Yeah, So I’m A Freelance Writer…

writing-clipart-2Freelance content writing isn’t difficult work if you can find it. You may have been the one who got As in your college-level technical writing class and you figure that you might as well do that on the side. It can be dull when you’re churning out product descriptions for wedding rings or spinning out yet another article on how to clean a fireplace that can pass Copyscape. Your clients are just paying for the time you spend doing it. Really the “difficult” part is that your income can be fairly unpredictable even when you’re good at it. Smart freelancers learn how to put money aside for the lean months when things are going relatively well because they’ve figured out that finding actual paying clients can be a tad bit problematic at times.

It’s a little more involved when you’re working for a company like Cloud Surfing Media. There’s a reason why truly good strategic online marketers make the big bucks. The clients aren’t paying for some hack writers who barely speak English as a second language and they’re not palming a few bucks to some kid who spews out a bunch of Spam links that’ll get them tossed into the trash heap of Google searches. The job’s basically 2-3 hours out of my day when it’s my turn to knock it out and I have to be pretty detail-oriented to handle this stuff. If you decide to send out feelers to the staff to improve the positioning of your website, tell them Heidi sent you. You don’t get a discount or anything, but they’ll know that you heard about them through the freelancing grapevine.

It’s not a full-time job, of course. Sometimes I’ll pick up the occasional odd writing job through Fiverr or my own WooCommerce shop just to stay busy. I must admit that I also enjoy tweaking affiliate marketers’ noses with the occasional article like “Ten Off-The-Wall Expensive Watches” when I get bored. I wish I could say that there was some magic formula for spending eight hours a day, five days a week creating cool articles for other people but there really isn’t short of being massively popular. If I was asked for advice for picking up jobs as a freelancer right this moment, my advice would probably include:

  • Don’t be ashamed to get your start on platforms like Fiverr. A lot of freelancers do that. You can even promote the heck out of Fiverr through their affiliate program if you want as long as you make sure they know how to find you. While I might wish Fiverr would activate deep linking to give members extra incentive to promote their own gigs, it’s pretty sweet for building your reputation as a freelancer.
  • Accept both Paypal and Bitcoin if you can. Paypal seems to be the default for people who want better buyer protection, but Bitcoin is in a good position to become the default for people who live in countries that block Paypal and people who can’t easily confirm a Paypal account because they don’t have a bank account. Cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin should be attractive to freelancers for many of the same reasons that Bitcoin insiders say it could seriously compete with Western Union: low transaction fees, fast access to your money, easy transfer of funds across national borders, and no third party sitting in the middle and determining whether the recipient is even going to see any of that money.
  • Networking is awesome and so is building those long-term relationships with clients. I got the job with Cloud Surfing Media because I already knew their lead copywriter from when I used to write articles for a Bitcoin news site he owned. I’ve also worked off and on with a client who is heavily into using his affiliate links to sell popular sports products and (more recently) top selling toys and Halloween costumes. It’s good to know people who can send regular work your way.
  • Don’t forget that you’re competing with every other freelancer out there. Including the ones who barely speak English! While you might have to charge higher prices to make a decent hourly wage, you also have to justify those higher prices by delivering actual quality work.
  • It’s okay to dump that lousy client. Every freelancer gets that client from Hell at some point. He harasses you and never quite gets around to paying you even though you did a slam-bang job on that project. This is why you always want to keep a copy of every communication in case it gets to the point where a court case doesn’t sound like such a bad idea and don’t be afraid to walk away before he gets a chance to give you one more headache.

You might get the idea that freelancing is not an easy life. That’s because it’s not really any easier than working a “normal” day job that you have to burn expensive gas to get there. Freelancing requires you to be self-motivated and not just someone who thinks freelancers are only doing it so they can sit around in their pajamas all day. You could go whole months without anyone really remembering that you exist. You have to deal with all the misconceptions about freelancers (and I’ve heard several). However, it can be sweet when you can lose the morning traffic jams, the lame boss and the annoying co-workers and you’re getting steady work and maybe working on one or two long-term projects that pay well.

Some Books To Check Out


Supplies To Get You Started

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