Wednesday, 7 January 2009

Get Noticed By Staying Relevant!

If you are looking to become a writer or at least looking for a second income in the coming months then all of the tips I have given so far will help you to forge a career as a freelance writer. However, none of the tips are as relevant as the one I am about to give- stay relevant to your audience and keep up to date with current events. Writing something relevant about modern day life or about a major event in the news will undoubtedly get you a little exposure and get your name out there!

Take, for example, the tragic news of the death of Jett Travolta. I wrote about it on my blog and received a massive response - in fact it was the biggest response to a single article I have had. I wrote about sending my condolances to the Travolta family and giving my opinion about how life is too precious to take for granted. That article can be found here. Giving your opinion on a current event in that way will encourage people to interact with you and discuss your post with their friends as well. This will get you a little recognition in itself, but then you can take it to a higher level.

I also wrote about the poor teenager's death on AC because I think it typifies the spirit that many communities have lost. People should now about it because it will bring many together in their well wishes for the Travoltas. It's also a good news story and so could be added to my work portfolio (on a more selfish level). However, the response I received on there was unbelievable. The article got 837 views within 2 days of being published... which is unheard of for my work on there because I usually write general articles! That article can be found here:

Jett Travolta, Son of John Travolta, Dies at the Age of 16
News broke yesterday that Jett Travolta, the 16 year old son of John Travolta and Kelly Preston, died after having a seizure whilst on vacation in the Bahamas. This article examines the story.
Jett Travolta, Son of John Travolta, Dies at the Age of 16

If you take a look at the two, you can also see that I have written for the audiece. My blog article has a lot of my thoughts and opinions, whereas the AC article is more factual with a little of me in there. Writing for the audience is very important but as long as you keep it relevant then people will come to see your work. You can develop your style from there.

If you want to write at either a good blog host or AC to get your name out there then the links to join are below:

Today.com

Associated Content

If you do join either then post your link as a comment here and then everyone can visit!

Friday, 2 January 2009

A Good Business Manual To Start Freelance Writing Full Time

I've been a professional freelance writer for some time now but do not profess to know everything there is to know about working for myself. In fact, there is probably more that I don't know then information I do know! However, I found the ultimate business startup bible over Christmas when I was given a book as a present. This is not any old book though - it's Steve Monas's Shoestring Venture: The Startup Bible.

Now I usually hate reading business start up books, both those that tell you how someone else did it and those that profess to be how to books. They bore me and are generally useless because they are written by self indulgent and arrogant businessmn that have no clue how to speak to someone like me! However, I was plesantly surprised to find that this book was different. It is actually a well laid out manual so it acts as a practical guide. I'm ashamed to say that I would not have bought this myself had I not been given it as a gift, but now I would not be without it and would highly recommend it to everyone else looking to make a go of their own business, whether that business is writing or not.

The Startup Bible covers aspects of business that I didn't even think about let alone plan for or consider in too much depth! Take outsourcing for example. I do not like turning down work and so would rather work 20 hours if the opportunities arise than saying no. However, it pointed out that if I had too much work and not enough time then outsourcing is the best option in terms of client retention. Of course, client retention is important for any business but the possibility of giving work to another freelancer did not even enter my head! That section in the book is outstanding because it deals with everything I need to know in a straightforward and yet comprehensive manner. All sections are like that in fact and all of them are equally impressive.

Even if you do not read the book all the way through, The Startup Bible is a handy manual to have on your desk for reference. All of the information is aimed at the individual business owner and is based on principles that have helped others succeed in the past. As such, it is a good investment as it will not date. You will need other resources for certain areas. Take blogging for example. There is very little on it in the book but then there is enough about that on the Internet. Most of the information given in the book is hard to find online, or at least hard to find in one place. As a result, I would highly recommend it.


You can view the book and buy it here at Amazon: Shoestring Venture: The Startup Bible. It is well worth every penny.

Wednesday, 31 December 2008

Blogging Tips For The New Year!

Quick one today. I just wanted to wish everyone a happy new year and a great 2009! Hope Christmas was a good one this year and everyone had a good time.

I've also just published an article on freelance writing and blogging on AC today. It gives you the basics of getting started and some tips on making extra cash from blogging as well so please take a look.

The Basics of Blogging for Your Freelance Writing Career
Do you want to be a freelance writer or earn an extra income with freelance writing? If you do then try blogging. This article will tell you how and why to get started.
The Basics Of Blogging For Your Freelance Writing Career

Thursday, 20 November 2008

Blogging For The Freelance Writer

If you want to become a freelance writer or would like to get your abilities noticed then you may want to look into blogging as a hobby. Many people make a good living as a professional blogger these days. Of course, many bloggers just blog for fun whilst making little or no extra cash on the side. They may want to vent or air their opinions, but the majority of bloggers are frustrated writers in some way, shape or form!

Starting a blog is a fantastic way to start showcasing your talent. You can use posts as example work ad can also hone your ability by writing on your own blog, just as if you had a written journal.

There are many blog hosts that you may want to tap into, such as Blogger, but if you want to make a little money then why not go for a provider that will pay you per post? I started a personal blog today at Today.com because I did not have a personal blog at all! Today.com is great for new bloggers because they pay you $1 per 100 word post and also give you 2c per view, meaning that you can make decent money if you build up your readership, whilst honing your talents at the same time! The money may not sound like a lot but many hosts will not pay you at all.

Just click on the link - Today.com - to get started and blog away! Registration is easy and you will find that it is a great way to get started for any writer in waiting!

My new personal blog can be found here: English Opinion. Please drop in and take a look!

Thursday, 23 October 2008

More On Business Finances And Credit Cards

I was re-reading through some of my previous posts on here and realised I had yet to discuss the obstacles that you may face when you apply for credit cards if you work for yourself. Few lenders will actually offer you a credit card if you are self employed because they have no guarantee that you will pay the money back. Although some will ask for your accounts or will consider you as a result of your bank balance, others will just decline your application immediately, so what to do?

The solution lies in your status as a business in your own right, believe it or not. When self employed individuals apply for credit cards, they are much more likely to meet with success if they do so through their business. This is risky if you want it for personal use because you could end up in debt via your business. However, if you are applying for a credit card for business purposes then the likelihood is that you will recieve a stamp of approval. Although banks are currently a little reticent to loan businesses money, very little has changed in terms of the amount of credit card approvals.

Always be sure to compare the best possible rates of credit cards when you apply because there are best value products out there and others that are extremely poor by comparison. The same principle applies to business finances as to personal finances so be sure to compare, compare, compare before you apply!

Wednesday, 22 October 2008

Promote Your Business: Using Personalised Stationary

Everyone entering into a career as a freelance writer can have all the writing skills in the world and still may not make that career a success. This may sound daunting but it is a fact. Any businessperson needs skills relating to self marketing. It is essential that any freelance writer learns how to market him or herself in order to get work. Some use websites, others use composed advertisements but the best place to start marketing yourself is in your local area by going to fairs, work expos and visiting local businesses because it is the people attending the events and local businesspeople that will put work your way.

To market yourself effectively you will need to look the part. One of the best ways to do this is to use personalised stationary. There are many companies around that offer personalised business stationary and many of them allow you to create your own business cards, letterheads and other stationary that you may need. By using these services, you can create your own logo and font relatively easily and thus make an impression on those individuals that may hire you.

Business cards are essential to hand out so that individuals can contact you at a later date if they need any writing completing, such as content for a website. Those business cards should include your name, address, phone number and email. You may also include your logo and motto or a short sentence giving them a reason to hire you. They can keep your card for future reference, thus making your marketing campaign a long term one rather than an instantly forgettable one.

If you do want to try out your own business cards then a company called VistaPrint is a great place to try. They offer free business cards (which can be found behind the link) for all new customers so you will only have to pay postage and packing for your first order, unless you decide to order stationary and other essential items as well. Their prices are reasonable so check them out if you want to save money and mount a successful marketing campaign. I use them and I have to say that I find their products value for money, especially the repeat order function available. After all, with any luck you would need more cards in the future!

Wednesday, 15 October 2008

Associated Content For Poetry!

I've mentioned Associated Content in a post before now as a good way to showcase your work and earn a little extra money as well, but this may surprise you...

... You can publish stories and poetry on Associated Content as well!!!

I found this out completely by accident when I claimed a call for content, but just check out my limerick if you don't believe me!

The Democrat Sheriff
This is a political limerick in honor of Barack Obama, the Democrat candidate for US President in 2008.
View more »