I became a freelance writer with no prior experience! If you were wondering about a viable option for working from home then consider freelance writing. I hope you find my story and tips about freelance writing useful too.
At the end of my maternity leave, I made my baby laugh. It was the first tieme I made any baby laugh. To go back to work and miss other milestones? No. I wanted to soak in all of this new baby life. So I quit my 8-year corporate stint to become a full-time parent! This big life decision was anything but easy. After all, I worked hard for over eight years to get to where I was. I was on my way to be an HR manager too. But God had other plans for me.
A one income family did nothing to help our credit card debt. So at first, I only wanted "some" job to support my husband. I scoured the newspaper and called up several "work from home" opportunities listed there. Most were insurance related, others were sales. I decided making sales calls during the day was not an option for me. There had to be another way, but what? So I prayed begging God to show me a way.
Everyone has a Talent - How I found mine
This parable in the Bible stopped me in my tracks (Matthew 25:14-30), I realised God has given all of us talents. We just have to apply them. So what was my talent? I modified my prayer to be more specific and asked God to help me know my talents. I also wanted to use my talents to bring others closer to God. Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people ~ Colossians 3:23
After five months of prayers, anticipation, and faith that God was listening to me, God whispered in my heart write. "You need to tell your story." He said. Naturally, I thought God wanted me to write a book on my life, how pregnancy and parenting changed me. How knowing God brought me peace. I also thought, WOW I'll write the book, sell a million copies and use that money to waddle through life. Ambitious but easy, ey?
I started working on a book, but I stopped after three pages. I wasn't motivated to move forward. Was my writing good enough? I needed to learn how to write first. I remember Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest ~Matthew 11:28 So I told God how difficult it was to write this book without any training or knowledge. In between all this, I realised how I loved reading books and an incident from school sprang back to my memory.
How I found a mentor!
In high school, there was this one time my father set a Lord of the Rings (LOTR) book on fire. A book that my classmate Trevor Coelho had kindly lent to me just that day. I took it home and I was just beginning to relish it instead of studying for my civics test. That's when my father came in, snatched the book from me and left my room without a word. My mom said he burnt the book in the alley outside. Ah, happy times.
I never had the courage to read the book or watch the LOTR movie ever since. Since I forgave my father recently for everything that upset me during my childhood, I gathered up the courage to watch the Lord of the Rings movie. That's when I realized, maybe I had never told Trevor about what happened. So I found Trevor on Facebook to apologize for what had happened back then and to let him know that I finally watched the movie.
Trevor, as it turned out, had already established himself as a prolific writer with over 10 years writing experience! He works full-time for an agency and is writing his book now too. He also has this great gaming website. After chatting for a while, he offered to help me with my book. We started working together. Slowly, but surely, he taught me so many things about writing, he became my mentor. PRAISE GOD! God answered my prayers! Sent Trevor in my life and everything started falling into place.
Starting from the bottom
After a couple of months, a dear mommy-friend Sheetal, introduced me to a local writing agency she was connected with. They hired me to write content for them (@Rs.125 for every 700 words) It was equivalent to infamous sweatshops of the third world countries, but I didn't care. I needed the work for practice. Lazy people want much but get little, but those who work hard will prosper. ~Proverbs 13:4
When I had written enough articles for samples, I joined Upwork. You need to bid for freelance writing projects here. It's easier to bag projects when you write a great proposal. More on this later. I met some great clients here and worked with them for several years. Thus began my journey of freelance writing. I had also Trevor backing me up, mentoring me until I was standing on my feet.
Freelance Writing Jobs
I worked 20 hrs a week to start and slowly increased hours as my productivity increased. Clients find me on social media and here on this website.Old freelance writing clients remember the awesome working relationship we shared in the past and are back for repeat business. I work at night after my children go to bed. This way, I have quality time with them during the day. My household is easier to manage when I work at night too. WIN-WIN A dream come true! God can provide opportunities, make connections, give you what you need! All you need to do is just Ask Him and He will do the rest.
My Top Tips to be the best Freelance Writer
- Trust God to show you a way.
- At first, take up small jobs for practice.
- Join freelance websites to find new clients.
- Approach agencies to work on contract basis.
- Find a mentor.
- Work hard, work smart.
- Be Honest.
Thank you for reading!
Need Help? Ask Liz here!