I’ve been freelancing for several years now and have answered this question a number of times. I’d like to think I’m kind of an expert in this field – as I took what was once a part-time job to help supplement my paycheck to a full-time job where I earn more than I ever have in my life. The best parts of this are that I get to work my own hours, I get to work from home, and I get to take the projects I enjoy most.
But let’s get back to your main concern: Where should I look for well-paid freelance magazine writing jobs? Here’s everything you need to know:
Start by making a list of your specialty areas and interests. There is a niche market for just about every subject in the world. Boating. Fishing. Architecture. Classic Literature. You can find magazine opportunities in each of these subjects and so much more. So just start with a list.
Next, research the kind of material that is getting published in your favorite niche areas. While you do want to create a voice of your own, it’s good to know the kinds of things magazines are going to pay for. See if you can match, even slightly, what it is that will likely get published at your top magazine choices.
Taking a combination of the notes you made in identifying your specialty areas with the research information you found about what is getting published, create a profile and portfolio that targets your desired niche market. Your profile can draw a lot of attention and can be the main point of which magazines will choose their next contributing freelancer.
Your proposals are a way to set yourself apart from other job seekers looking to write for the same magazines. Be sure that you not only highlight your skills and expertise but that you also communicate that you have done your research and know as much as there is to know about the magazine you are targeting. Don’t submit generic bids; be sure your proposals are customized and specific to the job.
Finally, even if you don’t get a gig at your top choice (or choices), be sure you don’t spend time with your down in self-doubt. Get out there and network with other people in the industry. Every rejection letter might point you to another opportunity. And getting to know a few other writers can open doors to other opportunities you may not have heard about otherwise.
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