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Freelance writing is for a type of personality that can take on risk, work with a variety of people, market him or herself, and still pursue their aim as writers. It's not for every writer. The contract writer is engaged in the marketplace and writes for it.

Some freelancers prefer to be called contract writers because they do independently contract out their talents.

Freelancing has little to do with your education degrees and a lot to do with your ability to persevere and continually market your talents.

Freelancing is a constant battle to market your material. The tools to do this include market books, query letters, schedules and forms that tell you what material is out, to whom, and for how long. It's no different than any other business that must continually sell itself and its product to interested buyers. It's a competitive marketplace.

Eventually you learn to market the same material to different buyers, learn how to get repeat business, learn how to find the higher range of paying markets, and how to estimate your earnings and build toward that goal.

Talk with any freelancer and they will tell you they have written every conceivable type of writing for every type of publication, and even, different sections and departments of the same publication.

But, eventually, they specialize and develop many slants for the same specialty.

Editors are ravenous for new and exciting material. Do the research, the interviewing, the fact-checking, the writing, and the negotiating well and you will be an excellent freelance writer.

We recommend "Writing Freelance" by Christine Adamec as an excellent introduction to what it takes to be a freelancer. Christine has been a freelance writer for many years and knows her stuff.

Other book recommendations:
Guide to Freelance Writing by ASJA
Handbook of Magazine Article Writing ed. by Jean Fredette
Online Markets for Writers by Anthony and Paul Tedesco
Guide to Freelance Rates & Standard Practice by National Writers Union
2009 Writer's Market

If you have any questions about careers in freelance writing don't hesitate to ask!

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David Eide
Copyright 2000-2016

Jasper asks, "What are the thrills and frills of the freelance writing profession? What does it take to become a freelance writer, in terms of education?"

David Eide
copyright 2000-2016