4 Tips for Freelance Writing Success

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With the first ever Writer's Digest Freelance Virtual Conference just around the corner, I want to share a few tips for freelance writing success from some of the presenters. I include a little commentary too. After all, I've been working on the Writer's Market Books series for nearly two decades now and have learned a thing or two.

Tip #1: Build the Right Structure for Freelance Writing Success

Writing skill and ability is necessary for freelance writing success. But it's only one part. Freelance writers run a business. They find paying gigs, negotiate higher rates, and file accurate taxes. Successful freelancers manage their time, money, and projects. They build their brands and work to get paid more for writing less.

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Tip #2: Start Local

The ultimate goal for many freelance writers is to be at the top of the pyramid, which usually means national--or even international--success. And that's a great goal. But not when you're getting started. Many successful freelancers start their careers locally. They pitch local businesses and regional magazines. They attend local writing conferences and enter local writing contests. Successful freelancers know this is a smart strategy for building up clips, clients, and cash to grow their freelance businesses.

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Tip #3: Write for Magazines

Some freelancers see writing for magazines as the ultimate goal. And it's a great goal in and of itself. But writing for magazines benefits other freelance writers as well. Magazine credits help establish a platform for nonfiction book writers. Freelancers who pitch businesses for professional writing gigs can add a WOW factor to their bios if they drop a few magazine publication credits in with their other credentials. Plus, most magazines pay money. That's always music to a freelance writer's ears.

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Tip #4: Know Your Audience

In Jane's quote above, she's talking about nonfiction book proposals, but it holds true across the freelance writing spectrum. Writers who pinpoint and know their audience are able to serve them better than anyone else. This leads to more freelance work. And ultimately, freelance writers with a defined target audience tend to make more money with the freelance gigs they land.

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Make Money Writing

By the way, all these tips are just a taste of what our presenters will be sharing on the first weekend of November at our first ever Writer's Digest Freelance Virtual Conference. Over two days, writers will learn the ins and outs of how to become successful freelance writers with sessions on breaking into magazines, crafting nonfiction book proposals, finding unexpected income for freelance writers, success strategies for building a 6-figure freelance writing business, and so much more. Plus, they'll have the opportunity to get a query critique.

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Robert Lee Brewer is Senior Content Editor of the Writer’s Digest Writing Community, specifically working on the Market Books, WritersMarket.com, and maintaining the Poetic Asides blog. Follow him on Twitter @RobertLeeBrewer.

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