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How to Bring New Money Into Your Freelance Writing Business

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The proverbial feast or famine can strike anytime in a writing business when you’re not paying attention. Or for some writers, it may feel like famine and still more famine. Whatever the case, if you’ve hit a patch where money is running low and no new infusion of cash is on the horizon, you can feel pressed to hit the panic button.

What not to do

Well, first, hard as it may be, don’t panic. When you panic, you make rash decisions; decisions that can get you further down the hole. Another good reason not to panic is that you don’t want anyone to smell the stench of desperation on you. If they do smell it, one of two things will happen: They’ll run away from you, meaning no new business is coming from that direction. Or they’ll try to move in for the kill and get you to take on a slave-labor project. In your panic and desperation, you might take on the project that is paying way too little money, as you are just happy to have any dollar sign headed to your bank account. But then a strange thing happens when you take on a project for way too little pay: You hate the project.

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10 Bad Freelance Business Practices to Leave Behind

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I recently spoke with a woman who had received a request from someone wanting to do business with her. She wasn’t sure of how much to charge. Her initial thought when we talked was to charge a really low rate — about half of what others in her industry charge for the same type of work. Why would she charge so low? Because she doesn’t quite value what she brings to the table. She knows she can do good work, and has done it for the handful of clients she has had, but she is intimidated by the idea of competing with others doing the same type of work. She doesn’t quite believe in her business. Beyond that, this new potential client is a rare sight indeed, as the woman doesn’t really market her business and so isn’t sure if she wants to scare off this one potential client by charging a fair rate.

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The Secret to Earning More — When Other Writers Are Getting Fired

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Making a living as a writer has in some ways become more difficult today.

But it’s also become easier. Here is what I mean. Publishing houses are doling out smaller and smaller advances. Newspapers are cutting staffs down to anemic levels. Publications are asking writers to contribute for free. All of these are current examples of how writers are earning less money from their work. But that’s not the full story.

The other side of the story is that writers are finding it easier to earn more. That is because technology allows an enterprising writer to remove control for his or her future from some outside party — publisher, editor, or boss. Instead, technology is allowing writers to create their own platforms, marketing, and other activities to make a name for themselves and stand out. What this means for you is that you no longer have to fear the current media and publishing environment. You don’t have to be scared that some other party will hold your future in its hands and will make some arbitrary decision to fire or downsize you. Instead, you can build your job security now.

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5 Ways to Boost Your Writing Business at the End of the Year

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The end of the year can be a slow one for many writers, as clients are distracted by end-of-the-year demands and the holidays. Couple this distraction with a desire by some clients to shut down spending so they don’t run out of cash by the end of the year, and you can have a pretty quiet time. In other words, no cash flow, no money. Broke.

Not exactly the holiday season of your dreams.

But it doesn’t have to be that way for you. After all, many other freelance writers find the end of the year a busy time, as they find clients who still need projects done.

If you’ve been in the position of suddenly finding yourself broke at the end of the year and wondering how you can make a living writing, then here is how to make sure that dreaded slowdown doesn’t happen to you this year: Step outside your comfort zone! Writers, freelancers, and other solo entrepreneurs often rely only on their favorite marketing efforts to bring in new business, but stepping outside your comfort zone can provide just the infusion of new energy you need as a professional writer.

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Price vs Value: How to Set a Rate That Earns You More Money

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Pricing is always a big question when it comes to writing for a living. Do you write for free to build a portfolio? Do you set a high rate and post it to your website so visitors can pre-qualify themselves and any who can’t afford the high rate automatically go away, never to bother you with their penny-pinching budgets?

While these are important questions, more consideration goes into pricing than these. You must determine just exactly what it is you offer and whether there is a market for it. Assuming that you have a market for what you offer, then it’s important to determine typical rates. But it’s not necessary to set your rate simply based on the typical rate. The typical rate is there only as a guide, so you know what buyers are paying. Your rate can be vastly different from this, depending on how you position and market what you do.

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Ready to Get Away From Low-Paying Writing Assignments?

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The reality is that the reality is never the fantasy.

I’ve wanted to be a writer since I was a kid. I dreamed that I would write in a rickety, old frame house and do my best to put peanut butter and tuna on the table for two kids. I’d bang out great pieces on my typewriter — yes, typewriter, because this was my ’80s fantasy. Somehow in that fantasy I was a struggling, single mom, happy in her writing, even as the personal life was unremarkable. Not sure why I automatically envisioned my writerly self as a single mom — did not even the teenage me see the value of a husband? The only conclusion I can come up with on that part is that not many dads were around, which is weird because I had a dad in the home, although he was rather emotionally unavailable.

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How to Price Your Freelance Writing Work

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Many freelance writers have questions about pricing their services. They wonder if they are too high or too low or even what the norm is for a particular type of writing. Pricing isn’t an easy question, but it doesn’t have to be impossible. You must consider a few elements to come up with the right price for what you do.

Many freelancers tend to under price and under value their services. They err on the side of being the cheapest or lowest-priced competitor, thinking that will surely land them clients. And it might, but not the type of clients you want. It’s usually never good to price your services very low when you are a solo professional or running a service business. That is because there are only so many hours in the day and you could very well find yourself working at a full-time rate for what, essentially, is part-time money.

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5 Ways to Get Repeat Business From Your Clients

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So you’ve landed the project. Yay! You do the work, get paid. And then … nothing. You don’t hear from the client again. If this sounds familiar, then you can increase your client retention rate by tweaking your business processes.

It might not be that the client isn’t interested in working work with you again. It might be that you’ve not invited the client to work with you again.

Build a relationship, not just handle a sales transaction.

Clients often are busy people who are distracted by other pressing matters in their lives — work, family, etc. Your client may have another project that needs to be done, but he may be too distracted to realize it or may not realize that other project is coming up pretty quickly. He may only be able to see the urgent matters right in front of him — the fires that are burning now — and not be able to plan ahead to avoid future projects becoming fires.

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21 Days to Making More From Your Writing

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This year has been an amazing year for Writer’s Living. In fact, this month marks the first anniversary of this blog!

Writer’s Living started in December 2011 with another name, as my original intent was to combine two things I love: the business of writing with thoughtful commentary on life and pop culture. After a few months of doing that, we realized those were two distinctly different things and each needed its own space. So we took that one blog and divided it into two separate ones. Writer’s Living, as you know it today, came to be, with the purpose of sharing inspiration, information, and advice to help you manage the business side of your writing career. The other — commentary on life and popular culture and interesting articles to help you live a bigger, better life — would go to Big Life Magazine. You can join the mailing list for Big Life Magazine so you can be among the first to know when it goes live in 2013. But today isn’t about Big Life Magazine. It’s about Writer’s Living.

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How to Use Your Blog to Get Clients

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A blog can be the foundation of your marketing strategy for your business. A blog can showcase your work, highlight your expertise, and connect you to your audience. If you are an author, freelance writer, or other content creator, then a blog is essential.

For the longest, I resisted the idea of adding a blog to my workload. It felt like just one more thing to do. But I finally knew I needed to have one. We began Writer’s Living a year ago under another name, before changing it to its current name in the early part of this year. The goal was to build a separate identity for it as a resource for all kinds of writers. But what I found in my blogging was that the blog also became a good resource for our primary business, RootSky Books, which provides book ghostwriting, editing, design, and other services. You see, the Writer’s Living blog, while not created to support RootSky Books, actually helped us land clients for RootSky Books!

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