Ugh! Sheverley I was also rejected by Upwork…twice! And I have felt so disheartened over the last few days trawling through the dreadful propositions on Freelancer and Guru…truly nothing more than slave labour, and when I look at the profiles of the so-called Writers my jaw drops as they don’t seem to have even a rudimentary grasp of the English language. It seems quite obvious to me that most of those profiles are fake. Not that the “job” propositions are worded any better! In fact many of the jobs are clearly students getting someone else to write their research papers for them. Surely this is NOT okay?! This article is awesome – and I’ve read plenty! Thank you Elna. I will keep the dream alive and pursue ALL of the above.

A few other things I plan to try: 1) buying cheap advertising in some niche publications where writing services aren’t usually advertised but the need is high; 2) adding an online content store to my author’s website I’m developing, so I can sell ready-made content directly to clients (kind of like Constant Content but without the middle man); and 3) pitching to website developers who might want to offer content services as a package deal to their clients. I have no idea if any of these strategies will work, but it’s always better to do something than nothing, right?


Many ESL tutoring sites provide everything you need in the way of lesson plans, and you just follow along. In order to teach, you’ll generally need a home computer that can do video chat along with noise-cancelling headphones with a microphone. Some companies require you have a college degree. Find out more in my Teach English Online post, or click through to see if these sites are hiring right away:
I just wanted to let you know that I have been hired by Maritz (Thank you Annie) and working with them for almost 30 days now (perfect attendance gets you a $.25 raise after 30 days too). The company has us calling customers from different businesses (banks, insurance co. etc..) and asking them to please complete a survey of how their customer service experience was between 1 (poor) and 10 (excellent). They pay you the minimum wage of your state weekly by direct deposit and pay on time. The staff is great and helpful and they make the job easy and enjoyable. Thanks again Annie and bless you for all your great and helpful information that you share with us.

This is the first post that I’ve read of yours and I just want to say thank you for publishing such an informative piece! I’m currently entering my senior year of college and I have recently become passionate about getting started with freelance writing. I’ve always enjoyed writing and would like to turn it into a career that allows me to pursue my goal of traveling to every country in the world (or most countries at least haha). I have no writing samples/portfolio and that’s where I’m kinda stuck right now. Im going to check out your blog for more tips on getting started! Thanks again!

College students make money online in all kinds of different ways, and the ones doing surveys aren’t going to be millionaires any time soon. That said, anyone with the time to sign up to two or three survey providers and answer all of the surveys offered them should easily clear an extra $30 (£25) or more each month. Taken in the form of Amazon vouchers, this is a good way to keep up with those essential reading list purchases.
As a novice freelance writer, you’ll need to get some experience under your belt before you can start grabbing for lucrative writing gigs. Although many people slag off content mills such as TextBroker (which turn out bulk content and don’t pay very much), students shouldn’t ignore them as they are a place to earn guaranteed money (even if it’s rather low money).
Hey, kelly. This article was an actual eye opener.I’m from India and being a novice writer, I didn’t have any expectations which made me vulnerable to such clients. I’ve worked for clients who have been paying rather poorly but require an ‘outstanding’ quality of work from us. I’m amused and at the same time rather disappointed when I realize that I had been working for 0.16 cents per word !! Once again a big thank you for now I know what to expect and whom to deny. Take Care.
What It Pays: Payment depends on how many people click on your video and how many subscribers. Views on popular YouTube tutorials range from 20,000 to 300,000 and higher. You can also earn money from sponsorships, ranging from $500 to hundred of thousands, according to Slate. In 2017, Daily Star reported that UK vlogger Zoella made £50,000 a month from her videos showing her shopping hauls, though, with over 16 million subscribers, her estimated net worth is £4m net worth.
I vehemently disagree with you here. Content mills horribly abuse writers and make it difficult for people who have spent years in this field to get a fair wage due to the expectation that companies can pay less to get more. Also, writers who start out here often get stuck in a rut and can’t evolve past the oDesk stage. All around bad news and not recommended for anyone who wants an actual career in writing.
I think you have the potential to be a freelance writer. I would start a blog or create samples on Medium or LinkedIn. Start writing posts that you want to get paid for. So finding a niche like business writing, digital marketing writing, parenting, gardening etc.. and then creating content around that. Then finding the clients that want that content! Good luck!
Thanks so much for this amazing list. I am new to the “leap off the bridge” mindset that is doing freelance writing for a living. I have made my living in the past in management and small business ownership (aftermarket automotive parts store, a NAPA to be precise). I have a BA in Sociology and I have also worked in non-profit management and social work but my dream has always been to write. So after selling the business I decided to follow my dream of being a writer. I have done some blogging and have a novel I’m working on along with a few academic papers that were published while in college. I also have written curriculum for young adults that was published by a Christian publisher some years ago. However, even with some marginal knowledge about writing for a living, I found the amount of information out there to be overwhelming and much of it is people simply promoting scams or trying to sell you on their program. Your post is a breath of fresh air compared to much of the other “content” out there about freelancing. Thank you for taking the time to share
I also recommend FlexJobs for finding more home data entry jobs. With that site, you can regularly search legitimate work at home jobs for data entry and other industries. Every job lead is guaranteed scam-free, and it's the only membership-based jobs site I currently use and trust. Their listings are updated 5-6 times per week, and they are plentiful. You can currently get 30% off a subscription using promo code AFFILPROMO.
I have been interested in writing extensively since a very young age, writing either poetry, novels, short stories etc. Eventually I ended up in the corporate sector writing business plans, marketing plans and various other corporate documents. But freelance writing has been in my blood, just never really had the inspiration to follow this dream of mine. I will apply your guidelines and intend to forge a new career path in freelance writing. I don’t think it would be a problem that I am living in South Africa since the internet has created a global community…

For example, if you type in “banana bread recipe,” search engines should pull up recipes from major sites first. Posts from smaller blogs or recipes for other, related dishes—like zucchini bread—should fall toward the end of the list. As a search engine evaluator, you’ll be asked to enter specific words or phrases into a search engine, then assess how appropriate and informative the sites it pulls up are.

At work, you had to keep your desk neat so that you looked organized—and sure, it’s always helpful to see the top of your desk. But at home, who cares if clutter collects around you? Well, don’t fall into that trap (especially video conference calls are part of your routine). While you might miss the building services team, who used to wipe down your crusty keyboard and empty your waste paper baskets every night, it’s ultimately up to you to keep your space spic and span so you can do your best work.


Elna, thank you for this wonderful article. It is full of resources, and it has motivated me to begin work as a freelance writer. I am currently a single parent of two witty little boys, who works full time outside of the home. In reading this article, I have found a renewed strength and a bit of a push to move forward with optimism to start little by little until I am able to eventually work more time from home. I appreciate you sharing this information.
I just wanted to let you know that I have been hired by Maritz (Thank you Annie) and working with them for almost 30 days now (perfect attendance gets you a $.25 raise after 30 days too). The company has us calling customers from different businesses (banks, insurance co. etc..) and asking them to please complete a survey of how their customer service experience was between 1 (poor) and 10 (excellent). They pay you the minimum wage of your state weekly by direct deposit and pay on time. The staff is great and helpful and they make the job easy and enjoyable. Thanks again Annie and bless you for all your great and helpful information that you share with us.
×