Home Business Idea - Freelance Writer

Being a Freelance Writer is a Good Business or Work from Home Job

Ever think about becoming a freelance writer? Many people who like to write wish that writing were their profession. Actually, it can be and while getting established as an independent writer is not especially easy, it may not be as hard as you might think.

Writing is one profession that is especially suitable for those who want to work from home. That's because most types of writing today only require a computer, an Internet connection, and word processing software.

The Internet has really accelerated the demand for freelance writers, especially those who can appreciate the subtle differences between writing for print and writing for web publication. There are some very good online web content writing courses available if you think you'd like to learn more about those subtle differences.

There are some very definite advantages to taking a writing course - even if you think you know all the ropes and can write very well. For one, you'll have an instructor and possibly other students in the course critique your writing. This can be very helpful, as you may be making mistakes that you weren't even aware of. And, you'll be able to show the course on your resume, giving you a leg up on anyone who has never had any formal training. If you offer writing as a home business service, this training can also give you a competitive advantage over others who haven't had the opportunity for advanced training.

Types of Freelance Writers

There are plenty of types of writing that are in demand. You just need to decide what you'd like to do and what you think you'd be best at. Here are just a few areas to consider:

  • Web content writing - The range of topics for writing on the web are unlimited, as is the demand. All sites need good content. If you know anything about search engine optimization or are willing to learn, you may be able to command a higher rate writing keyword rich web content.
  • Medical writing - Pharmaceutical companies need technical writers who are very knowledgeable about medicine and about FDA requirements.
  • Technical writing - If you like computers and software, if you have an engineering background, or even if you like to take things apart and put them back together again, this could be a great field for you.
  • Marketing and advertising copywriting - If you can effectively pitch a product or service or can get consumers to take a desired action, such as make a purchase or sign up for something, you could be highly successful in this area.
  • Product catalog writer - Writing compelling product descriptions can lead to a great business or work from home job as well. Because so many stores now also have an online presence, and many of the smaller to medium-sized online retailer operators are not terribly competent writers, the demand is out there for this type of writing.
  • Blogging - Again, the topics are unlimited. Blogs need frequently updated posts and posting blogs is relatively easy as most use a word-processor-like software tool to write, edit and manage blog posts. If you are web junkie, you could have fun doing this if you write about topics you're passionate about.
  • Resume writer - Lots of demand here, as well, if you have the ability to craft great resumes or are willing to learn. Many job seekers don't, that's why your services would be in demand. You would be rewarded each time a client told you they landed a job in part due to the great resume you prepared for them.
  • Business plan writer - If you're business savvy and can write clearly, you can also offer your services writing business plans.

Finding Writing Work/Clients

There are a number of ways to find clients if you want to be a freelance writer or to find writing jobs if you want to work steadily for someone else. If you want to write for magazines and other print publications, you'll want to get familiar with the various writers' markets out there. You can tap the knowledge of someone who's had direct experience.

There are a number of websites where freelance writers can look for work and promote themselves. Probably the largest of these sites are eLance and Guru.com. Most offer various levels of membership, some of which are free. I have used Guru for several years now to find writing projects and also to find writers to help me with some of my projects when I'm overloaded with projects for my own home business as Web Content, Technical, and Technical Marketing Writer. In fact, one of my regular Guru assistants was recently able to quit her day job and write full time as a freelancer. If you want to start a writing home business, you can promote it through your home business website as well. All of the content for your site will become published writing samples. Writing for article syndication sites can also get you some experience and get your writing published, although you typically won't get paid for your material. Still, article marketing can be an effective tool for showcasing your writing talent.

Freelance Writer Compensation

Because of the relative ease of entry, very low start-up costs and a better than average opportunity to work from home, writing is a highly competitive business. As a result, you may be disappointed at first because your competition is offering rates that are less than you can live on. You may not be able to charge what you'd like to if you are charging per word or per piece, especially at first, but when you get efficient in knocking out articles or web content ‚Äčni your area of interest, you may be able to generate enough volume to keep yourself going financially.

If you can find a specialty area that you are well-suited to, that commands decent pay, and get some training and experience under your belt, being a freelance writer can be very enjoyable.

Freelancing Guide