Freelance Writing

How to Avoid Failure as a Freelance Writer

Last Updated on by Michael Brockbank

Writing professionally can be quite the rewarding experience. Not only can it be beneficial for honing your skills, but it can be lucrative if you land the right clients. Unfortunately, many people who try their hand at writing will fail within the first six months. I know one person who gave up after just one article because he didn’t agree with an editor’s assessment of his abilities. Failure only happens when you don’t learn from your experience to improve yourself.
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Avoiding Failure as a Freelancer

Freelance writing is probably one of the easiest online jobs to get into. This is primarily because of the sheer number of websites on the Internet. Content is king, and everybody wants it. However, it also makes it one of the more cut-throat industries because of the number of writers online. So, how do I avoid failure as a freelance professional among a sea of ghostwriters?

Accept Criticism
The odds are slim that you will be able to please every one of your clients and/or editors. When you get feedback, learn from any points these people are willing to share. If the response seems overly vulgar, brush it off and move on. Some clients can’t help but to be ignorant. It’s the criticism that will help you tune up your writing skills. I’ve learned a great deal over the years thanks to some of the editors at Textbroker. I still have problems with commas now and then, but I strive to continue learning.

This is a point that I can’t stress enough. If you truly want to succeed as a freelance writer, you can’t commit yourself to just one platform. For instance, I use Textbroker for a great deal of my income. I also have accounts at Fiverr, WriterAccess, and When the workflow is low on one site, there are plenty of others that have potential to keep you busy. Diversify your work and incorporate those sites that can help you keep the bills paid. Regardless of how you slice up your time, it’ll be greatly beneficial to keep yourself busy writing every day.

Constant Development
Over the past few years, I’ve been able to enhance my abilities greatly by setting goals for myself. For instance, I want to write at least 5,000 words per day whether it’s for a paying client or for myself. This has increased my typing speed, grammar control and kept me in a professional mindset. It’s one of the reasons this blog exists. It’s like how an athlete practices in order to be worth millions of dollars in his or her given sport. If you want to be a star at freelance writing, you’ll need to put the time in to hone your skills.

Learn All You Can
I have a folder in my bookmarks dedicated to nothing but websites I’ve found for writing. From classes to tools, I have quite the extensive collection of goodies in my bag. One day, I plan to get some of them up on this website. The point is, do what you can to learn everything possible about improving your writing. It’s also a good idea to keep apprised of things that change in your preferred industry. Personally, I constantly peruse Google for new things surrounding technology, business and marketing – the material I write most for clients.

Treat it Like a Career
A lot of people will experience failure because they approach freelancing with the wrong mindset. If you truly want to be your own boss and become a freelancer from home, you need to treat it like a real career. Professionalism, attire, clean work space and more will all contribute in some part to keeping yourself in the right frame of mind. You don’t want to look at the experience as just something to put gas in your car. You need to approach it like a long-term commitment that has potential to vastly improve your life.

Time Scheduling
If you’ve quite your full-time job to become a freelance writer such as myself, then every second counts. You need to set up a logical and workable schedule if you want to stay busy. I know a lot of people like the idea of working from home and setting their own schedules, but you need to realize that most clients that hire you will be running a 9-to-5 business. You need to be available during specific times of the day if you want to keep busy and rake in the money. Otherwise, another writer will simply thank you for the boost to their own careers. Stick to the schedules you keep for work as you would any other job. It’s important for clients to be able to contact you when you say you’re available.

Never Be Afraid to Work
I know a lot of you will be more comfortable to write content surrounding a specific industry. When I first started, I was centering my attention around computers and technology. Once I decided to give other areas a try, I found that I also have a penchant for business and marketing. I also get quite a bit of enjoyment writing about travel. Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and learn new topics. It could vastly increase your workload. I’ve probably completed a few computer articles all year so far. Recently, my focus has been on marketing and WordPress “How-To” articles.

Keep Searching the Internet
Even if you find the perfect writing platform for your needs, it doesn’t hurt to take a few minutes and explore other options. For instance, I use Textbroker as my primary platform. However, I started looking for other sites that I can use to expand my reach as a freelance writer. In fact, there are a lot of companies that are looking for permanent bloggers as well. If you could land one of these jobs on top of what you’re doing for other companies, you could have it made. Keep searching for new opportunities.

Faith In Yourself
Last, but definitely the most potent, you want to have faith in yourself and your abilities. This is true in virtually any task you want to complete. When I first started writing, I was only making around $20 per day on the side of a full-time job. It took me more than a year to accumulate enough clients to allow me to write all day long. I had faith that I could achieve this and worked very hard to accomplish everything thus far. Even if you get the occasional rude comment, it’s best to brush it off and keep working to improve your abilities. Don’t let the judgments of others affect your dreams. If you do, you’ll never know just what you’re capable of.

Failure at any task can be heartbreaking and disruptive for keeping a positive mindset. In reality, a true failure is a mistake you don’t learn from. Instead of being angry with yourself, put more effort into adapting. Everyone starts as a beginner. It’s what you do as time marches on that will dictate whether you succeed or not.

Michael Brockbank
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