Posts Tagged ‘freelance’

Tips for Cutting Your Writing Business Expenses

Reevaluating your writing expenses at least yearly will help you bring more money to your bottom line. Look at everything you spend money on and see what you can cut to boost your bottom line. You will be amazed.

  1. Think like a student – Stock up on all your supplies during the back to school season. Paper, pens, envelops, folders are a lot less expensive during that time of year.
  2. Look at your phone cost – Do you have multiple lines? (phone and fax) How much do you really use your fax line? Getting rid of a line can save you lots of money every month.
  3. Send more e-mail queries – This saves paper, envelops and stamps.
  4. Stop printing everything – You’ll save paper, ink and the environment.
  5. Ask for a discount – When you travel to teach workshops, cover a conference or an interview, ask the organization if they have a discount with an airline or the hotel.
  6. Use your library card – The library subscribes to tons on magazines so you don’t have to. Do your research at the library or get articles on-line for free.
  7. Use coupons – Before you go out and buy anything go on-line and see if there is a coupon or on-line code for the product you need.
  8. Make the most out of your cell phone – Look at how you use your phone. Could you get rid of your land line? Do you have a lot of unused minutes or could you switch to a less expensive plan?
  9. Stay at home – Save money on travel and make more per hour by doing interviews by phone.
  10. Recycle printer cartridges – Take your used cartridges back to your office supply of choice and recycle it. Most will give you several dollars for the used one to use toward the price of the new one.

I’m sure this list of items has gotten you thinking about all the places you can cut costs and put more of your writing money in your pocket.

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Extremely Lucrative Writing Niche – Speech Writing

Writing

Writing

Extremely Lucrative Writing Niche – Speech Writing by Bob Bly

“What’s a writing niche in which you can make a lot of money, but – unlike health or financial – doesn’t have too much competition?”

Well, I’ve found just such a niche for you — speechwriting:

Did you know you can make between $2,000 and $3,250 writing a single 20-minute speech — and you can do it in just a day or two?

Speechwriting is a relatively easy form to master … extremely lucrative … fun … intellectually stimulating … and less commercial than direct mail, online, and many other types of copywriting.

Plus, there are relatively few experienced speechwriters working today. So there’s plenty of work for everyone.

I’ve been writing speeches, on and off, for over 3 decades – and have been paid as much as $10,000 for a single presentation (though that was a full-hour lecture).

In my e-book “Speechwriting for Fun and Profit,” I reveal everything you need to make a six-figure income as a freelance speechwriter.

Including:

** Shortcuts to getting your first few speechwriting clients and assignments. Plus: easiest speechwriting project to start with.

Page 28.

** The 3 secrets of achieving lasting success as a freelance speechwriter. Page 31.

** Where to get lists of potential clients you can contact about speechwriting work. Page 32.

** Typical rates earned by freelance speechwriters per assignment and per hour. Page 15.

** How to find speechwriting assignments online – and bid for them successfully. Page 39.

** And so much more….

For details . or to download “Speechwriting for Fun and Profit”

on a 90-day risk-free trial basis … just click here now:

 Once on the page click on products (left hand side) then scroll down to Speech Writing Magic.

Sincerely,

Bob Bly

Self-Employment isn’t all Beer and Skittles

Great article by Bob Bly on the drawbacks of being self-employed, but why he loves it anyway.

Yesterday I was staring at the waste basket next to my desk, which was filled to overflowing, and it occurred to me that one of the things that irks me most about being self-employed is having to empty my own waste basket; when I worked for Westinghouse, a janitor I never saw did it for me every day after I had gone home from work.

My stuffed waste basket is a visual reminder that self-employment is not, as David Ogilvy said, all “beer and skittles.”

As it happens, I am a fan of self-employment. I encourage others to pursue it, and have spent considerable effort teaching them how to do so.

Despite that, I think you should be aware of some of the drawbacks of self-employment before you decide to take the plunge – or even if you’ve recently put out your shingle:

** First, without a real job, it’s more difficult to get a mortgage. The banking industry is prejudiced against the self-employed because we don’t have a steady source of predictable income.

** Second, without a regular paycheck, your cash flow is more uncertain. I have had months where I’ve made over $60,000. But I have also had months where I made only a few thousand dollars.

As a corollary to Murphy’s Law, you will find that the months the checks don’t come in are the months you end up needing money the most, such as last month, when my 2000 Nissan Maxima died and we spent $21,000 cash to replace it with a fully loaded 2010 Toyota Prius.

** Third, you don’t get benefits. You have to buy your own health insurance, which in the U.S. can be a huge expense, especially if you have had medical problems. On the flip side, many traditionally employed people now have to pay for part of their health benefits; when I took my first corporate job in 1979, Westinghouse paid the whole bill and the coverage was great. 

** Fourth, you have to pay for your own office space, furniture, equipment, supplies, and services. Talk to your accountant, as much of this may be tax deductible.

** Fifth, you will likely spend your days in solitude with no one around you to shoot the breeze or go out to lunch with. It was nice at Westinghouse that my department went out for drinks after work every Friday.

** Sixth, being sick is a problem for the self-employed. You do not get paid sick days. You can’t afford to be sick because your clients expect their work to get done. There are no coworkers to take up the slack while you are out recuperating. A long-term illness could ruin you. I think it is exceedingly difficult to be self-employed if you are not in good health.

** Seventh, in a 9-to-5 job, your boss gives you work to do. In most freelance professions, you have to go out and get work, convincing potential clients to hire you. This involves marketing and selling that many independent professionals abhor.

** Eighth, you don’t get a company car. So you have to buy your own cars, which is expensive.

** Ninth, you don’t get a pension … but to be fair, that’s also true for many 9-to-5 workers these days. Still, without a pension, the self-employed professional has to make saving for her own retirement a priority.

** Tenth, going on vacation is really hard, because your clients expect you to be available when they want you. For a number of years now, my wife has forced me to go away with the family for a week vacation. If she did not, I would never take more than a long weekend, which is what I still prefer.

If you find this dreary, forgive me. I tell you all this not to discourage you, but to make you aware that self-employment is not an instant cure for all your woes. It will not eliminate all problems in your life. You will merely be trading one set of problems for another. You should know that going into it.

On the plus side, despite the fact that self-employment has many drawbacks, for me these are greatly outweighed by its positive features – including working at home, no boss, no commute, freedom, and more money.

To find out more about Bob and his books visit bit.ly/bobblyauthor

Have a great day and happy writing.

Six Reasons Why Freelance Commercial Writing Might Just Be the Perfect “Retirement” Career!

Six Reasons Why Freelance Commercial Writing Might Just Be the Perfect “Retirement” Career!
Good Money, Flexibility, No Age Barriers – What’s Not to Like?
By Peter Bowerman

According to Martie Callaghan, she’s always been a writer. “In nearly every past job, I would find a way to wriggle some type of writing into my job description.” Finally, five years ago, the Preston, Maryland grandmother made the break from secretarial work and took the plunge into freelancing. Starting with magazine features, she soon transitioned to the more lucrative “commercial” writing, crafting marketing materials for clients in banking, law, interior design, health care, and more. At 58, Martie is buoyant: “My cash flow keeps getting better, and I’m devoting more time to family and less to work. Commercial freelancing is the PERFECT fit.”

Is commercial freelancing a fit for you? Six reasons why the answer might be yes…

#1 – Downsizing & Outsourcing: THE trends in companies of all sizes, as many in this group have undoubtedly – and perhaps, painfully – experienced, firsthand. Yet, outsourcing means freelancers. Why not be on the upside of the trend?

Hawaii-based Sharon Meindertsma, 56, admittedly ready for a change from pharmaceutical sales, had the decision made for her when suddenly downsized out of her job. She’s reveling in the challenge of her new career, saying, “Becoming a commercial writer has been like being back in college, scary, but excited about at all the opportunity out there. Most importantly, it’s a profession I can pursue for the rest of my life, finally be my own boss and best of all, see what I’m made of.”

#2 – Experience: By definition, this demographic has a large body of career experience, which can be leveraged into a full- or part-time writing income. Wouldn’t a client rather hire someone who knows their business, industry, culture, and vernacular?

At 64, Chuck Belitz, former military contractor, was president of a small company, where he handled all writing responsibilities. After the company was sold, Belitz launched Inklings Media, bidding writing work from the government and its prime contractors, and offer his services throughout the Southeastern U.S. He observes, “I have formed a loose consortium of freelance writers, graphic designers, video producers, and editors from Birmingham to Atlanta. The prospects look good.”

#3 – Work Ethic: Copywriting buyers routinely lament the scarcity of reliability, excellence, and thoroughness in those they hire. A more traditional grounding tends to give this group a stronger work ethic and an intimacy with those very core values.

Dr. Bill Duhey of San Diego retired from the steel industry at 57, after various management positions and a final stint as editor of the plant magazine. The next year, he began a career as a consultant and seminar leader for companies across North America. At 76, he decided to become a commercial freelancer, reading up on the field and getting busy. A year later, things are going well. Says Duhey, “I have three clients who give me all the work I can handle. I earn a comfortable income, but I’m still young and looking for more work.”

#4 – The “Age-ism” Antidote: The commercial writing field is very democratic, in that it’s virtually all performance-based. One’s education, credentials, or age (which can often, unfairly, impact women more) matter far less than one’s ability to get the job done.

Buffalo area local Paul Chimera, 55, who makes about 75% of his income from freelancing – much of it commercial – observes, “If you write well, they’ll put you to work – whether you’re a Gen-X’r in sandals and a T-shirt, or a dashing old guy like me. If you’re 85 and can still turn out good stuff, that’s all they care about.” Chimera’s written everything from brochures to infomercials, and for clients in recreation, food, housing, printing, and more.

California-based Celia Sue Hecht, also 55, who transitioned from journalism to freelance PR writing (one arena of commercial freelancing), echoes this, observing, “Given that stereotyping is alive and well in some business environments, for older women, this is the way to go.”

#5 – Income: Whether someone needs to bring in a decent income or wants to scale back their work pace, with hourly rates in the field of $50-125 in most major metros, this field delivers handsomely for the time invested.

Former teacher Joe Yenkavitch, now 60, of Essex Junction, Vermont, continued his ongoing love of writing after retiring, but found that most magazine freelancing “doesn’t come close to compensating you for the time spent.” So he switched gears: “Once I got over the hang-up that commercial freelancing wasn’t creative enough, a whole world of possibilities opened up. I can make decent money, remain creative, and still pursue my next novel.”

#6 – Flexibility: A near-universal sentiment of the 55+ set is the desire to spend more time with family or involved in the activities of their choosing. With the income potential offered by this field, it truly allows its practitioners to craft a life on their own terms.

57-year-old Wayne Winkle of Ft. Smith, Arkansas, a former mental health professional, loves to write, was good at it in his career, and is starting a commercial freelancing business with his daughter. He finds the flexibility and variety of the work especially appealing, adding, “I’m looking forward to the additional income and to seeing my daughter get to be a stay-at-home mom for my two grandsons.”

Today’s seniors thirst for more – more work adventure, more quality of life, more excitement. Martie Callaghan sums it up when she says, “I can’t imagine doing a 9-5 gig again, nor can I imagine not working at all.”

Planning the next exciting chapter of your life? Looking for a flexible, lucrative way to build on a three- or four-decade experience base? As you read this, thousands of writers are landing countless, high-paying writing jobs. Why not you?

Interested in turning your love of writing into a full-time living? Or a flexible, lucrative “retirement” career? For a free report (AND to subscribe to his free ezine and blog) on lucrative “commercial” freelancing, visitbit.ly/pbowermanWhile there, check out the brand-new updated edition of the award-winning 2000 Book-of-the-Month Club selection, “The Well-Fed Writer,” the how-to industry “standard” by veteran commercial writer and business coach Peter Bowerman. Got a book in you? Forget the publisher – do it yourself and turn it into a full-time living! For a free report, visit, bit.ly/pbowerman home of Peter’s award-winning 2007 release, “The Well-Fed Self-Publisher: How to Turn One Book into a Full-Time Living,” which chronicles his self-publishing success on his first WFW titles (52,000 copies in print and a full-time living for seven-plus years).