5 simple steps to become a very successful freelance writer!

5 simple steps to become a very successful freelance writer!

Let me cut the chase – and come to the point – “so you want to become an AWESOME writer!” – I will guide you through 5 easy steps to become one – yes it is as simple as that – trust me – it is a fool-proof method! – for generations authors have used these steps to carve out a successful career.

Now let us go together through these steps one by one:

Step 1: Start writing!

I know it is confusing now!

“What is this guy telling?”

Patience my friend!

To become a successful writer – you have to start writing.

Let me explain – I will call it ‘dreamer syndrome’ – many of us suffer from it – the symptom is – that we just dream – we don’t do anything – just make castles in thin air!

It does not matter what you write – how you write – when you write – where you write.

Just WRITE!

A new-born child does not know how to write – parent and teachers help a kid learn to do it.

So ‘writing’ is not a congenital skill – it is learnt – through practice and more practice!

The first book won’t earn you a Booker’s prize – probably it will sell 2 copies – doesn’t matter – what counts is that you completed a task.

Many wannabe writers just want their work published – but their thoughts are not backed by concrete actions!

Maybe your first draft get rejected by publishing house or magazine.

No worries – just keep on writing – sooner you will realize that there is improvement in your writing – the words will become crisper and loaded with practice.

Fine tune your drafts – get honest feedback from relevant people – learn from mistakes – adapt – and then write again.

And one fine day you will get a confirmation mail from a Big publishing house – your draft is approved!!

But it won’t happen if you just dream about it – you have to put in lots of effort.

Practice – Practice – Practice!

So stop reading this article – yes stop – go take out your diary & pen or laptop whatever you want to use – and start writing!! – you can finish the article later – I will wait for you!

Step 2: Don’t write for yourself!

Yes never – ever!

I love noodles – specially the fried ones – will someone buy an eBook on ‘how to eat noodles?’

High chance – NOBODY!

The second step is the most crucial one – what to write about?

The answer is very simple!

Write what other people want to read – and not what you want to write!

Understand – who is shelving out dollars?

Obviously your reader!

So why not write what the reader wants to read??

Secondly most of us are very boring people – even if we want to think otherwise!

So we end up writing boring stuff – but naturally nobody wants to buy your Book!

The guru mantra is: ‘Give Value and Get Money’

Ask yourself: what value you are providing to the readers?

What difference will your book make in their lives?

Are they getting entertained – are they enhancing their skills by your advice/information?

Does the book leaves an impact on their minds?

Just keep on finding the concrete reason – for why some one will buy your book?

Forget about the money you will make – it is irrelevant – instead concentrate on the value proposition!

Once you have zeroed in on a topic after thorough brain storming – start the first step I.e. ‘Start writing’!

Secret Ingredient:

Step 3: Create a solid building!

Let us build one – step by step.

The foundation:

Answer these 4 questions to build the base of your book.

Q1: The topic of the book?

The most critical part of your book is the title – it has to be exciting, mysterious, informative, scandalous, attention grabbing!! And what not!!

Don’t believe this BS!

Yes it is important to have an AWESOME title but most of us waste countless productive hours – coming up with a ‘out of the world’ title.

Don’t indulge in such futile pursuits!

There is nothing perfect in this world.

Start with a ‘working title’ – name it Project X or whatever you feel like – but don’t waste time initially on the topic.

Just start writing on the theme you have selected.

Trust me before the end of the book the title will automatically come in your mind – simply because by then your theme would have taken a concrete form!

Q2: My writing style?

There are so many school of thoughts on what style you should write about?

Luckily for me – I never went to anyone of them!

The guru mantra is ‘keep it simple!’

Probably you can write in Shakespearean style – but that will be restricting your readership.

Don’t use HEAVY words – do you want to show off your dictionary knowledge or sell books??

Use short sentences and simple day-to-day language – avoid slangs – what is a joke for a New Yorker maybe offensive to a Texan! – also slang are very local in flavour – you want to reach the world – what if an Indonesian buys your book but cannot comprehend your slang words??

Don’t alienate your readers!!

Q3: The length of the book?

Long enough not to lose your readers!

Yes don’t bore your audience.

If you are writing an information book it is OK  and obviously it will fetch more dollars!

But generally speaking anything above 100 pages tends to become monotonous.

Many writers face the famous mental block primarily due to this – “have I written enough to give value” – well if you ask me – value is a funny thing – sometimes you just need few words and sometimes even million words are not enough.

Don’t lose your sleep on it – be crisp – be straight forward – just deliver your stuff quickly!

Q4: Market your book?

If you have million dollars for marketing – let me know!!

Ha!

Jokes apart – most of us don’t have the luxury to burn cash – so do it the smart way – ideally build an audience first!

Yes you can self publish your book but if it is not visible how will it sell?

I will suggest to start a blog on the topic of your book – so if you are writing about how to sell – start a blog on sales – build an audience – get people subscribed – I am not expecting you to get on board millions of people – but a few thousands loyal readers are enough.

Suppose you have just 2000 subscribers – and only 50% buy your book costing USD 7 – before you know there is USD 7000 in your account – not bad!

Step 4: Start Networking!

What if Opera recommends your book?

Well by the end of the day there will be 5-6 million dollars in your PayPal account!

Now who doesn’t want that!!

What Opera does is that she spreads the good word about your book to her enormous network of followers – who will eagerly buy anything she suggests.

Now very few people are lucky enough to get such an opportunity.

But don’t lose hope – at least now you realize the ‘power of network’ – so what are you waiting for – start building one.

Talk to your friends – peers – seniors – experts – fellow writers – just talk relevantly.

Be generous – offer some unique value to build your network – be true – be fair – and people will throng on to your side.

It doesn’t happen in few days or months or years – it is an ongoing life long event.

Your network will buy your books – recommend you to other readers – enhance your brand recognition – suggest you new profitable topics to write about!

Step 5: Start evolving!

‘Survival of the fittest!’

Yes be fit – be smart – listen to your readers – they are talking to you – they are saying something – pay attention!

The biggest problem with writers is that they live in a shell!

We all have this romantic reputation of the writers – a growing stubble – cigarette butts all around the room – empty coffee mugs.

Grow UP!

That was in the last decade.

Today the writers look and sound more like corporate executives.

Writing is a business – so start treating it like one!

Be professional – have a strict work schedule – update yourself – learn new things – tweak your drafts – offer over the top value – be honest – tweak some more!!

Are you changing with your audience?

Are you providing content what readers want?

Always remember – dinosaurs were the largest & the meanest animals – they did everything right – but forgot to EVOLVE!

Don’t be ANCIENT!

Now what are you going to do?

Sit back relax – read some other articles – surf porn – buy someone else book on amazon??

What exactly are you going to do today??

Let me suggest something:

Start your book – just start it – don’t think what, how, when, where, why – just do it!!

Let me know what your ideas are in the comment section below!