These days many people think freelance writing is something you can just jump into to make money. It’s only when they begin the work when the reality of the occupation hits home.
Writing content as a freelancer allows for a flexible work atmosphere as you’re free to move between clients and select the work that you want to do. However, to be successful as a freelancer, one must be methodical, diligent and punctual with their work.
Here are 10 basic writing tips to keep in mind while working as a freelancer:
- DON’T BE LATE TO WORK – Though some may think this goes without saying, it’s important enough to reiterate. Freelancing is synonymous with “easy money” in some people’s minds. That couldn’t be further from the truth if it wanted to. Freelancing requires a lot of hard work, research and producing fresh, quality content on a daily basis. Set up a schedule for yourself and follow it religiously, just like you would if you were working in an office and not from your home. Start early, work fast, pay attention to the details and the requirements of every assignment and make sure to finish on time.
- WRITE EVERY DAY – The more work you do, the more you can earn. If you are unsure about how much work you can get done, start small. Write 500 words every day. Gradually build on your speed. Keep tabs on it and before you know it, you will be able to produce 1500-2000 words every day. Keep on working hard to increase your speed. Getting faster would mean you will be able to write a larger number of words in a shorter span of time. This will help you accept more work. Keep in mind that practice makes perfect. Don’t sacrifice quality for the sake of quantity. Always try to maintain a high standard in your work.
- RELIGIOUSLY PROOFREAD EVERY ARTICLE BEFORE SUBMISSION – Do not forego revising your article before submission. Devote some time every day to proofread your work. Check the grammar, spellings, punctuation and the validity of the material. No client wants erroneous content.
- READ A LOT – A content writer needs to have great command over the English language. For this you will need to familiarize yourself with the language to the best of your ability. Read fiction, non-fiction, dailies, blogs, instruction manuals and whatever else you can lay your hands on. Do not limit yourself to reading one thing or another; read as much as you can. This will ensure that you build a strong vocabulary and get a habitual understanding of the language which in turn will help you write swiftly and easily.
- RESEARCH THOROUGHLY – Make the internet your best friend. If there’s something you have been assigned to write about, educate yourself about it. The answer to most queries can be found easily through Google or some other search engine. Utilize these resources and make the most of them. Set aside a period of time every day to study the topics you have been assigned to write. This will help you write a concise, concrete and informative article for your client and will guarantee continued employment.
- EDUCATE YOURSELF ABOUT SEO – Whoever aspires to be an earning freelance writer should be well informed about search engine optimization. As a content writer, you overarching target is for your client’s webpage to rank high in the search results. To fulfill this purpose knowledge of how SEO works is necessary. Meticulously read up on this topic and use the knowledge to your advantage while writing content. Popularity and relevance of an article will determine the rank of the content in the search results; if used carefully, this will be beneficial to both the client and yourself.
- DEVELOP A STRATEGY TO FINISH WORK ON TIME – Do not miss the deadlines. This is a near fatal flaw as it creates a bad impression in the mind of your client. If a particular assignment seems particularly tricky, start working on it early. Don’t shorthand the research, but try to be quick. Develop a strategy to complete studying about the topic in details as well as writing the content as proficiently as possible. Make sure to set some time aside for revision.
- AVOID CLICHES – This advice may seem somewhat peculiar but it needs to be heeded. Cliches are words or phrases in the English language that have been used so often everywhere that they have become boring and banal. Try to avoid using clichés in your piece whenever possible. Replace them with original or seldom-used phrases instead. When you’re writing on a formal level, using clichés makes the content look lazy and thoughtless. It is essential to create a good impression to keep the attention of the readers and clichés are counter-productive to that purpose.
- READ WHAT YOU WRITE – This is not just about revising or proofreading your content. As a freelance writer it is your responsibility to achieve higher standards of writing as you go along. Reading what you write, carefully examining it and revising every component of your work will provide a unique perspective which will be useful to help improve yourself.
- WRITE MORE – This advice is for anyone who wants to be a good writer, but it is especially important for freelance writers looking to make a career out of writing content for various clients. As mentioned earlier, write a little every day. Keep writing till you get better at it, and then keep writing more. Produce fresh content daily or just write for the sake of practice. Pay attention to the nuances and rules of the language, make the dictionary and the thesaurus your best friend and focus on achieving excellence as a freelance writer.