The 9 Hard FAQs of Freelance Writing
Just the Facts About Freelance Writing
Freelance writing sounds glamorous, and to the uninitiated, easy. While I love my profession, here are some hard truths I've learned along the way.
Writing is hard work
There's simply no getting around it, writing is hard work. It takes time to develop your skill, time to develop an idea, real effort to get it written, and even more effort to do the necessary rewriting.
Writing ideas are a dime a dozen
Ideas are everywhere, literally. The trick is honing an idea so it meets a market need. Keep the ideas flowing, but learn to be discerning about them.
Read the writing guidelines
Magazines and publishers go to great lengths to create guidelines for writers. Read and use these. There's simply no point in ignoring them - they know what works for their audience.
Read the magazine or the book
It's almost impossible to write for a magazine if you don't read it with at least some regularity.
Oh you might get lucky, but it's rare. So spend the money to buy an issue or two, then study it before you pitch an idea or submit an article.
If you're writing a book, read the book catalog and at least one of the books that's close to yours.
You must learn to market your writing
Neatness DOES count
The quickest way to rejection is a sloppy manuscript, and with today's technology, there's simply no excuse... and this includes spelling.
You don't need an agent
You don't need an agent, at least not in the beginning. The time and effort spent in finding an agent can be better spent finding a market.
Publishing once doesn't guarantee a career
Celebrate your first sale, but not for long. The only way to become a true success is to keep at it.
It's hard to make a million
Heck, it's hard to make a living at freelancing, let alone a million. But if you love to write, if you must write, keep at it. With practice and time and marketing ability, you can make a living, and even a million.