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A Beginner’s Guide: How to Start Freelance Writing in 10 Simple Steps

Posted July 27, 2020 by in Career
woman writing

    

Did you know 4.7 million Americans work from home? If you want to transition to working from home and become a freelance writer, we can help.

In this guide, we’ll go over tips on how to start freelance writing to build your niche. You’ll discover how to find job opportunities and create a portfolio. 

Want to learn more? Keep reading!

freelance writing job

  1. Learn More About Blogging

A new freelance writer must learn about content marketing. A business uses content like blog posts and articles for marketing their products.

Read blog posts to study the formatting and style. You’ll write in a different manner for a blog compared to a college term paper.

Focus on captivating the new reader with a catchy introduction and headline. Follow up claims with facts from influential sources. Include bullet lists, subheadings, or numbered lists. Make sure you also provide actionable tips that people can use.

  1. Decide What Will You Write About

Do you have a specialty that you know a lot about or that you studied while in school?

You can also choose topics that you interest you. This way, you will feel energized while writing about this topic for hours. Your interest will show through your work.

Pick a popular niche like travel, fitness, family, health, or nutrition. Do you have a specific hobby? Consider writing in that area as well. Other popular niches include finance, leadership, and creative hobbies.

  1. Complete Solid Writing Samples and Start a Blog

Before you get hired, you will need to create samples for your portfolio. Many writers will post on their blog or write as a guest blogger for other blogs. Share your work with friends and family, and begin to build a following.

If you want to become a writer, you’ll want to have an online presence. Build your presence by writing blog posts on your website. You’ll have a chance to share information and gain feedback from followers.

Consider posting on Medium or creating a blog for free from Wix or WordPress. You could also create a website that will work as an online resume or portfolio.

When you send out a pitch for work, use your samples. The client can read through your work to gain a better understanding of your writing. 

  1. Start Pitching

Once you have completed a portfolio, you’ll want to pitch your work. Find print and online magazines that offer paid projects or ongoing writing jobs.

Some jobs might have a token payment. If you’re a new freelance writer, this is an opportunity to reach a bigger audience and build your portfolio.

To begin building your business, create a short elevator pitch. This way, you can share with someone about what you do in a clear and concise manner.

You might chat with someone at a party or store who’s looking for a freelancer. By having a pitch ready, you can explain your skill-set in a straightforward manner.

Get in touch with companies who you feel passionate about and offer to write for their blog. Let them know you could create posts on their products and share them on your blog.

  1. Network With Other Writers

Consider joining local networking groups in person and online to meet other freelancers. People tend to share available jobs with their freelance writing community.

Do you love to blog? Start reading and commenting on blogs within your niche. You will get to know new writers and may have a chance to collaborate or share information.

Keep your social media pages and LinkedIn updated. This way, interested employers can learn more about you and read your published work.

  1. Look on Writing Job Boards and Freelance Marketplaces

You can go on a specialist job board to find new leads. Consider checking out BloggingPro and The Writing Finder. You might discover potential blogs to connect with and share your work.

Research freelance marketplaces like Freelancer.com and Upwork. You will find plenty of writing opportunities there.

  1. Get Reviews From Customers

As you begin to make connections and work with clients, you’ll want to get testimonials. Ask older clients to give you a few lines or words about their experience working with you.

You could also ask them to use the testimonial function on LinkedIn. Make sure you publish the top client reviews on your website. This way, interested customers can read about your previous work.

  1. Keep Track of Receipts

You will need to keep track of billing and client information, pitches, and projects. Keep separate files for all your receipts.

If you need to show proof of income or file your taxes, consider using a payroll check template.

  1. Learn Organization Techniques

Develop a writing routine so you can organize how you go about drafting new blog posts or articles. Learn about the most effective way to gather research. How will you outline your blog post?

Work hard to develop a writing system to help you stay focused. Consider writing for 25 minutes and then take a five-minute break. Keep a checklist beside your computer, so you don’t miss critical things.

Find out when you work the best. You might notice you work better in the morning, while others prefer to work in the evening.

  1. Use an Editing App

Consider using an editing tool like Hemingway or Grammarly to edit your work. Make sure you double-check your article and try reading out loud to catch any mistakes.

You want to make sure you’re sending clients high-quality work. This way, you can continue to work for them and build a solid reputation as a writer. 


We hope you found this guide on freelance writing helpful. Now that you know how to start freelance writing start building a portfolio. Research and learn more about content marketing and start pitching to online magazines.

Keep browsing our other helpful resources on career, education, and more.