How do you train to be a freelance writer?
One of the nice things about being a freelancer is that you don’t necessarily need a lot of formal education. While it’s generally expected that freelancers have at least a Bachelor’s Degree, many clients prioritize experience and ability over college degrees.
That being said, freelancers should constantly be furthering their education through the resources available to them. And luckily, freelance writers can now join numerous online writing groups and take several online writing courses to further their careers.
Online courses like Elna Cain’s excellent Write Your Way to Your First $1K offer an easy-to-follow breakdown of everything you need to know to become a freelance writer. Through a series of videos and online articles, you’ll learn how to:
- Choose your writing niche
- Write blog posts
- Properly format your assignments
- Edit your work
- Source photos
- Use basic SEO techniques
- Write faster
- Build your portfolio
- Find clients
- Write cold emails
Writing instructors like Elna regularly update their courses, so you’ll always have new resources to enhance your skills even after completing the course.
Work at your own pace, but be consistent. Carve out a set time each day to review a new module and practice your skills. Keep in mind that training to be a freelance writer means more than just reading how something is done—you need to spend time actually performing each skill.
If you find you pick up certain skills quickly, great! If not, that’s good too. <tweet-link>Recognizing your shortcomings and being willing to work at them is key to mastering your craft.<tweet-link>
Keep expanding your skill set
Your education shouldn’t end once you learn the basics of freelance writing and pick up writing jobs. If anything, being a professional freelance writer should reveal how much you still need to learn.
Continue educating yourself on how to sustain a healthy freelance writing career.
This might mean teaching yourself how to build a professional website (which Elna’s course Writer Website in a Weekend goes over step-by-step). It might also mean learning a new type of writing, like crafting white papers or developing scripts for online videos.
How you decide to further your education is up to you. If online courses helped, you can continue studying that way. You can also find excellent articles and teaching modules on Hectic’s blog or online academy.
However, the best way to pick up new skills is by trying something new. Build on your existing skill set by accepting assignments that challenge you in different ways. If you’re comfortable writing blog posts, maybe you should try writing web copy for a while. While delving into new territory can be nerve wracking, it’ll also keep your freelancing life exciting—and make you more employable.