Sunday, July 26, 2009


A good freelance writer knows when writing for someone (personal attitude) cannot stand in the way. One needs to be flexible and willing to take on jobs with the clients point of view in mind.
After all you're hiring yourself out to write about their topic of discussion.

One way to avoid ruffling your feathers is to, research a writing job before you accept it. Don't tie yourself to writing about a subject you hate and can't present at 100%. Your quality of work could reflect your "attitude" towards the assignment, if it isn't something you like. Word of mouth spreads quickly, good or bad people will come to know who you are as a freelance writer. Look before you leap.

Still, taking pride in what you write and having a passion for it should be owned by you!

Here's a glimpse at my passion for the pen! (Literal, digital or otherwise.

Pen's Write

Scribbling furiously my nib takes flight.
Snap, tapping motion of fluid release.
Words gather quickly preparing delight.
Rasping pen echoes, fulfilling increase.

If spoken, decreases intended bite,
disquiet then creeps in to intrusive views.
Impairing motion of pens' truest cite,
leaving me waiting your harshest reviews.

White pages become littered with inks plight.
Dueling lines pleading for dominant space.
Once chosen, dipped ink, is set to new heights.
Showing no evidence of struggles trace.

When all agree, ink, pen, paper and I,
what challenges come I'll release through flight.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Howdy! It's your Weekend Update from the Freelance Room

Okay, I kind of went AWOL and I apologize!

Summer is rough - three kids don't leave me with enough time to get all my work done, let alone blog. Thanks to all who post here and help keep things going.

Since I have a migraine today and am doped to the gills, I can't really gather my scattered brains together enough to come up with deep insight and words of infinite wisdom. Instead, I figured I would give you the Grace update -- since I know y'all are simply DYING to know everything about me and what I am doing.

On the home front, I managed not to get divorced this summer, though things are still shaky. I and my sig other are in a state of truce and trying to work things out - it's hard when you have kids and are trying to make the best decision for everyone involved.

We have a new vehicle ('05 Chevy Suburban) which we were forced to buy when some idiot ran a stop sign and drove hubby into a ditch, totaling our almost paid for truck ('01 Chevy Silverado club cab). Only good thing about it is that our payments and the interest on the loan actually went down, and we got the hulking thing for about half what it would have gone for four years ago, even used. Go decline of the SUV market, woohoo. Gets the same MPG as the truck did, is more convenient for hauling tools (rain can't cause problems) and LOTS more room! (Plus, DVD player for the kids for trips to Dallas, Yay!)

On the work front, I am about sick and tired of my boss at my 'real life' work at home job where I am down to what is more or less a token position. I'm pulling in less than $700 a month supervising a small crew... but every time I try to bail my crew has hysterics (Oh please don't go! We'll eat you up, we love you so!) so I keep hanging in there. Boss is a total (insert derogatory word here) and I hate him. Seven years of him has been six and a half years too much.

Writing. Going well, actually! I keep busy and make enough to get by most months. Made some good contacts, and the repeat work keeps coming in. This month I tried something a little different; a lot of one-offs to fill in gaps. I started bidding on the little bitty jobs since Elance has a $50 minimum, and managed to do about three this week, bringing in a nice bit of side money.

Rewrite a social media newsletter, edit 2500 word sales landing page for a real estate book, and come up with 2,000 words in first person on solutions for premature ejaculation. Seriously. I pulled it off according to client, who said (and I quote) "You write really well in first person for a problem you've never experienced, haha!" I replied that I had "asked my husband if he had any input, but he got affronted and asked me if I was complaining." LMAO.

Who says you can't have fun at this job?

All right, next week maybe I'll have something better to offer, but for now keep trying, keep bidding, keep hunting for jobs, and don't ever give up. Those who persevere may one day land a premature ejaculation gig of their own. :D

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Go green and make some green

I'll be the first to admit I'm not green. Trees are to be cut down to make me stuff I want to buy. I could care less how many chemicals a steer was exposed to so long as it tastes good. I sometimes throw recyclables out with the regular garbage and don't feel the least bit bad. The one thing I do recycle is my writing and you should too.

Lean times hit everyone and it never ever hurts to have a safety net to help generate a little extra income in a very short period of time. Anyone that has hit a rough patch and is using bids left and right with no work to show for it, or has seemingly all their regulars go on a buying embargo at one time has to know if it happened once, it will happen again. While you're searching down the big ticket jobs that really pay your bills, what do you do in the meantime?

Sure you can go to the Paid to write sites (PTWS) and try churning out a pile of articles for maybe an average of about $3 each that take a good 30 minutes or so each and pray you don't shoot yourself in the head after three days. It is money and money is good, but after awhile it gets tedious, frustrating, and it almost screams at you to stop writing. With changes to the pay structure at our preferred PTWS, how do you make money in the lean times and not go insane?

The simple answer is you go green and recycle your work. If you've been freelancing awhile you have to have a few hundred completed articles saved somewhere. You've done the research, you've constructed the format, the hard part is done. Now you have to re-write it.

Nobody likes re-writes all that much, but take a quick look at why you will learn to love it.

An average 400 word article should never take more than 30 minutes to write. Ever. A rewrite of one of those should take no more than ten minutes. That is 6 rewrites an hour for the math challenged. Lets suppose you can rewrite them that fast (And of course make them distinct from the piece you sold) that means if you only average $2/article that is $12/hr. It isn't great money but it isn't bad. If you can average $3/article that is $18. Not bad huh?

Say you have a small cache of articles like...hmmm.....300 sitting around.

300 articles x10 minutes = 50 hours
300 articles at lets say $2.50/article =$750
$750/50 hours = $15/hr

That is something you can do in one week if you apply yourself which will bring in enough money to let you keep pursuing higher paying gigs. It may not sound big, but if extrapolated over 1 year that is $36,000 assuming you take a months vacation, so yes it is good money even if only briefly. The problem is I don't know anyone with 12,000 or so articles to do this with, but that's not the point. The point is short term relief.

Even if you don't need to rack up a big week to cover a shortfall you can easily rewrite your sold articles quick and easy for extra PTWS dinero. With that said, let's look at the second angle.

Not all articles we sell to publishers come in neat little 400 word containers. In the case of those that are less, you should be able to beef them up in less than ten minutes to create a new article. In the case of longer ones trim them down. A 1000 word article becomes two 500 world articles. Chapters in an ebook become a series of articles.

In some cases it is going to take some time to make changes, but if you are waiting on bids come through and have nothing else to do but contemplate who invented liquid soap, and why, then you have time to do rewrites. Making some money off this material via reposting makes a whole lot more sense than letting it grow more cobwebs than an octogenarians special happy place.

The big question is whether or not it is legal and ethical. The short answer is yes. So long as you make each rewrite distinct from the original you are good to go. To keep past clients happy make sure you change the SEO (even kill it altogether and just get the thing posted fast) and generally make it your own. You all know how to rewrite so why am I explaining it.....Of course you now have the long steady trickle of pennies from share revenue to make this keep paying off long term.

The thing is if you recycle writing like I'm supposed to do with Mountain Dew bottles, you can make an extra couple thousand dollars a year in your downtime with minimal effort. Take it all at once or bleed it out over time, the choice is yours. Just make it a point to get in the routine of doing it, unless of course you already have enough money. If you do, I accept cash or Asian call girls under 5'5" with dyed blonde hair as gratuities. Just a suggestion, feel no pressure.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Utilizing The Parts Of Speech Can Lead To Successful Writing

How long has it been since you graduated high school? Really, isn't high school the last place you fully utilized all the parts of speech. Unless you majored in English, in college, you haven't traveled down the ole parts of speech highway since.....(add your graduation date here).

While working up lesson plans for my sons' homeschooling in writing, I was amazed at how much I'd forgotten of the parts of speech. You're asking yourself right about now, what does this have to do with freelance writing? Here's the scoop, do you see it? It's right there mingling with the noun and verb. For me it's the hyper adjective! Did you look closely? Did you see it? It sits there happily waiting for me to put it to use.

Seriously any part of speech can enhance your article. How you put your information together, when creating an article for purchase, will either catch the eye of a buyer right away or have them yawning from the start. Freelance writing is creative writing, but with less on the dramatic and more on the serious. This is true when facts come into play. By making those less restrictive places within your article, visually pleasing, you stand a good chance of selling your article.

Be it noun, verb, adjective, adverb, pronoun or any other parts of speech, reacquaint yourself with their usefulness. Become friends with them. If you treat them well enough, they just might all fall into the right places for you.

Ya, ya you say, but did I get your attention? If writing is your livelihood, you'll benefit from using the parts of speech to their fullest potential.