Looking for profitable writing gigs? Side hustles can be fun, as well as profitable.
My favorite side hustles, copywriting and ghostwriting, are fun because I enjoy writing, playing with words, and learning.
When faced with unexpected medical bills, a writing student asked me whether I could recommend in-demand side hustles for him. He’s staying with his parents to help during their crisis, so he needed gigs he could manage with just a notebook computer and phone.
Side hustles for writers: have pen, will travel
That’s the beauty of many writing gigs: you can write anywhere. I know several over-achieving writers who schedule vacations and mini breaks specifically to have something to write about.
You can do this too.
A tip: if you’re traveling to a location, take your camera. No camera? Use your phone’s camera.
Now let’s look at three great side hustles you can turn into writing businesses.
1. Ghostwriter for hire: the person behind the curtain
Check out this article for some useful tips, Ghostwriting Fiction: 3 Tips To Help You To Sell. As I pointed out in the article, remember:
Once you’re paid of course, you lose all rights in those words — your novel is a “work for hire”. The copyright devolves to your employer when you’re paid in full.
You can use those tips for nonfiction as well.
Here’s how to get clients and write proposals.
2. Blogging for large companies: have patience, make money
When I recommend blogging side hustles to writers I emphasize that to earn what you’re worth, you’ll need to target larger companies. Small companies have employees who blog or they stick to a Facebook page and/ or Instagram account.
You get large-company blogging gigs via connections. That said, they don’t need to be personal connections — try LinkedIn.
A big tip: when you’re working with a large company, patience counts. People are busy and most would rather chew glass than speak to a writer. Prepare for phone interviews carefully; if you’ve asked for ten minutes of someone’s time, get it done in nine minutes.
Be prepared to follow up, follow up, and then follow up some more…
Some additional tips for working with large companies:
- Grit your teeth. Ask for top pay. The money helps you to keep your patience;
- Some large companies slow-pay contractors — many smaller businesses fall for this. Don’t: be a squeaky wheel;
- Mine your connections in a company to get referrals.
You can build a profitable business blogging for large companies. Who knows? You may be able to quit your day job in a few months.
3. When words win for your clients, they’ll love you (copywriting)
It’s easy to get copywriting gigs. Essentially, copywriting is selling with words. The more money you make for your clients, the more you can charge.
One of the big benefits of writing copy for others is that you’ll learn how to sell your own material.
Check out our Copywriting Pro class.
Profitable side hustles: short stories and mystery novels
Think side hustles are too much trouble when you’re working full-time? They can be, when you’re working with clients. You need a client-free side hustle.
I’ve recommended two of our programs to my students who are looking for side hustles and can’t work with clients:
- Short Reads Report: write short stories fast, and sell them. If you’re a competent writer you should be able to write at least two a week;
- Write HOT Mysteries. Here’s why. Mystery readers love them and they’re loyal. They read as many mysteries as romance readers read romances, but mystery fanatics are more loyal.
The beauty of writing short stories and mysteries: you can sell them without a marketing push, especially if you write series, so that each one sells the others.
Have fun. 🙂
- Learn the secrets of top freelance writers;
- Get the writing jobs you want;
- Write less and earn more.
Writing too much? Worried about burnout?
The challenge for writers today is that we’re competing in a global marketplace. So, when you rely on job websites like the freelance marketplaces to get gigs, the race is to the bottom. The buyers want cheap writers, and the cheapest bid wins.More info →
This book will show you how to think outside the box, get creative — and SELL what you create. Making money from your writing can be a real challenge, especially if you're limiting yourself to trading hours for dollars. When you get paid by the hour, even if you're making $200 an hour, you're limited.More info →
Resources to build your writing career
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