Friday, October 31, 2008

What is Freelance Writing?

More than just defining what freelance writing is, the better question is, why would someone want to be a freelance writer in the first place?

Ask any writer why they are a freelance writer, and you will get just as many answers, as the number of writers you ask. It is simple, working alone; the number of different types of projects, and learning new things has always tweaked an internal need, and interest for some writers.

When doing research for an article, one needs to fact check for accuracy and substance of the article. It is this desire for correctness and deadlines that guide the freelance writer to take on an assignment, while also pushing them into a sometimes-uncomfortable area.

When writing within a writer's comfort zone, sometimes makes the writer lazy, if they become too comfortable. When a writer is so comfortable they become lazy, the writing will reflect this and the article will suffer. No writer wants to write less than his or her best effort possible. Less than a writer’s best effort will reflect on all writers. No writer wants to let down fellow writers by submitting sub standard writing.

If anyone is thinking of getting in to the freelance writing arena, he or she should think long and hard. It takes time to build up a reputation, and an even shorter time to lose it with poor work. If you think, you are going to make a full time living by freelance writing, do not quit your day job. There are many people willing to hire the unproven writer, but, for very little money.

Some people looking for writers are seeking someone to write for peanuts. If writers allow themselves to work for nothing, it brings down the hard working writers with experience.

Anyone wanting to get into writing should take some take some refresher courses in English. Only when the writer has a good working knowledge of grammar and punctuation, can they write well enough for the client’s needs. If a writer does not know the rules, they will not know when, or which one to break under certain situations. Take a course in English at a community college or a university to brush up on your grammar and punctuation skills before attempting to get into freelance writing, or any type of writing you wish to pursue.

People are under the false impression that a spell and grammar check found in most word processing programs is sufficient. WRONG! All a spell checker does it to tell you whether, or not the writer spelled the word correctly; not if it is the right word; as Mark Twain said, “The difference between the almost right word & the right word is really a large matter–it’s the difference between the lightning bug and the lightning.”

If a writer does not understand the quote above, he or she, needs to learn.

1 comment:

Yvonne Perry said...

Great advice! Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

Yvonne Perry
www.writersinthesky.com