This short article is for complete beginners at freelance writing online. I consider you a complete beginner, even if you've made hundreds of thousands of dollars as an offline writer. Writing to sell online is DIFFERENT. OK. Now, come closer, I want to whisper in your ear... (Whispering) Start small. Make $10 online. Then $100, then $1000 and so on. Why you should start smallDid I say that writing to sell online is different? I did. If you're a beginning writer, you're dazed. You don't know where to start. If you're an established writer, you have methods of working. Some work well online, and others do not. Either way, the online world is a new country, and I've no doubt that you have a brain-full of "musts." You must do this, you must learn that... Those musts will cripple you, and in Sell Your Writing Online NOW (SYWON) we aim to get rid of your preconceived ideas in the first four lessons, laying the groundwork so that you'll have a profitable writing career very quickly. You need to focus, and SELL quickly, because nothing will happen in your career until you sell something. This can be scary, and the sooner you get over this hurdle the better.So please start small.Write an article for pay. Edit something for someone. Write anything (but keep it short), and sell it, preferably today. The more time you spend thinking about what you could and would do, if this or that happened, or you did this or that, the more you'll procrastinate.Start small. Make ten dollars. That will show you that it's possible for YOU to make money writing online. That will make a big impression on you, and you'll gradually become aware of all the possibilities. Start small. Start today. Start NOW.
Are you convinced that you have no time to write? Strangely enough, this is a problem for all writers, whether they're new, or are full-time professional writers. In this article you'll discover the one simple secret which ensures that you'll find the time to write each day.
I've been a professional writer for some 30 years. In my early years, I struggled to find time too. Then I discovered one simple tactic which solved the time problem for good.
I'll tell you what it is in a moment. It sounds simple, but don't be fooled: it has immense power. I know this, because over the years I've often failed to use this tactic, and when I did, I struggled. Life events overtook me, and I ended up complaining that I had "no time" -- and often blaming others -- until I came to my senses and realized what I was doing.
Here's the simple strategy: make writing the first thing you do every day.
Yes, it really is that simple, whether writing is all you (supposedly, anyway) do in your work day, or whether writing is a sideline for you.
Here's how it works for me. Before I clear the decks after my work day ends, I decide which major project I'll work on for an hour in the morning. I prepare my notes.
The next morning, I grab a cup of coffee, and write for an hour. I don't read email, nor do I do anything else work-related, until I've written for one hour on the project I chose the evening before.
Then I go on with my day. Of course, I write much more in the course of my day, because writing is what I do. I always find that my early-morning session has warmed me up, and I get more done in all areas, because that early session has kick-started my productivity.
Many years ago, when my children were small, and I was running a business and writing, I got up at 4 a.m. every morning to write. I got a lot done. I was happy. My family was happy.
These days I don't get up quite as early. But I still make writing the first thing I do every day. I urge you to do it too, so that you have time to write.
I'm sorry about the lack of blogging over the past few weeks. I've been busy in the best way possible: creating new products for you which solve the writing challenges you have.My most recent product is the Write A Book Collection, which is getting a wonderful response. I've been coaching writers through it, and their inspiration and motivation inspires me, too. If you've purchased the Collection, here's something which may interest you.I've just completed another product, which will go into pre-launch in the next few days. Tip: all my pre-launch products are offered to the ezine subscribers first, as a very special offer, so if you're not a subscriber, you're missing out on these. After that, I'll be releasing another writing guide you shouldn't miss, if your writing income is below five figures a month. I'm very excited about this guide, because for many writers this information will be the key which unlocks the door to an outstanding career. Shush! I never speak about new products before their release, so I can't say more, but believe me when I tell you that this one will get you excited. :-) New: watch for affiliate programs for my productsOver the years, writers have complained about the lack of affiliate programs for my writing guides. Unfortunately, some products just don't lend themselves to affiliate promotions, simply because I offer coaching with most of them, and there's only one of me. If affiliates promoted my products, I'd just have too many coaching sessions to handle. Julia (my wonderful assistant) is taking on some of the coaching duties now, so in the next few months some of my products will have affiliate programs. You'll be able to promote these products to your own readers on your sites and blogs, to help them, and to make nice little commissions yourself too. So that's what I've been doing over the past weeks. I'm very excited about the rest of 2010, and I hope you will be too.I almost forgot to mention: Penny Swift has joined us as a contributor to the Fab Freelance Writing Blog, so please make her feel at home by commenting on her posts. Penny's building her own wonderful writing career, and she'll help you to do the same.
However, before you consider becoming an author, I'd like you to think about WHY you might want to do this. Write down your reasons and examine your own motivation.
If you're an established writer, writing a book may well be the next, most logical step for you in your writing career. It will help you to establish your credibility as a ghostwriter, for example. There are unlimited opportunities for you to act as a ghostwriter for celebrities, as well as for people who just want someone to help them write their autobiography, or family history.
If you're a beginning writer, you may want to build a career as a genre writer -- someone who writes mystery, romance, or historical novels. This is an excellent career path, and there are many opportunities open to you.
For writers, email messages are not merely a communications mechanism, they're also the way to get more writing clients, keep all our clients happy, and make much more money.
Unfortunately, very few people use email effectively -- and I'm not merely targeting writers here, this applies to everyone online. It even applies to individuals and companies which make the greater portion of their income online... Go figure. :-)
Let's look at ways in which you can not only get your email messages read, but which will also create an impression of confidence and professionalism, as well as inspire trust in your recipients.
1. Think from the point of view of your recipients
I receive over 400 email messages most days. This is average for anyone who operates online. Some people receive many more messages than this. A mass-market magazine editor I know receives over 1000 messages a day.
To avoid being overwhelmed when you're dealing with volume, you resort to triage. For example, I scan the senders and subject lines and batch-delete anything I don't want, don't have time for, or which is obviously spam.
I also have filters in place, so that messages from SYWON students are sent directly to a SYWON folder, and messages which are obviously from writers are sent to folders which Julia manages.
Therefore, since your recipients will judge the value or otherwise of your messages strictly on the sender and subject line, it's vital that you give some thought to this.
Tell the recipient exactly what your message is about in the subject line. For example, if you're sending a magazine query, the subject line should consist of: "Query: ___________ (the title of your article)".
2. Never ever assume that the recipient knows who you are
In the first few lines of your message, introduce yourself. Yes, do this even if you've corresponded with the recipient in the past. Remember that everyone struggles with the volume of email messages they receive. Unless you're a close personal friend, or are otherwise important to the recipient, it's unlikely that they'll remember you instantly when they're focused on clearing their Inbox as quickly as possible.
You could write:
I'm _______(your name.) I spoke to you at...
I'm _______(your name), and I'm sending you a query for __________ (magazine, website)
I'm a __________ (a writer, a freelance writer) and I'm writing because _______ (your reason for sending the message)
Telling the recipients who you are even applies when you're sending out bulk emails to a list -- say your client list. Take the time to introduce yourself in the first paragraph, or use email stationery which clearly states who you are in the first few lines.
3. Keep messsages short, BUT do include everything the recipient needs to know
When it comes to email, shorter is always better. However, while keeping your messages brief, take a few moments to frame each message you write, so that the recipient knows why you're writing, and exactly what you want him/ her to do.
4. Make it easy for the recipient to respond
The easier you make it for your recipients to respond, the more likely it is that they will.
When you're dealing with your writing clients it's especially vital that you give them a choice of ways to get in touch. Include your landline number, and cell number too. People who aren't writers are usually happier talking than writing. :-)
Email is a powerful tool, but it's also a royal pain. Use these simple tips to ensure that your messages are read with pleasure, and that you get the responses you want.