Tuesday, 29 March 2011

The truth about freelance writing

How to become a freelance writer
On Thursday I participated to a Guardian's Q&A on freelance writing in the company of esteemed colleagues covering different topics and media.

I rarely blog about my day job, but this discussion makes fascinating reading for the beginner and the more experienced scribbler alike. It's about surviving as a freelancer rather than writing as a hobby and it paints a different picture from those upbeat writing and proofreading courses you see advertised everywhere.

A way with words, sound grammar and excellent spelling are not enough to guarantee success, the hard bit these courses don't prepare you for is to sell your skills in a saturated market, where young writers are prepared to write just for exposure (a link and a byline) while those living in developing countries can churn articles for a fistful of dollars.

If you are still keen on becoming a writer, your best bet is to choose a less popular topic or something really niche like medical writing (you will need a scientific degree, though). Brush up your maths and go for finance, you can't go wrong there! Travel, beauty, interiors, fashion, music and any popular topic are swamped by experienced writers chasing fewer opportunities. You have been warned!

No comments:

Post a Comment