If you’re just starting out as a freelance writer, you want to start off just right. Don’t do what I did and feel your way around. That just wastes time, effort, and money. To help new freelance writers start the way that will benefit them financially, I’m sharing the top tools and services I recommend.
I will point out that all these tools or services I either currently use, have used, or are a version of ones that I’ve used. I don’t recommend anything that I haven’t tried personally or are close versions of ones that I’ve tried. After all, we wouldn’t recommend a restaurant we’ve never eaten at, right?
Some of these tools are free. There are others that cost a little bit. Others will be tools or services you want to think about in the future, as they will involve a larger business investment. You want to get them as soon as you can, though, to make money online as a writer.
Good web hosting for freelance writers
There are many web hosts out there. Some are better than others.
I have recommended SiteGround for a long time, but I’ve recently made a switch of web host for a variety of reasons. I’m not with BigScoots. SiteGround still has its benefits, but BigScoots is cheaper, especially after the first year of hosting.
You need good web hosting for your writer website. This is essential to get business.
I hear a lot of people say that they get clients through Facebook or that they use third-party sites like UpWork or Fiverr. You’ll get better clients at a better rate with your own website, and you have so much more control.
Your own website will also include a blog. This is a great way to keep your site updated with fresh content, and it will give you a place to host your samples.
Trello for your writing organization
I can’t rave about Trello enough. This is by far my favorite task organization and client working tool. I’m so thankful that two clients introduced me to it last year.
For those who don’t know, Trello is like Pinterest and Evernote put together. It’s excellent for the visually-minded people, who need somewhere to add in to-do lists, create a workflow for projects, and organize their work and home lives. We use it in our house to manage our diaries and make sure both of us know which project we’re currently working on – yes, we’re both work at home parents with our own websites.
I’ve shared about Trello so much recently, so I’ll let you check out this Trello review to help you understand more about it. In the coming weeks, I’ll share more about how I personally use it and give you a snapshot into my boards and how they help me manage my tasks, my marketing, and my client work.
But sign up for it. The best thing about Trello is that it’s FREE! Well, there are paid versions but the free version is perfect for new freelance writers.
I’ve also started using Milanote. This is something that I’m still testing. It’s more visual than Trello is, which is great for those who like mind boards.
Books dedicated to freelance writing and being an entrepreneur
It’s time to start reading to help you become a better writer. There are plenty of blogs out there, but I recommend getting books (or eBooks) that cover the subject.
And don’t just get books on writing and being a freelance writer. You want books on being an entrepreneur within your niche and even books about your preferred niche.
I love the Boss Mom: The Ultimate Guide to Raising Your Business and Nurturing Your Family, by Dana Malstaff. It was written after I started my business, but it’s relevant for many work at home moms. It was relevant for me at the time as I went through a slight dip in what I wanted to do with my business and my life – at a time that I was heavily pregnant with baby number two!
By the way, there’s the Boss Mom’s Facebook Group that I also highly recommend. This is free to join and full of a world of information.
While Boss Mom isn’t just for freelance writers, it’s still useful for setting up your business.
Will It Fly by Pat Flynn is another book that I highly recommend for those just starting out. It’s written for all entrepreneurs and not just those who want to write or those who work at home.
Again, this isn’t just for freelance writers. Getting business support is essential.
Join the freelance writer’s den for writer support
Being a new freelance writer is daunting. You have no idea where to start or what to do. And you just don’t know anyone else who is doing it.
Well, this is where the Freelance Writer’s Den comes in. This is a place full of writers, both those who are just starting out and those who have a successful six- or seven-figure business. There are writers in all niches and at all levels.
This is your place to share your goals, get support with your pitches, learn more about the writing world, and so much more. I loved it in the Freelance Writer’s Den. I’m not there anymore as I’ve moved on from that stage in my career and I’m taking my writing and my business in a different direction but it was the most useful monthly investment I’d ever made.
I know that not every writer will be able to afford this at first. It’s one of those that I kept putting off but then I realized that I was seriously missing out.
The first couple of months may be rough but you can scale back on other costs. I scaled by on the books that I bought and other business investments that I made for the first month. I also saved up for a couple of months to make sure the first two months of investment were there. After that I was making back the investment and more through the tips.
It’s one of those that you want to invest in as soon as possible to skyrocket your freelance writing career.
Hire a writing mentor to help support you
While the Freelance Writer’s Den is good for supporting you initially, you will need to move on from that. There are limitations in a group setting.
The tips and information shared is for the average writer. There are no personal situations or needs taken into account, except for in the monthly goals that you make – and then I found that fell slightly short because it didn’t support the way people pushed themselves with their goals.
When you hire a writing mentor, you get the individual support. I held back from hiring a mentor for a long time, but I wish I didn’t. I should have invested much sooner. And that’s what this expense is. It’s a business investment.
Your writing mentor will be able to work through your business plan and help you set up your personal goals. A good writing mentor will adapt tips to help your personal circumstances and work in with your needs. Great writing mentors can help boost your motivation and productivity.
You don’t need to settle for the first writing mentor you find. My first one was good on a business level but I didn’t connect on a personal level. My second business coach was excellent on both accounts and could help me focus on my goals and what I wanted to achieve, while having a laugh at the same time.
Some writing mentors will offer group sessions, which are powerful for bouncing ideas back and forth. Others are perfect for one-on-one sessions, where the focus is purely on you.
Now that I’m set in my writing and I know how to get to this point, I’m available as a freelance writing mentor for hire. I won’t just help you start making money, but I’ll help you hone your skills and find the perfect clients or writing bases. I’ll be your guide and your motivator.
New freelance writers: Choose your first writing tool to invest in
Now it’s over to you. Which will be your first writing tool to invest in? I know that Trello will likely be the first on your list since it’s free. I highly recommend that you choose that one.
A good web host is essential, and I do think this should be the first financial investment you make. A website is necessary for all freelance writers.
What are you going to invest in first? Let me know in the comments
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