What Makes a Good Freelance Writer?
First of all, this probably should go without saying but you must have strong writing skills. No one is going to pay you to turn over poor quality writing. Additionally, you need to be able to adapt to a wide range of needs and styles for different clients. Time management skills are a must. You have to get your work completed to the highest quality and turned in on time or you won't be likely to get contracted again. No one wants to pay for content that is late or poor quality. Remember you do not sell Your work, Your work is what sells you as a professional.
Where to Write
There are many websites open to writers but there are essentially two different types. There are legitimate publications which contract freelance writers and then there are content mill type sites. Content mills are low paying sites that churn out massive amounts of content while paying you either pennies per word or a performance-based commission dependant on page views. These sites are fine when you are starting out, but they are not the way to sustainable income. Legit publications will often pay at a higher set rate or will negotiate a per-word pay with the freelancer. As an established freelance writer, you can set your own per-word rate and only work for what you are worth!
Establishing Your Writer Cred
So you want to start making good money selling your services as a freelance writer? Well, you have to sell yourself first. You have to demonstrate that you can create quality content. You need to show a body of work that shows off your skills and tells a client why they should hire you. This, of course, is tricky if you are just starting out and have no portfolio of work. There are three common and simple ways to build your library. pro bono work in which you find a company or individual that could use some promotion and offer your services. content mills As we talked about earlier are not great for pay but good for exposure and resume building. And lastly Guest Posting on An established blog is an excellent way to get your name out there and your work seen. If you are reading a blog and think to yourself "I have knowledge to contribute to this topic" send a message to the owner of the blog inquiring as to whether they accept guest posts, if they are receptive, pitch your idea. Get your name on multiple blogs and websites to show what you can do for a potential client.
Creating a Portfolio
A web-hosted portfolio of your work is an excellent thing to have. Many clients want to see writing samples and a clean professional portfolio is better than a bunch of copy and pasted links. There are several sites which will host a collection of your writing samples. They range from very basic to highly stylized and advanced. Personally, I use Clippings.me but there are several options out there depending on the style you want. The thing that's important is that you are showcasing your best work.
Tying It All Together
To summarize the most important things to remember as you embark on a career as a freelance writer are dedication, presentation, and innovation. You have to throw yourself completely into the work striving to produce the best content possible. You have to sell yourself and show what you can offer. And you have to be able to adapt and innovate finding the strongest approach to any given project. Of you master these, success is yours as a freelance writer.