Want to write? Good. Someone wants to pay you to do it, according to Freelancer.com. Between 2017 and 2018, the number of online writing jobs posted on Freelancer rose by 535 percent.
To be clear: Freelancer.com doesn’t necessarily post the best-paying jobs. But it does post jobs. And if you’re trying to get going as a writer you need clips.
The focus of my online course is not just writing your own website. It’s writing a blog people will read. Whether that’s a personal blog or a blog that will pay you to write is up to you.
For some people, getting their own thoughts published is the main goal. But I’m here to tell you that you can also bring in some decent coin – or even make a living – as a freelance writer. I haven’t held a square job since November 2002.
In order to get hired, though, you need to know what you’re doing.
How to learn your craft? Practice, practice, practice – and maybe take a class.
Developing a writing life
The old saying is that a writer writes. So write. Write a lot. Write in a journal or on your website. Find a writing group, or even just a writing buddy, to share knowledge, and to hold yourself accountable if need be.
Or, yeah, start a blog. It doesn’t have to cost much, or anything at all.
Grayson Bell, who’s kind of a big deal in the personal finance blogosphere, has written “Your Guide to Blogging on WordPress,” a free course that explains this free self-hosting program. Grayson has helped a lot of bloggers, and I highly recommend his expertise.
Did I mention that it’s free?
Training for online writing jobs
Not everything is free. My online course normally costs $147, but a short-term discount* is currently available. As someone who’s made a living as a writer for 35 years, I have a lot to teach.
Here’s what one WABPWR alum took away from the course:
“It taught me that I am allowed to have an authentic voice in what I write…In other words, my opinion does matter so just own it and get on with it.
“I’m one of those people that tend to give too much detail and I now realize that speaking/writing less can have a bigger impact than being long-winded (or just trying too hard to prove a point).
“This is the writing course to take if you’re serious about improving your writing but don’t want to feel like you’re back in some high-school English class with a teacher who no longer has the passion for the written word … Donna gives us permission and the tools to find our unique voice and to express it well.”
Three more useful courses
My course focuses on topics like craft, editing, self-care, idea generation and taking oneself seriously (but not too seriously!) as a writer. By contrast, Holly Porter Johnson has cornered the market on the business of freelancing, with several courses that will almost certainly lead to online writing jobs:
Earn More Writing: Just what it sounds like – specific, actionable tactics that teach you how to create ideas, pitch them and write them. Holly teaches people to know what they’re worth; follow her advice and you’ll increase that worth.
Earn More Writing PRO: This one addresses common issues that freelancers face, including but not limited to branching out to different writing niches, bookkeeping, productivity and how to become more businesslike with clients (for example, how to ask the tough questions and how not to be a doormat).
Earn More Travel Writing: Make your travel jones pay off! If you like to go places, Holly will teach you how to turn wanderlust into cold, hard cash.
Holly’s courses get results. I know alumni – both in real life and through a private Facebook page – who have built satisfying side hustles fairly quickly. Some alumni have also been able to quit their day jobs in favor of full-time online writing jobs.
Note: The link on the first course is an affiliate link, which means if you sign up I get a finder’s fee. If that bugs you, then go sign up without the link. I believe her courses offer a lot of value (hint: she makes a living as a writer, not as a person who sells courses about writing). That’s why I promote all her courses, even though two of them do not have affiliate links.
Besides, she offers a 30-day, money-back guarantee. What have you got to lose?
Online writing jobs: A growth industry
Way back in 1996, Microsoft cofounder and former CEO Bill Gates wrote an essay called “Content is King.” At that point all the money and props seemed to be going to coders. But Bill predicted that writing was where “much of the real money will be made on the Internet.”
“The broad opportunities for most companies involve supplying information or entertainment,” he said. “No company is too small to participate.”
One of those companies could be yours. Whether as a side hustle or a full-time gig, it is possible to make money online. And while some people create a successful blog on the strength of a funny name or a particular demographic, being able to sustain that early win for the long haul is another story entirely.
As I note in my course, you can tease people over to your site with effective SEO or a headline so compelling that readers just have to check it out. But if you want them to stick around, you need more. Specifically, you need good writing – powerful, intriguing, impossible-to-ignore, consistently swell writing:
“Some bloggers rely on cults of personality: a funny name, a unique backstory, an unmistakable style. The rest of us have to get noticed on the strength of our work.
“That’s not to say that funny/unique/unmistakable sites can’t be well-written. But if they aren’t, they’ll likely find their reputations dwindling over time. Readers may read you for a while, grow out of/grow bored with your site, and move on.
“Finding a blog you’ll stick with for the long haul is like dating: After the novelty wears off, you have to decide whether you actually like this person once he or she stops wearing makeup/removes the toupee.”
TL;dr: The jobs are out there. Go find them.
*From now until April 30, you can buy the Write A Blog People Will Read course for just $99 – and I’ll throw in a free 15-minute coaching session. Visit the payment platform and use the discount code 500PERCENT to sign up. The platform accepts via credit cards, debit cards and PayPal.