Freelance writers need to plan their finances carefully to ensure that they are financially stable and have a sustainable income. Financial planning involves creating a budget, saving for emergencies and retirement, managing debt, and investing wisely.
There are many benefits to being self-employed as a freelancer. You can essentially choose your own schedule. You control which clients you work with. And, if you’re willing to put in the time and effort, there is really no limit to how much money you can make. [Read more…]
You’ve been writing for a client for a while, and suddenly, they no longer require your services. It doesn’t matter whether or not it was your fault – it’s still a troubling situation to be in. Take a few deep breaths before you hit the panic switch. It can be hard to remember that losing one client is not losing your entire career, and you should be able to successfully rebound from your loss. Once you’ve calmed down about the loss, it’s time to figure out where you should go from here. [Read more…]
Most freelance writers cannot imagine themselves going back to a corporate setting where job stability – and salary – is practically guaranteed. As we found out in our survey, The State of Freelance Writers in 2015 , the main issue that freelance writers face is uncertainty in income.
For sure, all of us have faced this problem at least once. There are those periods when we are flush, but there are times when we just don’t know how we’re going to manage.
During these times, it’s easy to fall prey to desperation and depression, but there are ways to handle things. When you’re in dire financial straits, you can either “give up” or find solutions.
Let’s be positive and choose the latter, shall we? [Read more…]
“Big money” is obviously relative. For some freelance writers, this could mean at least $50 per hour. For others, this could be at least $100 per hour.
No matter what figure you consider big money, you can reach that goal. It may take a bit more work than you’re currently doing, but with these four simple tips, you will increase your worth.
Make sure you’ve got the writing chops.
First things first. You’re a writer. Therefore, you need to make sure that you know what you’re doing, that your writing skills are above par.
Go one step further. Make sure your writing skills are so good that clients can’t help but be impressed.
Additionally, know what kind of writing fits client requirements. Learn how to write copy for landing pages if you are targeting that niche. Learn how to write well-researched articles if you want to reach out to clients who need this type of content.
Be honest with yourself. How good a writer are you? What areas can use improvement?
Train yourself to write fast.
Really fast. The faster you write, the more work you can take on, and the more money you can earn. However, do not lose sight of the fact that, on its own, writing fast won’t lead to big money.
You can be a blazingly fast writer, but if the quality of your work suffers, then you’re better off writing slowly and delivering excellent work.
How do you train yourself to write fast?
Go easy on yourself when writing the first draft. Just go ahead and write as quickly as you can. Once you’re done, edit and polish your article. It may be difficult in the beginning, but once get the hang of it, you’ll write even faster.
Don’t get stuck on research.
Here’s another way to help yourself to write quickly. Focus on what’s most important: the writing.
Yes, research is necessary in many cases. If you’re not an expert on the topic you’re working on, then you’ll definitely spend more time on research. However, do not spend more time than you have to on this activity!
You don’t need to spend hours and hours on research and ground work. Just get the information you absolutely need to get the job done well, and get on with it!
Note: research may include reading background material, looking up stats, interviews, and so on. You may have to do some tests to determine just how much research you need to do (on average).
Avoid quoting per hour.
We often see hourly rates in job ads, don’t we? That works most of the time, but if you want to earn more for a project, don’t give an hourly quote.
Instead, mention a flat fee for the whole project. The trick is to do the math so that the flat fee you quote gives you the hourly rate that you want.
Follow the advice of expert negotiators: quote a fee that gives you leeway to negotiate. Also determine beforehand the lowest amount you will accept.
These are ways freelance writers earn more. Although it does not encompass everything, it is a good start. Do you have your own success stories? Share them with us, and help fellow freelance writers earn more!
Being a freelancer has lots of perks, but just like anything else, it also has its downsides. I could be wrong, but I think that being able to handle one’s finances smartly is a major concern of every freelance writer. Not only do you have to make sure that you land enough gigs to cover your living expenses every month, you also have to make sure that you are able to manage your income and not spend more than you earn.
For individuals who are new to freelance writing, and who may have worked for a regular salary prior to going freelance, the financial challenges may be bigger. I still remember the first month after I left my day job and relied on freelance writing as a sole source of income.
My day job used to pay twice a month, and I also wrote freelance on the side. That meant I had a steady of flow of money coming in, and while huge amounts were not involved, I always knew that there would be something no matter what.
Soon after that first month, I developed habits that contributed to making ends meet – bad month or good month.
You may find it old fashioned, but I became a regular visitor of coupons sites such as Cheap Sally. These sites are invaluable if you are serious about making savings. The discounts that you find may not be humongous, but at the end of the day, the small savings really do add up.
Another trick I have learned to rely on is to always set aside money for the essentials at the beginning of the month, when money comes in. Rent, electricity, water, phone, insurance, and Internet – no matter how much I earn each month, these things are first on the list of expenses. This way, I can be sure that I will not find myself without Internet connection at some point (it’s how I earn, after all!). I just adjust my spending habits after all the essentials are paid. If it’s a bad month, then working at coffee shops (or going out to eat) gets relegated for the next month.
I have found that groceries are usually the largest expense I have every month. To ensure against starvation during a bad month, I stock up on non-perishables during high earning months. Soups in cans, tinned tuna and salmon, tinned veggies, pasta noodles, etc. – my pantry may look like I am building a bomb shelter at some point, but stocking up really helps during lean months!
With a little preparation and the willingness to be frugal when necessary, a bad freelance writing month is not that bad after all. How about you? Do you have any tried and tested tips to make ends meet?
Photo via 401(K) 2012
Working from home has many financial benefits. It is also true that the benefits are not merely financial. For example, a home business allows you to strike a balance between your career and family. But instead of focusing on the emotional and personal benefits, I want to keep it business related – so I am only going to discuss the financial side of working from home and earning your income online.
1. You make the money
This is what both motivates and scares people that decide that they want to work from home – your income is directly proportional to your performance. If you work for someone on commission, you have a small incentive to work harder and bring in new clients, however if you go to work from 9 to 5 every day and would not make any extra whether you brought in 5 or 25 clients, you might soon lose motivation. Working from home, what you earn is yours. [Read more…]