What Is a Freelance Writer and How Do You Become One: A Step-by-Step Guide

As an industry, content writing is not going away anytime soon. The reason is that getting into this industry and maintaining a career in it does not require too much thought.

Assuming you’re wondering what is a freelance writer and how you can become one, let’s jump into it below.

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The Growth of Freelance Writing

The rate at which freelance writers have grown dramatically over the years is noteworthy, and among these, writing has become a vocation with massive potential for growth.

With regards to being a gifted writer, you may have thought about looking for freelance writing work, and given recognition to the flexibility of freelancing.

Freelance writers can take on a large range of projects from a wide range of clients, making for a fascinating side hustle or even a diversified and flexible career.

What is a Freelance Writer?

Freelance is generalist by nature, that is, production of materials for a wide range of media and distribution platforms is involved.

Websites, blogs, press releases, guest articles, newsletters, proposals, and more can all serve as channels.

Freelance writers work according to the schedule they choose for themselves.

What Is A Freelance Writer

As a freelance writer, you set your time, hours, and deadlines. Part-time or full-time, anywhere in the world, these writers can be found.

The writer’s clientele can be numerous or just one large company that is in constent need of fresh content.

Multi-talented Freelance Writers

Becoming a successful freelance writer takes a lot of time and dedication to continuing education.

This career is not built for those who are not multi-talented. Being skilled in a variety of areas, topics, themes and styles is something that will launch your career into orbit.

Different writers have along the line come up with ideas and strategies that best suit their personality and the needs of their clients.

If you are determined to succeed as a freelance writer, we recommend the following:

1. Diversify Yourself

To start with, it’s always best to choose topics that you are passionate about. If you can’t manage to do that then moving outside of your comfort zone will work but remember that you’re going to need to be doing a lot more research about topics you’re not interested in.

The more of an expert you are about a few select topics, the better your writing will be, and you won’t have to spend as much time researching and making revisions.

Digital Marketing, entrepreneurship, finance, fitness, health and travel are all examples of popular and well read niches where you could potentially find work.

You could also choose to go with a passion but if it’s too niche, you might find it difficult to find enough jobs to keep you afloat.

Diversify yourself and be good at a few things rather than just one.

2. Enroll in Content Writing Workshops and Courses

As a freelance writer, you must have thorough awareness of the industry skills required before your success is viable.

Enrolling in a content writing class would be a great way to not only learn new skills but brush up on old ones as well.

As a result, you’ll be well-versed in all facets of content creation, types of content writing, skills needed to become a great writer, and also get an opportunity to network with people in your industry.

3. Start Pitching Yesterday

Freelancers have various challenges, one of which is pitching.

It would help if you began submitting your work to websites and print publications that host guest contributors and pay for projects.

This will not only help you improve your overall portfolio, but also help you reach a large audience within the industry.

4. Utilize Job Boards

Exclusive job boards are an excellent source of leads if you are looking for a well-paid writing job.

Various specialists provide information on numerous websites, publications, and blogs that assist you in obtaining a well-paid work.

As a freelancer, your ultimate goal should be in a position where clients are seeking out your services through word of mouth.

5. Build a Website or Blog

You’ll need an online presence as a freelance writer and one way you can do this is by starting a blog.

There, you will be able to have a place to publish and share your work as well as receive feedback that you can learn from along the way.

At the end of the day, every freelance writer needs a website to promote their services and it doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg.

You can either choose to go the free route (WordPress.com) or the paid route WordPress.org. 

The difference between WordPress.org and WordPress.com is significant and we’re not talking about cost.

WordPress.org is used for professionals. Yes, you.

WordPress.com is a free platform that doesn’t give you full control of your website and runs ads on your content. In other words, WordPress.com is not free at all.

You’re trying to become a successful freelance writer, correct?

If so, invest in yourself.

You can start a website using WordPress.org by simply following these six basic steps below:

  1. Visit GoDaddy.com and purchase an economy hosting plan.
  2. Choose your free domain name that comes along with the purchase of your hosting plan.
  3. At checkout enter the coupon code: GDD1HOS ($1/month hosting for 12 months)
  4. Install WordPress on your hosting account via the cPanel.
  5. Install a theme. If you don’t want to invest in a theme, there are plenty of free themes that will get you by for now.
  6. Start publishing your content
  7. Bonus: Share your content on your social media platforms in order to send social signals to Google.

If you’re wondering why go WordPress.org vs WordPress.com…

Well, because if you are afraid to invest $12 and a little bit of time to understand how WordPress works, you probably won’t make it far in this industry.

6. Choose Your Samples Wisely

A sample of your work needs to be constructed, which will serve as your portfolio.

This can as well serve as your resume when it’s time to start submitting paid proposals. 

Creating a website and starting a blog in your particular niche as stated above will look great on your portfolio.

You can also submit your sample articles to prospective employers via GoogleDocs.

No matter what you do, you must be sure that you curate the best of the best if you’re planning on sending off samples to new clients.


In addition to the steps listed above, as a freelancer, you need to be prepared for anything as being self-employed can be a bizarre and dangerous experience because of the unpredictable nature of your money and sometimes the odd hours you have to work.

All in all, becoming a freelance writer requires persistence, dedication, discipline, enhancement of your skills, and a complete insensitivity to rejection.

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