13. Become a writer
If you are a kind of person who prefers staying out of the spotlight and transferring the ideas into words, becoming a writer might be the right career for you. Other than your skill and passion for writing, you will not need much to get started.
This is a career that has traditionally been available to only a few people, but with widespread usage of the internet, anyone can become a writer, without much of an investment. Of course, like with most of these jobs, you realize that reputation is everything. That is the only way to ensure that you continually make money online through the career of your choice.
What will you need?
For starters, you will need the skill. The main requirement is that you are good at writing.
You need to be able to convey your ideas correctly and in an engaging way. You also need to know the language you are writing in. Regardless if that is your native language or the language you speak fluently, when writing you need to know how to express yourself correctly, how to format the sentences, how to create this sort of fluency for your readers. Your ideas need to be organized.
The second skill you will need is being able to research and find the information you need. When you write about something you are familiar with, the process of writing is much quicker and smoother. However, most writers sometimes have to write about something they might not be quite familiar with. In this case, they need to be able to find trustworthy information and learn the topic themselves to be able to write about it.
Next, you will need an environment that helps you concentrate and stay focused on the work. For some, it is listening to music, some prefer writing outdoors, etc. If you are working from home, it is good to have your special place for writing, preferably one that allows you to isolate from the rest of the family and thus avoid any distractions.
Finally, you will need software for writing. There are a lot of tools you can use for this purpose, and here are some of the most popular:
- Word – Offline tool for text editing with lots of options for formatting, creating layouts, table of contents, templates, etc.
- Google Docs – An online tool for creating text files, with predesigned formatting options for headings, but plenty of tools for customization, add-ons, and even templates.
- Apple dictation – The tool is a built-in feature of a Mac computer enabling you to convert the spoken words into text. It is very helpful when you have loads of ideas but cannot type quite fast enough.
- Bear writer – An online app that allows you to quickly access your work from any device and keep everything organized.
- BlankPage – It is a subscription service that helps you write more, offering guidance, help, and motivation during the process of writing. It helps you set goals, continue work from any device, etc.
- Hemingway App – This tool shows you hints on how to improve your writing, and it is primarily focused on style. While showing alternatives and possible confusing parts, the tool helps you make your text more readable.
- Grammarly – It is a tool that helps you improve writing by highlighting grammatical, spelling, and style mistakes. The tool also suggests one or several alternatives for enhancing your vocabulary.
- ProWritingAid – This editing tool helps you with grammar, style issues, and improve your writing with tools such as word explorer and contextual thesaurus.
Some of the types of content you can create as a writer include:
- Blog articles
- Landing pages
The first option is to work for yourself. You will publish the work under your name, and you will directly regulate sales. Working this way offers lots of flexibility and independence, but it also comes with more responsibility and management for making your content available, promoting it, etc. You will have more freedom when it comes to choosing the topics you write about, your style, etc.
Monetization opportunities include selling your content on online platforms (such as Amazon and Smashwords) or creating your online shop where you would sell your writing. A great benefit of publishing your work independently is the possibility to earn passive income. If you have evergreen content, or for example, if you write fiction, you will spend some time writing, but earn from that work in the years to come. This is how you create a steady source of passive income.
Working for others
When it comes to working for others, this comes with more assurance as you will get paid once the work is done. Usually, when you work for clients, they have a specific topic they want you to write about, and sometimes they even provide the exact title.
With this kind of work, you will avoid publishing, management, and promotion of your work. The main drawback is that you will continuously have to work. You cannot transform this into a passive income. Once you complete the writing for the client and get paid, the client receives the rights to your content. So if any sale comes from your work in the future, it will be your client’s earning.
Where to find jobs?
If you choose to go for independent work, you will use one of the platforms that support selling digital products (Chapter 3) or your own online shop.
On the other hand, if you want to look for clients offering opportunities for writers, here are some commonly used places:
The process of cold email including contacting brands or companies directly and offering your services as a writer. You can choose the brands you would be interested in, and this might help you find great gigs.
ProBlogger Job Board
ProBlogger gathers a large community of bloggers and those interested in using blogging in their business. The job board represents a section for companies to advertise their job opening and find writers anywhere in the world.
Platforms such as Upwork, Freelancer, and People Per Hour offer a lot of opportunities to find writing jobs. Through these platforms, you build your experience and reputation, which eventually helps you raise your rates. A lot of writers report that the rates they get on freelancing platforms are significantly lower than industry standards and comparing to the gigs they could get otherwise. Access to the large directory of open jobs and the fact that your payments are usually protected and guaranteed are some of the reasons why writers still prefer handling all the work through the freelancing platforms.
The social network enables you to create an outstanding profile and show off your skills, while you also get a chance to keep up with new writing gigs.
The platform Constant Content offers writing services and hires writers to work in their team. To get this job opportunity, you will need to go through the application process and be approved.
This is the quick list to get you started, but as you begin exploring the field, you will see that there will be many more opportunities to cash in on your writing skills.