8 Tips to Get Started as a Freelance Writer

The very first thing to do before embarking on a freelance writing job is to know your goals. There are, however, several things to consider before starting a freelance job that will help you achieve your goal. Below, I will guide you on how to make money online as a freelance writer.

  1. Know Your Niche

To start with, one must discover their niche—their interests, background, education, or area of expertise. Knowing what you enjoy writing about will help you a long way. One also has to know the type of people one would want to work with.

There are numerous forms of writing and types of clients one can pursue. Technical manuals are always in demand and can be a great niche if you are interested in engineering or technology. Another big niche is the travel industry. You might have an interest in travel, and if that is the case, you can start by writing blog posts for various well-known travel sites and those that are not that famous. Always remember that if you handle this bit well, you can contribute to making them discoverable and known.

  1. Try Short Story Writing

Before embarking on freelance writing, one might have a thing for short story writing. This can be utilized through storytelling, such as success stories, motivational stories, and growth stories, especially those that are business-related. Short story writing might lead to book writing, as the world market for book ghostwriting is vast.

In book and story writing, one can pursue a writing style that suits their profession. For instance, if one is into marketing as a full-time job, you can craft sales page copy and social media campaigns for fresh and serial entrepreneurs. This can first turn into a hobby, then a full-time profession.

More so, one might have cherished essay writing either in high school or college, handing out complex information, and participating in arguments or debates. If this is so, white paper writing might be your calling, and you should be ready to embark on it.

  1. Build a Portfolio

Apart from knowing where your strengths are, one needs to build a portfolio. Your portfolio proves that you can do the work intended to be done. This can be an advantage because, in the field, most people value experience and previous work. Having or not having a degree in writing should never stress you if you are to pursue freelance writing as a job. You don’t need to pay to create your online portfolio. There are plenty of free options that will do the job. Here is an example of one of my first portfolios, hosted at

  1. Gather all Your Previous Articles

The next step would be gathering all your previous articles, be they blog posts, short stories, or your first book. After doing so, networking comes in, starting with family, friends, and the community. This will put you in touch with exciting projects, like social media campaigns for new business owners or a family member who runs a small business. If you don’t have a portfolio of work to showcase, you can volunteer and do some jobs for free. This will help you get a few examples of your work to show potential new customers. 

  1. Move Your Work Online

Moving forward, it would be good to put your work out there. For instance, you can share with potential clients on a website or social media. Here, also, you can share your portfolio. After doing so, you can now look for and find clients.

Having the idea of what you intend to pursue, the type of projects you are interested in, and a good-looking portfolio showing your ability to do the required work will help you find clients.

  1. Try to get Contracts

For freelance writing to be simple and smooth, you can start by contracting with the company you will be working for, if you are working. If you take this route, life can be easy for you as you have already established good relations. Another advantage would be knowing and understanding the organization’s mission and voice.

  1. Make Use of E-mail

Email the contacts within your business network. Let them know what type of projects you’re doing and invite them to pass your info on to others who want to work with you. The next step would be to send your work or ideas to the sites you like and make sure they accept submissions. You could get lucky, as some sites or blogs will pay for such services.

  1. Create Relationships

Another essential thing to do is create good relationships with fellow creatives who provide services similar to the ones you provide, for instance, website and graphic designers. These would automatically have clients in need of copywriting. Another thing to do is always to be humble and network with other creative freelance writers, as these will refer you to potential clients when they are fully booked.

Author: David Todva is an experienced writer who has worked as a freelancer for many years, writing about sports, tech, business, and real estate investments. 

Christopher Stern

Christopher Stern is a Washington-based reporter. Chris spent many years covering tech policy as a business reporter for renowned publications. He has extensive experience covering Congress, the Federal Communications Commission, and the Federal Trade Commissions. He is a graduate of Middlebury College. Email:[email protected]

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