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May 282012
 

So you have your freelance writing jobs portfolio up, a few free hours and the determination to type out an award-winning article. Now you face the daunting task of finding the right person to hire you. This can be both encouraging and daunting, given the huge range of freelance writing jobs. Moreover, they all ask you to put a price on how well you write, which can be a humbling task. Looking at the flood of projects posted every day it can be hard not to flinch at some of the aptitude asked of the writer. But don’t sell yourself short, and take the time to search for those jobs that are right for you.

How Many Freelance Writing Jobs Are There?

Freelance Writing Job

There are thousands, tens of thousands of freelance writing jobs out there. And more are  posted all the time. In this fluctuating economy, the information age still produces companies who need thousands of articles generated for them each day. Hundreds of sites are dedicated to freelance writing, or buying the pre-written work of freelance writers. Personal writing websites are accruing revenue, as well as blogs. In this day and age, there’s a wealth of freelance work to find, if you know how to get it.

Can I Get Freelance Writing Jobs?

 You should be able to. In this day and age everything has gone digital. You talk on phones, watch television, surf the net, and play video games. Millions of people are watching the same thing and reading the same thing at the same time. Thus, it’s more important than ever for employers to have writers of the highest quality that can rake in the biggest audience. There are many journalists, reporters, and full-time writers working for companies. However, they are still not enough to meet every demand and for that the information industry looks for freelance writers who are cheaper, quicker, and equal or more than equal to their company-employed writers.

Who Would Employ Me for Freelance Writing Jobs?

Freelance writing jobs cover every type of writing. It can be article writing, blogging, editing, reviewing, E-book writing, script writing, poetry, you name it. On my first freelance website I had a humbling experience when I could barely say I felt confident in even two of them. I realized that no one is ever going to hire a person who says their talents are poetry and short stories, even if they are looking for a poet or a short story writer. If you have the right skills you will have potential employers for your freelance writing jobs.

Lack of confidence is the key reason that freelance writers don’t land jobs. In a digital over-the-e-mail or Skype relationship, the hiring person doesn’t know anything about you. They can’t see your facial expressions, what your room looks like, what you’ve done that day, or how good of a writer you are. Confidence and competence through what you say—type—is the only thing (s)he will or can look for. Be confident.

Good sites for professional freelancers are Guru.com and Elance.com. They have decent paying freelance writing jobs, with good expectations. However, it’s important to remember that aiming high on sites will get you plenty of rejections and maybe not any won bids. However, lower-end freelance sites  such as Scriptlance.com can be just as depressing. There’s nothing quite so cost-inefficient or saddening as shelling out your hard written pieces for little pay. It’s worth it looking at many sites. The pay rate isn’t the only thing that is different. Where one site will demand thousands of articles, another will ask for creative writing.

Is the Freelance Market Too Competitive?

The market is competitive, but it is not too competitive. As mentioned before, there’s a lot of work out there and not enough people to do it. Part of the freelancing hiring process is for employers to weed out the less confident writers and find the ones who are more assertive. Ironically, fewer jobs in today’s economy means less bodies to compete against. A decade ago, getting freelance writing jobs was harder due to the higher employment rates with steady workers writing for their companies. Now that the economy is poorer, temp agencies are looking for contract writers - both in person and online. Freelancers are more in demand now than ever before.

But What If I am Not Good Enough?

You are. Not all people can be a great freelance writer. But most can be a good freelance writer, including you. Anyone who has put in time and effort to be a good writer is better than most people, so your work is of higher value. And you deserve to see that your hard work is published with rewarding pay. However, if you want to be the highest-valued writer on the market, that will take a lot of time, skill, and some luck. There are plenty of people who would be pleased to have a competent writer working for them, and you will be in more demand as your skills improve.

A good way to compete on this market for freelance writing jobs is to have/develop a specialty topic. This can be either a writing skill, such as being adept at researching and writing papers or it can be a branch of knowledge, such as engineering, that makes you savvy at writing technical papers and manuals. The best freelance writers aren’t usually those who spread to every topic. They remain in several select areas and become an expert in it. If you find yourself stuck in a rut, it may be time to branch out and learn something new, or polish up the knowledge and skills you already have.

How Can I Land a Regular Writing Job?

 Freelance Writing JobsSome freelance writers get rightfully nervous as demand for freelance writers and freelance writing jobs may decline any day. Many of them are lucky to land a regular and even permanent writing job with a company. However, this may come with time. Getting into writing for a company can be easy, especially if it’s a company who hires dozens of freelance writers. But this work tends to be cheap and unrewarding in the long run. How can you get into the type of writing you love and excel at?

The answer is in your portfolio. As you gain more work, your portfolio (preferably on your website) will expand. However, that doesn’t mean you have to list every piece of work. Some freelance writers do a variety of work in different genres and formats. Others aim at a couple of select styles of writing. A portfolio allows editors to see your work. And if they’re interested in your level of skill, orientation, and the freelance writing jobs you’ve done, you may have set yourself up for gaining new opportunities.

Conclusion

 No one is holding you back from freelance writing besides yourself. The biggest opponent to a freelance writer is their own confidence and assertiveness. In this time, when temp writing is valued so highly, it’s time to get out there and make yourself known – you can get those freelance writing jobs!

 

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  6 Responses to “Freelance Writing Jobs: On the Market”

  1.  

    I cannot tell you how much valuable information and inspiring insights I gained from this article. I have only dipped my toes into the waters of freelancing, and I keep backing up onto the shore with all the excuses and many of the excuses you list above. Thank you for this, I’ve bookmarked it!

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    •  

      Hey Pamela, nice to talk with you again and thank you for your kind comments. Freelancing is a tough business, but what isn’t? As in so many aspects of writing, we have to be courageous – put one word in front of another and get the job done. I can’t take credit for writing this article, it was written by Lilly who has freelanced for years (as I have). I thought Lilly did a nice job of encourage the aspiring freelancer. I will add that a good way to find freelancing jobs is by networking in your local business community, go to, like, business card exchanges at different networking events – do you know what I mean?

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  2.  

    One site I’d add here is fiverr.com. It’s the bottom of the barrel price wise ($5 a job, as the name implies) but it’s a pretty popular post for freelance blog writers. I use it a lot, I farm out a lot of freelance work for blogs, generally 2-300 word minimums, and paying $5 for a short article normally gets the job done well enough for what I need.

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    •  

      Scott, thanks for commenting. While we don’t endorse any freelance sites, I’m sure our readers will be interested to know about the site and info you posted. Thanks for sharing! Stop back!

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  3.  

    great article, thanks. I’ve got to get onto it today!

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    •  

      Thank you, Emma, and I wish you great freelance writing success! If you write fiction as well check out our great articles on writing a novel and publishing; they offer easy-to-follow guidelines for aspiring writers. Thanks for stopping by and come again!

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