How To Earn More Writing: Make Money As A Freelance Writer

Freelance Writing 3

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UPDATE: Earn More Writing is now closed to new members. The good news is that there’s another freelance writing course that’s even better. I wish it was around when I was getting started. If you want to learn how to start a freelance writing business, check out Freelance Writer Academy.  

Are you looking to make extra income for yourself and your family? One of the best ways to do that is with freelance writing. It requires little start-up costs and is a skill you can develop with practice. You don’t have to have a journalism or English degree to be a writer either. I don’t have either of those things but have found success writing this past year and you can too. I’m going to share my story with you and show you how you can earn more writing. 

My Story as a Writer

I’m a freelance writer. It’s not my full-time job. I work during the day and then write in my spare time in the morning (before work) and the evening (usually after our kids go to bed). I didn’t go to school to be a writer, and I don’t have a college degree in journalism or English. Writing was something I’ve always been interested in, but I never looked at it as a career option.

After we adopted our girls, I became more interested in personal finances. Adding two more kids to your family will do that I guess! I would search the internet for ways to save money and manage our finances better. Travel has always been a passion of mine so I spent time learning how to find deals so I could still plan great trips for our family of six. 

FMA Ron Jon

One of the websites I frequently visited to learn how to find travel deals was Club Thrifty. Greg and Holly Johnson have a great website. Reading their blog was one of the inspirations for Family Money Adventure because it tied together all of my passions in one website.

Holly created an online course called Earn More Writing which was all about learning to make money as a freelance writer. Seeing the success Holly has had, I signed up for the course.

One of the best decisions I’ve ever made. No joke.

There is only so much cost-cutting and deal-finding you can do to save money. Eventually, to be able to have more money to save and invest, you need to increase your income. Freelance writing was an opportunity to make more money. I wasn’t looking to switch careers. I just wanted to make enough money to pay down debt, save for the future, and fund some of our family adventures. 

I also wanted to avoid a side hustle with tons of overhead costs or that locked me into specific working hours. Our family is always busy, and I needed a flexible side job that could be done at any time and from anywhere. Freelance writing was exactly what I was looking for. 

How Much Money Can You Make Freelance Writing

Like anything else, the amount of money you can make as a freelance writer depends on how much time and effort you put into writing. At first, you won’t make much as a writer. You may have to do some free articles or guest posts just to get your foot in the door. Do just enough to build a portfolio and then never do any free work again. 

The sky’s the limit with freelance writing. In a year, I’ve been able to build up my writing income to $2000+ monthly. That’s just writing in between my day job, coaching basketball, and chauffeuring kids to various practices and school activities. I know writers who regularly make 5 figures every month as freelance writers. Several of them have been able to make enough writing to quit their jobs and become writers full-time. 

Freelance Writing Update 

Using all of the tips and advice from the course, I was able to completely replace my income (and beyond) through freelance writing. Things went so well that I was able to quit my day job and become a full-time freelance writer a few years ago. Since then, I’ve grown my writing income to almost three times the salary I received at my old job.

None of this would have been possible without taking a writing business course.

Freelance Writer Academy

The very best courses and resources for building a freelance writing business, whether you're going full-time or creating a side hustle for extra income.

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How to Get Started as a Freelance Writer

So, what does it take to become a freelance writer? How do you start? The path to becoming a freelance writer looks different for everybody. There’s no right way to become a paid writer. Through my experiences, here is what has helped me get to where I am today.

Online Portfolio

Potential clients will want to see samples of your writing before hiring you. It’s that simple. You need to have some kind of portfolio online to show off your writing. Many writers simply create a website or blog to do this. This could be a whole website dedicated to your writing services or just a “hire me” page on your website. This is what I’ve done with Family Money Adventure.

You can check out my “Hire Me” page here. 

If you don’t want to create a website, there are services where you can create a portfolio on their platform. Some are free to use and others cost money to set up. Here are some of the more popular portfolio websites: 

  • Contently
  • Clippings.Me
  • Journo Portfolio
  • Pressfolios
  • Muck Rack

If you want to want to keep it simple, you can just create a Word or Google Doc with links to all of your work. Editors need to see your samples however you can provide them.

Pick a Writing Niche (or Don’t)

Most writers will tell you to figure out your writing niche. What is a niche? It’s a specific subject or target audience. For me, it’s personal finance and travel because that’s what I know and what I love. I can write about other topics, but I choose to focus most of my efforts on these two areas. 

Why limit yourself to a specific niche? Doesn’t that limit your income possibilities? Possibly, but probably not in the long run. I find limiting what I write about helps my writing business. I can position myself as an expert on certain topics. My portfolio isn’t a jumbled mess. I’m more focused on my pitches and on my work itself. It’s almost freeing to pick a niche. 

Imagine you were applying for a job and your potential employer asks what you are good at. You reply, “Everything!” Is that going to go over well? Probably not. I can write about robo-advisors, student loans, and budgeting, but it’s not going to go so well if I land a writing gig for a scientific journal. 

How do you figure out your writing niche?

What are your interests? What do you like to write about? You don’t want to pick something that’s of no interest to you. Even within your niche, you’ll end up writing articles that bore you to death, but it’s a chore if you don’t have a genuine interest in the subject matter as a whole.

Another option is to not pick a niche and let your niche find you. Plenty of writers don’t limit themselves at first and take any writing job they come across. As they get further in, they learn what they love and what they want to avoid. 

Build your Writing Portfolio

How do you attract clients if I don’t have any writing samples to show them? How do you get writing samples without having clients?

It’s the whole chicken and the egg thing, right?! Pretty much.

One method to overcome this is to do some free writing in the beginning. Find bloggers that accept guest posts. Take low-paying writing gigs, but only enough to start a decent portfolio. Quickly move on to higher-paying writing gigs. You don’t need a ton of work in your portfolio to move up the pay scale. 

Use Social Media

Social media is a powerful tool for writers. You can connect with editors, bloggers, other writers, and anyone else that might lead to writing jobs. Join writer and blogger groups on Facebook and create a LinkedIn account. Writers can even land writing jobs through Twitter and Instagram. If you have a blog or website, set up accounts with any of the social media platforms you use. 

Here’s a link to my LinkedIn Profile I use for freelance writing. 

Don’t use your personal social media accounts for your writing business, though, unless it’s all you are using them for. You don’t want to connect with potential clients on the same accounts that you post pictures of your breakfast or retweet weird memes. 

Network with Other Writers

This is probably my number one tip. One of the features of the Earn More Writing course is access to a private Facebook group. Besides having a group to receive encouragement and ask questions, you can develop relationships with other writers. Often writers will post writing opportunities as well. Many of my earlier writing jobs came from posts in the group. I just landed my biggest client with the help of a friend in this Facebook group. Other writers aren’t always your competition. There’s enough writing work to go around. 

Start Working Towards Higher Paying Freelance Writing Gigs

As you gain writing work, you can leverage that into other writing jobs. If you develop a good relationship with an editor or client, ask them to refer their friends to you. 

You can continue to add your new work to your portfolio and attract other clients. Having that experience will help you as you pitch your writing services to potential clients. If you land the right clients, it could lead you to tons of new work. 

Perfect Your Craft

Continue to get better at writing. As you write, you’ll get better. You’ll become a better communicator. And be able to do it more concisely too. You’ll learn how to research, secure quotes, and how to source information. Your understanding of client needs will improve, and you’ll be more confident in your abilities. It’s amazing how much better your writing skills will become in a few months. 

Should You Invest In A Writing Course?

The course I took was a crucial part of my success in launching a writing career. It did not teach me how to write better, but it taught me how to build a business, land and keep clients, increase rates, and other valuable lessons that helped me become a full-time writer and content creator. 

The course I took is no longer available. Luckily, there’s another option that’s even better than the course I took. It’s called Freelance Writer Academy. I was a beta tester for the course before it first launched. Honestly, it’s a more comprehensive resource with more examples, tools, and resources. If you’re thinking of starting a writing business, I highly recommend Freelance Writer Academy. 

Freelance Writing

Have you ever thought about freelance writing for extra income? Have questions on how to get started? Let us know in the comments below.

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How To Earn More Writing: Make Money As A Freelance Writer

5 thoughts on “How To Earn More Writing: Make Money As A Freelance Writer”

  1. Hey, Kevin! What are a few of your favorite Freelance Writer Facebook groups for tips and jobs?

    1. Hi, besides the one attached to Holly’s course, I’m only in one other freelance writing FB group right now and it was “invite only”. I am sure there are some others out there that would be helpful, though.

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