Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Freelance

Now that I've graduated with my BA, I've been spending a good deal time considering what I want to do with that degree.  It's a question I get all the time, "What're you going to do after college?"  This is inevitably followed by, "A degree in English!  You're going to be a teacher, then?"  The answers are always "Not sure" and "Absolutely not" in that order.  I've never wanted to be a teacher, I'm simply not cut out for it.  What I want is to be a writer --more specifically, a freelance writer.

I don't want to work on someone else's schedule, I want to be free to work on mine.  I consider myself a strong proficient with the language, I'm educated and well spoken, and I communicate well.  I have everything one needs to be a freelance writer, except experience.  It's how one goes about earning said experience where I seem to get hung up.  I've researched, I've read, and I'm still at a bit of a loss as to how one breaks into freelance writing and becomes a successful freelancer.

To that end, I've been working for Helium for the last few years, but haven't produced a huge number of articles.  I've written seven articles to be exact, sold one paying article, and have been featured on Helium's homepage.  While I was an undergraduate, I hardly had time for anything but classwork, so quality was always preferable to sheer quantity.  Now that I'm not, I'm going to try to turn my attention to writing for Helium on a regular basis.  I'd like to produce two well-written articles a day, five days a week and focus in on topics I'm proficient with: literature, technology, blogging, and leisure (games).  That's my goal.

Additionally, I'm considering writing for eHow, Associated Content, and Bukisa.  Like Helium, these sites are places to publish articles and earn revenue.  Two articles per day, five days a week.  That's the goal.  If it feels like I'm repeating myself, I am.  The goal is in mind, I just have to get on schedule and get to writing.  Producing two well-written articles a day will require a fair amount of research, something with which I have a good deal of experience.  Once the articles are researched, writing them will be the easy part.

Finally, tonight I applied to work for Demand Studios and am crossing my fingers and hoping for the best.  They're a very well respected venue for freelance writers.  I submitted my resume and a writing sample, but realized after my resume was submitted that I'd managed to forget to include my MLA membership.  I figure it'll be okay, but will definitely include it in on future resumes.  I have a friend who freelances, and works for Demand, and will likely send her an email soon for some advice about how I might further my freelance writing career.

I'm confident that reaching for my goals, and getting my foot in the door, is something I can achieve if I put my attention toward doing so.  While I'm a graduate student, freelance writing is a job that can both utilize my skills and allow me the freedom to study.  For the time being, I'm off to research the article topics I plan to write for Helium.  Should you have any suggestions or advice about how I might push my freelance career forward, please don't hesitate to leave me a comment.