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Written by guest blogger Leslie Campos
As every college student knows, being in college isn’t cheap. In addition to tuition, one needs to handle costs relating to accommodation, meals, travel, and more. Having a part-time job while pursuing your degree can help you offset these costs and gain valuable experience to add to your resume. When shortlisting potential positions, becoming a freelance writer should be on top of your list. In this article by SelfPublishinUS, we’ll explore the steps to becoming a freelance writer while in college and the advantages it brings.
Schedule Your Classes Early
Class enrollment often starts a week or two before the semester begins. Aim to be one of the first to choose classes and secure a schedule that provides you ample time each day to dedicate towards writing.
Additionally, regardless of your major, opt to enroll in at least one class related to writing, which can include creative writing, research writing, etc. These will help you gain valuable knowledge regarding the basics of writing popular content pieces such as articles, long-form blogs, journal articles, etc.
Create a Portfolio
A portfolio is a collection of your best writing pieces that you’ll submit for any position. A portfolio consisting of various published articles will increase your chances of getting hired.
If you have never been published, college is the best place to find numerous avenues to do so. Reach out with article ideas to your college newspaper, magazine, student-run blog, and other organizations. While you will not get paid for these articles, there will be no barriers to getting published. Additionally, if you have a great idea for a book, you can team up with notable publishers to become a published author.
To save time, you can use your assignments as article submissions. While you will need to tweak them to match the expectation of the publication and medium, it’ll be way faster than writing an article from scratch.
Once you have a couple of well-written published articles, you’ll be ready to find a great freelance position.
Find Good Positions
As reported by the employment website Zippia, the freelance writing market is brimming with opportunities right now, making it the perfect time to enter as a newcomer. Here are some prominent platforms where you can find writing gigs:
When shortlisting positions, here are some best practices to follow:
● Check if their compensation matches your expectations. New writers can expect to be paid between $0.03-$0.05 per word which translates to $30-$50 for a 1000-word article. However, if you lack experience, plan to take lower-paying roles for the first few weeks/months.
● Thoroughly research the company to ensure it is credible. Go through their “About Us” section; read their blogs to understand their requirements. Additionally, find employee reviews on sites such as Indeed and Glassdoor.
● Look for long-term positions providing you with a consistent flow of work and income.
Adhere to Deadlines
Being a dependable writer for your clients can open doors to new opportunities through referrals. Additionally, having good reviews will make it easier for new clients to trust you over competitors. To create such a reputation, it is important to always write high-quality content and submit it on time.
Each week, in addition to your work, you will need to attend classes, and submit assignments. To maintain a good balance between the two, it’s important to develop time management skills. The beauty of being a freelance writer is that you can choose your work hours. This provides you complete flexibility to adapt your writing responsibilities around your college schedule.
Form an LLC
As reported by the business services website ZenBusiness, registering a Limited Liability Company will help you incorporate your writing business as a separate legal entity. As a result, you will be eligible to pay lower taxes and protect your personal savings and assets during any dispute with clients.
Additionally, selling your services as a business will help you develop a professional brand in the market, making it easier to land clients.
Becoming a freelance writer will provide you with a balance between earning a consistent income and developing work experience while in college. This will not only help you cover expenses but also make a smooth transition from academic to professional life in the near future.