Taking the plunge into freelance writing can feel kind of terrifying, especially in the beginning. To be honest, you should be a little scared. I sure as hell was and I still feel scared all the time. Even on the easiest days freelance writing is a beast, this work isn’t for the faint of heart. The unknown is your new home and nothing really feels comfortable (I’m hopeful that constant discomfort will go away, though I feel I might be waiting in vain). All those fears though, are good signs; they mean you’re doing something worth your time! Yay for giving yourself permission to do something scary! You’re already more brave than half of the population, we’re off to a great start.
Still, standing in the face of a bear armed with nothing but a stick made of the little confidence you’ve managed to build up isn’t exactly a great plan of action. I tried to bootstrap it all on my own at first and yeah…didn’t go too well. As isolating as the nature of this career is, there’s a great big community out there where freelance writers learn from one another and reach out for support. I know you’re probably super busy, because aren’t we all, but there’s always time for learning! I’ve put together a short list of 5 of the top resources I’ve used and believe serve as a great foundation for beginner freelance writers.
In No Particular Order…
1. Make A Living Writing
Carol Tice is one of the best around. Her ebook, 100+ Freelance Writing Questions Answered, (which can be found on her website listed above) has been a huge help to me as I buckle down on my own freelance writing journey. Carol Tice been in this business for over 10 years and knows her stuff. If anyone is a fighter for freelance writers, it’s this woman. The whole reason she even started her blog came from her seething anger about the fact that so many freelance writers were getting crap pay and thinking it was okay. She aims to answer your questions and make your life easier, covering a giant group of topics (over 800 posts). All of which tie back into the goal: how to make a living writing -even if you’re a beginner!
2. The Freelancer Podcast
Paul Jarvis is where I go for bite sized and truly honest advice. His podcast focuses on, “the intersection between commerce and creativity” and man, is that intersection truly is a great place to be. Jarvis doesn’t give ‘advice’ in the traditional sense, he really just shares his experiences. Which helps it feel less “Do This And Get Rich Quick”. This podcast is short and to the point, no fluff (except for when Paul talks about his pet rats, which is the best, and the only acceptable, kind of fluff). It’s a great pick for a listen during a short break. I listen on my short 10 min. walk to work (I teach preschool during the day, cool right?). This guy is absolutely hilarious and always provides a truly unique perspective, which will make you think “hm…I never thought about it that way”.
3. Writing Revolt
Jorden Roper is a badass. Her edgy style of writing and fiery red hair prove it. Well, that and her blog filled with “no bullshit advice for bloggers and freelance writers”. Writing Revolt is chock full of helpful posts spanning topics like: the perfect pitch, picking your niche, negotiation, getting started and much, much more. She also has a free course for beginner freelancers to help you hit the ground running with your writing business. Writing Revolt’s posts are easily digestible too! Tons of breaks and white space to ease the eyes. Jorden has a sort of dark, but great sense of humor in her writing and is so approachable on Twitter, so go say hi!
4. One Hack Away From Wonder Woman Podcast
Do you like lists? So does Lorrie Hartshorn. Her freelance advice podcast (one of my absolute favorites!) is full of lists with actionable and relatable information. I’m not sure which I enjoy more: her accent or her lists. Either way, listening to her podcast is one of my musts for the week’s to-do list. She talks about the struggles she goes through in her own part-time (she is also the mommy of a tiny person) freelance writing career and breaks down processes and strategies to help your writing career flourish. She encourages confidence in everyone (definitely me) and also offers freelance coaching if you’ve got some cash to invest in yourself.
5. Writers In Charge
Alright, I’m including this recommendation because this site gives you lots of examples of actual websites you can pitch to. All that helpful advice we consume doesn’t do a whole lot of good if you can’t find a place to showcase your skills and write. Run by Bamidele Onibalusi, Writers in Charge features list upon list of niche specific websites that pay contributors. Knowing that you don’t have to settle for $3 per article removes a pretty big road block in the mind of a beginner freelance writer. That was the case for me for sure. While I don’t always find every one of their emails relevant to me, the ones I do find relevant are super helpful and give me lots of opportunity to put my skills to use.
We Live On The Internet! This List Doesn’t End Here
So, the best part about this list is that it basically never ends. There are a gajillion other resources out there, free and paid options. It helps to have someone in your ear, telling you “you can do this!”, wrestling with the fear of sharing your ideas doesn’t seem like it will ever go away. Beginner or not, but there is value in the works of these freelancers and I don’t know about you, but I enjoy free helpful information. What are your favorite resources for freelance writing tips? Did I miss anyone?