This fall, I’m looking back at the bloggers who have been generous enough over the past few years to invite me into their communities and support my work as I’ve grown. Thanks for the awesome advice and motivation, Sophie!
If you’re like most freelance writers with a dream, you do one kind of writing “by day” — the kind you get paid for — and another “by night” — the kind you love and dream of doing full-time.
If that’s you, you’re doing twice the work you need to, and you may be hurting your chances of advancing toward that dream career.
Be more choosy to make your dream career a reality.
When you’re starting out, many steady blogging jobs ask you to “be able to write with authority on a variety of topics”. You become trained to believe that in order to make money blogging, you have to know how to write about whatever a client wants you to write about. You become very skilled at internet research.
But what about the reason you write in the first place?
What about those topics you love with such passion that you pour hours every week into unpaid posts for your own blog? What of the things you choose to read about in your spare time, that you talk about in days-long Twitter conversations with people halfway round the world?
You don’t have to be a jack-of-all-trades blogger to make money. You can be choosy and stick to the topics you love. Here’s how.
Choose Your Freelancing Ground
Think about the paid blogging you’re doing now.
Do those pieces help drive traffic to your blog? Do they drive sales for your book? Do they garner consulting clients?
If not, why not? Maybe it’s because you’re being paid to write posts about real estate trends, but your blog, books, and consulting services are focused on your real passion: self-improvement for twenty-somethings.
Does this sound like you?
As a blogger, you’ve probably already learned how powerful guest posting is as a marketing tool. You might already be leveraging that power, pitching ideas regularly to top blogs in your niche to build your perfect audience. You’ve got a Big Idea and you love every second you pour into your passion projects.
As a freelance writer, you’re probably ecstatic to be able to say you make your living writing — and desperate to keep it that way.
You’ve studied the best practices and tips for freelance blogging. You scour job boards daily and bid on anything you think you can cover — from real estate trends, to tech tips, to travel writing about places you’ve never seen.
But you’re not as proud of your paid work as you are of your own blog, and that’s a shame. Try this instead:
Write Half the Words for Twice the Benefit
When you’re blogging for clients, you might adopt the idea that paid blog posts have nothing to do with your own self-promotion. But if you focus on freelance blog opportunities in your desired niche, you can double-up your efforts and gain exposure and credentials while making money.
Instead of scouring job boards and bending your “expertise” to the whims of the market, connect with blogs you love, and keep your eye out for the types of paid writing that you love so much you’d do them for free. They’re out there!
To make a living writing about what you love, you have to make a commitment to your niche. Know what you love to write about, and what you want to be doing for a living. Find the opportunities to make money on that path with the skills and experience you already possess.
Stay focused, and know that your dream career does exist.
When I discovered Be a Freelance Blogger and picked up Sophie’s free Ultimate List of Better-Paid Blogging Gigs, I finally made that commitment. Now I’m building my own dream career, sharing advice for budding writers, and not compromising on the work I love.
You can commit yourself to staying on that path; refuse to work out of your niche. Once you create these boundaries for yourself, you’ll be astounded by how suddenly you’re able to find paid opportunities writing about what you love!
You don’t have to settle. With a simple promise to yourself, you can build your dream career without relying on assorted “expertise” to make money.
Are you making money writing about what you love?