One of the fastest growing segments in the freelancing industry is writing. From 200,000 freelance writers in 2012, online job market platform Elance already houses more than 300,000 freelance writers.
Many people enter the field of writing simply because writing is a basic skill that we are taught the moment we can hold a pencil. We have honed this skill throughout the years and under different capacities. Thus, a talented writer in all of us is waiting to be discovered. In this article, you are taught how to land a freelance job even without experience.
Website design, software development, legal transcription, and 3D animation are examples of projects that require a freelancer to have specific skill sets, competencies, and in some cases, certifications. For sure, you cannot hope to land job contracts for these types of projects without training and years of experience under your belt.
But in the case of writing, prospective clients just want freelancers with the ability to write. A degree in English or in journalism may give you an advantage, but for clients, having someone who can express their purpose, vision, and ideas into a narrative that can engage and influence the thought processes of readers is more important than these degrees.
The following names may be familiar to you: Harper Lee, Augusten Burroughs, Charles Dickens, William Faulkner, Mark Twain, Harvey Pekar, Jack Kerouac, Jack London, H.G. Wells, and George Bernard Shaw. They are 10 award-winning writers who never finished schooling.
Some of them, like Charles Dickens and Mark Twain, only finished high school. However, they became great writers because during a specific period in their lives, they unearthed their passion for writing. None of them had formal training in writing, but they used their ability to capture, articulate, and transform their experiences and visions into classic works of art.
Although not everyone can be as gifted as these iconic writers, they have proved that the ability to write is in all of us. All we need is to commit to the process and write!
Eight (8) ways on how you can land a freelance writing job even without experience
1. Reassess your basic skills
You don’t have to know the conventions of APA Publication Manual or the Chicago Manual of Style in formatting citations to become a successful and in-demand freelance writer. However, you should evaluate your basic skills and assess your level of proficiency in the following key areas of writing:
- Sentence structure
Nothing is more off-putting than reading a piece containing misspellings, incorrect grammar, poor punctuation usage, and sentences that are structured without sense, direction, or continuity of thought. In fact, just one instance of any of these mistakes can put the credibility of the article into question.
If you want to test your proficiency level in writing, take any of the skills tests available in popular online job platforms, such as Elance, oDesk, and freelancer.com.
2. Establish a blog site
One of the biggest mistakes freelancers make is not having a website to present their services. Keep in mind that being a freelancer means you are running a private enterprise that qualifies you as a small-business owner.
Having a website also gives you a medium to showcase your writing skills through a blog page. If you want to land a freelance writing job but have no experience, a blog page can give prospective clients a venue to view how you write and, more importantly, how you think.
Don’t you believe it? Statistically, businesses that blog generate 126% more leads than businesses that don’t.
Another advantage of having a blog site is that it gives you purpose to keep writing. To become a good writer, you need to keep working on your craft. If you are not confident with your writing skills, you have to practice every day.