Welcome to Issue 5 of Write to be Published
Freelance Writing – Ten Characteristics of Successful “Working” Freelance Writers
By Suzanne Lieurance
Anyone can become a freelance writer. But successful “working” freelance writers all share ten characteristics.
If your freelance writing career isn’t what you’d like for it to be, maybe you need to develop a few more of these characteristics.
1. A “working” freelance writer writes on a regular basis. That should be no surprise. But it’s probably the number one difference between people who dabble at freelance writing and those who make a living at it. “Working” freelance writers write every day. Even if they aren’t working on a particular writing assignment they’re usually writing something, even if it’s just updating their blog, posting to their website, or writing promotional materials for their writing and writing services.
2. A “working” freelance writer knows how to study the freelance markets. He takes the time to get to know the publications he wants to write for BEFORE he queries them. He studies each publication’s guidelines, reads several months’ worth of back issues, and digs around online to find the editorial calendars for publications so he knows the best times to “pitch” his article ideas.
3. A “working” freelance writer knows how to write winning query letters and book proposals. He knows editors want to read a query that “hooks” them in the first paragraph and is written in the same style and tone as the proposed article. He knows all the components of a winning book proposal and he also knows how to find an agent and/or a publisher to submit it to.
4. A “working” freelance writer knows how to write for specific markets. He knows that an article he writes for AARP Magazine should not have the same tone as an article for TEEN magazine. Obviously, the subject matter for these publications should be different, also.
5. A “working” freelance writer knows how to find many lucrative writing assignments. He doesn’t sit around waiting for jobs to fall in his lap. He knows how to find jobs at online job boards. He subscribes to a variety of ezines that list freelance writing jobs. He also knows how to develop relationships with editors so they call him back for assignments over and over again.
6. A “working” freelance writer always has a weekly marketing plan for his writing and writing services. He knows that marketing his work, and developing a “platform” for himself, is just as important as his actual writing assignments.
7. A “working” freelance writer has a network of contacts that help him promote his writing and writing services. He knows writers all across the country (and even across the globe) and networks effectively with these people.
8. A “working” freelance writer has developed a focus for his writing career. That is, he knows where he wants to go with his writing. He doesn’t waste his time writing a slew of short articles each week that pay peanuts and eat up his time. He goes for larger, more lucrative projects, and also develops presentations, courses and workshops that pay him well for his time and expertise.
9. A “working” freelance writer knows how to stay focused so he lives the writer’s life of his dreams. He has a plan that keeps him focused. When he can’t stay focused alone he hires a coach to help him stay on course.
10. A “working” freelance writer has developed his own informational products to market and has other people marketing them for him as well. Most top-notch freelance writers know a LOT about the subject of freelance writing. They use that knowledge to create articles about writing, tips booklets about writing, and books and courses about writing. They market many of these items themselves but also have affiliates who sell the items for them as well. Develop all ten of these characteristics and it won’t be long before you’re a “working” freelance writer, too.
For more helpful tips for writers, visit http://www.workingwriterscoach.com and sign up for the mailing list. When you do, you’ll receive a free ebook for writers, plus every weekday morning you’ll get The Morning Nudge, a few words to motivate and inspire you to get a little writing done. Visit the National Writing for Children Center at http://www.writingforchildrencenter.com and find out how you can learn to write for kids. Suzanne Lieurance is a full time freelance writer, children’s author, and founder and director of the National Writing for Children Center. Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?Freelance-Writing—Ten-Characteristics-of-Successful-Working-Freelance-Writers&id=336409] Freelance Writing – Ten Characteristics of Successful “Working” Freelance Writers
Galvanize Your Creative Writing with Whole-Brained Thinking
By Jim Green
One morning in early August 2010 I awoke to irrefutable verification that I had entered the first day of my 80th year on this planet. Despite the relentless march of time I am still writing, painting watercolors, creating and running online businesses. But above all, writing.
As a right brain dominant person I recall that my far off schooldays were absolute torture; endless boredom and the way classes were taught created frustration as I tried in vain to learn through instruction that was left brain oriented. The only subjects I excelled in were English and Art (both right brain fodder) and they have been providing me with a living ever since. If like me you are right-brained by nature but trapped in your left brain by a society that insists you stay there to cope with everyday pressures, then think again.
You could do as I did several decades ago and train yourself to become whole-brained… How does that work? In the middle of the left/right-brain continuum lie the whole-brained who can access the strengths of both the left- and right-brained populations.
You can think of whole-brained thinking any number of ways:
• You are riding the line between creative and analytical: between the pop psychology definitions of right-brained and left-brained.
• You are successfully integrating your brain’s subcomponents into one powerful processor.
• You are tapping into your inner beauty, your complexity, your life fractal; you’re riding the line between chaos and stagnation and loving every moment of it. Time was already at a premium when I first started writing in earnest sixteen years ago but my freshly acquired skill of whole-brained thinking enabled me to crank out 37 books; all of which were traditionally published and all of which are best sellers in their respective niche.
My 38th title (ISBN 9781845284206) was published in June 2010 and has already entered the best seller lists. No matter what age you are (or perceive yourself to be) whole-brained thinking will empower you to galvanize your creative writing but do so in such a manner that your work will have a better than evens chance of being published, attaining best seller status, and in the process opening the door to a myriad of residual and incremental earning opportunities.
JIM GREEN is a bestselling author with 38 traditionally published titles in the realms of fiction and non-fiction http://creative-writing-course-xl.com Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?Galvanize-Your-Creative-Writing-With-Whole-Brained-Thinking&id=4877457] Galvanize Your Creative Writing with Whole-Brained Thinking
Creative Writing Tips – Top 20 Distractions and Excuses That Keep You from Writing
By Bryan Cohen
People often cite the extreme amount of distractions in their lives that keep them from working on their writing/creative projects. They also like holding fast to excuses that have blocked their creative outlets for years. This article of creative writing tips will provide potential solutions to 20 common distractions or excuses. That way, if you aren’t writing, you can say, “I am choosing not to solve these problems,” as opposed to blaming the problems themselves. Acceptance is the first step, right? 🙂
1. My phone keeps ringing with calls or texts. Turn it off or be dramatic and take out the battery. Believe it or not, the world will go on without you being reachable for a little while. If you don’t believe me, test it for ten minutes and see if the Earth is still here. If yes, try to add to that time little by little. If no, wow, you’re really important!
2. People keep sending me instant messages. Exit out of the offending program or uninstall the dang thing. I uninstalled AOL Instant Messenger about two years ago and my life has been much more productive ever since. If you are worried that you will miss a specific person’s message, just tell them you’ll be busy for an hour doing something cool.
3. My house, café, basement, attic, or street is too noisy. Write somewhere different? It isn’t too hard to find a quiet place if you’re willing to leave the problematic area. Local libraries, bookstores or quiet out-of-the-way restaurants work for me when I crave silence. If you need to stay in your noisier place, ear plugs are a cheap solution and noise-cancelling headphones are a bit pricier. And lastly, a bathroom is always a good last resort.
4. I’m too jumpy or jittery to write!!! Whoa, calm down. First, read my article about quitting coffee :). Secondly, think for a second instead of just giving up on writing. Previously in your life, when you’ve needed to calm down or relax, what have you done? Read a book? Listened to Frank Sinatra? Laid down for a few? Try what works for you, and then go back to the writing. It will probably be much easier to start.
5. I keep feeling the need to check my e-mail, traffic stats, football scores, etc. on the computer. Turn it off, unplug it, or leave the house. Challenge yourself to keep it off for as long as you can. Without a computer, how will you write? Go old school and bust out the pad of paper and a pencil.
6. My computer is broken, too slow, or in use. See pad of paper suggestion in #5. If you must use a computer, ask a friend or search out an Internet Café.
7. My favorite TV show or movie is on. Turn it off, unplug it, or leave the house. These days, nearly every popular TV show will be online the following day. Also, if you have TiVo or a DVR, the problem is solved. This is your time to write, don’t let CBS tell you otherwise. If it’s your favorite movie, find a way to record it or buy the DVD. Many of these solutions will involve sacrificing your immediate pleasure for your eventual fulfillment. Believe me when I say this: TV is less important than you.
8. I’m too tired to write. Get up and go for a walk, do some stretching, eat an apple and some raw almonds. Put on some pump up music and do a little bit of dancing. If none of that works, write standing up. It’s tough to fall asleep standing up. Just don’t pop a pill or drink a Red Bull. It will work in the short-term and hurt in the long term. Also, evaluate what time of day you are the strongest. Write at that time.
9. I’m too hungry to write. Take your laptop or paper and pencil out of the house and stop by a good writing café. If you take the time to prepare a five-course meal at home, you may lose the drive to write by the time you have finished stuffing yourself. Let someone do the work for you and write while they’re doing it.
10. I have to leave for work in an hour. Leave now! Get there early and write when you get there. Heck, if you take public transportation, write on the way there. Just because you don’t have a lot of time to write, does not mean you shouldn’t. Just make a little progress. And by leaving the house, you should eliminate several distractions right there.
11. I have time, but I don’t feel motivated. Surf around this site for twenty minutes! That’s what it’s for :). One quick tip: think about how good you’ll feel when you have the piece you’re working on completed. That is basic law of attraction.
12. I don’t know how I’m supposed to do the next chapter, story, passage, or scene. Just write. Write the first thing that comes to mind. Don’t judge it. Just go for it! If you need certain information, collect the research and then write! There is no way you have to do a particular thing, it just needs to be done. So, make it happen.
13. My dog/cat/bird needs to go out for a walk. Why not bring your dog/cat/bird to a dog/cat/bird park with your trust pad of paper in hand? If not, use taking out your pet as an excuse to leave the house to work. When you come back to the house, just drop your pet off and head to the local café or favorite writing spot. I’m sure he or she will understand :).
14. I told my boss, my friend, my land lady, my spouse, etc. that I would do something for them. Now you can bust out the old IM, text message, or phone call and tell the person in question that you are unable to work on his or her project. This is not a lie! You have an important project to work on for yourself. If you are motivated, you have an idea, and you have yet to begin, you should get out of your prior engagement. If it is impossible for you to reschedule, do it. If you can’t reschedule it, try to delegate. If you can’t do either, put it off for an hour or two and start writing. Your writing is important. The sooner you start conveying that to the people who “request” your time, perhaps you’ll find that more writing time happens naturally.
15. I am too overcome by sadness, grief, rage or some other powerful emotion to write. Perfect! Use it. Being overwhelmed with emotion is a great situation to be in as a writer. There is a lot of raw power you can draw from and draw from it you will. Try to convince yourself that putting this emotion down on the page will be great for your writing. If that seems impossible, find a friend that will understand your desire to channel your feelings into the written word. We’ll call this friend a writing buddy. I was the writing buddy for my friend Adam during a tough break up. He was devastated. He couldn’t eat or sleep, but I forced him to write. The result was a one-man show that is currently being adapted into a full-length film. Putting true feeling into your work can carry you far. Some obstacles aren’t obstacles at all.
16. I want to write, I just don’t feel like I’m any good. Prove it. Prove to me that you aren’t a good writer. I can show you proof of the chinks in my armor. I received a C in a poetry class, a fiction teacher told me I shouldn’t write fiction, and I was mentioned in a newspaper review as saying I had co-written a “lemon” of a script. And yet, I pressed on. Why? How? I have yet to make my grand contribution. I can feel that there is still something I can write that will mean something or last. Maybe it’s this website and maybe it’s not. I just know I’m getting closer because I still want to write. If you want to write, then you should write. If you don’t feel like you have any talent but you still want to write, then there must be some reason. If you do not write, you will never find that reason out. If you have yet to test the waters, you might as well jump in. Talent and perceived talent are only a small part of the pie. So I say, dig in, write, and see what happens. You know, before I make another metaphor :).
17. I don’t know how to write. Take your favorite book or play and open to your most earmarked passage or scene. Write something in the style of that scene. With the same characters or your own creations. When you’ve finished, read it out loud and chance anything that sounds weird. Now repeat the same process with another scene. Keep doing that until you feel comfortable starting from scratch. If interested in non-fiction, do the same with a similar non-fiction work. And then you are a writer. Start putting it on your business cards :).
18. I work so much! There just aren’t enough hours in the day. 2 options. Option 1 – Change one of your jobs into something that will allow you to write. Working in a library or as a receptionist at a less-than-busy office can make this possible. Also, finding something more passive like a website or some kind of investment can free up some time to write. Option 2 – Sleep less. I started option two about a year ago and option one a couple of months ago. They both have their positive and negative traits. Option two has been more effective personally, and both work best only if you have strong goals to support them. I know that sacrificing sleep is negative for your health, but I do plan on improving this aspect of my life in the future. Making time for your writing often requires a sacrifice. What is it gonna be?
19. I don’t have any ideas. There are tons of free creative writing prompts out there on the Internet. Several are at my website if you happen to go there. 20. I have so much to say, I can’t get it all out at once! Start small. Just write a paragraph. Or write an outline. Don’t let your wealth of ideas stop you. You have the best kind of problem. Just know that any work takes time. But if you absolutely need to get it all out, take a day off of work, go to a café and bring a lot of paper :). I once wrote a screenplay in one day because it felt like it needed to come out of my head. Why fight it? Start writing! In Conclusion Please, please, please write. Don’t let anything get in your way. If you get stuck, check back here and I’ll try to get you through it. Happy writing.
Build Creative Writing Ideas: http://www.build-creative-writing-ideas.com/index.html Creative Writing Prompts: http://www.build-creative-writing-ideas.com/creative-writing-prompts.html (c) Copyright: Build Creative Writing Ideas, 2008-9 Article Source: [http://EzineArticles.com/?Creative-Writing-Tips—Top-20-Distractions-and-Excuses-That-Keep-You-From-Writing&id=1961057] Creative Writing Tips – Top 20 Distractions