melanie johnston writer

How To Start A Freelance Writing Career: 5 Vital Steps To Take


Have you always felt like a writer at heart but never known how to make that passion into a viable career? If so, check out these five vital steps that can make that dream come true for you:

  1. Prepare the right tools
  2. Freelance writing can be exhausting at times and if you use the wrong tools it won’t be long before it takes a serious toll on your body. Make sure you have a desk which properly supports your wrist and a keyboard that responds to the lightest tap. You should have access to cloud storage in case you need to switch devices or, heaven forbid, your computer crashes at an inopportune moment.

  3. Hone your craft
  4. Get used to reading the absolute best examples of writing you can get your hands on. Do this frequently and make notes so your own writing starts to look more polished. It’s also advisable to read up on proofreading and editing techniques. Some clients will have their own editors on staff and others will not work with you twice if they see errors in your work.

  5. Value your work
  6. Take a good look at the industry and see where you fit in. Should you be charging at the very top of the price range or somewhere near the bottom? Be honest with yourself as you decide on this. If you have no skills it’s better to start low, learn more and become better over time. You can also revalue yourself.

  7. Pick a specialty
  8. There are many ways to approach freelance writing. Do you want to ghost write novels? Is creating bulk content more your speed? Decide where you fit best in the industry.

  9. Create a portfolio
  10. Once you know what type of writing you want to sell, put together a portfolio that shows off your best examples. You should be writing regularly just to get good practice but this portfolio should only contain the pieces that make you proud. Your portfolio can be uploaded to freelance sites or be organised in blog format. The method you choose is up to you and should suit your personality and writing style.

These steps aren’t complicated but many writers fail at freelancing because they rush through the first four and fail miserably at the fifth. Give yourself time and your chances of doing well in the business will skyrocket.