Part III of J-O-B: Finding Freelance Gigs

Last week I posted a bit more on the Poor Valley Witch story, so I decided to continue on with the third in my J-O-B series this week. Sorry, Mike. But for all you other readers, I hope you enjoy!

I mentioned in the first J-O-B post that I have two freelance gigs in addition to my part-time work. I’d like to share how I landed those gigs.

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Being freelance has lots of perks: you can pick and choose your work, the world is your office (or your house is your office, with a fuzzy cat “office mascot” and super relaxed dress code.) BUT freelancing has its downside. Sometimes work is thin on the ground, so you take whatever work you can get. And sometimes you get so sick of your house you flee to run errands and freak out the grocery store clerk because you’re so starved for human interaction you end up telling her your whole life story …

So how can you find fun and fruitful employment as a freelance writer? I have two avenues to share with you today.

1.Check online sources, and do it often. You’ll need a system, because just looking at all the places jobs might be posted takes days. Have a few you rotate through and check a couple daily, or maybe have two afternoons a week dedicated to job searching. Get good at recognizing how to pitch yourself as the best for the job through email cover letters. Make sure your resume and samples are up-to-date.

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2. Pursue the professionals you personally know. One of my clients is a local real estate agent who was interested in having a blog, but doesn’t have the time or experience to keep it up herself. I didn’t know that when I cold-called her, but she was willing to meet and hear me out. You never know what sustainable coffee shop owner wants a menu rewrite, or which outdoor adventures outfitter might want to start up a store newsletter. Come with ideas, plenty of writing samples (and, of course, a custom cover letter for that business, and your resume) and be prepared to hear “No.” You’ll get lots and lots of “No” before you land steady clients.

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Having multiple work streams is definitely the way to go in freelancing. When one client dries up, you can still sustain your work days with other clients. And don’t ever stop pursuing knowledge of freelance writing! Bloggers are out there, every day, sharing pearls of wisdom. Consider it Continuing Education, something every profession requires.

Thanks for reading!

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