Let me say it up front. You can work from home, write, watch your child, and bring in some extra income. It’s possible.
Five, count ‘em, FIVE, ways to make money writing online.
Make no mistake. Writing is work. I am no fan of cheesy, gimmicky, get-rich-quick garbage. If you want to make money from your writing you can, but you will have to earn it.
Here are some options for how to do so:
1) Freelance Writing
There are a gazillion magazines and websites that are starving for content. Whether you specialize in well-researched nonfiction or gripping, inspiring, or spooky fiction, there are plenty of paying outlets for your work.
The trick: you have to perfect your pitch. Getting the planets to align so that an editor will take a chance on your work is the key here. Fortunately, the more often you are published the easier it becomes.
2) Get Giggy with It
A cursory search for “writing gigs” will yield a boatload of results. These include everything from greeting card writers to slogan strategizers. You will have to compete with eager bidders from India and other developing countries, but if you can deliver the goods, you’ll get the job.
The trick: jump in early and often. These jobs are highly competitive. You have to fight and slog and lower your rates to get in.
This may seem self-explanatory, but there are plenty of ways to make money through blogging. One route is to build up the readership of your own blog with excellent content so that you can make money through advertising and/or affiliate links. The other is to write content for blogs that are already making money.
The trick: more than other forms, blogging requires that you master the conversational tone, provide content that people are actively searching for, and that you interact well with readers’ comments.
Just because a business is good at building widgets doesn’t mean it knows how to talk about them in a winsome or compelling way. With a little practice, any writer worth his salt can spice up a sales letter and/or manage a social media page for a company.
The trick: you need to find a company willing to let you do this work from home, then stand out from the crowd of other people trying to do the same thing. Craigslist is a great place to start your search. Set up a landing page on your blog explaining your skills and experience.
5) Big Projects: Novels / Screenplays
I’ve put this last on the list because it’s usually the first thing people think of when you talk about writing from home. Unfortunately, with a few rare exceptions, it also tends to be among the least lucrative fields long-term.
The trick: choose your market. Everyone wants to land an agent who will set up that major book deal/meeting with a studio, for many this only happens after years of work and/or a stroke of luck. Why not start off with smaller independent projects to earn a name for yourself and get your foot in the door?
I will write full articles on each of these topics in the future. In the mean time, do you have experience making money as a writer? Let me know in the comments. Also, if you liked this post click the +FOLLOW button on the bottom right of your screen. Thanks!