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How to Start a Freelance Writing Side Hustle

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The Covid-19 pandemic has changed the way so many of us once viewed life. From a safe shelter of the nonchalant, everyday buzz of daily commutes and Friday meetups with friends — to a sudden cold world of social distancing, fear, and depression, we’re facing a world crisis unmatched since World War II. Start Freelancing

How I accomplished all this was through one channel alone: the written word. Today, I’m sharing with you how you can do it too, banishing the figure of the starving poet from your mind and getting down to creating a thriving freelance writing side hustle. You can use it to supplement your income or even replace the job you may have lost. Here are five steps to follow.

1. Find your niche.

Choosing a niche involves two things: the subject you love and the people you’re talking to. It’s impossible to label yourself as a “writer” without knowing what you’ll say and to whom you’ll say it.  

To start, dive deep into what interests you and sparks your passion. Lay your experiences out on the table and study them. For instance, if you have a long history in personal finance and credit cards, you can get into the finance writing niche. Your audience will be everyday people who want to save more and live a richer.

At first, this sounds counterintuitive. As a finance writer, you’ll miss out on clients who need writers on other subjects like fitness or marketing. But the longer you do it, the more you’ll see how it makes sense. While you can always land generic writing assignments in freelance markets, authority writers get paid up to $1 per word while building a lasting name in their industry.

2. Learn.

One thing you need to keep in mind before starting your freelance writing career is that web writing is entirely different from book or even essay writing. You need to build the right skills before you can get hired and paid. This is critical. When you write for the web, it’s less about wordsmithing to satisfy your readers’ literary cravings, and more about catching attention and competing with the go-go world of hundreds of digital media distractions. More often than not, good web writing also involves SEO-optimization and content strategy.

The good news is that it’s not difficult to get into the zone and learn how to create powerful web copy. Here are the resources I recommend.(Start Freelancing)

3. Build your portfolio.

Before clients or agencies hire you, they’ll want to see your work in action. To make it easy for them, take a few days to build an attractive website for yourself. Plug in your writing samples, photos of yourself and landing-page copy selling your services.   

4. Pitch for projects.

By now, you’re ready to contact potential clients and ask them if they want to work with you. If you’re just getting started, platforms like UpWork and Fiverr are diverse freelance marketplaces where you can connect with clients and land freelancing gigs.

5. Rinse and Repeat

When it comes to freelance writing, getting started is one of the most difficult parts you’ll come across. But the moment you land your first freelancing gig, you’ll snowball from there, gaining experience, collecting reviews, and building your reputation as a web writer. (Start Freelancing)

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