This article is part of the Side Hustle Stories.
What I love about freelance writing is that the barriers to entry are very, very low.
If you can type, then you can get started today if you want.
What I hate about freelance writing is that there are all sorts of people who believe they are “experts” because they can write.
To give you the story straight and only provide you with practical advice, I’ve called in Ali Luke.
Ali is consistently featured on popular blogs around the web and is one of the more well–known writers in the industry. (In fact, she contributed to Passive Panda’s Freelancing Series.)
Due to her experience — and because she teaches writers as well — she seemed like the perfect person to write this article.
Here is Ali’s story in her own words.
What she does
I do a whole mix of things!
I started out with the paid writing, though, and that’s been a consistent source of income for me for over three years now.
What she gets paid
I typically get $40 – $60 per blog post of 600 – 800 words.
I write fast, so it takes me under an hour to write and edit each post.
How you can get started as a freelance writer
The great thing about the blogging world is that it’s very easy to get a foot on the ladder — unlike traditional journalism or publishing.
Huge, well–known blogs like Copyblogger will take guest posts from total newbies … so long as they can write.
I normally advise that would–be paid bloggers build up a relationship with an editor first, before asking for work. If you’re keen to start making money this week, though, you can speed things up a little.
It’s really just a two–step process.
- Look through the blogs which you’re already familiar with. Which of them use paid writers? (You can usually tell by regularly recurring names — and many sites will have a page aimed at would-be contributors.)
- Write a short, polite email to the editor.
You can use something like this as a template:
I really enjoy reading [name of the blog]. I’d love to write for you, and I wondered if you’re open to taking on paid writers at present? [Note: modify this sentence to suit you and the blog — if they’ve recently advertised for paid writers, obviously make reference to that.]
I’ve attached a couple of samples of my work, so you can get an idea of my style. I’ve written for [name any blogs/magazines/etc that you’ve written for in the past].
A couple of topics I could write about for you are [suggested post title] and [suggested post title].
Let me know what you think!
Obviously, if you already know a particular editor (perhaps you comment regularly on the blog or you follow them on Twitter) then your pitch is more likely to be successful.
Finally, there are several job boards devoted to blogging jobs. However, the advertisers often get inundated with applications, and you might not hear back for several weeks (if at all).
My two favorite sources of job listings are:
Thanks so much to Ali for the tips!
As you can see, there really is no reason you can’t start freelance writing this week. Extra income is just a few keystrokes away.
Have thoughts or suggestions of your own? Leave them in the comments below.