benefit from these changing tides.
Here are seven key action items for freelance writers as the free HuffPo contributor channel fades away:
Starting out as a freelance writer can be tough. It can take a long time to start earning a good living.
But you don’t have to starve while you’re waiting for your freelance writing career to take off. I built my business while I was still working a day job.
I got to “retire” from it at the end of 2014, so I could do full-time freelance writing.
After nearly 10 years as a financial adviser, I’d found myself growing more and more unhappy.
First, I tried to change that by taking a certification program and working to become a stronger contributor at my office. But dedicating myself to my job didn’t make me fall back in love with my career. In fact, it did the exact opposite.
It was time to look at alternatives.
Writing has always been my passion. My research showed me it’s a viable way to earn a living. So I got started.
Here are the five things that helped me to go from zero to full-time freelance writer:
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