What is Freelance Writing? (+ Answers to All Your Questions)

What is Freelance Writing? (+ Answers to All Your Questions)

What is Freelance Writing?

What is freelance writing?

That’s the million-dollar question, isn’t it?

You’ve heard all the horny tales approximately the glamorous lifestyles of a freelance writer.

Working from a seaside on an exotic island. Making money for your pajamas. Getting paid to jot down for your favored courses.

Or maybe you’re just looking for a way to pay your bills on time (for once).

Either manner, you’re excited. You may additionally have ultimately located a direction to turning the thing you like to do maximum — writing — into a source of earnings.

Sounds terrific, proper?

Problem is, you still aren’t quite certain what freelance writing is, what’s worried, the way you discover freelance writing opportunities that pay, or what you’ll want to get began.

This submit will solution some of these questions and extra. By the time you’re finished analyzing, you’ll have all of the information needed to decide if freelance writing is right for you.

Sound accurate?

We’ll begin with the maximum simple query…

What is Freelance Writing?

Freelance writing happens while a self-hired author is hired to complete a writing undertaking for pay.

The mission may be any writing venture — from a brief product description to a three hundred-page eBook.

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What Exactly Does a Freelance Writer Do?

Many writers eagerly leap into freelance writing wondering they’ll spend all day writing.

They don’t apprehend that freelance writing is a commercial enterprise. And there’s plenty more to this enterprise than writing to your underclothes.

A a success freelance creator can anticipate to spend plenty in their time acting the subsequent 4 actions:

1. Marketing & Networking

Early on, the bulk of your time as a contract creator may be spent promoting your services.

The unique advertising moves you take will depend on what works nice for your niche.

Some regular advertising and marketing sports include enticing on social media, writing guest posts, sending pitches to potential customers, networking, making use of to process advertisements, and building your online presence.

At first, you’ll be throwing matters at the wall to look what sticks.

The trick is to measure the consequences of your advertising efforts, identify what’s running, and repeat it.

2. Writing, Proofreading, & Editing

Once you’ve negotiated the info of an project, the a laugh component starts offevolved — writing.

An clean metric to gauge the fulfillment of your freelance writing business is seeing how a great deal time you spend on writing as compared to other sports. The greater you’re writing, the more money you’re making.

You’ll additionally spend masses of time enhancing your work — at least within the starting.

Once you’re making enough to be a full-time freelance writer, you may outsource modifying to a expert copywriter.

3. Professional Development

Abe Lincoln as soon as said: “If I had 6 hours to chop down a tree, I’d spend the primary 4 sprucing my axe.”

Like Abe, a freelance writer should spend a large amount of time sprucing their equipment and skillset.

Professional development includes developing your writing abilities, enhancing your content material creation talents, retaining abreast of the ultra-modern enterprise trends, and more.

4. Administrative Actions

Every freelance writer’s least favored part of the job is the executive work.

Admin paintings consists of sending invoices, searching down clients to get paid, organizing taxes, filing commercial enterprise-associated office work (LLC’s), and whatever else worried in the day-to-day execution of your task.

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What are the Different Types of Freelance Writing?

So, what forms of writing are freelancers employed to do?

The short solution is anything.

Any form of writing a agency needs to outsource may be reduced in size to a contract writer.

But in terms of categorization, freelance writing may be broken down by using the sort of target market and the kind of content material.

Audience Type

As a freelance creator, you’ll both be writing for a B2B target audience or a B2C target audience.

B2B means “commercial enterprise to business” — its content objectives professional audiences and regularly entails breaking down complex topics into step-by way of-step strategies.

Your B2B customers will encompass alternate publications and businesses that sell to different companies.

B2C manner “business to patron.” Its content targets regular people, and may be informative or entertaining in nature.

Clients inside the B2C target audience will encompass lifestyle courses, amusement blogs, health blogs, and more.

Some guides target a combination of B2B and B2C. But for the benefit of your writing career, you’ll want to focus on writing for one type of target market (at least within the starting).

Content Type

Another way to categorize freelance writing is by means of the sort of content material you create.

Some not unusual varieties of content include:





White Papers


Press Releases

Case Studies


Creative Writing

Sales Letters

Grant Writing

Technical Writing

Video Scripts

Email Marketing

Instructional Writing


Research Reports

Social Media Content


Product Descriptions

Don’t worry. No one expects you to understand a way to create all of these things.

In truth, you’d be a idiot to attempt. Successful freelance writers focus on creating just a few forms of content material.

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How Do I Start Freelance Writing?

One of the various matters that makes freelance writing such an attractive career alternative is the low barrier of entry.

In other phrases, you likely have already got maximum of what you’ll need to get commenced. And what you don’t have can be fairly easy to obtain.

To get began as a contract writer, you’ll want:

A Laptop, Computer, or Other Writing Device

The maximum critical detail of any writing profession is your weapon — your writing tool.

You can write the use of whatever device you opt for, which include your laptop, smartphone, or tablet.

Word Processor

You can use something word processor you’re most comfortable with. However, it have to additionally be like minded together with your purchaser’s preferred preference.

I advocate the use of Google Docs. Your writing is stored on-line and can be effortlessly accessed by way of all of us you permit.

Writing Skills

Writing tools are useless without a professional author to wield them. So you’ll have to broaden your craft.

In unique, you’ll want proficiency with search engine marketing (search engine optimization), decent writing and editing abilties, and an know-how of content advertising.

But don’t prevent there. The satisfactory freelance writers aren’t frightened of tough work, and they’re always on the hunt for brand spanking new pointers, hints, and physical activities to up their writing recreation.

Writing Samples

A portfolio that demonstrates the first-class of your writing and your potential to get effects can be the most important tool for getting clients to rent you.

You should spend a considerable amount of time growing a writing portfolio that wows potential customers. This includes amassing first-rate writing samples, obtaining testimonials, and amassing facts (traffic stats, leads generated) at the effects of your work.

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How Can I Find Freelance Writing Jobs?

One day, your writing will communicate for itself and you gained’t want to seek out writing jobs.

Your customers will be so thrilled together with your paintings, they’ll refer you to their colleagues. Others will study your content on a competitor’s website and beat down your door to rent you.

But until that day arrives, you’ll need to slog it out with the relaxation folks.

There are many techniques for buying freelance writing gigs, many of which can be determined right here.

But in popular, the numerous techniques for purchasing freelance writing paintings fall into 3 classes:

1. Job Boards

Job forums and content mills are websites that aggregate task advertisements from businesses looking to rent freelance writers.

Some famous task forums encompass Upwork, ProBlogger, LinkedIn Jobs, BloggingPro, and FreelanceWritingJobs.Com.

Job boards provide a large selection of jobs you may browse via to locate some thing that suits you. Want to jot down magazine articles? Find paintings as a ghostwriter? WordPress professional? Professional creator for small organizations?

If you may wreck via the noise, task forums can join you to some quite moneymaking writing opportunities.

But therein lies the rub.

You’ll be competing against hundreds of different freelance writers for the equal jobs. Many jobs will ask for revel in you don’t have. And it can be difficult to distinguish your self from the opposition.

2. Networking

A family member hires you to create content for their website. Another freelance author recommends you to a former purchaser. An editor refers you to every other editor.

These are all examples of getting writing jobs thru networking.

When you start out, you can now not have much of a community to speak of.

But if you make investments time in cultivating a solid community, it is able to finally change into a beneficial supply of freelance jobs.

Having a robust network is like having an army of human beings operating to get you jobs.

And even as it’s still as much as you to persuade the purchaser to lease you, a task referred thru your network places you in the strongest viable function.


Because a person else vouched for you. They placed their popularity on the line for your desire.

Three. Pitching

Pitching includes targeting a agency or publication you need to write for, crafting an idea that you suppose they’ll like, then sending them an e-mail provide.

You can either pitch an concept or pitch on spec.

When you pitch an idea, you’re sending an editor a subject, headline, and quick synopsis for an editorial. But you don’t truely write it until they approve.

When you pitch on spec (speculation), you write the object earlier than the editor approves it. Then you send them a short description of the thing with a link to it.

Pitching is tremendous because it offers you the maximum manage. You determine who you want to put in writing for and what you need to jot down.

More importantly, it offers new writers a way to cut thru the noise and exhibit their abilities to clients upfront.

The big danger with pitching is that you may spend plenty of valuable time crafting a pitch simply to get rejected.

Further Reading: How to Write a Pitch That’ll Wow Editors & Clients (+ Examples)

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Do You Need a Degree to Be a Freelance Writer?

Not at all.

I even have a degree in digital filmmaking that’s worth much less than the paper it’s published on. Thankfully, none of my writing customers has ever requested me about it.

At the quit of the day, clients most effective care about one issue — whether or not you may do the process and supply results.

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How Much Money Do Freelance Writers Make?

This is a complicated query. And the answer is: it relies upon.

PayScale says the common freelance creator earns among $21,000 – $110,000 per year.

So in different words, between a bit and lots… thank you PayScale.

Let’s try to interrupt it down in a way that’s without a doubt beneficial.

The amount a freelance creator earns relies upon on:

Their rate

The length in their projects

The amount of monthly initiatives they have got

A freelance author’s rate is typically calculated in step with phrase. A beginner can count on to earn between $0.10 and $zero.15 consistent with word.

So for a 2,000-phrase article, a novice can expect to be paid $200 to $three hundred.

If the freelancer has 7 habitual monthly assignments (all at 2,000 phrases each), they are able to anticipate to make $1,four hundred to $2,100 per month.

To make extra money, you’ll need to:

Increase your price

Get more writing initiatives

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How Do Freelance Writers Get Paid?

You were given the activity.

You spent hours writing and polishing your content material until it become simply right.

And you submitted it to the purchaser and they loved it.

Now comes the instant you’ve been watching for… getting paid!

Getting paid is one of the most complicated and least famous elements of freelance writing.

Everybody wishes money. But writers tend to be ignorant and reserved about the technique of really getting it.

So let’s shed a little light in this problem.


The first step to getting paid is sending your purchaser an bill.

An bill is basically only a description of what you’re being paid for, how plenty you’re being paid, and how the charge is to be brought. It’s used commonly for report maintaining.

Don’t worry. Most customers will let you know how to invoice them and what facts to consist of.

If you and the customer use PayPal, you may send invoices immediately via their software.

You also can use different invoicing software like Freshbooks or Harvest.


Next comes the technique of charge.

How you receives a commission is usually entirely depending on the customer. While a few customers are bendy, many have established methods of doing matters.

Some customers nevertheless ship paper checks, however most customers inside the digital age use  fee offerings like PayPal.

Business Account

The very last payment consideration is the financial institution account your money is going into.

In the beginning, it’s ok to deposit cash directly into a personal account.

But as commercial enterprise picks up, you’ll want to open a commercial enterprise bank account to preserve your freelance cash separate from your personal price range.

Separating money earned thru freelancing makes matters simpler come tax time and is a need if you need the felony protections of an LLC.

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Who Hires Freelance Writers (and Why)?

When human beings historically think about freelance writing, they generally consider newspapers and magazines.

After all, that’s where the huge money become within the beyond.

And whilst newspapers and magazines are nevertheless an amazing source of paid gigs, the biggest possibility for freelance work today lays in content material advertising.

According to marketplace research from Technavio, agencies are set to increase spending on content material advertising from $195 billion in 2016 to $416 billion by way of 2021.

The cause they’re spending greater is due to the fact first rate content:

Builds brand awareness

Increases conversion prices

Costs much less than traditional marketing

And thankfully for freelance writers, most businesses don’t have the team of workers or resources in-residence to create all of this content via themselves.

Companies that understand the value of first rate content material are inclined to pay top-greenback to freelance writers who can create it.

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How Do I Pick My Freelance Writing Niche?

One of the most critical profession selections a contract creator makes is choosing a gap.


Because your niche will have a prime effect for your ability to get jobs, your incomes capability, and what sort of you revel in your work.

You have to pick out a writing area of interest that:

You enjoy writing approximately

Capitalizes in your expertise

Maximizes your incomes capacity

Step 1: Identify your areas of experience/understanding

What jobs have you ever had in the past? Are you certified in any abilities or topics?

Start your area of interest-hunt by means of making a list of regions where you have experience and understanding.

These topics may be less complicated to put in writing about because of your current understanding base.

And perhaps more importantly, it’ll be easier to persuade customers to lease you if you have validated enjoy.

Step 2: Identify subjects you’re captivated with

When you’re enthusiastic about your topic, you’ll have more a laugh writing approximately it.

More importantly, ardour translates right into a better product, with the intention to please each the reader and the patron.

Make a listing of subjects that you experience talking, analyzing, and writing about.

Step three: Identify gaps & possibilities inside the marketplace

Finally, you’ll want to validate the marketplace ability of the subjects you identified in steps 1 and 2.

Do a few research to locate guides related to each topic that you may write for. Look for:

Trade courses and magazines

Businesses that have started out their own blogs associated with the subject

You can find such courses within the Writer’s Market. Or you could strive Googling versions of the phrase “[topic] + blogs”.

Topics with masses of capability customers could be extra worthwhile and ought to be prioritized.

Step four: Identify overlaps

Identify 1-2 topics that satisfy all 3 criteria: expertise, ardour, and opportunity.

Congratulations, you’ve determined your area of interest!

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What Makes Freelance Writing so Attractive?

It’s not all about the money.

Writers are interested in freelance writing for a bunch of various motives, every precise to their state of affairs.

But some of the maximum regularly referred to points of interest encompass:


Want to be your personal boss? Who doesn’t?

As a contract creator, you’ll have complete manipulate over whilst you work. You set your very own hours, and paintings as a lot or as low as you please.

You decide whether or not to make freelance writing your complete-time task or your part-time facet hustle.


Working from domestic means you can say goodbye to dress codes and place of work-suitable apparel. You have carte-blanche over your whole work day.

Do you need to work to your pajamas today? So be it.

Want to punch out early? So be it.

Want to vape even as you write (like I do)? Knock your self out.


The global of freelance writing is a meritocracy.

Your incomes potential is directly related in your skills and your capability to get results. Say good-bye to workplace politics and company butt-kissing.

And as we’ve already discussed, there’s no degree required and no barrier to access. Anyone who puts inside the time and sweat-fairness can do the task and get customers.


For people who love writing, the largest perk of freelance writing is the possibility to make a residing doing what they love to do. ‘Nuff said.

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What’s The Most Difficult Part About Being a Freelance Writer?

Freelance writing isn’t all sunshine and roses.

The task can get hard. And not everyone can hack it.

There are a few problems you must be aware about and prepare to encounter in case you’re planning on getting into this sport.


The power that includes being the boss sounds cool.

But with energy comes obligation. And some flounder under the load of that duty.

The downside of autonomy is that it calls for area and decisiveness. It’s as much as you to keep away from distractions. It’s as much as you to make selections approximately what to spend your time running on.

And in case you fall off-music or fail to finish assignments, you’ve got handiest yourself to blame.


The concept of running from domestic sounds noticeably attractive — until you in reality do it. Every… unmarried… day.

It’s easy to take the social nature of an workplace setting for granted. It’s clean to count on you may manage spending whole days via your self.

But the reality of it makes some sense lonely and stir-crazy.

Lack Of Stability

Say good-bye to regular weekly paychecks.

With freelance writing, not simplest will your earnings range depending upon your workload, however you may frequently cross weeks with out getting paid.

Also, clients can drop you immediately, leaving you scrambling to fill the gap.

Lots Of Research & Learning

Many assignments will require you to analyze topics you already know little to nothing about.

This may be right or bad relying upon how a whole lot you revel in learning new matters.

I show up to love exploring unfamiliar topics. And to be successful as a contract blogger or creator, you need to too.

Still, the gaining knowledge of curve can add hours to the time you spend on a challenge. And time spent getting to know is time not spent completing new initiatives and getting paid.

So, What is Freelance Writing? It’s a Way to Get Paid to Do What You Love.

Remember when you first clicked in this post?

You had no idea what freelance writing changed into. No clue what abilties were concerned. And no concept how to get started out.

Now, all your initial questions had been responded.

And at the same time as you continue to have much to examine, you have all the information you want to determine and get began.

So, it’s time to determine.

Do you watched you can hack it as a freelance writer?

Do you need to show your ardour for phrases right into a rewarding career?

Are you geared up to forestall fantasizing about your dream lifestyles and begin building it?

If so, then it’s time to take the following step.

Check out our article on “How To Become A Freelance Writer, Starting From Scratch“, and start your journey now!


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