Oh, so you guys thought I was just a money- and attention-grubbing whore looking for both of those things on this blog, eh? Well, you’ve pretty much got me pegged, so at least you know who you’re dealing with. This blog isn’t just about me or about hiring freelancers, it’s also about BEING a freelancer.
Getting started as a freelancer, that’s a tricky one. There are about as many paths to freelance writing as there are freelance writers. I’ve asked other writers how they got started, and by and large, they had a mentor of some sort. Either they were young journos (we can smell our own) and had a kindly editor who didn’t beat them horribly and even taught them a few things, or they had a blog that kind of turned into a big deal after they connected with so and so… you know, those kinds of stories.
But it’s possible to bring yourself up by your bootstraps, I know it has to be. The first step, I guess, is to get some experience (this is where a mentor helps a lot). After you’ve got a few decent writing samples to show off, you can go after some real work — private clients or big marketing firms or publications or whatever you like. Writing is one of those professions where it’s almost impossible to get any experience unless you have experience — I never really understood the logic of that.
That being said, I’ll be disbursing general advice here from time to time about The Writing Life, but getting started is such a personal experience that it’s hard to give that a big blanket answer in blog form. I’ll do what I can to toss you some pieces to add to your education — maybe that’ll be enough, eh?