How to build a strong writing routine for freelance writers

As a freelance writer, how often do you feel lost, not knowing where to start?

Learning how to build a strong writing routine will help you achieve your freelance writing goals.
Learning how to build a strong writing routine will help you achieve your freelance writing goals. – Photo Credit: Freepik

When you’re in the freelance writing business, waiting for a strike of inspiration is something you simply can’t afford. You have to write! So, how can you overcome the lack of motivation and creativity?

As I’m writing this article, I’m struggling with all this.

How did I finish it? I followed a writing routine I’ve built over the years to help me stay on track.

In this article, I’ll show you how you can build your own writing routine.

Why building a writing routine is important?

When I started as a freelance writer, I didn’t have any experience. I had never been a professional writer and had only written for myself. I had the skills but didn’t know how to use them. In fact, I only wrote when I felt the need to.

When I started my own brand, I needed more than my passion for words! I needed to find a daily writing routine that allowed me to write spot-on content any day of the week!

So, why is having a strong writing routine so important, and why build your own?

  • Improved productivity – Once you have a strong writing routine, you’ll become more productive and start producing high-quality articles faster, with little to no editing.
  • Feeling more motivated – A daily writing routine helps you keep your motivation high, even when you don’t feel so inspired.
  • Helps organize a work schedule – Planning your work week is the best strategy to know where you’re headed and build a realistic freelance writing routine.
  • Keeping focused – While working from home, you’ll see more distractions than at the office. With a strong writing routine, it’ll be easier to avoid any interference.
  • No more procrastination – When you don’t feel like writing, even the thought of looking at a blank page seems daunting. A daily writing routine will help you stop delaying what needs to be done.

How can you build a solid writing routine?

You can google all you want; you won’t find a straight answer! Each successful freelance writer has their own method. The key is finding what works best for you!

Plan ahead to keep track of all your writing asignments
Plan ahead to keep track of all your writing asignments. – Photo Credit: Freepik.

How did I do it?

I started by defining my writing process! You know… those things that are basics for writers and you do all the time, but you never really give them much thought.

Then, I found the perfect place to work and learned the best time of day to write.

And then, I figured I needed to rest to be at my best!

Once you identify your writing process and what makes more sense to you, everything else will seem clearer!

To help you find your answer, here’s what worked for me!

Establishing a writing process

1. Find content ideas

Some freelance clients will provide detailed content writing guidelines where your only job is to put their ideas for blog posts on paper. On the other hand, you’ll also find potential clients who know what they want but not how to do it. That’s why they’ll ask you for topic ideas relevant to their business.

Check their existing content or google their main product or service to find new topic ideas. You’ll find their client’s main concerns on social media so you can address them in your next blog post.

2. Do some keyword research

With the right keyword research tool and strong research skills, you’ll learn all you need about your audience’s search intent. This is especially useful when producing content focused on search engine optimization.

Keyword research is your best ally to find what your audience needs
Keyword research is your best ally to find what your audience needs. – Photo Credit: Freepik

So, before typing away, make a list of keywords, identify the types of keywords you found, and highlight which will be your primary keywords. It’ll help you focus on what your audience needs!

3. Build an outline

Even when a potential client doesn’t request an outline, you should always build one. It’ll help you focus on your content strategy and not drift away from the main topic. This is also a crucial component when you have a strict word count. This way, you’ll know how long your subtopics can be.

4. Write your first draft

When I started my freelance career, I always struggled with starting a piece of content. Anything I wrote seemed rubbish, and I continued hitting the backspace button more times than I care to admit. I knew what I wanted to say, but I was too focused on finding the right words.

To avoid this, you should always start your writing project with a draft. It’ll look sloppy and your worst piece of writing, but it’s the start of your masterpiece. Writing without thinking will help you put your ideas on paper, not caring about style, tone, or format.

5. Edit the article

The editing process is a crucial phase of my freelance writing routine. This is when I decide what sounds good and what doesn’t. On a good day, there isn’t much to change. On my worst days, I delete complete sentences to find others that convey my message better.

Get your editing mode on to improve your piece of content, make any corrections you need, and find your own voice and writing style!

6. Proofreading

To build a strong writing routine, you must proofread! You can proofread yourself or ask someone to do it for you. Personally, I prefer to do it myself.

After editing, I always let the article “rest” for a few hours or even a full day (if I’m ahead of the deadline). By doing so, I’ll return to it with a well-rested brain, ready to spot basic grammatical errors that would damage my reputation.

I use Grammarly to avoid any misspelling errors. I don’t use every single suggestion Grammarly presents, but it helps find errors after reading the text several times.

7. Submit the final result

The moment I hand in a new article feel such a relief! However, before submitting the article, I always read it one last time (even after editing and proofreading) to guarantee it’s close to perfection!

When submitting, consider your client’s preferences. Some may ask you to submit the article on Google Docs, while others prefer to email them a PDF file. Regardless of your client’s preferences, always confirm the format they need.

Additional tips to build your daily writing routine

Once you understand your daily writing routine and what works best for you, you should consider other aspects of writing that will affect your writing flow.

  • Have a dedicated space

A common freelance writing mistake is working anywhere and not having a dedicated space. I know not everyone can afford to convert a spare room into a home office. Nevertheless, there must be a place in the house where you feel more comfortable writing. It’ll help you boost your creativity, avoid distractions and keep focused. 

  • Learn your most productive time

Some freelance content writers are early birds, while others think best at night when everything is quiet and still. To figure your daily writing routine and find your optimal writing time, work at different times each day. By the end of the week, you’ll know when you’re most productive.

  • Write every day

To become a successful freelance writer, you must write every day to build a strong writing routine. I know it sounds obvious, but it’s a common freelance writing mistake by many freelance content writers. Writing is for your brain as exercise is for your body.

Writing is for your brain as exercise is for your body
Writing is for your brain as exercise is for your body. – Photo Credit: Freepik

It doesn’t matter what type of content you’re producing. Whether you’re preparing proposals to jobs, guest posts or social media posts, the important thing is for your “brain muscles” to improve you must write on a regular basis. It’ll help you improve your writing skills and language proficiency.

  • Set daily goals

Set specific goals each day, if you’re starting a career in freelance writing and you’re having trouble writing enough content daily. Start with 500 words, then 1000 words, and so on. Setting challenging but achievable writing goals and actually achieving them will make you feel accomplished and motivated.

  • Find time to write

If you’re not a full-time freelance writer and this is your side hustle, you know how challenging it can be to keep up with all your responsibilities. Managing a full-time job, and family and still finding time to write is never easy.

To build a successful freelance writing career, and a strong writing routine, you must schedule writing time as you do with other tasks. Try using a tool for writers such as Google Calendar or Asana. It’ll help you stay organized.

  • Avoid distractions

When you’re working from home, distractions will come out of nowhere and stop you from achieving your goals. That’s why your best option is to tackle these distractions from the beginning.

Is your phone constantly ringing with social media notifications? Turn it off!

Do you work with too many tabs open and get lost? Leave only the essentials!

The coffee shop where you usually write is too busy and nosy? Go somewhere else!

The important thing is to avoid anything that might prevent you from finding your freelance writing routine.

  • Get some rest

Our brains work around the clock, gathering all sorts of information throughout the day. At night, it’s time to reboot.

Have you ever dreamed about several events that happened to you during the day, but in a completely different order? Well, that’s your brain trying to process all you experienced.

That’s why a good night’s sleep is your best friend when it comes to writing. It’ll help you be more creative, productive, and a better problem-solver.

  • Get your mind off work

Recent studies show that doing nothing improves our mental health. Besides, our brains establish creative connections during rest moments. Basically, if you want to be productive and creative, you must allow yourself to have regular breaks.

Doing something completely unrelated on a 10 to 15-minute break has worked for me over the years. Reading a book, watching a movie, listening to music, playing video games, hiking, having a coffee with friends, or just wandering around the block has helped me many times.

Figure out what works for you and enjoy those relaxing moments. You might not know it, but you’re working on yourself!

  • Adjust your writing routine

Your days might seem the same every day, but there’ll be a time when a new appointment comes along to mess up your schedule. When it happens, be sure to adjust your writing routine so that you keep track of all your commitments.

Adjusting your routine will help you find the perfect work life balance
Adjusting your routine will help you find the perfect work life balance. – Photo Credit: Freepik
  • Develop a routine into a habit

Transforming a routine into a habit may take several months, especially when you’re a beginner. Compromise your writing time a few hours a day, and gradually add more time as you become more comfortable. Then, be consistent and treat writing assignment as an important commitment. Before you notice, you’re writing flow will improve.

How’s your writing routine?

Writing is a challenging craft. However, if you’re as passionate about it as me, I’m sure you’ll find it extremely rewarding.

Having a strong writing routine will help you become more productive, and creative and stay motivated even when you lack inspiration. That’s why, you must prioritize self-care by resting and enjoying other activities outside work.

Regardless of what your work method looks like, finding a strong writing routine that works best for you is key to a successful freelance writing career.

I hope this article will get you in the right direction to find your writing routine. Send me an email and let me know how it went!

10 Freelance Writing Challenges You’ll Face And To Can Overcome Them

How to overcome freelance writing challenges

A career in freelance writing is an art and a form of self-expression where creativity makes your mind wonder.

How to overcome freelance writing challenges
Mastering how to overcome freelance writing challenges is key to a successful career. – Photo Credit: Freepik

However, when writing is your full-time job, you can’t rely on creativity or wait for a lightning bolt of inspiration. In the freelance writing industry, your work must always be high-quality. But how can you do that with so many obstacles in your way?

In this article, I’ll show you the most common freelance writing challenges every freelance writer must handle and how you can overcome them.

1. Inconsistent income

Why did I start with such a topic? Usually, this is the first thing that comes to mind when you start your freelance writing career. “What if I don’t get paid?”

Unfortunately, this is probably one of the most common challenges every freelancer must handle. There are many reasons behind an inconsistent income. Whether it’s because you worked on fewer projects or because of your client’s late payment, the fact is that you won’t get the same amount every month.

Not knowing how much and when you’ll get paid can be very stressful when you need to put food on the table. However, there are a few strategies to cope with it.

Building an emergency fund will definitely take the pressure off. You’ll know you’ll cover most expenses even if you don’t get paid for a few months. Also, you’ll be relieved to know that you can face unexpected expenses, such as a car fix or a hospital bill.

Writing a contract with clearly defined payment terms will protect you, if you ever need to hire a lawyer to get paid for your work.

Additionally, you can diversify your freelance income sources. Don’t depend on just one client or project. Do your best to acquire new skills and find new clients. These strategies will be fundamental to keeping the money flowing.

2. Setting rates

Putting a price tag on your work is never easy, especially as a beginner. You’re proud of your work and want to be fairly paid, but you’re afraid of setting rates too high that’ll push your customers away.

Finding the perfect balance is challenging but not impossible. Freelance writing rates depend on the project scope. Before determining a rate, ask your client who’s the target audience, what’s the niche, where it’ll be published, how long the text should be and so on.

These questions will help you understand how complex and lengthy the project will be. You can also research your competition and find out what rates they apply for similar projects.

Alternatively, you can also set your rates based on your expenses. How much do you need to make a decent living? Consider your housing and utility bills, health insurance, transportation, food, clothing and other fixed expenses. This will help you define a minimum wage, meaning you can never charge lower than that.

3. Finding and keeping new clients

Finding clients is challenging when you’re a beginner. Regardless of how good a writer you are, no one knows your work. So, how can you get your first client?

Building strong client relationships is key to retain satisfied clients. – Photo Credit: Freepik

Freelancing platforms are a great way to get started. Platforms such as Upwork, Fiverr or Freelancer post new jobs daily. Many of these jobs focus on beginners looking to build their portfolios. While pitching, aim for projects that are an exact match to your skills. This way, you improve your chances of getting hired.

Online job boards are excellent for finding prospective clients. Indeed, Glassdoor or even LinkedIn offer excellent opportunities to freelance writers.

Moreover, building a content marketing strategy is the answer to putting yourself out there. Start a blog about what you do and be active on social media. The more you show your writing skills, the more likely you’ll get potential clients soon.

Once you get your first client, there’s a new task: keeping them! How?

For me, there are two basic rules for client retention: Always delivering high-quality content and meeting all deadlines! If you guide your work through these two rules, I guarantee you’ll have satisfied clients.

However, competition is fierce, so you need more than that. So, put yourself in your customer’s shoes… How would you like to be treated?

Building strong client relationships will require you to be responsive and professional and use a friendly tone regardless of client expectations. They don’t need to know how much work you have if you’re overwhelmed or tired. These will sound like excuses and make potential clients doubt your work capacity.

4. Learn about marketing

Many freelance writers aren’t aware of how important digital marketing is to their craft. Having a portfolio, applying to writing gigs and being present on social media will help your freelance business, but you need something more.

Learning the basics of digital marketing will help you identify your potential clients and their needs, outline a content strategy and monitor your strategy performance.

Marketing will also help you build a personal brand. Unlike what you might think, this goes beyond creating a logo or writing the perfect catchphrase. Your personal brand is who you are as a writer and how you present yourself to others. Once you get the hang of it, clients will know you for more than your high-quality work.

5. Set your priorities

One of the biggest challenges of working as a freelance writer is juggling multiple projects simultaneously. That’s why you must define what’s more urgent!


Check each project deadline and start with the one you must deliver soon. If you have one complex project and another a bit simpler, attack that one first. That way, you’ll have your mind (and schedule) free to dedicate all your attention to more complicated work.

Building a task calendar and having a regular writing routine might help you define your priorities. This is especially useful if you want to take a few days off. If you write down where you should start next, it’ll be easier when you get back to work.

A focused writing environment and eliminating distractions will help you keep on track. And if your mind starts to wander, unplug all social media and try the Pomodoro Technique (work for 25 minutes and then rest for another 5).

Once you become a successful freelance writer, you can always hire someone and delegate tasks that’ll consume the time you should be focused on your writing process. Hiring an accountant, a marketer or a web designer will free you from those tasks, and you’ll have more time for your clients.

6. Keeping a healthy work-life balance

You might think a freelance career will help you find the perfect work-life balance easily. I regret to inform you couldn’t far from the truth.

Working in the freelance writing business allows you to define your own schedule. However, there’s a catch most people don’t know about. If you work anytime and anywhere, you’ll get sucked into workaholism and not even realize it.

To avoid falling down the rabbit hole, you must define boundaries!

  • Define a regular writing routine and a work schedule and inform your clients. You don’t want them contacting you in the middle of the night!
  • Reply to your work emails only during your working hours.
  • Avoid cutting off time with your friends and family to work.
  • Establish work-free days.
  • Take time for your hobbies.

Having some time off work and enjoying quality time with your friends and family will avoid loneliness feelings! Besides, your creative juices will flow, and you’ll be more productive and engaged.

7. Battle the Impostor Syndrome

I don’t have any statistics on this matter, but I can almost guarantee all freelancer writers, at some point, have dealt with Impostor Syndrome.

The Impostor Syndrome holds back many aspiring freelance writers from doing what they enjoy the most. – Photo Credit: Freepik.

You know what it is… that intense sensation of feeling like a fraud when compared to other high-quality writers and that nothing you do is ever good enough.

I don’t know about you, but I sure had my fair share of Impostor Syndrome, usually when I’m about to deliver a project and waiting for the client’s reply. If they take too long to answer, I always assume the worst!

Fortunately, I’ve found a few strategies to avoid such a feeling. Here’s what I do that’ll help you too:

  • Acknowledge how you feel. Usually, talking with others is an excellent first step.
  • Write down your accomplishments. After reading it, you might not feel like such a fraud.
  • Stop focusing on perfectionism! No one knows everything, nor do they do everything right. Do your best, and everything will be fine!
  • Avoid comparing your work with others! Every writer has a unique writing style, so comparing yourself to others is just a waste of time.
  • Don’t dwell on social media! Although you’re using it professionally, you might put yourself down instead of finding sources of inspiration from other people’s work.
  • Don’t let it hold you back! Write about whatever you want. Your passion will fuel your work, and your readers will notice it!

8. Coping with writer’s block

The dreaded blank page! This a challenge for freelance writers everywhere!

Sometimes you only need a few minutes before getting started. While at other times, you take weeks or months before finding the right words. However, working in the freelance writing business means you must write if you want to put food on the table! You can not afford to spend weeks on end without writing.

How can you turn this around?

Don’t overthink it, and start writing! Your first draft will be sloppy, but the beginning of something remarkable. If this doesn’t work, take a break and do something completely unrelated. It’ll help you be more creative and productive.

Building a creative writing prompt will help you get to the point faster. This way, your writing style will be more concise.

Finally, edit and revise only after the writing project is done. Avoid feeling trapped in the same paragraph or trying to aim for perfection. Who knows… after reading your first draft, it might not be that bad!

9. Dealing with rejection

This is the most frustrating part about providing freelance writing services. You put your heart and soul into your work, and it’s rejected. Unfortunately, hearing a big and round “No” is much more frequent than you might think.

So, how can you deal with rejection and keep your motivation high?

First of all, always reply in a professional and friendly tone. Your work might have been rejected at this time, but who knows… maybe there are new freelance writing opportunities around the corner! And second, try to understand what went wrong. Use your business mindset and learn from your mistakes. It’ll help you improve your writing skills.

Also, accept you’ll hear several “No’s” before hearing your first “Yes”.

10. Not having enough work

This is another freelance writing challenge every freelancer faces now and then. Even with excellent client feedback and a solid client base, there’ll be times when you’ll be almost out of work.

  • Use these strategies to avoid not having enough work:
  • Don’t rely on just one client. Find more clients from different businesses and build strong client relationships.
  • Broaden your skills. It’ll help you find new clients and new projects.
  • Gather constructive feedback and testimonials from satisfied customers and post them on your online portfolio and social media.

Your best strategy to avoid the feast and famine cycle is consistency. Find dedicated writing time daily by sending an irresistible pitch and applying to new creative projects. Also, remember to post on social media regularly.

Are you ready to face your own obstacles?

You’ll find many more challenges along your freelance writing journey. Each writer, in their own writing niche, will battle to overcome obstacles.

This will happen to you too! What you must do is preserve!

Build a focused writing environment and create a regular writing routine! This way, common freelance writing challenges like these will be peanuts!

However, from time to time, you’ll struggle to find motivation. Regardless of your motives, remember why you decided to become a freelance writer. Focus on your passion for writing and write as if no one is watching!

Writing engaging content: how to connect with your readers

Anyone can write content. Yet, only a few can write engaging content.

To connect with your readers requires more than incredible writing skills. – Photo credit: Freepik

Whether you’re a content writer, copywriter, blogger or marketer, I’m sure you’ve struggled with the content creation process at some point.

Now, more than ever, content creation has become much more than writing. We want to attract readers, and we want them engaged.

When your audience interacts and shares your original content, they’ll be helping spread the word about what you’re writing. Also, it´s the perfect way to present yourself to your customers.

But what is “engaging content”?

In this article, I’ll show you how you can write compelling content for your audience.

What is engaging content and why it matters

Engaging content refers to any text that draws people’s attention and draws them to keep reading.

Regardless if you’re writing for your own website or a client’s, all you want is to allure your audience into reading all through to the end.

Why is this important?

The longer you keep your readers engaged, the more likely they will buy whatever services you’re promoting.

Today, we know engaging content helps boost conversions, promotes brand awareness and generates high organic traffic. In the world of marketing, this is the holy grail. This is why having striking writing skills is essential. Yet, as a writer, there are other abilities you must learn to succeed.

The content pillars

Writing any type of content is far from boring. With each new project, you must adjust your writing style to your client’s needs, tone and voice. Even so, there are a few ground rules you should always consider.

Know the audience

You may have the topic, but you must know to whom you’ll be writing. As a skilled writer, you know there are many ways to approach the subject. So, knowing your target audience will help you decide what’s the best writing style and format for your message to be understood.

To write engaging content you must know who is your audience and their goals. – Photo Credit: Freepik

Know your audience goal

The keywords you use to build your content marketing strategy are the best way to learn your audience’s intention. Why are they googling such terms? Once you have your answer, it’s time to help them get theirs. Structure your pieces of content around your audience’s goal. This way, you’ll get straight to your reader’s needs.

Know your business goal

Before starting writing, you must ask yourself a few questions:

  • Why you’re writing about this theme?
  • What’s the purpose?
  • What are you looking to achieve?

These simple questions will help you structure your original content. In the end, you’ll achieve your readers and your business goals.

How to make your writing more engaging

Regardless of what you’re writing about or which format you use, your articles must be fascinating and drive your reader’s curiosity. Here I’ll leave you some tips I use daily to guarantee my audience is engaged:

Enjoy what you’re writing about

I know, it sounds obvious! But writing about what you enjoy will help get your reader’s attention. They will feel your enthusiasm and be eager to read your next piece.

However, sometimes you must write about the most boring topic. Whenever you find yourself in this situation, try to understand why this subject sparks people’s attention. Maybe you’ll find some common ground, and it’ll be easier to please your loyal customers and their readers.

Structure your content

When writing long-form content, such as a blog post or a case study, be sure to structure your text before writing. It’ll help you organize your thoughts and how you present your argument. Also, it helps cover all topics about that specific subject.

Building your content structure helps organizeyour thoughts. – Photo Credit: Freepik

Invest time in headings and subheadings

These are responsible for your content’s first impression. And we know it only takes a few seconds to build first impressions and a lifetime to change them.

Headlines and subheadings are the first words your audience will read. It’s your chance to capture their attention. Your remarkable content will do the rest.

So, spending more time finding the right words to create bullet-proof headlines it’s crucial. To guarantee original content meets readers’ needs, some writers use long-tail keywords as titles. It’ll make our content more appealing and easier to find.

Write as if you’re speaking to your audience

Not all your readers are experienced academics used to formal and complex words. So, if you write similarly to the way we speak, your piece of content will be more accessible to more potential customers.

Additionally, the reader will feel you know their mind and that you’re speaking directly to them. They will feel heard and unique, persuading them to keep reading.

With the Hemmingway App, ou can check your text’s readability level. Besides, this incredible tool provides plenty of suggestions to help you improve content for websites according to your goals.

Write in the active voice

One rule of writing, whether it’s on or offline, is to use the active voice. Besides sounding more vibrant, it gives your readers the feeling something is happening right now. It’ll keep them engaged long enough to read everything you wrote. Also, your writing will sound more concise and elegant.

No fluff

Our attention spans are getting shorter day by day, especially when it comes to online content. We know what we need, and we want it fast. Most readers online skim the articles only to read a few words instead of complete sentences.

Writing Job
Writing only what’s essential is key to engage your audience. – Photo Credit: Freepik

So, avoid writing content for websites that doesn’t enrich the reader’s experience. Be direct and get to the point as quickly as possible.

Be original

In today’s world, it’s hard to be completely original. Everything is invented, and nothing is truly new. Yet, as an online writer, you can bring a fresh perspective to a highly discussed subject.

On the other hand, if you must write about something that was already written, use your own words. You don’t want to become known as the writer who copies other people’s work. Besides, regarding SEO, Google Search will penalize your content if it shows unoriginal sentences or paragraphs.

In-depth research

The web is full of made-up facts and fake news. The last thing you want is to make it even worse.

Providing accurate data is one step to building a reputation as an online writer. Regardless of the information your ideal customer is looking for, in the end, all they want is to know what’s true.

So, when you’re writing, confirm your sources before including them in your content. This way, you’ll capture your reader’s attention and become a reliable source as well.

Share your personal stories

Using your experiences to connect with your readers will make your original article more relatable and captivating. They will feel compelled to read what you have to say, and you’ll leave them with a positive impression.

Sharing personal experiences is a good way to connect with your audience. – Photo Credit: Freepik

Sharing how you overcame the same problem they’re having now is one way to go. Another is to share other people’s experiences (with their consent, obviously!). This will invite your readers to comment and share their own experiences.

Use visual content

Reading online is much different than reading on paper. Adding to people’s shorter attention span, reading on screen is harder on the eyes, information is processed too quickly, and it drains mental resources faster. The result: your readers will get somewhere else before reading everything you wrote.

This is why you must avoid big pieces of text. Mix it with a few visual elements, such as photos, vectors or infographics. It’ll enrich your content and make it more skimmable. This way, your readers will get the main message, even if they don’t read every sentence.

Write shorter sentences

Your killer headline is attracting new readers every day. Yet, only a few read everything you wrote. Perhaps, your original article is too dense!

Even the most avid reader will feel discouraged in front of pilled sentences and paragraphs. So, breaking your text into smaller pieces makes it easier on the eye. Besides, it’s more attractive and feels effortless.

Always spell check

Regardless, if you’re writing a blog post or a book, avoiding spelling and grammar mistakes is fundamental knowledge. Some would say it’s the first rule of writing.

Spelling mistakes makes your writing look sloppy. – Photo Credit: Freepik

So, another tip for writing compelling content is to avoid these mistakes at all costs. If you’re like me, once I see a spelling mistake, I can’t barely get past it. Even if you’re an incredible writer, these mistakes will leave a lousy impression on your readers.

AI-powered tools will help you on this mission. One that I use the most when writing in English is Grammarly. Its interface is user-friendly, and its remarks are spot on. Unfortunately, they don’t have other languages. So, when I’m writing in Portuguese, I use LanguageTool. Although it’s not as developed as Grammarly, it sure helps quite a bit.

Another piece of advice: even if you are confident about your writing skills, always spell check. You’ll be surprised to see there’s more to improve than you thought.

Use power words

Power words are embedded with a strong meaning, which usually triggers a psychological or emotional reaction in audiences. Usually, copywriters use power words to make their content more interesting and call people to action.

Choosing which power words suit your article will depend on your goal. Here’s a list of the seven types of power words you can use. You’re welcome!

Bring variety to your content

People enjoy novelty and tend to ignore repetition. So, to keep your readers engaged, you must mix up your content.

Yes, you can still write. However, you must find new ways to present your content to people. Video content has become a growing trend in content marketing. Younger generations prefer watching videos in search of information rather than reading. Other alternatives might include podcasts, streaming, social media posts or user-generated content.

Regardless of your decision, always keep your audience in mind. Posting on the wrong platform will keep your target audience from reading your captivating content!

Avoid repeating words

The beauty of writing lies in the variety of words we have at our disposal, regardless of the language we’re writing.

The pros and cons of freelance writing
Online tools will help you find the right words for your content. – Photo Credit: Freepik

However, when you’re writing for quite some time, it’s common to fall for the same terms over and over. Avoid this by checking a dictionary once in a while. Finding synonyms will enrich your high-quality content, making it more engaging. Also, by expanding your vocabulary, you’ll sound more experienced and educated.

When writing in English, I often use the Cambridge Dictionary and WordHippo. For Portuguese, my go-to tools are Priberam and Reverso. Without them, writing valuable content would be much more complicated!


Usually, this is the last item on any piece of persuasive content. By using a call to action, you’re engaging your audience, asking them to take action. As a result, with a single word or sentence, you can convert potential clients into real customers.

Using a call to action helps boost your conversions. – Photo Credit: Freepik

However, you shouldn’t overdo it. It’ll make you sound like you’re forcing people into something, which usually has the opposite effect of what you want. People want to know they have a choice, so use a call to action with moderation and make it feel like it’s a natural step to take.

Summing up

Creating engaging content is more than writing. Although you’re writing skills are crucial, there are plenty of other abilities you must keep in mind.

Keeping your audience engaged daily, requires you to be on top of your content’s performance, as well as growing trends. Therefore, you must check and update your older content, while creating new.

Hopefully, with these simple strategies, you’ll make your content more engaging. Let me know how it went!

The Pros and Cons of Freelance Writing

The pros and cons of freelance writing

Freelance writing is a dream job many aspire to.

The pros and cons of freelance writing
Freelance writing has many advantages, but there are also a few downsides. – Photo credit: Freepik

You set your own schedule, work from anywhere you want and decide how much work to take on. With so many benefits, it’s no wonder freelance writing is on the rise.

Yet, sometimes I get the feeling there’s this romanticized perception of what freelance writing really is. Yes, sure, there are plenty of advantages… but what about the “not so good” parts that no one tells you about?

If you’re considering starting a freelance writing career, there are some things you must know. In this article, I’ll list the pros and cons of freelance writing. Also, I’ll let you know how to overcome the challenges you’ll face. Hopefully, I’ll help you decide if this is the right job for you.

The Pros

Let’s start with the good part!

The benefits of freelancing I’m about to tell you are some of the reasons why many writers decide to transform this side hustle into a full-time job. I’m sure you’ll find some of them quite alluring too.

· Work-life balance

Worklife balance is the goal of many aspiring freelance writers. – Photo Credit: Freepik

The pandemic forced many people to work from home and find extra income by freelancing. This new reality seemed impossible in the beginning. However, it became quite popular among several businesses.

Full-time freelance writing allows you to work from home (or anywhere you want). Besides ditching the long commutes, you can also save some money on transportation. You will have more time to enjoy yourself and the ones you love.

· Decide your own schedule

This is one of the biggest benefits in freelancing. Since you’re the boss, you decide if you want to stick with the 9-to-5 office hours or enjoy flexible working hours. It’ll only depend on how many hours you want to work daily.

Do you want to complete as many tasks as possible? Perfect!

Do you want to work three to four hours a day? Not a problem!

Just remember to keep your word to your customers and guarantee you meet all deadlines.

· Unlimited earnings

Traditional employment offers the security of a fixed salary. Regardless of how much you work, you’ll always receive compensation.

However, in many companies, no matter how much effort you put in, at the end of the month, your salary will be the same. Off course, there’s always a chance for a promotion or getting paid for those extra hours. Yet, you’ll always depend on someone else to notice your performance.

With a freelance writing career, your earnings are potentially illimited. The more you work, the more you earn. This is one of the first benefits any independent freelancer will give you. Although it’s all true, it won’t happen overnight.

While you’re building a reputation and your online presence, you set your rates and choose the project you want to work on. Yet your success will always depend on how much your freelance clients are willing to pay.

· Choosing your clients

In most employment contracts, you’re told what to do and how to do it. Even if you have a different opinion or are more skilled at working on a different task.

In freelance writing jobs, no two days are the same. This means you will work with different clients and on different projects at a time. This will force you out of your comfort zone and face a new challenge every time you accept a new project.

As a result, there will come a day when you’ll be able to choose the projects you want to work on. You may choose the ones paying the highest sums or the most challenging ones. In the end, the decision is yours!

· Always learning something new

This is what I enjoy the most in the freelance writing business. Although I specialized in hospitality and organizational psychology, as a freelance writer, I’ve had the opportunity to explore other areas.

Throughout your freelance career, you’ll have to adjust and research if you want to provide what your clients need. This intellectual challenge means you’ll have to be curious and open-minded. And, of course, enjoy learning new stuff every day.

The Cons

So far, so good, right?

After what you just read, I’m sure you’re excited about freelance lifestyle. Now, let’s pause for a moment… I’m about to show you the disadvantages of freelancing.

· Irregular work

When you follow this career path, it means your workload will vary over time. Some days you’ll be overwhelmed, while others, you’ll be desperate to find your next gig. Even though this is normal in freelancing, it is definitely a challenge in freelance work.

This is especially true if for novice freelancers. No one knows your work and who you are, and you lack a consistent client database. So, you have to put in extra effort to find your next client. The good news is it will get better. Until then, your primary job will be marketing your services.

Solution: Apply to gigs on job boards, explore freelance platforms andcontent mills, or contact potential clients directly. Also, build a portfolio or start a blog. Blog writing it’s a great way to show off your skills and expertise.

· Inconsistent income

This is a major drawback when it comes to freelancing. Although you may earn more than in a 9-to-5 working day, it is also true the amount you earn won’t be the same each month. Short-term projects, irregular work and late payments will highly impact your income. Also, there are no sick days off, parental leave or health insurance. You’ll be responsible for all expenses.

Freelance writing's irregular income pushes away many writers willing to write full-time.
Freelance writing’s irregular income pushes away many writers willing to write full-time. Photo Credit: Freepik.

Solution: Build an emergency fund. Having some money aside is the best way to deal with the irregular income that freelancing provides, especially when you’re beginning. Experts on personal finances advise you to save up to 6 months’ worth of expenses. So, if you don’t have any spare money, analyse your spending habits and check how much money to need before exploring the freelance world.

· Full responsibility

When you’re a freelancer, you’re so much more than that. You’re a business owner, accountant, marketer, customer support… The list goes on!

Starting a freelance writing business means you have to learn how to run a business. This includes managing time effectively, doing your taxes, keeping close contact with your current clients, and marketing yourself to find your next project. And, of course, you’re also responsible for every expense you have, from software licenses to IT hardware and electricity and other utilities.

Solution: Before starting your freelance writing business, confirm with the tax authorities what you need to become a professional freelancer and what taxes you will need to pay.

If you don’t know how you can market your services, consider attending a digital marketing course. This will help you find your first clients and how to keep them.

To manage time effectively, consider writing in the quietest area in the house and unplugging all social media and unnecessary devices. It will help you focus on your craft.

· No employee benefits

Besides a fixed salary at the end of the month, traditional jobs usually include other perks, such as sick days off, parental leave, paid vacation, health insurance and so on. Working as a freelancer means you’ll have to secure these benefits yourself. As a result, you should always consider these expenses when setting rates.

Solution: Find out the best options to enjoy employee benefits. Talk to your bank manager about retirement plans or with your insurance company regarding affordable health insurance. There are plenty of options. All you need is to find out which suits your needs.

· Isolation

Some may argue this comes as a benefit. Others may see it as a drawback. In my opinion, we’re social beings. Although we may wish to work far from anyone, there will come a day when you’ll miss having someone to vent your frustrations or celebrate your achievements.

Freelance writing can feel lonely from time to time. Most days, the only human contact you’ll have are your clients. Do you think you’re a good fit for freelance writing?

Solution: Work outside the house. Working at a coffee shop or a shared co-working space will help you avoid feeling lonely.

Is freelance writing the right career for you?

The incredible tales of digital nomads who make a living writing often lack honesty.

Although they might tell you how great it is to work anywhere in the world and as much as you want, they often forget to tell you how hard you must work to build a career in freelance writing.

Hopefully, this article will help you decide if freelance writing is something you want to pursue full-time.

How to Start a Freelance Writing Career

Freelance writer

Do you enjoy writing?

Are you good at it?

Did you ever wonder about a freelance writing career?

Freelance writer

Starting a freelance writing career with no experience may seem overwhelming. There’s so much information online that you will find it hard what to believe. From digital nomads to remote workers, freelance writers worldwide talk about all the perks of the freelance writing industry. However, only a few will tell you what it takes to become a freelance writer.

In this article, I’ll show how to start a freelance writing career. Objectively. No fluff. One thing I can guarantee you for sure: you will have to work hard to succeed!

What is a freelance writer?

Let’s start with a simple definition…

A freelance writer is a self-employed contractor who works with several clients or projects simultaneously. It means a freelance writer is a business owner, not an employee. As a result, they are paid by the hour, per project or per word and are not included in the company salary sheet.

In the freelance writing business, there are different types of freelance writers. From copywriters to technical writers, each has its own area of expertise. You can find freelance writers’ work on blog and social media posts, instruction manuals, white papers, press releases or product descriptions.

So, who are these freelance writers, and what do they do?

·         Content writer

A content writer produces high-quality writing for digital marketing purposes. The daily routine includes planning, writing and proofreading web content for blog posts, social media, press releases, newsletters or landing pages.

·         Copywriter

Sometimes, copywriting overlaps with content writing. However, they have different goals in mind. While most of the content writer’s work is informative, in this writing niche a copywriter aims to engage an audience to take a desired action. Usually is to make the audience buy a product or service. So, their job is to write persuasive phrases, sentences or taglines to market a product or service. This process is called writing copy.

·         Technical Writer

A technical writer’s job is to translate complex concepts into simpler words anyone can understand. User manuals and how-to guides are some examples of the writing services available in technical writing. Besides being an expert in a specific field, other skills, such as proofreading or knowing style guides, might be handy.

·         Ghostwriting

Ghostwriters use their writing skills to create web content, e-books and blog posts under someone else’s name. In some cases, ghostwriters also work on creative writing, like novels or autobiographies. The foundation of ghostwriting states that you provide your work and ownership rights. This means that you can never claim it as your own. If you feel comfortable with this, it might be the perfect option if you want to write and keep your identity private.

How to start a career in freelance writing with no experience

Once I realized I could make a career writing (and not necessarily writing novels!) I began to wonder: Will I pull this off?

Putting yourself out there can be scary, especially when you’re passionate about online writing, which you know very little about. If you’re going through the same existential crisis as I did, keep reading! I’ll show you the steps you need to take to fulfil your dreams.

1.    Research the freelance writing business

Since you don’t have any experience in the freelance writing industry, researching the market will be a great starting point. Go online and search for established freelance writers. Check their work and who their clients are. Read about their journey. You will get an insight into the life of a freelance writer.

Each experience is unique, and yours will be too. What I mean is that what works for one writer may not apply to you. However, their experiences will help you define your own path and discover what makes more sense to you.

Also, this research allows you to explore the writing game to its core. Check the job boards and see the clients’ demands. These are some of the best sources of information since you will learn about what experience, training or expertise is most requested.

2.    Choose a freelance writing niche

Even the best writers can’t write about everything. In fact, the best of the best focus on a specific subject where they are experts.

Consider your skills and training. What are you really good at? What do you enjoy doing in your spare time? What is your past job experience? By asking yourself these questions, you’ll be one step closer to deciding what type of professional writer you want to be.

Although you might not have any professional writing experience, your past job experience will be a good starting point. Since you’re already an expert on what you do daily, why not write about it?

But most importantly, don’t forget about what you love. Why? When you’re writing about something you’re passionate about, your readers will feel your enthusiasm and become more engaged with your work. Also, why should you waste time writing about something that doesn’t make you happy?

3.    Hone your skills

Successful freelance writers don’t need to spend years and all their savings on a college degree. Online there are plenty of courses that help freelance writers perfect their skills. If your writing is spotless, maybe you only need to perfect some skills.

Where can you find such courses? Learning platforms, such as Udemy or Gotham Writers a handful of writing programs where you can learn about the basics of freelance writing business, or go deeper into a specific subject, whether it’s regarding creating engaging copy, learning about search engine optimization or how to monetize a blog. Depending on what you want, all you have to do is to choose the writing program that best suits your goals.

4.    Build a spotless portfolio

When you’re pitching and applying to freelance writing jobs, clients will ask you for writing samples. And, if you’re starting, likely, you don’t have any. That’s why you must build a portfolio. It’s the best way to show clients your writing skills and style.

Don’t have any clients yet? Not a problem! Start a blog and write about what you know and love. With each new article, you will build a spotless portfolio. This way, it’ll be easier for your clients to see how good you are.

Besides working as a freelance blogger, you can write on a profit-sharing website, such as Medium. Through their Partner Program, you can earn money and build a portfolio, all at the same time. Each time someone reads your articles, you will be cashing in. Also, Medium presents your writing services to larger audiences thanks to its curation programs.

Bloggers that accept articles from guest writers provide a fantastic opportunity when you’re starting your freelance career. Is there a website or blog that you would like to collaborate with? Get in touch and tell them how your content ideas and skills can help them by providing guest posts!

5.    Set your rates

The dreaded moment for any freelance writer!

And searching online for what’s a fair freelance writing income isn’t helpful! You’ll find rates starting at 0.025€/per word up to 1€/per word. Why such a difference? It all depends if you’re a beginner or if you’re an experienced writer.

So, how can you decide what’s the right price?

As to setting rates, you want your work to be recognized. However, you don’t want to scare off your potential clients! So, how can you achieve the perfect balance?

I believe there isn’t a magic formula that suits all freelancers and all clients. In the freelance marketplace, the rates will depend on a variety of things. What’s the content purpose? Who’s the audience? Where will it be published? What’s the deadline?

All these factors weigh in when setting rates. Also, you must discuss with your freelance clients if your work will be paid per word or by the hour. When the project takes several months off your schedule, some clients will ask you for the total cost.

Whatever the requirements are, be sure your earnings will cover all your business and personal expenses. As such, you must know exactly how much you spend and how much to need to live comfortably.

6.    Find your first clients

This is probably the most awaited moment when starting your freelance writing career. Although you love writing (and would probably do it for free!), you must find a paying gig. So, where can you find your first clients?

Freelance platforms, such as Upwork, Fiverr or Freelancer, are a great way to get started. You will have access to hundreds of offers and contact clients worldwide.

Especially when you’re a beginner, most of these platforms offer low-paying gigs. However, don’t be discouraged! Everyone got to start somewhere! Besides, these entry-level writing jobs are the perfect opportunity to get your client’s confidence and some excellent reviews. Over time, you’ll be able to gradually increase your rates.

You can also apply to job offers posted on freelance writing job boards. Websites such as Indeed or Flexjobs publish hundreds of new offers daily. Like any other full-time job, check the job requirements, see if you’re a good fit and send your offer.

Cold pitching is another option. Since you’re unsure if you might need your services, aim for digital marketing and content marketing agencies. They are in constant need of new talents that will help them and their clients achieve their goals.

Something more you must know…

Starting a freelance writing career involves more than simply writing. When you’re a freelancer, you are also a business owner. As such, you are responsible for all aspects of running your writing business.

This means you’re more than a writer. You’re also an accountant, a customer service specialist, a web designer and a marketer. As a result, you’ll likely end up working more hours than in your daytime job. Rest assured, this is only the beginning. Once you become an established writer, you can outsource all secondary tasks to other experts and focus solely on writing.

What you should never forget…

As I mentioned, each journey is unique, and what worked for someone online, might not work for you. So, don’t get anxious if your path isn’t exactly the same as someone else’s. Do what you love and what makes the most sense to you. With hard work and your passionate writing, you will find your own way to success!