Freelance Writers Wanted

EDIT: this was published in February 2011. As people are still responding in November 2011, I've closed off the ability to leave any new comments. My friend has enough writers now. Thank you.

Yes, it's true. My friend is looking for freelance writers to write articles, web copy, ebooks, blog posts and other assorted jobs. There are far too many orders coming in for her existing team to keep up with, so she's seeking more.

Here are the basics:

You must be able to write in US or UK English. You must be able to follow the client's preferences for formatting and style. You must adhere to deadlines. You must be willing to communicate if you have problems meeting deadlines so someone else can help you. The topics vary all the time, so we never know what to expect next. You must not submit plagiarized work - originals only. You are only expected to accept the amount of work you can reasonably complete by the deadline date. You must be willing to WORK. And you must love writing.

It sounds easy, right?

However, there is a catch...

You see, she has several writers already working with her little team (some on a full-time basis, others part-time) and they seem to have plenty of work when they want it. But despite her best efforts in the past two weeks to find new writers, she's found only lemons.

Here's a run-down of just SOME of the quality for the most recent batch of  "freelance writers" has been like that she's seen in the past two weeks:

1. One writer began working for the team, accepted the work this writer felt could be done by the deadline shown and was promptly never heard from again, leaving those jobs untouched, incomplete and needing to be completed by someone else in a mad hurry to try and meet the deadline.

2. One writer was so desperate for any work at all that there were promises made of being able to complete at least 10 articles a day - every day - without any problems. My friend was happy that someone would want to do that, so accepted this writer based on the strength of good samples. Two articles were completed. Both were woefully written and not in native-English at all - in fact, not even close to the quality of samples shown. When asked to rewrite the first two articles submitted, that writer also decided it was too hard, didn't do them and didn't complete the rest of the orders that had already been accepted. Needless to say, that writer won't be receiving any more work.

3. One writer was absolutely thrilled to be a part of a team of professional, full-time writers and was eager to get started. This writer was given plenty of work to choose from - but promptly decided it was all way too intimidating and ran away.

4. Our next lucky contestant was told that each of the jobs allocated show the word count, the pay rate, deadline, keywords required and any formatting requirements that client expects. Of course, all work is Copyscaped checked for uniqueness before being submitted to the clients, so it goes without saying that you can't submit plagiarized work. The writer accepted some jobs and completed them very quickly. Unfortunately, they were copied directly of someone else's website. They didn't include the keywords required at the density requested - and they weren't even formatted in the way the client expects and is paying for.

5. Our final contestant picked up a reasonable, realistic amount of work, made it clear that the work would be completed on time and even gave updates to let my friend know they'd be on time throughout the week. Yet when the deadline day rolled around, that writer was nowhere to be found. No responses on email or Skype. No contact at all. In fact, it's been three days and still no contact. Someone else had to complete that already-overdue job in a mad hurry to get it to an angry client


If you think you're anything like any of the above ex-writers mentioned, then stop reading now. This post doesn't concern you. My friend simply doesn't need writers like this.

Writers who do these things don't tend to receive offers to work on a full-time basis. They don't receive repeat orders. Writers who accept jobs and promise to complete them on time, only to think of something more interesting to do instead also won't be needed.

However, if you believe you're able to write simple, legible articles in native ENGLISH (yes, we can tell...) and you can follow the client's instructions for the articles they are paying to have done THEIR way, you're welcome to apply.

How to Apply

As a way to test whether you CAN follow instructions or not, please apply by adhering to the following instructions. If you can't complete this simple step, chances are you won't be contacted.

Please leave a brief comment after this post letting me know of your interest in joining the team. Feel free to let me know if you've written before or not. If you're in the US, UK, Canada, Australia, or South Africa, let me know your location. If you live elsewhere in the world, you may still be considered, but your English will need to be of a high standard.

If you have a blog or a website, link to it where the comments section asks for your name and URL. Make SURE there is a way for me or my friend to contact you on that blog. If you have samples on your blog/website, we'll read them. If you don't, we may ask for them.

If you do not have a blog or website, please leave your email address formatted as follows:

yourname (at) extensionname (dot) com

Do not write out your email address in full using the @ symbol. This will encourage more spam to arrive in your own inbox and it brings way too many scammers to my blog.

If you can follow these instructions, my friend and I will be going through those compliant applications over the next week or so.

I'd love to see you all on the team, so don't let me down...



Is Freelance Writing Worth The Hassle?

Let's be honest here - full-time freelance writing as a career path can be a lot of hard work.

But is it worth the hassle, time and effort you put in?? Absolutely. I wouldn't dream of doing anything else.

I'm not talking about churning out a couple of articles in my spare time for a few extra bucks. I mean the full-time daily grind of writing something EVERY day, writing enough to cover all the bills, keeping up with client demands and deadlines, invoicing, converting currencies at opportune moments, and all the other associated bits that go along with being a full time freelance writer.

And yet I'm contacted by writers on a fairly constant basis wanting tips for how they can break in and really 'make a go of this writing thing'.

The answer is absurdly simple and it's available in some very easy-to-follow steps. Are you ready for them?

Step One: Apply your butt to your chair.

Step Two: Open a Word document, or other word processing file

Step Three: WRITE SOMETHING, stupid.

Yeah, it sounds cynical, I know, but there you have it - the basis of becoming a real, paid, full-time freelance writer. It never fails to surprise me how many people forget all about steps two and three in this industry.

So what do you do with those things you write once they're written? Why, you make the best possible use out of them, of course.

Upload them to Constant Content and see who buys them. Apply to a few content mills around the place and see if you can find clients who will pay you to move through steps one through three on a consistent basis. Advertise your services available on forums where people who need writers hang out. Use the pieces you write as samples to entice new clients. Create a blog and tell people you write stuff and you expect to be paid for it.

Be a little different and submit your articles to various article directories. Remember to include a link that points to your blog or website, which contains some form of monetization to help you recoup some costs for writing those articles (and maybe even churn a healthy profit if you're any good at it).

How to Know When You're Doing it All Wrong

If you've been following steps one, two and three on a consistent basis without being distracted by Facebook or Spider Solitaire and you're still not making any money, there's a really good chance you're doing it wrong.

Here are some tips to let you know when you haven't gotten those steps right:

1. You're given a paying job, with a real deadline and you forget to apply steps two and three.

2. You're offered steady, regular work by a client and you don't even bother to begin at step one.

3. You create a blog or website that advertises your writing services and it's full of mis-spelled words and horrendous grammatical errors.

4. You think you don't need to learn any more about freelance writing once you've figured out how to earn $3 for a 500 word article.

Once again, this might sound a little bit cynical, but you would be surprised (or maybe you wouldn't) by the amount of times I see people making these same four mistakes over and over again and they're confused why they can't make money in this freelancing thing.

The real secret to making a really respectable income as a freelance writer is simple. It's not even a secret.

Just sit down and write.

Stop complaining, stop whining. Get off Facebook and close MSN messenger for a while. Write something. Anything. Write articles. Write fiction stories. If you really want to be a writer so bad, you'll write.

If you don't enjoy writing enough to do it every day, go and submit your application to McDonalds. I hear they're hiring burger flippers at the moment ...