Launching yourself as a freelance writer isn’t as simple as writing your way to a steady income. Writing as a profession is a job like any other and has startup considerations. Here is a look at some things you’ll need to get started as a freelance writer:
A website: Having a nice-looking home base off auction sites is a good idea. At your own website, you can display the professional image you’ve chosen. You can also post up samples of your work, rates, past writing jobs, and the services you offer. Keep in mind that you’ll need to pay for site hosting and web design.
A computer: You’re going to need a good computer that runs at a healthy speed, and you’ll need to keep it maintained by changing parts or upgrading software. An internet connection is a must as well. Having the latest software for word processing is a good idea, too. You’ll also need to have a plan for archiving files.
Startup capital: While up-front costs for freelance writing are relatively low compared to other professions, there are expenses to consider. Auction sites that you can peruse for work often have associated fees or yearly membership subscriptions. You may want to get some up-to-date books on writing, publishing, or to brush up your language skills.
A way to be paid: You’ll be earning income, so you’ll need a method for clients to pay for your services. Paypal is usually a good way to do your virtual banking, though there are other methods you might want to explore, such as wire transfer or Interac email transfers. Have your banking needs prepared before you start working.
A plan: You’re going to need to know where you’re going with your profession. It’s not enough to know what you’re doing right now; you need to also have an idea of where you want to be in a few years. Have a plan to develop your business and work towards your goals.
A schedule: Working from home is great, but it’s also very easy to get distracted. Have a schedule of time you set aside to work, and make sure not to get sidetracked by other interruptions. Also, keep in mind that writing is a mental task, and you’ll get tired easily. No one can write well for many hours at a time, so schedule your work hours in chunks throughout your day when you’re at your best.
A good proposal: Have a solid proposal to present clients. Clearly outline what services you’ll provide for the rate you’re charging, and indicate your turnaround time for the project. Try to cover as many details as you can without going overboard. Make sure your proposal portrays your services in the best light and attracts clients to choose you over your competitors.