What Items Would an Intending Freelance Writer Need to Start?
In online writing circles, freelancing has become a buzzword. English words can be deceptive. On first hearing the word, one might imagine that freelance writer means someone who writes for free. This might be because of the belief that writing is not a commercially viable endeavor, and is rather, one funded solely by passion. Of course, every writer needs to be passionate about writing; but freelancing doesn’t key into that singularity of thought.
Freelance writing is commercial writing, to put it simply. The “free” in the word is not a statement on the value of the work, but the status of the writer. The writer is free – not bound to any organization for the long term. He is a seller, a “mercenary”, that offers paid writing services to different employers.
The range of services rendered by a freelance writer cuts across several areas. Popular among these are editing, ghostwriting, content writing, copywriting, etc. Still on the word “free”: although freelance writing doesn’t require as much capital as other forms of entrepreneurship – asides from talent and zeal – there are still some basic items an intending freelance writer needs before starting.
In this article, we would be looking at some of those items:
Basically: an efficient writing medium. The computer is a broad term that covers everything from a laptop to a smartphone. This takes into consideration the budget of writers at different levels of their careers.
However, to not be economical with the truth, a laptop is the professionally recommended writing tool. It is easier on the eyes, accommodates advanced writing software, has better formatting features, and can handle multitasking better. It is also important to note that certain websites have better interfaces when viewed on a laptop. Some freelancer writers cut corners by enabling the desktop feature on their phone browsers. While a very good phone might serve well as an emergency alternative, they set you a pace behind.
A select few among freelance writers write first drafts on paper. As freelance jobs operate with strict deadlines, this is not the best of choices.
Asides from writing, a good computer also works as a storage system and a medium of correspondence. These days, Zoom and mails are the fads. It facilitates proper discussions between freelance writers and their clients.
Writing is preceded by research. The internet is the only library open for 24 hours. To access it, one must invest in reliable data subscription plans. The connection within your workspace must be high. Fewer things are as frustrating as watching plagiarism diagnosis run slowly due to network. WiFi seems a more profitable option, but one must individually access the available data plans. Regardless of choice, internet connection is non-negotiable and must include it in a budget.
People work better when they are in a comfortable environment. Writing is a mental job, and one must prioritize comfort. It is unrealistic to expect writers to have magnificent, novel-esque study rooms. Writers can, however, create a space within the room that is less disturbed – especially for parents with kids. It is discouraged to work on the bed as this might lull the mind. A comfy chair and sturdy table would prove helpful not just in improving concentration and posture, but in carrying our writing equipment.
Valid Bank Accounts and Price Framework
The end goal of freelance writing is to be paid. Most freelance writing jobs are remote – in the sense that they happen away from the site. This means it is nearly impossible to be paid in hard cash. It is therefore important to have valid bank accounts. A local bank account might suffice for jobs done within the country, but one should also get an international account. Platforms like PayPal and Venmo allow people receive international transfers from nearly all parts of the world.
In addition to this, one must study the pricing system in the freelance world. This can be done by gauging the rates of more experienced writers in your niche. A solid pricing framework ensures that you are paid your worth. It also creates an air of professionalism that might attract clients.
So, you want to become a freelance writer. How do you convince clients that you can do the work you claim to know how to do? Clients are not taken in by word of mouth alone. They need to gauge your skill. For this reason, you need a portfolio that compiles some of your best-written works as a sample. It would help to have a professional website for this. One can also leverage on platforms like LinkedIn and Medium.
Asides from all of this, one must learn the craft of writing. It is the most important of all the aforementioned items. There are many learning resources on copywriting, content writing, etc. The people at the top of the freelancing food chain garnered experience after having understood the basics. If it is possible, one should also find a freelancing community to remain up to speed on the latest trends and deals.