Ask Me: Advice for Freelance Writers

Confession: I made a New Year's "Goal" to blog at least 2 times a week here. But I often find myself staring at this tiny box and wondering what on Earth to write.

With nearly 15 years experience as a writer and editor, I've launched magazines, written press releases, reported for a local newspaper, pitched countless article ideas and written thousands... but I find myself stumped when I stare at this little blog space and wonder what I could possibly have to share with the world.

So, I'd like to give you, my readers, the opportunity to ask me anything you want. Ask me how I made more than $40,000 as a freelance writer this year, putting in less than 30 hours a week (for the most part). Ask me how to impress editors. Ask me how to build a social network of people who need writers. Ask me the best places to find freelance writing jobs. Ask me why I won't work for less than $30 an hour, but why it's okay to blog for $5 a post sometimes.

In short, ask me anything else you'd like about the freelance writing life.

Some facts:

1. Although I call myself a full-time freelance writer, as it is my only source of income, I don't work full-time hours. There's no need. I never made $40,000 at any of my "day jobs," even as the Editor-in-Chief of 'top in their industry' publications. But I did it this year solely through freelance writing.

Can I do that--and better--while taking care of an infant in 2009? We'll see.

2. I rarely send queries--although that will change in 2009 as I attempt to achieve the goal of being published in a non-niche, mainstream glossy newsstand publication.

3. I love my job. More than anything I've ever done in my life (besides parenting).

4. I have the freedom to travel, to stay home and take care of my daughter, to set my own hours.

5. The one thing I've learned is that success is all about relationships. People hire people they like to work with... whether they're working long distance or side-by-side in an office.

I sometimes get e-mails or private messages through Absolute Write asking me how to make a living as a freelance writer. Unfortunately, many of the people who e-mail don't want to work at it. They don't want to hear it's hard work. They want the magic solution. I won't lie... freelancing *is* hard work and it takes time to build up contacts and connections (I'm assuming would-be writers have some level of talent).

But I will do my best to answer any questions posted here... it's up to those asking the questions as to what they do with the information.