Friday, August 29, 2014

8/30 -Writing Leads

I have more than 240 emails since my last jobs post. Of course some of those emails are from social media marketing websites (newsletters and such).You can overwhelm yourself every day with potential writing gigs by following the super easy steps I followed to become a freelance writer. You can find them here. Purchasing it is a great way to create your own leads and a nice way to say thank you to me for sharing mine for those who don't have time to do this. :)

  1. Email Writing
  2. On-Page Content for 23 Keyphrases
  3. On-Page Content for 45 Keyphrases
  4. Content Writer
  5. Write a Business Plan
  6. Press Release Writer ($35/ Hr)
  7. News / Political Writer
  8. Nationwide Journalists - Affect Magazine
  9. Senior Medical / Life Science Writer- The Linus Group
  10. Staff Writer - BuzzFeed
  11. Writer- University of Michigan
  12. CT / Entry Level Copywriter- TracyLocke
  13. Contract Writer - Imagination Publishing
  14. Copywriter- Pappas Group
  15. HS Personal Fitness Curriculum Writer - Connections Education
  16. Tech Writer- Robert Half Technology 
  17. Re-write Website Content
  18. 3 Women's Fashion Articles
  19. Write Three Pages for IT Company
  20. Video Game Promotion Article Writer
  21. Real Estate Cash Flow Book Ghostwriter
  22. Writer - Kim Komando Show
  23. Tech Writer- Cinder Solutions
  24. Content Developer - Concur
  25. Content Strategist - Apple
  26. Writer
  27. Writer - Restoration Media
  28. Web Content Writer - 1-800-PetMeds
  29. Content Writer
  30. Content Writer
  31. Writers Wanted
  32. Copywriter - DKNY
  33. Copywriter
  34. Digital Content Writer
  35. Writer Producer - TNT
  36. Makeup Manual
  37. Ghostwriter
  38. Fashion Editorial Writer
  39. Article Writing
  40. Writer for Funny Video ($50 / hr)
  41. Football Content Needed
  42. Educational Writer
  43. Social Media Writer - Hobby Lobby
  44. Political Writer
  45. Ghostwriter for Book
  46. Write Business Articles and Blogs
  47. Create and Curate Viral Content
  48. Sports Journalist
  49. Writer and Web Specialist - Kelly
  50. Web Copy
  51. Tumblr Article Writer
  52. Expert Ezine Writer
  53. BitCoin Writer
  54. Daily Beauty Blogger
  55. Professional Blogger
  56. Course Writer - Academy of Art
  57. Web Content Writer - Garmin
  58. Powerful Email to Introduce Book
  59. Web Content Writing
  60. Sports Writer -
  61. Content Strategist - Dave Ramsey
  62. Ghostwriting an Ebook
  63. Beauty and Fashion Freelance Writer
  64. Social Media Writer
  65. Tool Hobbyist
  66. Internet Content Writer
  67. Corporate Blogger
  68. Food Blogger
  69. Greeting Card Poetry
  70. Health and Fitness Course Writer
  71. Blog Writer
  72. Writer - PopSugar

Thursday, August 28, 2014

20 Myths About Writing

I've been in this game for a long time...a really long time. I've been paid for my writing since I was 14. I will celebrate my 36th birthday in September. I have a lot of experience in the writing field. Here are my 20 myths about writing.

  1. You can only make money by publishing a novel. That's a huge myth. I've self published a novel that's had moderate success. However, the steady income comes in from freelance writing articles, web content, and consulting.
  2. If you write web content, you have to take low page. I hate this myth. So many good writers get screwed over because they think they have to write for content mills or take ridiculous prices. Content mills aren't good for writers. Sure, some will pay a little better than others once you show that you can write well. However, unless you can churn out 10+ articles daily and have them approved by the client you can't talk to (who may have been screwed over by another content mill writer and is in a bad mood) then you won't make much. You also get bottom of the barrel selection for writing. You can't get to know your client or their preferences. You don't have to settle for the low money of content mills or low paying projects. I call those slave wage projects. If writing were so easy, they wouldn't need a writer. It's not your issue if they can't appropriately budget for a writer.
  3. A published clip must be in a magazine. That's wrong. I started an account on and I also used my old blog. Both can be used to show that you know what you are doing as a writer. Just make sure that your blog has a relatively appropriate name. Only clients who need smut writing will want to check out your profile called 1FineTwerkinBehind. Don't do that.
  4. You can write about your favorite thing in the world and make a ton of money. Sure, there's money to be made in writing. Sure, there are projects you will love. However, if you want to make a living as a writer you need to realize that you will have to take projects you don't like (at least in the beginning). You might not like writing news summaries or an opinion piece that you don't agree with, but if you want to feed your family - you will initially take what you can while you build up your reputation and portfolio.
  5. Your schedule is totally flexible. I hate this myth. It's the worst. Sure, being a freelance writer has some being that a bit of flexibility. Your schedule is not totally flexible. Freelancing is a lifestyle, but you must adhere to the schedule you set. I make breakfast, work for a couple of hours, make lunch, take the youngest spawn to afternoon kindergarten, work a little more, pick up the little one, and come home to either work or fulfill household obligations. You will not have time to watch the children of others or do all of their errands that they will tell you that you have time to do if you are managing your own time. By the way, many of your future clients will have some form of a deadline. Further, many of your clients will want to be able to contact you during their regular business hours. That can get interesting if you start taking international clients. You will learn quickly that Google Hangouts can be your best friend.
  6. The editor is always right. No...they're not. I have to play "edit the editor" more times than I care to admit. If the editor is wrong, approach them like a rational and professional human being.
  7. You can work from anywhere. This is a partial myth. If you have a mobile hot spot or you only write for clients on a flat rate or per project basis then you can work any damn where you want. However, if you decide to freelance on an hourly basis then you will be using a time tracker. Odesk and Elance (and most likely every other freelance gig site in existence) has one you download to track your time. That time (and the screenshots to show you are doing your job and fucking around on Twitter -- unless you're being paid to fuck around on Twitter) will be uploaded. So, in general you need to work somewhere that you have access to Internet.
  8. Your children, spouse, friends, and family will feel amazingly proud to know that you're a super awesome writer living the dream and they will respect your family. That's a load of bullshit. Okay, my husband (Bull) is amazingly supportive. At first he didn't really understand how I didn't have time to do this, that, or the other until he offered to take some over flow work from me. The first lesson he learned is that he doesn't want to write for a living although he does love to write. The second he learned is that when you are a writer, it takes longer than those who do not write anticipate. The third he learned is that if I am not actively working, I am not getting paid. That affects the family bottom line. He was supportive from the beginning, but he became very protective of my time for me after he had a tiny taste of my work life. Your children, unless they are much older and mature, won't learn to respect your working time unless you continuously lay down the law about it. Clearly, I stop the very second my five year old needs something. The older two are 13 and 16. Unless they are missing an eye or on fire, it can probably wait. They're pretty good about respecting my work time...because otherwise the Bank of Mom remains closed.
  9. When you announce that you're a writer, people will flock to you for your written brilliance. No, they won't. You must have some form of a website. In addition to this blog, I use Wix. I also have a Facebook fan page and Twitter account. Soon I will also have a YouTube channel. I also use Google+ on a regular basis. I keep myself out there. I also regularly check a lot of places for gigs. You need to market yourself. You need a CV. You need a portfolio. In other words, you need to treat yourself and present yourself like the professional you are.
  10. You need an agent to write a book. That's not necessarily true. I love agents and I think most agents are professional and reputable people who keep the best interests of their clients in mind. Self publishing is now relatively acceptable. Amazon, Create Space, and Lulu make it easy to get your creation on to avenues that allow for download for Kindle and Apple products. Do you want an agent if you want a best seller? Yep. Most publishers won't talk to you without an agent...actually, many publishers won't talk to you if you are trying to pitch your self published novel. It's already published. Be very careful if you decide to self publish.
  11. Any competition or place that asks you for money for an entry fee is a scam. This is a myth. Are there shady people out there? Yep. Most places that want an entry fee for their writing competition or a very nominal reading fee are handing out prize money. Where do you think they get their prize money from? Just do your research on the place asking for your dough. There are a lot of places that don't charge any money, but there's generally nothing paid if they publish your work. Besides, writing competitions are fun. Sometimes their reading panel will respond to you with great feedback.
  12. If you get a rejection on a pitch, query, or submission then you're a terrible writer. This is an awful myth that destroys the self esteem of good writers worldwide. A rejection just means one thing: your work isn't a fit for them right now. It doesn't necessarily mean that you're a bad writer.
  13. Your mom likes your work so you must be good enough to make it in the writing world. My mom hates my fiction work. She doesn't read any of my nonfiction work...and she wouldn't understand most of it even if she did. All she knows and is that I sit in front of a computer and type. If your mom likes your work, she's probably just being nice to you. You need feedback from an unbiased source. If my mom decided that she likes my work, I'd wonder when I changed and started fucking things up.
  14. Being a freelance writer is super exciting and easy. Nope. It's actually a little boring and hard. We don't get water cooler talk. Now, that suits me just fine. I'm so introverted that the Myers-Briggs test can barely chart me. I really don't need a lot of social interaction outside of my family. Granted, I go to school events, football, and some of my husband's shows. I get my social interaction by working at the library and people watching. If you enter the freelance world, you will be shocked by your feelings of isolation. Please get out of the house once in a while. It will help you. Freelancing is hard. A client might cancel a project...and it won't necessarily be because they don't like your work. They may have cancelled the entire project or decided to go a different direction. You may have clients who don't pay or pay late. You may not have enough work. Working from home as a writer means you really don't ever get away from your work. This is not for the faint of heart. If you can't handle risk or uncertainty, this is not the field for you. If you are a good writer, go to work for a marketing company or use Indeed to find jobs with businesses that want an on-site writer.
  15. Writing is stress free because you are doing what you love. Writing is not stress free. Much like I said under #14, you really don't get away from your work. There are no paid sick days. There are no paid vacation days. If you don't work, you don't get paid. The week you have the flu? It will take you longer to recover because you will be worried about money. You will find yourself always thinking about writing or projects. You will have ideas pop into your head when you least expect it. It's very hard to turn off your brain and switch back to family mode.
  16. Writing is creative and awesome. This is a partial myth. To some degree, writing is creative and awesome. It is awesome to be able to get paid for doing it. You will have clients that have a specific way they want their written product. There's very little room for creativity. It can become tedious. Your brain will hurt. You will cry. Yes, even you Mr. Manly Man reading this.
  17. Your writing has to be perfect or you can't be a writer. This is incorrect. If you write for magazines, there will be an editor. If you write for digital magazines, there will be an editor. Should you do your very best to eliminate typos and other basic problems? Yes! That will increase your worth. Your writing just has to make the client happy. Here's my tip: go above and beyond for your client. Even if it is a one time project, you will hear from them in the future. They will remember what you did for them.
  18. You shouldn't write for start up companies. This is one of those partial myths. You should do some research and ask a lot of questions. I have worked and will continue to work with start ups. I ask about their business model, funding, and other things. My goal is to find out how viable they are in the current market. They may not have a huge budget for writing now, but they will appreciate your hard work and input. Don't write for a start up if they want you to do it for free or you have a bad feeling about them. Always trust your gut.
  19. Writing for exposure will get you more clients. No it won't. It gets the person who suckered you some free content. You can create your own exposure for free. They aren't going to tell you their web stats. They can't guarantee your exposure. Once they start making money they most likely won't pay you. Occasionally, I do volunteer my services but it is at my leisure. You won't take me seriously here. You'll end up learning the hard way.
  20. If someone says they are a writer then they clearly know what they are talking about in the industry. No they don't. Anyone can say they are a writer. If they are burning the midnight oil writing the next American best seller, that's pretty cool and I respect that. Novels aren't easy...that doesn't mean that they know a damn thing about writing for money. Be careful who you trust. 

Monday, August 18, 2014

Writing Gigs: 8/18/14

It can become a bit of a problem when you're too busy to check your email. Pro Tip: keep two email accounts. Use one for job postings that are automatically delivered. Use a secondary one to actually correspond with your clients. Your life will be so much easier if you do that. I have more than 300 messages that have job postings in them for freelance writing. Clearly I don't (and won't) post every job. I just thought I'd give some of you some Monday cheer.

  1. Freelance Writer - New Orleans
  2. Onsite Freelance Writer
  3. Copywriter - Ft. Myers, FL
  4. Web Content Writer
  5. Content Writer
  6. Writer (Human Rights Campaign)
  7. Writer (Angie's List)
  8. Communications (
  9. Technical Writer (Blizzard)
  10. Short Content Writer (MLB)
  11. Writer / Content Strategist
  12. Sr. Editor - Yahoo News
  13. Write a LinkedIn Profile
  14. Content Solutions Coordinator
  15. Technical Writer
  16. Creative Writer
  17. Writer - User Manual
  18. Web Content
  19. Write an Ebook on Business
  20. Editor
  21. Ghostwriter
  22. Travel Blogger
  23. Ebook Writer
  24. Technical Writer
  25. Website Content / Blog / Social Media
  26. Experienced Copywriter for Newsletter
  27. Biohacking Blog Post
  28. Copywriter
  29. B2B Blogging
  30. Writer (FDA)
  31. Contract Content Writer
  32. Freelance Vet Writer
  33. Content Freelancers
  34. Blog Ghostwriter
  35. Bloggers: Social Media, Photography, Technology
  36. Writer-Editor of Federal Resumes
  37. Copy writing for Website
  38. Ebook - Data Analysis
  39. Watersports and Sailing Blogger
  40. Social Media Content Writer
  41. Home Design Writer
  42. Mom Writers
  43. Blog Post
  44. Lifestyle Writers (Bustle)
  45. Technical Writer
  46. Content Writer: Teacher on Assignment
  47. Writer (BuzzFeed Espanol)
  48. Writer (EA)
  49. Marketing Copywriter
  50. Ghostwriting
  51. Fibromyalgia Article

Big decision

It's a pain in the ass to manage two blogs when you work as much as I do (and when part of that work involves managing the blogs of others). So, all job postings will also be found here instead of the old site. It just makes my life a little easier. I'll post some soon. I need to get some other gigs caught up first.

Interested in hiring me to help you with writing or social media? Click here.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Johnson & Johnson - No More Tears VoxBox

** I received these products complimentary from Influenster for testing purposes.**

The other day I received an amazing surprise in the mail from Influenster. I received full size bottles of Johnson's Baby Shampoo with Conditioner, Leave In Conditioner, and the No More Tangles Spray. 

I absolutely love that Johnson's now offers a baby shampoo that has a little bit of conditioner in it. I know that some parents might think that's not necessary...because baby hair is so soft. However, sometimes hair can be so baby soft that it snags and tangles like no body's business. It's still tear free and since I have a kid who loves to stick his face in the bathwater, using tear free soap and shampoo is a must! 

I also love that they now offer a leave-in conditioner in a squeeze tube. I think out of the three products I received to review, that was my favorite (but we will get to that in a minute). Here in Oklahoma, it gets more than a little hot in the summer. It gets down right humid. You can give your kid a bath and get them looking absolutely perfect. It won't matter. Two minutes after being out in the Oklahoma heat, every dirt speck within a ten mile radius is now sticking to your child. Their once perfect hair is now a mess of snarls and snags. This little tube of awesome can easily go with you in a diaper bag or even in your purse. It doesn't take much...just squeeze a little into your hand. Then rub your hands together. Run it through your child's not so trendy messy 'do and you can comb those knots right back out! 

Speaking of the leave-in conditioner, it works well for adults with fine hair, too. I've used it in my hair and it stops fly aways. So, if you have fine hair that tangles easily...Johnson's Leave-In Conditioner works double duty for the same price. :) 

The No More Tangles Spray is just as great as it was when my grandmother used it on me more than 30 years ago. It also has a convenient way to lock the spray top. I actually use it on my 13 year old son's hair. It's very fine like mine, but is also naturally curly if left to grow out. Since he plays football, it's easy for his hair to tangle under his helmet at practice unless I spray his hair first. 

The only thing I did not like about this product was the smell. I am very particular about smells. My husband said that they smell like baby powder. I just don't like the smell. The kids don't mind the way it smells (not even the teen). It is definitely a product that we will buy in the future. 

Thursday, August 7, 2014

"You're too expensive. Can I interest you in this shiny penny?"

I read a great article from Freelancers Union about what to do when a potential client doesn't like your fee. Red Adair summed it up perfectly. "If you think it's expensive to hire a professional to do the job, wait until you hire an amateur."

Sure, there are people that may work for a rate less than I do...and good for them if they can live off of it or wish to work insane hours that they hoped to avoid by working at home to begin with. So, here's my numbered list of thoughts on this matter. Please note that I don't expect anyone to agree. These aren't in order of importance either.

  1. You love your family. I love mine. Just like you need shelter, food, and basic necessities - so do we. My children have school expenses. They play sports. The older two occasionally have an interest in someone of the opposite sex. My dog needs food...rather, I need money to buy the ingredients with which to make her food. It's actually cheaper and better for her than if I were buying elite dog kibble. Sorry, I'm not feeding my dog ash and filler (and you shouldn't feed it to your dog either). 
  2. You have expenses. I have expenses. Let's face it (and I'll say this again soon), if writing were easy, you'd do it yourself. November is known as National Novel Writing Month. That is a month in which participants can aim to write 50,000 30 days. That's a little less than 2k words per day. Think about your topic and open your word processor. Now, try to write 2000 really good words from the top of your head. Go ahead. This post will be here when you're done. What's that? You're not a professional writer? Even those of us who are professional writers must take time to think and to plan. Why on earth would I accept $100 for 20,000 words? Furthermore, why would I limit myself to completing such a task within seven days? Saying no and working with other clients that would end up paying me more money (and I would have more variety) is far better.
  3. Can you call your electric company and bargain? The answer to that is no. Maybe you can set up a payment arrangement, but you can't call and tell them that you think their fee is too high. You will not have electricity if you do not pay your bill. 
  4. My fees are fair. Fees charged by writers vary due to cost of living, experience, and complexity. If we charged less, we end up not being able to pay our bills. 
  5. Hiring a writer who is self employed means that you are (most of the time) hiring a writer who now is devoted to your cause. We aren't successful unless you are successful. You won't deal with mid-level managers. You aren't dealing with an entire agency or a content mill. You are dealing with a real person who can learn about your needs. 
  6. If writing took no talent or brain power, you wouldn't have looked for a writer. If it were so simple, you would have done it yourself. The fact is that why anyone is capable of writing...that doesn't mean that talent to write exists. I am pretty good with computers, but that doesn't make me a web developer. 
So, please...have some respect for your freelancers and self employed contractors. We have the same expenses that you do...and many of us aren't desperate. 

Writers, if you find yourself in a desperate situation...don't accept slave wages. Contact me or look on the Internet to find free websites that list writing gigs. There's absolutely no reason why you can't make a decent living if you are willing to devote yourself.