Once a week I am offering three quick tips that you can take and use right away. For those of us who would rather be writing than reading blogs, this is a place you can grab something useful and get back to work. If you have suggestions, please share them in the comments section.
Everyone who writes and/or teaches about freelance writing offers the same basic information, how to find ideas, write queries, do research, write, revise, yada, yada, yada, but the Renegade Writers tell you the stuff the rest don’t tell you. Linda Formichelli and Diana Burrell, who have turned one Renegade Writer book into a collection of books and blogs, offer advice, free e-books, e-courses and other goodies at http://www.therenegadewriter.com.
You guessed it: The Renegade Writer: A Totally Unconventional Guide to Freelance Writing Success, now available in print and as an e-book, will tell you all the good, bad and ugly about freelance writing. And don’t stop at this one book. They have others, including The Renegade Writer’s Query Letters That Rock: The Freelance Writer’s Guide to Selling More Work Faster and A Renegade Writer Kick in the Ass: 30 Riffs from the Renegade Writer Blog to Help you Bust Your Excuses, Light a Fire Under Your Butt, and Become a More Motivated & Productive Freelance Writer.
Be a renegade writer yourself. Close your eyes and picture your byline on the one thing that will make you feel like a successful writer. It could be a book, an article, a short story, poem, script, or song. Now open your eyes and write for at least 30 minutes about what you need to do to make it happen. The word “can’t” is not allowed.
Now Go Write
2010 is almost over. We have a few days before the beginning of 2011 to take stock of the old year and make plans for the new one. So take some time this week to look at your freelance business.
What have you accomplished this year? Go ahead and make a list. If you have written but not published, that counts, too. Think of it as sowing seeds for future harvests. If you have published, have you organized your clips so they’ll be handy when you seek future work? Have you safely backed up all your files?
What do you want to accomplish in the coming year? Now is a good time to set goals. What will you do by this time next year? What do you need to do each month, each week, each day to make that happen?
What about money? Did you make money or lose money in 2010? Either way, if you’re freelancing for money, you need to report it to the IRS. If you have kept records all year, that won’t be hard. If you haven’t, set up a system this week that you will use starting on Jan. 1. I just signed up for QuickBooks to better organize my accounting. You can use any kind of computer program or write it out in a notebook, but you must keep records. On Jan. 1, write down the mileage in your car. You’ll need to know what the odometer says.
All the best to all of you for the new year. May it bring much success and happiness.
Have you purchased your copy of Freelancing for Newspapers yet?