16
Jun 10

World Cup & Freelance Writing

Sports writers, good news! World Cup 2010 is finally here, and something good follows.

There are more and more sports related writing jobs waiting for you.

Check out these sports writing jobs.

Some of these jobs are offering up to $20 per article.

Want to earn some extra $$$ ?

Time to polish up your sports knowledge and writing skills.

Meanwhile, you might want to read up these materials to boost your knowledge.

Soccernomics: Why England Loses, Why Germany and Brazil Win, and Why the U.S., Japan, Australia, Turkey–and Even Iraq–Are Destined to Become the Kings of the World’s Most Popular Sport

World Cup 2010: The Indispensable Guide to Soccer and Geopolitics

The ESPN World Cup Companion: Everything You Need to Know About the Planet’s Biggest Sports Event

The Beckham Experiment: How the World’s Most Famous Athlete Tried to Conquer America

Soccer World Cup Preview 2010


12
May 10

Another 5 Reasons Why Freelancing is Cool

So, I have written about the Top 3 Reasons Why Freelancing is Cool on 11th February 2009.

I would like to continue to add more reasons and here is a list of 5 reasons why I think freelancing is cool.

1. No more paying for transportation

(I used to take the bus to work and it costs me RM2 every working day, so 22 days x RM2 = RM44 a month)

2. No more spending extra money for lunch

(It costs about RM5 per lunch and I work an average 22 days a month, so 22 days x RM5 = RM110 a month)

3. Get to spend more time watching my favourite drama series – I love Charmed and Chuck

4. Friends envy me – It is not my intention to make them envy me, but they do because I work from home. They wish to be me!

5. Even my mum thinks I am unemployed (at first) and she has no idea how I can give her money to spend – which is pretty cool

Until today, most people around me can’t understand the concept of my work. Sometimes, I am getting tired of having to explain many times about what I do, and how I can earn a living.

Extra reason: My income is unpredictable

I really love the fact that I can save some money as I no longer use public transportation and I don’t eat out as often as I used to, which means I can save about RM154 a month, and that is a big deal for me. An extra RM154 every month means I can pay off my debt faster.

What is the coolest reason for you to freelance?


10
May 10

More Than 8 Working Hours

Everyone needs a job to sustain life.

We need money for food, accommodation, transportation and other things in life that stand between our need and desires.

So, we work to earn money, with the hope to change our life around.

Do you work more than 8 hours a day, to make sure that your projects are done on time?

Perhaps you can earn a few more bucks by doing some other jobs, aside from the projects you are working on?

The truth is some people do work 24/7 – with a few hours off to sleep, maybe.

Other than sleeping, everything else is all about work, getting work done and gaining more work, after the previous work is done.

I don’t really work 24 hours, 7 days a week, but I definitely work more than 8 hours.

Sometimes, I find myself going towards the “working 24/7” mode, especially when I have tons of work to be completed.

I don’t seem to be able to take my mind off work, at anytime and anywhere, not even when I am spending time with family and I have no idea why I just can’t leave work where it is supposed to be – in my home office.

However, I do enjoy freelancing even though having to work more than 8 hours, because I get to work at home, using my own laptop and wear whatever I want, without having to worry about wardrobe malfunctions, spending additional money for lunches or paying even more expenses for transportation to and fro the office.

The whole point of me being in the freelancing industry is to avoid working in the office, although I only need to work about 8 hours in the office. Now, I truly enjoy the world of freelancing, even if it means I have to work more than 8 hours a day.

Do you work more than 8 hours a day, or do you set 8 hours as your working hours and the rest of the hours are non-working related?

There is nothing wrong working more than 8 hours except you have to watch your health and sanity.


26
Mar 10

And You Think It Is Easy To Be…

a virtual assistant!

Being in the customer service industry is tough! The good part is sometimes, you don’t have to answer calls, only checking emails.

Checking emails is easy but dealing with the emails would be a different story. Some people can be very polite, others can be super rude.

There are times when people are getting really mad, you can expect to see some F-word, B-word and other vulgar words.

You CANNOT be personal when dealing with company emails. You NEED to be polite even when the person on the other end is screaming all the vulgar words at you, scolding you or perhaps swearing!

In the end, it is all about being polite when replying to all company emails.

So, if you want to be a virtual assistant, you need to be tough enough to handle really “rude” emails and at the same time, you have to play nice.

Are you up for the challenge?


26
Jan 10

Essential Websites for Photographers

Being a freelance photographer is a challenging career. You will need all the resources you can get. The internet is a friend for everyone as you can find anything you want on the internet. However, when you are trying to establish your own photographing portfolio, you will need to know how to set up your own portfolio. Do you want to print them out and keep it in your portfolio album or post them on the internet to reach more audience.

The internet is definitely a companion for everyone. You can post your work on the internet so that more potential clients can view your work.

Therefore, we have special websites for photographers. There are three types of websites to feature your work on the internet.

1. Photo sharing communities
2. Blog based sites
3. Portfolio-based sites

Example of photo sharing communities would be Flickr. Flickr is the easiest-to-use website to feature all your photos. You can sign up for a free account (which allows up to 200 images) or professional account for more features. You will definitely need a professional account to feature all your photos if you have more than 200 photos to upload. Besides, Flickr is an excellent photo sharing site thanks to the ability to set different copyright for your images. If you are looking for other alternatives, SmugMug might be the one for you. Annual fees range from $39.95 to $149.95.

Blog based sites mean having your own blog to feature your work. This is easy to set up. You just need a domain and a hosting plan to get started. By having your own blog, you get to design your own blog to make it ‘stand out’ in the crowd. Remember you are not the only photographer in the world. If you have no budget to buy a domain and hosting plan, you can create a free blog from Blogger or WordPress. However, since you are trying to establish a professional reputation, it would be best to get your own domain and hosting.

Portfolio-based sites is a good choice if you hate to do the coding (HTML) on your own (perhaps you have no idea how to do all that). Portfolio-based sites such as BIG Folio, LiveBooks and PhotoShelter are there to help you out. They will help you to set up your very own portfolio for less than $1,000 a year. If you like, they can even set up e-commerce so that you can sell your photos online (print sales and image licensing).

With so many choices available, it is time to choose the best idea for your own portfolio.


21
Dec 09

Freelance Writing Industry in Malaysia

It is rather sad to see that freelance writing industry in Malaysia is rather gloomy. No one seems to recognise freelance writing as a career. Although it is “freelancing” but from “freelancing”, we can develop our own business (like me).

Since I have started my own business, I started to write full time. I take in projects that I can do and of course, life is good as I don’t have a fixed working hour (which is a very important element in my life because I hate working fixed hour).

Credit Card Application.

Recently, I have applied for Hong Leong Bank credit card (Classic card). The problems that I faced:

  1. My first application got lost somewhere between the mails. I waited for about a month, called the consultant a few times, checked at the branch itself only to find out that they didn’t receive my application.
  2. So, I sent in a second application. Second application seems to go well. The consultant informed me that I had to wait about 7 days for the application status and they will sent me a status letter. I waited for 3 weeks and I haven’t receive the letter.
  3. Finally, I called the credit card call centre and they told me my application was rejected.

I guess I will have to try other banks but certainly not Hong Leong Bank.

Tax.

I am new to business. Therefore, I am new to tax as well. I sent in an email to the IRB (Lembaga Hasil) to ask about tax. I waited for a week before I got a reply. Thankfully, the reply was very detailed.

On 9 December 2009, I sent in another email asking a new set of questions, today (21 December 2009), I still haven’t receive any reply.

Buying a Car.

2009 is a year where I have tried to buy a new car so many times, I am sick of seeing car dealers. Apparently I am not eligible to buy a car because my “business” is new (the true reason: they don’t see my business as a profitable business).

My dreams?

  1. I want to buy a house.
  2. I want to buy a car.
  3. I want to save money.
  4. I want to travel to other places.

I wonder which one that I can do real fast.

My priority is to get a house because I am married and I can’t stay with my parents for long (think about the privacy!).

Join or Back Off?

If you are a Malaysian, young adult and want to join the freelance writing industry in Malaysia, please be prepared to endure all these problems (unless if you are luckier than me). It is worth the time to explore this industry but do it at your own risks.

I am taking the risks, and I am enduring all these problems now!


03
Dec 09

10 Free or Cheap Ways To Market Your Writing Business

These 10 strategies cost nothing, or close to it. They’ll save you money… and put money in your bank account, too!

1. Look in the business section of your local paper for the names of people who have been promoted, hired or rewarded by their companies. Write a short congratulatory letter (refer to the specific achievement to make it personal), and enclose two or more of your business cards (one for the person to keep, the others for him or her to give to others). By the way, your business cards DO include complete information about what you do, don’t they? If not, redesign them today! Just a title, such as “Freelance Writer,” is too vague. List what you can do (newsletters, brochures, ads, etc.) and add a blurb that highlights the main benefit you offer.

2. Scan magazines and newspapers for articles that are of interest to one or more of your current clients or “hot prospects” (people you’ve talked to but have not worked for yet). Clip the articles and send them to the prospects with an attached, handwritten note stating something like, “Hi, Alice. Thought you might be interested in this. Please keep me in mind for your future writing needs! Regards, Henry.” This strategy gives you a reason to remind your clients and prospects about you. It’s a way to keep your name in their minds. The use of snail mail and a handwritten note gives this tactic a personal touch. This is much more effective (and less obtrusive) than sending interesting tidbits via e-mail.

3. Create an alliance with graphic designers. Writers sometimes need graphic design work or have the opportunity to refer their clients to artists. And artists frequently need good copy that their clients cannot or do not want to supply themselves. Contact local graphic designers and ask them about their businesses before you talk about yours. Let them know that you may have an occasional client who could use their services. After the conversation gets going, you can mention your services. Follow up by sending a personal letter and several of your business cards. (One for the designer to keep, and the others for the designer to give to clients who may need you someday.)

4. Join an organization, such as the Chamber of Commerce or the local advertising club. Face-to-face networking is one of the best ways to get the word out about your business. Put your business cards in your pocket and always give two or three to each person (one to keep and one or two to share).

5. After you join an organization, volunteer and be active. Get noticed by taking a visible role in committees or events.

6. Call 5 to 10 people you know — friends, relatives, coworkers, folks at church, etc.–and talk to them about what you are doing as a freelance copywriter. Let them know you are available for work if they happen to hear of anyone who can use your services. Sometimes we think our “inner circle” knows what we do and can therefore refer us to others. More often, though, these people have only a limited idea of our capabilities. Change their misperceptions today!

7. Start your own newsletter or e-zine. Make sure at least 75 percent of the copy is information people can use — not marketing hype about you. For example, write articles on “Better Business Writing,” “The Top 10 Mistakes to Avoid When You Write a Business Letter,” or “Advertising Copy That Sells.” Show your expertise in most of the newsletter, then highlight the benefits of your writing services. Remember to add a call to action (what you want the reader to do next, such as call you for a free consultation).

8. Contact a bookstore and offer to teach a free seminar about writing. Use a recently published book as a resource, and have lots of copies on hand for participants who are interested in purchasing the book. You’ll benefit from the free publicity and the store will benefit from the free promotion of the book.

9. Call four ad agencies and ask to speak to the creative or copy director. Be ready with a 30-second introductory pitch about your services and how you can benefit the ad agency. Ask for either a meeting to discuss the agency’s needs or permission to send a package with some of your writing samples.

10. Try to get in the newspaper or on the radio or local TV. Many media outlets actively seek guests who have something interesting to say. Develop a topic idea that will showcase your talents as a writer while also making for a good story or segment. Contact local reporters, radio hosts and TV producers with your idea.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Kathy Poole has been a Prosperous Writer since she launched her highly profitable freelance copywriting business in 1985. She is also a Writer’s Coach who empowers other writers to prosper in this opportunity-rich field. Kathy gives writers the confidence, knowledge and action plans they need to start, run and grow their own lucrative copywriting businesses – much sooner and more easily than they could by themselves. For information, resources, more articles and a complimentary Special Report, visit http://www.prosperouswriter.com

Send e-mails to kathy@prosperouswriter.com


25
Nov 09

Freelancing is Not a Bed of Roses

Are you freelancing?

Do you think freelancing is fun?

Do you think freelancing gives you more time to do other things (i.e. spend more time with family)?

*****

Freelancing is not always as rewarding as we hope.

The money is good. The work is good. Everything seems to be so good.

What could be worse?

It is when work is getting less, money is reducing and you are getting stressful, that you will realise freelancing is not a bed of roses.

In fact, you will have to spend a lot of time to make sure you get constant work and better income.

Of course, this is the same for all type of jobs. However, freelancing is risky as you don’t get a steady paycheck every month.

You must be prepared if you want to be a freelancer.

Be prepared for unforeseen events.

Be prepared for the worst.

Be prepared for everything that comes to your mind.

Are you ready to be a freelancer?


11
Oct 09

Freelance Like a Farmer

I began my illustrious freelance career with visions of tweed coats, elbow patches, cigars, and pensive photos. My mind’s eye saw a cluttered office, checks strewn across my desk, and waking to one illuminating thought after another. I believed I’d tap at the keyboard, mail queries, read my articles on glossy paper, and assignments would flow like water.

Small problem with that scenario. Tweed coats don’t look good on me. I don’t smoke, never have. And I usually wind up looking goofy in photos, no matter how hard I try to strike a pensive pose.

Ah, but my desk is cluttered. I do occasionally find a stray check in amongst the mounds of papers. But illuminating thoughts? Bah.

There’s a fundamental problem with my original scenario: my freelancing model missed a crucial element necessary for financial success.

For example, the cash I expected to earn from writing articles just didn’t add up to the numbers I hoped they would. Seriously. Spending weeks writing, rewriting, and finally submitting an article, only to reap a whopping 25 bucks just didn’t pay the bills.

Then I decided to write books. Unfortunately the small royalties barely covered my promo expenses. It’s exciting to sell books, but we needed some large volume sales to make this endeavor financially worthwhile.

How ’bout publishing? Again, after wholesaler discounts, distributor expenses, author royalties, and postage, we’re talking some pretty slim profits. And again, we’re talking volume sales to lower expenses and prop profits.

But then something magical happened. I discovered the wacky world of copywriting.

In case you’re unfamiliar with copywriting, a copywriter is a master persuader. They write ads, direct mail, sales letters, and such.

And (little did I know) proficient copywriters earn a lot. World Class Copywriters earn astronomical fees.

Copywriting isn’t difficult. But there are definite tricks to the trade. And you can cut your learning curve by years if you receive proper training.

But here’s where things really get cool.

Turns out these new persuasive skills made it far easier to write awesome queries. Boom. Article sales jumped.

Next, I revised the sales copy for my books. Boom. Another jump in sales.

I applied “copywriting language” to everything I wrote and kaboom… even more sales, more exposure, new readers found me.

And I haven’t even gotten into copywriting as a business: writing for clients turned out to be quite lucrative as well.

Now, I love to write. It’s my passion. There’s nothing like receiving a complementary e-mail outlining how something I’ve written has made someone else’s life easier, gave them hope, helped guide them through this wacky profession.

On the other hand, I hate marketing. It sucks. One rejection and I’m down for the count. At least for a while.

But by combining my writing skills with copywriting psychology, my self-promo time is automatically sliced in at least half because I’ve learned stealth persuasion to draw clients my way.

So now, clients (and publishers and editors) are attracted to me rather than my gunning after their very fractured attention.

So… where does the “farming” come in?

Simple. Rather than concentrate on one aspect of your writing career, think like a farmer. Plant many seeds and watch them grow at different rates.

Instead of becoming an article writer extraordinaire, write articles when the spirit moves you. Submit them when they’re polished. Start writing the novel that’s burning your heart. Eventually publish it. Research a nonfiction title. Write ad copy.

You can even take this further. I speak to the local high school. Elementary schools, too. How ’bout local organizations and the Chamber of Commerce? Once a businessperson sees you in action, they’ll be hooked.

Just keep planting seeds (remember, you’re a “farmer”) and before you know it, you’ve got more paying clients than you know what to do with.

But copywriting’s the linchpin that binds all these endeavors.

That’s because effective persuaders control their destiny… and their income.

So here’s to effective “farming” and inevitable success.

Beth Ann Erickson is the queen bee of Filbert Publishing and editor of Writing Etc., the free zine that’ll make your writing sparkle, help you create a profitable writing career, and get you on the road to publication fast. You’ll receive the e-booklet, “Power Queries” when you subscribe today. http://FilbertPublishing.com.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Beth_Erickson


06
Sep 09

20 Revenue Sharing Sites – Written Content

Revenue Sharing: People working together and registering online in a way similar to that of a corporation, and sharing the proceeds.

What you need to do?

Write content, submit content, wait for content to be reviewed and published, and earn royalties (Google Adsense) based on page views (different sites might have different methods to calculate the earnings).

There are 20 revenue sharing sites that are worth checking out.

It is time to earn some extra money.

If you know any other revenue sharing sites that are not in the list, feel free to add in the comment.

*****

1. Triond : I have talked about how you can make money with Triond.

2. Bukisa : Similar to Triond. Check out how you can make money with Bukisa.

3. Associated Content

4. Ehow.com : If you love to write how-to articles, this is your best choice.

5. Hubpages

6. Squidoo

7. Suite 101

8. Xomba

9. Thisisby

10. Pakt

11. About.com : If you are really good at certain topics, you can be a guide on About.com.

12. Helium

13. Oondi

14. LaunchTags

15. Scratch Projects

16. GreenDoc

17. Daytipper

18. MeshPlex

19. Digital Journal

20. SoftwareJudge

Note: 16.09.09 – Serena from RevShareSites shared a list of 52 (and growing) revenue sharing sites and information about each of them. Some of the sites are listed above. Others are unknown to me, but I guess it is worth checking out.

Update 29.12.09: Ryan from Info Barrel would like to add his site to the list. I have looked at the front page of the site. Look promising but you will have to learn more from his site.

Disclaimer: I will not be held responsible for any wrong information listed on RevShareSites.