Freelance writers are being hit by the recession, just as old employees are having a hard time. With editorial budgets slashed and more and more layoffs in writing and editing, the opportunities for freelance writers are shrinking.
Overall, though, the writing market is expanding – you just need to spend more time understanding how this expansion can work to your advantage. So if you’re a freelance writer looking to keep your motivation and optimism high, here are some tips to keep you smiling.
stay calm. Frankly, rejection can be difficult, but editors or commissioners who keep changing their minds can be very frustrating. Remember to keep this anger and frustration in check – count to ten before you pick up the phone to rant or send that rogue email – after all, you need their ongoing long-term business. Instead, stay away from the situation… physically. Get off the laptop, make a cup of tea or coffee, and after a particularly bad conversation with the editor, head out into the garden. Just take 15 minutes out of your day to look at things and calm down. You will see that 15 minutes is worth gold.
Never stop learning. Writing is like any skill or trade – you need to keep your market knowledge up to date. So keep in touch with the publishing industry or the publishing industry as you will find this is a great way to find early writing opportunities.
Don’t put all your eggs in one basket. If you’re nervous about the current state of the freelance market, see if there are other jobs or roles you can take on on a temporary basis to help ease or resolve any concerns about your income. Also, don’t put all your energy into writing for a particular publication. Get close to a pair, and spread the risk of rejection.
Keep writing, keep coming up with ideas and work towards the editor or client. While it can be difficult at times, don’t lose motivation.
adhere! Always maintain this tenacious attitude.
Make the most of your expertise. If you have a healthcare background, use it to promote health articles in popular women’s magazines or to write targeted health articles for healthcare magazines.
Believe in yourself and aim high. If you’re not looking for big opportunities, you won’t win them. But if you try a tone, you never know…it might come off!
Play to your strengths. You are usually the best at what you are passionate about. So, if you really feel like a duck to water in football, check out what opportunities there are in this area.
Keep an eye on your finances and catch up on payment arrears. Don’t let yourself get into financial trouble by sloppy bookkeeping.
Keep your own happiness. It always gets worse when you’re tired, hungry, exhausted, or depressed. This prospect creates a negative atmosphere that can be devastating for writers. So keep yourself mentally, emotionally and physically happy and you will find that this also has a positive effect on your writing.