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Freelance Writers: Back up your Work!

I cannot stress this point enough: if you are a freelance writer, you need to backup your work on a regular basis. This is not the first time that I have said this, and it probably won’t be the last. The reason that I keep harping on this is that I am always hearing horror stories of freelancers who did not do this. Even if you are not a freelance writer, you will still want to back up your work as much as possible.

If you neglect to do this because you think you are invincible, you could be in for a big downfall soon enough. What would you do if you suddenly lost an entire project that is due in a few hours? While you can only hope that this never happens, you would not be the first person to be dealt this cruel hand. But guess what? If you backup your work, it is safe to say that you will not lose any part of your project.

There are many things that can happen that can cause your work to be suddenly deleted. This can include anything from a hard drive malfunction to the power suddenly going out in your office. Just a couple weeks back I was in the midst of a 2,000 word feature article when the power blew. Was this a big deal? It wouldn’t have been if my work was backed up. But since I just started the project that morning, I had yet to save it anywhere. The result: losing two hours of work and being forced to start over at step one.

If you are going to take your freelance writing work seriously, make sure that it is always protected against unforeseen incidents. I know this is easier said than done (see my story above) but it is a very important part of your business. The only thing worse than losing a project that you worked so hard on, is losing a client because you could not deliver their work on time. 

8 Comments »Freelance WritingFebruary 29th, 2008

Freelance Writing Productivity Tips

As of late I have received a run of emails on how to become a more productive freelance writer. More specially, people want to know how to manage their time so that they can make the most of each day. I totally agree with wanting to be as productive as possible. After all, freelance writing is one of those careers that pays based on how much work you can do. While this is not always the case, the more time you have the more money you should be able to make.

Here are three freelance writing productivity tips to keep in mind:

1. Make sure that you know what tasks you have to complete before the day begins. As a new freelance writer I never kept track of my daily workload. Instead, I simply worked from the emails that clients sent. While this worked for a bit, soon enough I was getting off track and having a difficult time remembering what I needed to do. My best advice is to write out each task that you need to complete, and then cross it from your list when done.

2. Work at least eight hours a day. This is the amount that you would work at an office job, so you should carry this over to your freelance writing career; at least when you get started. If you are lucky, you may be able to cut back on your working hours after you are established. But until then, make sure that you are working a full day. If you go beyond eight hours, expect to see a huge bump in productivity; just make sure that you do not burn out.

3. Try to get rid of low paying jobs that take up a lot of time. When you replace these jobs with projects that are higher paying, you will notice an increase in your hourly rate. Yes, this is easier said than done, but it should be your goal. Set a goal for how much you want to earn per hour, and then wean out low paying, tedious projects until you get there.

These tips should help you to become a more productive freelance writer. They are all general in nature, and despite the fact that they are basic I still rely on them day in and day out.

2 Comments »Freelance WritingFebruary 28th, 2008

Are you a Male or Female Freelance Writer?

To tell you the truth, I never really thought much about the sex of freelance writers in the past. But a few hours back, I saw a picture on John Chow’s blog that got met thinking. He is attending the Affiliate Summit West conference this week, and as usual, is posting pictures for the rest of us to see.

Last night, it appears that John took part in a huge party at Tao nightclub. He stated that this bash was open to all conference attendees. While glancing at the pictures, I noticed that most of the attendees were of the male persuasion. While this may have been a coincidence, it got me thinking about which was more popular: male or female freelance writers. From what I can see, it appears that most affiliate marketers, at least those at Affiliate Summit West, are male. In the second picture of John’s post, I could only find six or so females. This is in comparison to approximately 40 males.

So what do you think about this? Is there a similar trend within the freelance writing industry? From where I sit, I would guess that female freelance writers are a bit more common. But then again, this is a one sided view.

If you do think that one sex is more popular than the other, do you believe there is a reason for this?

While this has nothing to do with becoming a better freelance writer or increasing income, it is something that is fun to think about. Let me know your thoughts!

8 Comments »Freelance WritingFebruary 27th, 2008

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