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How to be Successful as a Writer

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First let me ask you a question, what kind of writer you want to be or what sort of writing are you trying to get into? Do you want to be a content writer, copywriter for agencies or a blogger? Do you want to earn a living by writing novels? Do you strictly looking for some good creative projects? Have you heard about Ghost Writing? Today in this piece of writing I tried to combine nearly all of these things, I really believe that if you want to be successful or earn a living as a writer, you should be versatile.

I will definitely say, though, that’s my goal to be a full-time content writer. But that absolutely on its own, at a moment, doesn’t even pay the bills. Not just yet. But I have been able to carve out a six-figure career doing end no. of writing projects, most of which I really enjoy. And this piece of writing is completely geared towards writers, not authors or novelists, but those who are capable to take on all that comes with the title of writer.

Let’s start from the very first:

Energy

  1. Commitment: You can never get to a profitable level if you are not committed at all. You have to carve out time for writing.
  2. Distraction: Almost your each and every move should be towards your determined goal. Even when you have to perform odd jobs, you must know what your real career was going to be.
  3. Payment at the beginning comes in the form of Promotion: Take each opportunity you can to publish your writing to various platforms. If someone provides you a guest blog opportunity, take it unless it is a site that is totally against your beliefs.

 

Portfolio

  1. Connections Matter a lot: Building your experiences is not the most important thing, building connections is the most vital one. You might not be able to see the connections immediately, but they often present themselves down the line. If you are dedicated enough and have passion in you, you will surely get success.
  2. Store and Revisit your Portfolio from time to time: Even today, people still ask me for samples and I just dig through my catalogue and just them an existing file. Eventually, you don’t have to write anything new when someone asks for a specific sample.

 

Study the Craft

There are numerous resources online for writers. Also, think regarding reading a book on editing or taking a course of editing. You do not have to go too deep, but it will surely give you a better grasp of proper sentence structure and general grasp of the language. I still read a lot of editing books to enhance my writing skills.

You must have proper knowledge of language, understanding sentence structures and you must get comfortable with grammar. It is actually crazy to me how many writers I meet that skip this vital step. Writing is a skill that includes many technical aspects you cannot break the rules unless you know all of them inside out.

 

Put Yourself Out There

I can’t tell me how much money I have made early on, just because people found my resume or portfolio through leading online platforms. If you are not accessible and visible, then how can you expect to be seen? If you have done any writing at all, post your resume and portfolio to these following sites:

  1. LinkedIn
  2. Indeed
  3. Monster
  4. Craigslist
  5. Kijiji
  6. Glassdoor
  7. Freshgigs
  8. Craigslist

All these are literally just the basic cities. In addition to adding your name to these sites, you require to know where to look for opportunities. There are so many famous sites that allow you to pitch to them directly, along with sites built specifically for assisting creative find jobs or projects. Sign up for Media Bistro and pay like $50 for the year. They offer you info on how to pitch to some of the best online platforms in the World.

 

Blogging: Let’s Get Going

Why blogging matters a lot- It’s your opportunity to put out your own authentic voice. Don’t take blogging for granted. It is one way people connect to your brand. And you might not directly earn income off of your blogging, but there are ways to leverage your posts and turn those into opportunities.

 

How Does that Happen

  1. Be Specific: What are you going to write?  Are you going to give tips or are you a lifestyle writer? Or are you simply writing about your own life? It’s really tough for most writers to concentrate in one general topic, but in accordance for you to gain an audience, they must understand what kind of content to consistently expect.
  2. There are loopholes: There are always ways around every rule. If you think it’s difficult to write about one single topic then utilise multiple platforms. For instance, I use my personal blog to write regarding whatever the hell I want to write about. I usually use LinkedIn to write about content related to writing but from the perspective of how it can be leveraged or monetized. I generally used Medium for parenting or creativity. Even I use Huffington Post to write about education and social issues.
  3. Consistency: No matter what you blog about you must be consistent. If you are super disciplined you can pick specific days of the week to release your content. If you know you are not that reliable then I would encourage new fresh bloggers to write at least two posts in a week. But even if you write one single post per week, make sure it’s every week. Consistency builds for familiarity with your audience and it also assists in improving your searchability.
  4. Start Reaching Out:  Once you have felt like you have begun to define your niche and you are consistent, begin with reaching out. Now, this is where it depends on what kind of opportunities you are looking for and what you will get. If you want to write for the NY times then submit. If you want to be a Ghost Writer then let people know you are entertaining those opportunities. People will judge the quality of your work and then make a decision on if you are qualified. If you want to be a novelist then you should be submitting to literally agents. For non-fiction, you only need to have a proposal developed. For fiction, your whole manuscript should be all but complete, even though most agent only asks for 25 to 50 pages.

 

Building a Fan Base

  1. Identify your fans: Once you start putting out work, specifically through your blog, you begin finding out what your pants look like. And I don’t just mean age and gender. If you really want to take this seriously you must get hyper-focused on who’s reading your stuff. Are they woman between the ages of 35 to 50 who are mothers that tend to be liberal and enjoy travelling? Yes, that kind of focus and concentration.
  2. Fans are built one by one : I hope you are really taking in that sentence: One by one.  And I mean that literally. You have to really pay high attention to each and everyone who likes, comments, and shares your posts. Each of them will be the foundation of your fan base.
  3. Communicate with your fans: Don’t be afraid to reach out to someone once they have engaged. Send them a direct message or invite them to be friend or connect. The closure you can get to your readers the better. To this day I still keep in touch with my original readers. Even if it’s a rare hello or a personal email, you have to let them know they matter. Remember that having one reader is like having two, because they will share their experiences with at least one single friend.
  4. Yes a mailing list matters a lot : I am not going to lie, even I required to do this much better job at this. The fact is that a mailing list is a way to speak directly to your audience. You will have to offer something up to get people to join your list, but once they do, treat those people like gold. I have been fighting this for years and I have been able to make really good money without it, but if you want to build your personal brand there’s really no way around it.

 

How do you Get Paid

 

I know that is what everyone wants to hear and this is the most amazing part too. Well I will break down how I get paid to demonstrate the various opportunities that exist.

 

  1. Content Writing: I usually land a contract with a well-known organization that is in need of monthly content. Usually there are multiple well-known brands who need content writers on daily basis. So, your chances of getting hired are high. Generally if you work with a well-known organization you can easily get 40k in a month.
  2. Personal Clients: This number varies from month to month as I gain fresh and new clients and other contracts expire. What I do for those clients is tell their stories. Most of the time it’s through articles on a website or blog site, but it can even be through a series of posts directly on social media.
  3. Ghost Writing: You can be a part of some amazing team of writers who ghost write for some pretty amazing clients. You can try out for some good publications like INC, Elle Magazine, Global Citizen, Forbes, Time and many more. These publications generally pay in hundreds of dollars range. If you ghost write novels, you will be paid to write two scripts. These generally pay in the thousands and tens of thousands range.
  4. Guest Blogging: You will get paid more than on single occasion to guest blog. Most of the time, you have to guest blog for absolutely free, free, free. The opportunity to speak to an audience outside of your own is not one you should pass up.
  5. Book Sales: This is not lucrative yet, but you can make money every quarter from the sales of your initial two novels.

 

How are you going to get Paid- Trust and Leverage

Trust and Leverage: This is how you will get paid. Publishers, clients, literary agents and publications, no matter what your end goal is, these people need to trust you can deliver. When I say Leverage, I mean understanding the situation along with your competitive benefit and using that your advantage. So, I am a elder sister raising a small brother. I am even a good writer who blogs regarding my adventures, struggles, and the joy I go through raising this crazy kid. My benefit is my perspective. It could be that simple. Now take that advantage and find other communities or platforms or organizations that could use your perspective. They should be able to see the value immediately.

 

Give your Plans Time to Work

 

Take the time to let your plan work. One single month is not enough time to make a decision on whether or not to continue. It’s enough time to gauge feedback and iterate, but not to make any presumptions either way. What’s important is that you monitor your progress. Gauge your progress. You have to be aware of how well you are progressing. What are your milestones? Setting time limits may be difficult, but there has to be a way you determine if you’re progressing. Be patient, but aggressively patient. Finally, invest in yourself. Everything I explained above takes time, energy, and some cash. Embrace that. If you’re not taking the time to make sure that you are putting out the best version of yourself, then you won’t be prepared for the opportunities that come your way.

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