The Best Freelance Writing Job for Writers – Blogging for Dollars

Blogging is the best freelance writing job for writers, but it’s not easy as pie! These “blogging for dollars” tips will help writers who are struggling with freelancing or writing novels, and need a change. Here’s why and how I leapt from full-time freelance writing for magazines to full-time blogging and how much money I make — plus a few tips for writers who want to blog for dollars.

Before the tips, a quip:

“The typical blogger, like most people who go on diets and budgets, quits after a few months, weeks, or in many cases, days.” ~ Stephen J. Dubner.

Like with any successful career – especially in the writing industry – you need to stay the course. You can’t start writing a novel and idly hope it gets published; you have to hone your writing skills, write every day, approach literary agents or publishers, and refuse to give up on your writing dream. It’s not easy, but it’s worth it.

It’s the same with blogging. I think blogging is the best way for writers to make money – I get such a rush from creating my own site, writing articles, engaging readers, helping readers, and making more dollars every day. I answer to nobody, and enjoy complete freedom to run my blog and write the way I want (except of course for the old search engine optimization beast…every rose has its thorns). Could a writer’s life get any better?

To learn more about blogging for dollars, take Quips and Tips for Successful Bloggers for a spin. And, here’s why I think blogs are the best jobs for writers…

The Best Freelance Writing Job for Writers – Blogging for Dollars

Why and How I Leaped From Full-Time Freelance Writing to Full-Time Blogging

I got tired of pitching article ideas to editors. I didn’t like the constant pressure to come up with new feature article ideas, new ways to present old information, and better ways to hook magazine editors. Even after editors started sending me assignments without me pitching first, I had a hard time motivating myself to play the game.

But, it wasn’t easy for me to start blogging full-time and stop freelancing full-time! My ego was the biggest obstacle: I’d rather tell people I was a freelance writer for magazines (much easier to explain, and people were impressed when I said “I’ve written for magazines such as Reader’s Digest) versus a full-time blogger who makes money (people don’t understand blogging — or they think I write about celebrities, my year of eating within a 100 mile radius, or my journey as a writer).

The biggest thing I miss about freelance writing is editorial input. My Reader’s Digest editor taught me more about writing magazine articles than all the books I’ve read (and I read a lot about writing!). I dreaded her phone calls – she’d actually call me and go over almost every line of my articles – but it yanked my writing skills from “so-so” to “better than so-so.”

How Much Money Do I Make From My “Quips and Tips” Blogs?

Filthy lucre – I love you! This summer, I’m earning about $60 a day from blogging – not including the money I earn writing for Suite101 (that’s web writing, not blogging). By January 2011, I fully expect to be making $100 a day from my blogs (actually, if I’m only earning a hundred dollars a day, I’ll be disappointed). This may not sound like a lot, especially if you’ve heard of those six-figure affiliate bloggers, but I am proud of what I’ve accomplished! I can support myself as a writer, and I don’t mind living frugally. I have the freedom to do what I love.

It takes time for any new business to make money. Most new businesses take at least two years to turn a profit, but I started earning money a few days after I started blogging for dollars. I started my first blog – Quips and Tips for Achieving Your Goals – in January 2008. I started my most recent blog – Quips and Tips for Money and Love – in February 2010. These blogs are my full-time job.

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Tips for Writers Who Want to Blog for Dollars

  • Figure out your goals as a writer
  • Figure out your goals as a blogger (different than your goals as a writer)
  • Adopt a long-term perspective (like any worthwhile career!)
  • See yourself as an entrepreneur, who is starting a profitable business (because you are)
  • Find a writing job to keep your skills up (I write a monthly newsletter for BC Women’s Hospital, and will accept article assignments from magazine editors)
  • Create a blogging schedule
  • Read how six-figure affiliate bloggers like Problogger and Copyblogger earn money – but keep your goals realistic and achievable (remember that rising to the top of any field takes supreme time, effort, dedication, focus, and a little luck)
  • Keep honing your skills as a “blogger for dollars” and a writer – it’s challenging to be both!
  • Expect to invest financially in your blog (for example, I hired a webmaster to speed my blogs up — and of course I pay web hosting fees to HostGator)

I love waking up in the morning and checking in on my little plot of cyberspace – I really believe this is the best writing job for freelancers. The possibilities are infinite…as long as you take your first step and stay the course…

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Fellow scribes, have you started a blog? What’s your biggest challenge – and your proudest moment? I welcome your thoughts and questions below…

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