You want to make money writing, but it’s a real challenge for you. There’s never been a better time to be a writer — use these tips, to end 2014 with a bang.
These tips will help, whether you’re a seasoned writer, or a complete beginner.
1. Write stuff people want, and for which they’ll pay TODAY
It’s a thrill to write something, and get dollars in your PayPal account quickly.
A couple of months back, I wrote a series of blog posts on making $500 a day from your writing. If you read those posts, you’ll see that people pay for many different kinds of writing. Make a list of what YOU could write, for which people pay. Study the list here.
2. Write (short) reviews of stuff you’ve bought
You can develop an entire writing career on writing reviews. Travel writers and many tech writers do exactly that.
3. Think long-term – write stuff that pays off over time
As well as writing material for which you’ll be paid quickly, as in tip #1, consider investing in yourself. Write ebooks. You’ll get paid over and over again for your words, AND your income will grow, the more books you write.
Which brings us to…
4. Be generous with your words. Write more, every day
Professional writers write a lot. In this blog post, I wrote about platform, and Nora Roberts, who (probably) writes around 3,000 words a day.
A writer’s job is to write. Be aware that you can’t get paid for what’s in your head, until the words are on the computer screen.
5. Write when you don’t know what to write
All writing is a form of discovery. Often, I’ll sit down to write, without a clue. I set a timer for ten minutes, and just write. Inevitably, I write about current projects, and just as inevitably, I come up with fresh ideas for those projects.
Get a timer. It’s a powerful writing tool. 🙂
6. Write what you’re too scared to write
What would you LOVE to write, if you weren’t terrified? Try writing it. You may well surprise yourself.
7. Write what’s easy for you to write
One of my writing students, Tess, loves weddings. She loves all the folderol around weddings so much, she’s made a nifty little career out of it. She writes wedding vows, invitations, speeches, thank you letters, product descriptions (for wedding shops), little sayings for wedding favors, and clever captions for wedding photos.
Tess doesn’t look on this kind of writing as work – to her, it’s fun. She’s in touch with wedding planners, photographers, caterers, bridal shops, wedding venues, restaurants, and stores. They hire her. It’s an added service they can offer their clients, and they take a cut of Tess’s fees for that. Tess doesn’t mind, of course.
She’s one of the busiest, most prolific, and highest-earning writers I know. She writes what’s easy for her, because she loves weddings.
Tip… Weddings are an industry. People spend a lot of money on weddings, so they don’t blink, when their wedding planner hires a professional writer to write their wedding vows and speeches.
8. Write what you know
Bloggers like Dooce and untold thousands of mommy bloggers make money writing about what they know – their families.
Thousands of other bloggers make money writing about food and fashion.
9. Create a writing schedule for the month, and for each week
Tip #5 can be scary, if you’re a beginning writer. Make a list of topics you want to write about – aim for around 100. Keep adding stuff to the list. Then you’ll always have things to write about.
Next, create a writing schedule for the month. What will you write? For whom? Then create a weekly schedule, and finally, a daily schedule.
10. KISS: Keep It Simple and Small
New writer? Aim at targets you can hit. Please don’t decide that you’ll write a 100,000 family saga for your first Kindle ebook. Try a short report. Short reports sell well, either to individual clients, or as ebooks.
With each project you finish, your confidence will grow.
Which brings us to a companion tip to #10…
11. Finish what you start
Every professional writer knows about “the wall.” You’ll hit the wall in just about every project. For me, the wall is at around page 100 in a book. In a shorter project, it happens when I’m a third into the project.
You’ve hit the wall when you’re fed up with your project. What made you consider it in the first place, you wonder. You hate every word…
The wall is just a state of mind. You’ve lost your original inspiration for the project. It will come back.
When you expect the wall, you’ll know that the “blah” feeling will pass.
It does. A couple of days later, you’ll be back working on your project; somehow, you’re inspired again. Finish the project, and sell it.
So, there you have it. Eleven tips to help you to make money writing. Start writing, and keep going. 🙂
Post updated on November 3, 2014
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