Want to write for money? You can. It’s never been easier to get hired to write, or to get people to buy your ebooks. A few weeks ago a friend asked me what I’d do if I were getting started as a writer today. I thought about it for a moment, then said: “I’d do what I already do – I’d write.” He agreed. That’s what he’d do too.
New writer or established pro, writers write. When you write for money, you write to order, or you write something people need, for which they’ll pay you. If you’re writing fiction, they need entertainment; so you entertain.
We’ve discussed how journaling makes you a better writer. Never stint on the writing. It’s what we do. And it will take you where you need to go.
Let’s look at some tips which will help.
1. You’re an Expert. Someone Will Pay You to Write.
I’ve often told the story of how I got started as a copywriter, completely by accident. I wrote a press release so that I could save our business money; we were spending huge sums on display advertising. No one was more surprised than I was when people asked me to write for them. I also got hired by business people who knew me because I was involved with various causes.
In those days, I saw myself as a romance writer, not as a copywriter or magazine writer. I wrote because people asked me to write.
Tip: use your expertise. You have it. It just takes one person to hire you. What are you an expert in? Are you writing about that? If you’re not doing that, start. Write a letter to the editor of your local paper. Start a blog… do something which draws the attention of people who need your way with words.
2. Not an Expert? Get Some Expertise.
Forbes published a story about Bethany Kehdy, a “Lebanese-American culinary queen, who parlayed her passion for food into a small empire”:
First created in 2008 as a pet project, Dirty Kitchen Secrets is Kehdy’s Middle Eastern food blog and the cornerstone of her success.
Bethany Kehdy’s blog has spawned a couple of side businesses too, not to mention a book. This is what happens. Writing leads to other writing, and to new ventures.
Get known for your expertise in something. If you have no expertise, you can develop some easily enough. Writers tend to be “experts” in the sense that they know enough to ask questions. After you’ve published your fifth article on how to get a home loan for example, you’ll be looked on as an expert not only in home loans, but in finance in general.
Tip: no expertise? Research something you’re interested in, and start writing about it. As we’ve said, a writer’s expertise is basically just knowing what questions to ask the real experts.
3. Find People Who Need Your Help. ASK!
Who needs your help? Magazines need articles. Businesses need content for their websites. You get writing gigs by asking them. The best writing jobs aren’t advertised. You’ll get those unadvertised jobs if you show up in people’s Inboxes. Writers write. Write on your blog.
Watch the news: local, and national. Writers tend to be news junkies. If you see a business mentioned in your local newspaper, look up the business on the Web. They don’t have a website: hooray! That’s opportunity knocking. Maybe they have a website but they could do more with it… opportunity again.
Tip: people talk to each other. You might write to someone who’s mentioned in your local paper, and he passes your name on. Or you write something on your blog, and your blog post is passed on to someone who needs what you can do.
If you remember that people talk to each other, you’ll come to realize that all you need to do to develop a brilliant freelance career is to keep writing, keep learning, and keep reaching out.
Bonus Tip: Practice, Practice, Practice…
You’ll never regret the words you write. You’ll always regret the words you don’t write. So, write. You CAN write for money. Seth Godin wrote that Confidence is a choice, not a symptom.
Choose to be confident. Writing is practice. Writers write, and you can choose to write for money if you wish…
Our Beginning Writer’s Fast-Start Package has been revamped for 2014. It gives you the help you need.
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