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Archives for June 2013

The State of Freelancing: Why Online Freelancing is Happening “Everywhere”

As the statistics in a recent post here on The State of Freelancing” revealed, freelancing is becoming a way of life for many Americans. And, it’s not just America. The freelancing boom is a worldwide phenomenon that is growing — especially in the online sector, as discussed in The New York Times article, The Boom in Online Freelance Workers.

Why Online Freelance Talent is So Desired

According to a 2012 global business survey by Elance, on average, survey respondents predicted that over half — 54% — of their workforce would be found online in five years. And the main reason these employers gave for hiring online talent?

They [found] that talent online is better than or equal to what’s available locally, and in part, are leveraging online workers to do work that they would have done themselves or not done at all.

Advantages of Hiring Online Freelance Talent

Following are a few more statistics from the Elance survey.

85% of respondents believed that hiring freelancers gave them a competitive edge;

40% believed that the quality of talent to be found online was superior to the talent that could be found locally; and

The average savings to a firm was 53%.

The 5 Most Sought-After Skills in Online Freelance Professionals

(i) Web Programmers/Developers took the top spot (70%);

(ii) Graphic Designers/Multimedia Experts came in second (61%);

(iii) Writers/Content Creators/Bloggers were the third most desired skill set (38%);

(iv) Online Marketers / Social Media Consultants came in fourth (32%); and

(v) Mobile Developers rounded out the top five (28%).

My Take: Why Freelancing Is So Popular

In a recent CNN video below, the owner of a start-up tech company in Kansas said:

“The job you create for yourself is the most stable job you can have.”

In my opinion, this kind of sums it up, especially in light of what’s been happening with the economy over the last decade or so.

Americans have gone through a crippling mortgage/foreclosure crisis; had big banks fail at alarming rates; have been downsized, laid off and/or outright fired from ‘stable’ jobs; seen their pensions/retirement savings dwindle; have gone through savings to try and save homes and/or plug the gap while they look for new jobs – and they’re tired.

Tired of the uncertainty.

Tired of not being able to make livable wages.

Tired of not being in control of their own financial destiny.

The last decade or so has been a perfect storm, if you will, for freelancing to take off.

And it has.

A Freelance Writer Sees the “Handwriting on the Wall” and Takes Charge of His Career

One commenter (HK Guy from NYC) who responded to The New York Times article mentioned above wrote:

I’ve been a freelance writer for 30 years. I saw the handwriting on the wall early and managed to carve out a career. . . . I see so many journalists not able to adapt to what, for better or worse, will become the standard way of doing things.

This is exactly what I did when I last my last full-time job in 2007. I knew I never wanted to work for someone else again, and I wanted more control over my own financial future. So, I turned to freelance writing full-time in 2007, started an SEO writing company in 2008 and luckily, haven’t had to look back since.

Has it been easy? No. There were times I wanted the security of a full-time job again. But, even stronger than this was my desire to control my financial future. With layoffs and foreclosures in the news practically every day back then, my thinking was, “Even if I am lucky enough to land another position, what’s to prevent me from getting down-sized again?”

I just didn’t want to go that route any more. So I hung in there — working like crazy for a couple of years to get to the point where I never have to worry about looking for a job again.

Note: Subscribe to Inkwell Editorial’s newsletter and get the free ebook, Living the Freelance Life! How I Live Internationally and Have Earned a Living Completely Online Since 2007 & You Can Too, which details my journey from working for someone else to striking out on my own as a freelancer. Just look for the sign-up box on the right-hand side of every page on this site.

A New Definition for “Job Stability”

As commenter HK Guy from NYC pointed out – and freelance statistics from many sources bear out — you have to be nimble and adapt to what is a changing world. In my opinion, the idea of “job stability” is a dying concept.

Freelancing IS the new job stability.

Share Your Thoughts on Freelancing

Why do you think so many are turning to freelancing? Have you tried it? Do you want to freelance? What would you say are the major obstacles that prevent you from freelancing? Please share in the comments section below.

Here’s to a productive week ahead!

Yuwanda

P.S.: Share Your Freelance Story. We’re always looking for insightful stories from freelancers that can help others.

P.P.S.: Did you know that you can now order any of our products (like the SEO copywriting course which is currently 50% off) and take up to 6 months to pay? You can.

 

 

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Quick Tip for Freelance Writing Success

Here’s your Quick Tip for Freelance Writing Success for this week . . .

Choose a Freelance Writing Niche

Why? Several reasons . . .

(I) You can charge more: When clients view you as a “specialist” in a certain niche, it’s easy for you to become their “go to” writer.

(II) You spend less time completing projects: For example, when I first started out as an SEO writer, I specialized in writing mortgage/real estate articles. Because I had a “go to” database of sources and links, I spent less time researching. Also, I could write articles faster because I knew the industry so well.

(III) Referrals are easier to come by: The reason is, when you target a certain niche, you can ask clients to refer like clients to you. For example, if you work with attorneys, they likely know other attorneys via the Bar Association, who they went to school with, who their friends are, etc.

The bottom line is, like tends to hang with and/or know like. And, if you do a good job for existing clients, they won’t hesitate to refer you and if they’re in the same niche, they can see the work you’ve done for their colleague(s). Hence, it’s easier for you to land them as a client.

See why specializing in a niche can work so well? 

Have a Quick Tip for Freelance Writing Success?

Send it in. Following are the submission guidelines.

Submission Guidelines

Length: 100-250 Words

Bio: 25-50 words; a link to your freelance writing website/blog and a link to one of your social media profiles.

How to Submit: Send in the body of an email (info*at*InkwellEditorial*dot*com). Put “Freelance Quick Tip” in Subject Line.

You’ll be sent a link when/if it’s published.

Have a great weekend!
Yuwanda

P.S.: Learn how to dramatically increase your chance of landing freelance writing jobs by finding them — before they’re even made public.

P.P.S.: Did you know that you can now order any of our products (like this freelance writing e-course) and take up to 6 months to pay? You can.

Read more.

One of the Biggest Problems with Writing an Ebook . . .

Written by Yuwanda Black

Quite simply, it’s finding time to write the darn thing!

In just a bit, I’ll share how I’m getting back on track with my self-publishing dreams — and how you can too! — but first a little rant (thanks for indulging).

Making Money as a Self-Publisher

If you want to make “real money” as opposed to just occasional McDonald’s lunch money as a self-published writer, you have to create a library of products. I know there are those writers who get lucky and make a ton of money with their first or second ebook, but the reality is, that doesn’t happen for the vast majority of us.

I’ve been writing and selling ebooks online since 2002 and it wasn’t until I’d published around a dozen or so titles that I realized it was possible to make good money doing this. So, I keep pumping out titles.

If you’re a long-time reader of this blog, you know that in 2011 I published 50 ebooks on Amazon. Of course I devoted the whole year to this goal and it was my most prolific writing year yet. I’ll never attempt to do something like that again (it was a crazy, crazy, exhausting – but rewarding — experience).

How to Find Time to Write TipsSince then though, I haven’t even managed to publish one ebook per month – when that year I published on average of one per week.

How to Find Time to Write Your Ebook

I’m getting back on track though. I detailed how in my blog on SheWrites in a post entitled How to Find Time to Write.

FYI, SheWrites is a writing community for women. My sister told me about it and it’s quite inspiring (and gets great search engine juice), so I set up a blog there to stay in touch with — and feed — my writing soul, especially as I’m starting to write romance now (I start my second one next month).

You know it’s funny, the reason I was able to self-publish 50 ebooks in 2011 is because I kept a running journal on this blog about my ups and downs. Now, I’m using the same “trick” to get back on track, ie, keeping a running journal on SheWrites to stay on track. My goal is to write at least a half hour per day.

 If you don’t find time to devote to your dreams, you’ll never achieve them.

This thought is what keeps me motivated. My dream is to earn five figures per month (that’s at least $10,000) JUST from self-publishing. It’s my back-up retirement plan of sorts.

How to Price Your Ebook to Sell . . . and Other Ebook Marketing Advice

FYI, here’s a great post on The Creative Penn blog entitled, How To Sell 1 Million Books On Kindle: Lessons Learned From John Locke. It’s chock full of some good ebook marketing tips. One thing . . . I’m not sure I’d agree with the 99 cent price point advice anymore. Here’s some of the best advice I’ve read about how to price your ebook. Makes tons of sense; I’ve never seen it broken down like this.

How Do You Find Time to Write? Share Your Thoughts

Is self-publishing one of your dreams? Do you have a hard time finding time to write? If so, share how you manage to squeeze it in.

I hope you’re enjoying your summer now that it has officially begun.

Best,
Yuwanda

ebook-publishing-pack

P.S.: Get 4 Ebooks for One Low Price — The Ultimate Self-Publishing Package!

P.P.S.: You can now order any of our products (like the SEO copywriting course which is currently 50% off) and take up to 6 months to pay.

 

Read more.

How to Quickly Find Local Freelance Writing Gigs: 4 Places

Written by Yuwanda Black

Many freelance writers get so focused on finding jobs online that they forget about those right in their back yard. I know I’m guilty of this. Recently, I ran across a question from one of my Google+ friends asking how to find more local freelance writing opportunities. Following is his question and my answer, along with some input from others.

Question from a Freelance Writer on How to Find More Writing Jobs Locally

I always have a hard time finding writing gigs close to where I live (Minneapolis/St. Paul) via internet want ads like Craigslist. Can anybody give me tips on how to snare more local clients? I’ve got three total so far (one current, one on standby, one past) but I want to add more.

My Answer

Richard:

Join your local Chamber of Commerce. It’s where your community’s business leaders are and hands-down THE best way to meet them and start growing your writing business.

I’ve belonged to a few in my professional life and usually, annual fees run anywhere from $150 (for small towns) on up to $500+ for basic packages in large cities, eg, Atlanta. The fee is well worth it though IF you attend meetings regularly and network smartly.

FYI, here’s a post I did years ago on what freelance writers should look for in a Chamber of Commerce.

Hope this helps.

Best,
Yuwanda

Other Suggestions for Finding Local Freelance Writing Gigs from the Google+ Community

Find Local Freelance Writing Gigs: 4 PlacesSo joining your local Chamber of Commerce is the first suggestion for landing local writing jobs. Following are a few more ideas shared by other freelancers from freelancers on Google+.

2) Attend writing workshops at local libraries;

3) Reach out to local businesses you frequent directly; and.

4) Check with local college writing groups.

The bottom line is, if you want to “write local,” you have to “think local.” One freelancer gave this account of finding a local writing gig; saying:

One of my first copywriting gigs was for a local bakery in my neighborhood – if you frequent a place and see that maybe its website or menu needs some polish, it’s a great chance to promote yourself. And since the management will already likely recognize you, they’re already comfortable with you – don’t underestimate the power of familiarity!

Finding Freelance Writing Gigs: 2 Major Advantages of “Going Local”

I know the above type of proactivity works because I’ve gotten work from my dentist and from a lawyer who handled the closing paperwork on a piece of land I bought – all because I simply asked them if they had a website and if they did, if they were happy with the amount of sales and leads they were getting from it.

What I’ve found is that most local businesses aren’t. In fact, many have static sites that they haven’t touched in months or years. But, once you explain to them how you can help, they tend to be receptive.

So open your mouth and let people know what you do. I can’t think of anyone who doesn’t need more site traffic, web leads and sales. All of this starts with content and who better to provide it than you, no?

This is the first major advantage.

Another advantage is that local businesses are probably not being targeted by other freelance writers offline; ie, someone who’s right there in their face. Remember, people tend to do business with those they know, like and trust.

Well, what better way to start this cycle than to be right in front of a prospect.

Share Your Thoughts

Have you marketed for local freelance writing gigs? If so, how did it work out? If not, will you start? Please share in the comments section below.

Here’s to a productive start of the work week!
Yuwanda

coverP.S.: Ready to start your freelance writing career?

Get the ebook that pushed my freelance writing career to the next levelallowing me to travel and live abroad, get out of debt and really “live the freelance life.” One freelancer wrote:

First let me say thanks for answering my question(s) in your previous blog posts. I am writing to let you know, that I had my first $200 day after following the steps you outline in your e-book. I sent . . . emails pitching myself as a niche writer . . . A few days later, an SEO company called me, explained the scope of the project and sent me the funds through paypal without hesitation. . . . they are a local company. They said if they like my work, they will have much more in store, and are willing to pay higher fees.

For some reason, I thought your advice would only work for you. I know, call me naive, but I guess it seemed too good to be true. Luckily, I discovered you and liked what you had to say. If it wasn’t for you, I think I would still be trying to break into magazine writing.

P.P.S.: You can now order any of our products (like the SEO copywriting course which is currently 50% off) and take up to 6 months to pay.

 

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Freelance Writing Jobs for the Week of 6/24/2013

News Writer: Bustle.com is seeking a freelance writer to start ASAP to help fill its news vertical with intelligent, thoughtful content. The freelance news writer will be expected to produce roughly 4-6 posts per day, 3 of which would be ready for edit by 10 AM EST and the remainder produced throughout the rest of the day. A minimum commitment of 3 days per week is required, with the possibility for additional days should a writer prove themselves indispensable. Pay: $100 a day. Get full details on this freelance news writing job.

Freelance Web Technology Trends Content Writer: We’re looking for a blogger to produce interesting summaries of internet trends data found on our site at http://trends.builtwith.com to publish on our blog at http://blog.builtwith.com and email to our subscribers. Must be able to write technically whilst keeping non-technical readers engaged. Pay: $30-$60 per article based on length and quality. Get full details on this freelance technology blogging job.

Natural Health Newsletter Writer:  We have a natural health newsletter for conservative men in their 50’s-70’s. The main things we are looking for in a writer: (i) good knowledge of natural health and paleo diet; (ii) ability to consistently produce 3-4 emails per week (no excuses, no laziness); and (iii) is good at storytelling and creating empathy in your writing. Our audience is very conservative politically. You will be writing newsletters in this tone. It’s very anti-government, anti-Obama and anti-FDA… Pay: $50 per newsletter. Get full details on this freelance health writing job.

Fashion Writer (Canada): We are looking for an organized, diligent, and eloquent writer/(or translator) who has perfect grammar and can meet deadlines. We are a fashion focused e-commerce company from Canada that specializes in designer sunglasses and eyeglasses and we want to hire a freelance writer to help us write descriptions for our brands/products for our websites. Pay: Starts at $400 CAD. Get full details on this freelance fashion writing job.

Content Writer (Houston, TX):  Home Theater Gear and Sprinkler Warehouse is looking for a Freelance Content Writer to assist with Website articles. This is a Freelance position to write content (text) for our websites; BUT you must present resume and example articles I person at Sprinkler Warehouse: 8535 Jackrabbit Rd., Unit A, Houston Texas 77095. This freelance position will allow you to work from home and not have to come into work each day. You will meet with our staff once a week to collect the list of needed article titles and discuss the details about each article being requested. Pay: $20 – $40/article. Get full details on this freelance online content writing job.

Social Responsibility Writer:  Joycott is a social venture looking for entertaining writers to contribute quality content for our website. If you like topics ranging from social responsibility to fair trade practices, then this is an excellent opportunity to help us make the world a better place. Writers will be required to write 400-600 word articles on a number of different topics, including compelling stories on companies doing social good and other related industry topics. Pay: $20-$30 per post. Get full details on this freelance social responsibility article writing gig. We will also need social media posts and payment for these will be negotiated.

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Editor Note: Did you catch yesterday’s post, The State of Freelancing: Why “The Most Stable Job You Can Have Is the One You Create for Yourself?” If not, here it is: http://j.mp/17wGf9J.
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Pop Culture Writer: Marketing firm is in search of freelance writer to write about pop culture and television topics for clients. Articles are for publication online and must be submitted weekly. Pay: $15-$20 per hour, depending on experience. Pay is weekly. Get full details on this freelance pop culture writing gig.

Real Estate Blogger: TRIBUS is a thriving technology company that specializes in the real estate and mortgage verticals. We are currently growing the content division of our organization and are seeking a content / news writer to support overall blogging efforts. The ideal candidate should be a natural wordsmith and be passionate about writing informative copy. Pay: $10 per 350 word blog post; approximately 85 blog posts required on a monthly basis. Get full details on this freelance real estate blogging job.

Technology Writer: Skyword has partnered with a cloud computing solutions company that’s searching for tech people who can speak to developments in cloud computing, application monitoring and next gen apps on their blog. The freelance articles you contribute will be 300-500 words in length. Content will live on the Boundary blog. Writers should have professional or writing experience with relevant IT topics. Pay: $75 per article. Get full details on this freelance technology writing job.

Sports Writers: Leading entertainment company is looking for freelance sports writers to create original, opinionated features on a weekly basis. Writers must bring fresh perspectives, a strong voice, and be up to date on all major American sports. Get full details on this freelance sports writing job.

Technology Writers/Bloggers: We are an emerging marketing and social media company in need of an articulate, clear thinking, professional contributor to write articles, blog posts, white papers and engaging content. Get full details on this freelance technology writing job. Pay: $20 per post.

 “Viral Content” Writer: Have you ever written an article that went viral? Have you had something you’ve written receive more than 1,000 Facebook likes? We are an established media company that is seeking another brilliant and creative mind to join our team.  We are looking for someone with experience creating compelling content that people just love to share. Think Buzzfeed, the Huffington Post, Digg, etc. Get full details on this online freelance writing job. Pay: $30 – $80 per post.

Travel Writers: Port Cities Review, a relatively-new online publication of “places where land and water meet” is seeking writers to submit feature-length articles that reveal the essence and aura of marvelous port cities worldwide. Articles can be in the form of personal narratives, travel stories, lifestyle articles, or arts and culture pieces, as long as the writing is engaging and, most importantly, ties into a port city theme, either objectively, subjectively, or symbolically. Recommended word length is between 800 and 1,200 words. Pay: Flat rate of $50/article. Get full details on this freelance travel writing job.

Writer for Wedding/Party Planning Site: Looking for someone with a fun, creative and engaging writing style to write one post a week for an award-winning wedding and party planning blog. Articles generally consist of real event spotlights, trend alerts, wedding and event inspiration. Experience with WordPress is required. Knowledge of the Jewish culture is preferred. Pay: $25/article. Get full details on this freelance blogging job.

Real Estate Bloggers: Movoto.com is a San Mateo-based Internet startup led by a team of entrepreneurs who want to empower real estate consumers. Movoto provides a unique home-buying solution that combines innovative, easy-to-use online research tools with access to a network of experience local real estate agents. We are looking for people with a background in being awesome. You must be an extraordinary individual who is going to work hard and be productive. Include: 1. Clips of past writings or a link to past writings; and 2. Resume. Pay: $100-$200 per article. Get full details on this freelance real estate blogging job.

Home Improvement Ghost Writer / Blogger: We install and program commercial, intelligent HVAC controls and we’re looking for a blogger to ghostwrite daily blogs for us about new developments in building management science which relate directly to HVAC/controls, such as energy efficiency in the context of intelligent (computer-assisted) control. We are talking about advanced control strategies using new, primarily software, cloud based technologies. Pay: $40 per blog, 5 times per week for a total of $200/wk. Get full details on this freelance home improvement blogging job.

Music Bloggers: Dig This Real, is looking for bloggers and writers with excellent writing and research skills to work on your schedule. We are a digital and print e-zine that showcases various musical offerings while highlighting the DIY type artist. Pay: $10-$35 per article based on word count. Get full details on this freelance music blogging gig.

Small Business Writers (($1 per word):  Write for Entrepreneur.com. Did you know that Entrepreneur‘s upfront section, “Edge,” features brief, punchy articles on news and trends affecting small-business owners and that they purchase short (250-400 words) articles for $1 per word in the following topic areas: Money, Marketing, Management, Technology, Viewpoint, Miscellaneous? They also buy Snapshot articles; brief (150-word) profiles of entrepreneurs, focusing specifically on what is innovative about their company in one of the following areas: sales/marketing, business financing/financial management, management strategies, or technology. Get full details on this freelance small business writing job.

Here’s to a productive start of the work week!
Yuwanda

coverP.S.: Ready to start your freelance writing career? As these opportunities illustrate, there are lots of jobs out there.

Get the ebook that pushed my freelance writing career to the next levelallowing me to travel and live abroad, get out of debt and really “live the freelance life.” One freelancer wrote:

I built my first professional website, and launched a legitimate SEO copy writing business in January 2012. I marketed as you suggested, and by April had a full time client load. I went from just writing articles to learning how to optimize an entire website by October 2012. I learned how to write not only quick 400-500 word articles but in-depth, highly-researched, longer themed content in the alternative and medical fields.

I [also] learned how to write sales copy – much harder for me to do, but my client is impressed with the conversions. I got put on staff at one business and became a feature writer at another. I learned a number of internet marketing strategies in November 2012.

The cream is that at the beginning of December 2012 I was invited to interview as a SEO campaign specialist for a local mid-sized company. The hiring decision should be made before the end of the year. Even if I do not get the job, the experience has shot my confidence through the roof. I plan to completely rebrand myself and my company since businesses recognize and value my skill sets.

P.P.S.: A Practically Fail-Proof Way to Start a High-Paying Online Writing Biz

As these listings highlight, there are many, many online writing opportunities. With the right knowledge, it’s great work-from-home career to start – PT or FT. Get trained to get started!

 

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The State of Freelancing: Why “The Most Stable Job You Can Have Is the One You Create for Yourself”

A growing trend in the job market is freelancing. One of the reasons, as one small business owner put it, is, “I guess sort of the idea that the job you create for yourself is the most stable job you could have.”…

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Quick Tip for Freelance Writing Success

Here’s your Quick Tip for Freelance Writing Success for this week . .  .

Create Your Own Marketing Database

The best kind of leads to get as a marketer (no matter what kind of business you’re in) are those you generate yourself. These can come via referrals, networking, cold calling, email campaigns, etc.

When I first started out as an SEO writer, I landed 14 jobs in one week and within two months, I was so busy that I had to outsource work to other freelancers. I did all of this via leads I generated from email campaigns.

I targeted the types of firms I wanted to work with. I literally went online, found the contact info search engine optimization companies (my initial target market), and sent them customized email blasts. This was in 2007.

To this day, I still have this list and I continually add to it. This last part is extremely  important because, over time, the integrity of your list degrades. By how much? According to the HubSpot post, 25 Clever Ways to Grow Your Email Marketing List:

It’s a sad fact, but your email marketing database degrades by about 25% every year. Your contacts’ email addresses change as they move from one company to another, they opt-out of your email communication, or they abandon that old AOL address they only use to fill out forms on websites.

[So] As a marketer, it’s your job to make sure you’re constantly adding fresh contacts to your email marketing campaigns so you can keep your numbers moving up and to the right.

Make Annotations On Your List

I always note when I last contacted a prospect, what I said to them and how/if they responded. By keeping these type of detailed notes, you avoid contacting the same prospects too often AND you can stay top of mind by getting on schedule to reach out to them regularly (eg, once every month or two).

I have hundreds of contacts in my marketing database. Some will never use my firm’s SEO writing services; others have hired us after a couple of years of receiving e-blasts.

The point is, when you build your own marketing database, you’re building the foundation of your freelance writing business – from the ground up. And over time, it’ll pay huge dividends if you stay consistent with it.

Have a Quick Tip for Freelance Writing Success?

Send it in. Following are the submission guidelines.

Submission Guidelines

Length: 100-250 Words

Bio: 25-50 words; a link to your freelance writing website/blog and a link to one of your social media profiles.

How to Submit: Send in the body of an email (info*at*InkwellEditorial*dot*com). Put “Freelance Quick Tip” in Subject Line.

You’ll be sent a link when/if it’s published.

Have a great weekend!
Yuwanda

P.S.: Learn how to dramatically increase your chance of landing freelance writing jobs by finding them — before they’re even made public.

P.P.S.: Did you know that you can now order any of our products (like this freelance writing e-course) and take up to 6 months to pay? You can.

Read more.

Freelance Writers: Why You Need a “Go to Hell” Fund

I ran across this great post on Twitter yesterday that I just had to add a couple of quick thoughts to. Following is the tweet.

RT @LinguaGreca Why you need a go to hell fund http://ow.ly/m6wvN  [via @drfreelance] #freelancing [Loved this post!]

Like the author of the post, I have entrepreneurship in my genes. My parents didn’t verbally tell me to have a go-to-hell fund, but my father and stepfather sure did model this saying, as I touched on in this post about pursuing your freelance dreams.

Following are a couple of things I wanted to point out here as it relates to freelancing and finances.

How Much Money Should You Have in the Bank before You Quit to Freelance Full-time?

This will be different for each person. I had practically nothing when I started, but I grew up poor and was so accustomed to “winging it” financially that this didn’t bother me overly much. I did work like a fiend to get a good cushion in the bank though. Now that I’m older (and a bit wiser and saddled with a mortgage!), I’ve become much more conscious about having — and keeping — that financial safety net in place.

I just wanted to remind you to take advantage of having your full-time job to save as much as you can before you quit. Ideally, six months to a year would be great. But if you can get – and sustain — three to four months worth of expenses in the bank, this should be enough of a financial head start IF you work your tail off when you start freelancing full-time.

Financial Tips for Freelance WritersThis means getting up, putting in a solid 8, 10 or 12 hours per day to get clients rolling in.

FYI, I discuss freelancing and finances in detail in the ebook, How to Know When You’re Ready to Quit Your Job to Freelance Fulltime: 6 Signs It’s Time and How to Go About It.

Health Insurance: One of the Biggest Costs of Freelancing

I didn’t have health insurance for years when I first started freelancing. Not only could I not afford it, I just didn’t worry about it because I was young and carefree (read: unconcerned). As you get older though, eg, into your 40s and beyond, you start to think more about it. Of course, if you have children and/or other dependents, it’s always top of mind.

The reason I bring this up is, healthcare is one of the biggest expenses of freelancing. And starting in January 2014, you will be penalized if you don’t have it. So be sure to add this cost into your budget (go-to-hell fund) now, especially if you’re like me and went without / are doing without healthcare now.

Obamacare and Freelancing: What You Need to Know — NOW

FYI, following are some quick stats about Obamacare and how it will impact freelancers.

A single freelancer who earns up to around $45,000 could be eligible for subsidized coverage. Source:  BusinessWeek.com.

The penalty(ies) for not purchasing health insurance start at $95 per adult (or 1 percent of income) in 2014 and goes up to $695 per adult (2.5 percent of income) by 2016. Source:  BusinessWeek.com.

If you earn $88,200 or less for a family of four, you will qualify for subsidized rates.  Source: 200KFreelancer.com

If you’re a single, 40-year-old with no dependents earning the 2012 median income of $53,000 for freelance writers, your cost for health insurance premium will be $3,857, which equals 7.28% of your household income. Source: 2Kaiser Family Foundation Healthcare Calculator (this is a great tool by the way).

FYI, you can get healthcare as a freelancer for up to 40% off via organizations like the Freelancers Union.

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Editor Note: Did you catch yesterday’s post on SeoWritingJobs.com on why infographics (and other mixed media) are critical to ranking well in SERPs?
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Share Your Thoughts

Do you have a go-to-hell freelance fund? Do you think it’s a good idea? How many months expenses do you think freelancers should have saved before quitting to freelance full-time?

Please share in the comments section below.

Best,
Yuwanda

What You Need to Know Before You Quit to Freelance Full-timeP.S.: Are you dying to quit your job to freelance full-time? This ebook is a realistic roadmap of exactly what quitting to freelance full-time is all about. A review of this ebook left on Amazon sums it up, saying in part:

This book is just what it says. It will give you a good idea of the pros and cons of becoming a freelance writer.

I really like it that the author gives a lot of personal information about her situation. After reading this book, I feel that I have a good insight into the life of a freelancer – the pitfalls as well as the joys.

P.P.S.: Did you know that you can now order any of our products (like this freelance writing e-course) and take up to 6 months to pay? You can.

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Freelance Writing as a Career: Do You Have “One Day” Disease?

The following is a guest post by Tiffany Howard.

It’s a benign enough phrase: “One day.” It’s the ubiquitous placeholder for those of us in the adult world who feel too overwhelmed with everyday life to assign time frames to “nonessential” things….

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Freelance Writing Jobs

Freelance Article “Re-Writer” Sought: Seeking freelancer who can re-write/repurpose some articles to make then unique and usable for our website. The articles are on topics related to technology/software. Pay: $40-$60 per article. Get full details on this freelance article writing job.

SEO Content Guide (Ebook) Writer Wanted: Seeking knowledgeable writer who can produce a 40,000 to 50,000 word guide on the latest happenings in SEO, ie, “SEO: Search Engine Un-optimized.” Pay: $2,000 – $2,500 (but if you think you can create a hell of a viral/authoritative guide, we can negotiate a higher price). Get full details on this ebook writing job.

Healthcare Blogger: Seeking freelancer with first-hand experience in the Health Care Management industry to write articles for HealthcareManagement.com. Candidate must have flawless English writing skills and be an expert on topics like EMR, HIPAA, Medical Billing, Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), Medicare, Insurance Exchanges. Pay: $20 – $30 per post. Work at home at your own pace. Get full details on this healthcare blogging job.

Freelance Web Writer for Small Business Site: Entrepreneur launching a small business selling one-of-a-kind pet accessories seeks writer. NOT only looking for a traditional copywriter, but someone who can really give the site a lot of character and spruce it up through words. Pay: $100. Get full details on this small business writing freelance gig.

Freelance Writer & Researcher Sought: Key Duty: Produce 2,000 to 3,000 publishable words of original, researched content each day on a broad range of topics with minimal support from the editor. Pay: Freelance writer/researchers are compensated 4-8 cents/word, depending on the amount of research a project will need. Writers are not capped at any income and can earn as much as their ability to produce quality content allows for. Get full details on this freelance writing and researching job.

Freelance Political Bloggers Wanted: Political news site seeking part-time bloggers. Work from home; flexible hours. Hours: An hour and a half per day, at least three times per week. Pay: $350 to $450/month. Get full details on this political blogging job.

Political Freelance Writers: New monthly national nonpartisan political publication seeking highly talented freelance political writers. Pay: Rate starts at 25 cents per word for articles of 600 to 1,200 words ($150 to $300 per article) for writers who know what they are taking about, write only about the facts and can keep their personal opinions out of their writing while keeping a reader engaged. Get full details on this freelance political writing job.

Part-Time Copy Editor: New online international news company seeks a part-time copy editor to begin in July, working 15 hours a week copy-editing and publishing articles on the web site. Editor should be familiar with AP Style and have prior editing and writing experience, as well as a strong interest in international news, opinion, and analysis. Pay: $25/hour Get full details on this freelance copy editing job.

Freelance Copywriter: We’re a technology start-up shaking up the 3D space. We are looking for a copywriter who will be responsible for creating and editing content on our website including product description, pricing, use cases, our company story, etc. — and potentially other promotional items as well. Pay: $20-$40/hour. Get full details on this freelance copywriting jobs.

Freelance Web Development Writer: Seeking writer who can research, write, edit and publish articles related to web development/open source. Candidate must have in-depth knowledge of javascript, jquery, json, php, SQL, etc. We are looking for 2-3 post per week, 350 to 700 words long. Pay: $15 to $25 per post, depending on quality. Get full details on this tech writing job.

Medical RE Blogger Needed: We are developing a commercial real estate practice in medical real estate and need occasional article and blog posts. Articles (600 words) will be submitted for publication in healthcare and real estate media. Blog post every other week (200-300 words). We will provide topics and research for written materials. Pay: $20-30 per post and $50-100 per article. Get full details on this freelance writing job.

Freelance Lifestyle Writers Sought: Plum Deluxe, an online lifestyle magazine, is accepting articles on specific topics; these include weekend getaways, custom recipes, wine pairings, cocktail recipes, interior design ideas, preventative health issues, beauty tips, and similar topics. Pay: $30/articleGet full details on this freelance lifestyle writing gig.

Freelance Blogging Job: Massachusetts-based leader in the video monitoring field is seeking experienced, talented, productive, self-starting freelance bloggers to produce three to four 500-800 word articles per week. Pay: $50 per published post. Get full details on this freelance blogging job.

Freelance Writers Needed to Submit Daily Content: Company with multiple web sites in need of daily content seeks freelancers to research & write original content. Topics include: gaming, fashion, sports, technology, health/wellness, beauty, entertainment, music, movies, and parenting. Pay: $15 per feature. Get full details on this freelance writing job.

Freelance Social Media Content Writer: The candidate will work off-site on a car racing / video game brand. The brand is targeting a new audience (males between 16-35 who enjoy sports and automotives) with a voice that is energetic and friendly but opinionated and blunt at the same time (think Johnny Knoxville). You’ll be writing for their Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages which should take about 12-18 hours per month, ongoing for at least 1 year. Pay: DOE. Get full details on this freelance social media content writing job.

Freelance Sports Writing Job: Seeking freelancer to write high-impact, engaging stories covering all levels of sports. You will work closely with other writers and editors to develop stories, sources and collaborative projects. You must be able to meet stringent editing and vetting requirements and deadlines, and produce 2-3 stories per month, including the cover story. Pay: Competitive. Get full details on this freelance sports writing job.

Freelance Writers Sought for Marine Industry Magazine: Magazines for the marine industry seeks experienced writers to provide regular contributions for up to three different publications, The Waterways Journal Weekly, International Dredging Review and Marina Dock Age, and each corresponding website. Pay: Negotiable. Get full details on this freelance social media content writing job.

eHow / Demand Media Seeks Writers: Demand Media Studios is currently seeking out writers with talent and experience to contribute content covering a variety of different topics for our network of publishing partner sites. Opportunities for Studio writers involve 300-500 word articles that require the ability to write informatively about a number of different fields, including Business, Finance, Nutrition, Travel, Technology, Fitness, and more. Pay: $20-$30 per article. Get full details on this freelance writing opportunity.

Things to Keep in Mind When Applying for Freelance Writing Jobs Online

Note: Most clients you do business with are ethical. I’ve been “stiffed” in my freelance writing career exactly one time — years and years ago (I’ve been freelancing since 1993). So just know that going in. But as content marketing grows, so will unethical operators. The following posts give some insight into how to protect yourself as a freelance / online writer.

How to Protect Your Writing Samples & Guidelines on What Exactly Are the Responsibilities of an SEO Writer

What to Do When Clients Don’t Pay

Good luck, and have a great week!
Yuwanda

coverP.S.: Ready to start your freelance writing career? As these opportunities illustrate, there are lots of jobs out there.

Get the ebook that pushed my freelance writing career to the next level – allowing me to travel and live abroad, get out of debt and really “live the freelance life.” One freelancer wrote:

I built my first professional website, and launched a legitimate SEO copy writing business in January 2012. I marketed as you suggested, and by April had a full time client load. I went from just writing articles to learning how to optimize an entire website by October 2012. I learned how to write not only quick 400-500 word articles but in-depth, highly-researched, longer themed content in the alternative and medical fields.

I [also] learned how to write sales copy – much harder for me to do, but my client is impressed with the conversions. I got put on staff at one business and became a feature writer at another. I learned a number of internet marketing strategies in November 2012.

The cream is that at the beginning of December 2012 I was invited to interview as a SEO campaign specialist for a local mid-sized company. The hiring decision should be made before the end of the year. Even if I do not get the job, the experience has shot my confidence through the roof. I plan to completely rebrand myself and my company since businesses recognize and value my skill sets.

P.P.S.: You can now order any of our products (like the SEO copywriting course which is currently 50% off) and take up to 6 months to pay.

 

 

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The State of Freelancing: Why 40% of Americans Will be Freelancers by 2020

Did you know that by 2020, more than 40% of the US workforce will be so-called contingent workers (ie, freelancers)? This is according to a study conducted by software company Intuit in 2010. That’s more than 60 million workers.

Freelance Statistics

Following are some more mind-boggling (in my opinion) statistics from the QZ.com article, 40% of America’s workforce will be freelancers by 2020.

The Number of Contingent Workers in the U.S.: 42.6 million as of 2006 (this includes independent contractors, temp workers and the self-employed).

Number of Freelancers Today: No one knows, as 2006 was the last time the U.S. government tracked these statistics.

Number of Temps Employed by Large Companies: 22%, according to a survey of 200 companies.

Huge Growth in Temp Force: Between 2009 and 2012, there was an almost 30% increase according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

What Type of Workers Make Up This “Independent” Workforce: Infographic

Infographic of Freelance WorkforceAccording to an infographic that breaks down this freelance workforce on the HireRight.com blog by Mavenlink.com, a lot of them are editorial workers, eg, writers, copywriters, editors, translators, etc. See? (click graphic for larger view)

Share Stories about Freelancing

See an interesting story in the news about freelancing? Or, want to share your story as a freelancer? Send it to us via the Contact link on every page of this site, or in an email to info**at**InkwellEditorial.com.

I hope you’re having a great weekend.

Best,
Yuwanda

P.S.: Train for a career as a web writer and start earning $50,000 to $75,000 per year.

As an SEO copywriter, you can earn this or more — all from the comfort of home. Proof? See the average salary for SEO content writers.

P.P.S.: You can now order any of our products (like the SEO writing e-course which is currently 50% off) and take up to 6 months to pay.


 

 

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Quick Tip for Freelance Writing Success

This is a new series we’re starting here on InkwellEditorial.com. What is it? Very simply, you answer one question, ie:

What one piece of advice can you share that’s helped you the most in your career as a freelance writer?

The goal with this series is to dispense advice to new/aspiring freelancers, and/or to those who may be struggling. So if you don’t have time to submit a guest post or become a regular guest poster, this is a great way to still help others and get your name out there.

Submission Guidelines

Length: 100-250 Words

Bio: 25-50 words; a link to your freelance writing website/blog and a link to one of your social media profiles.

How to Submit: Send in the body of an email (info*at*InkwellEditorial*dot*com). Put “Freelance Quick Tip” in Subject Line.

You’ll be sent a link when/if it’s published.

Here’s the first installment . . .

My “Quick Tip” for Freelance Writing Success

Market consistently — even when you’re crazy busy, and especially when times are slow.

Years ago, I owned an editorial staffing agency in New York City. I had a business mentor who had owned one too. He was retired; he’d sold his business for a few million dollars and spent part of his time volunteering; helping new/struggling entrepreneurs.

One of the many great pieces of advice he gave me over the year and a half or so he acted as my mentor was to make marketing a habit. I never forgot this. It can be particularly discouraging when you’re marketing your butt off but no writing jobs are materializing. But, think what’ll happen if you don’t market.

I promise you (if all other things are in place like your writing skill, pricing, etc.), if you make it a habit to make a certain number of touches per day, week and/or month, you WILL land freelancing writing jobs.

I advise doing so daily or weekly. If you’re slow, double what you may normally be doing, eg, if you normally send out 5 marketing emails per day, double it or triple it, ie, contact 10 or 15 (or 20 or 30) prospects per day. If you’re busy, don’t slack off (which is a bad habit many freelancers get into); still reach out to new prospects and/or stay in touch with existing clients — something many freelancers forget to do. Don’t!

Good luck out there.
Yuwanda

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P.S.: Learn how to dramatically increase your chance of landing freelance writing jobs by finding them — before they’re even made public.

I’ve been blessed with the “mind of a marketer,” so to speak. It’s what’s accounted for my freelance writing success over the years. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve told somebody about a marketing technique I use and I’ll get a response like, “I never would have thought to do that.”

Unsolicited Testimonial

Yuwanda,

I just purchased your ebook on 7 ways to market your freelance writing business. I’m only on page 19 – the second idea – and I must say that my writing business will never be the same again! (emphasis added) After reading only 2 of the 7 ideas you mention, I can’t believe I didn’t think of these before! Nobody mentions them in freelance writing discussions, and it’s no wonder that so many are hurting for clients. I am truly blown away!

Thank you for revolutionizing my business with this information.

-JL

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