Friday, November 4, 2011
If they want to redo their business model, then good on them. But, to leave thousands of innocent people bobbing in cold dark water at the expense of sudden change is simply cruel and unusual.
I am proud to say that I have not written a word for this poor excuse for a company in nearly eight months. I hope that all of you who are currently on this literary Titanic can soon say the same thing. I will make a point of posting job leads several times a week to try and help you. There is a list of sites a few posts down where you can start. While LoveToKnow has since folded as well, the rest should still be active. Do not wait for DMS to surge again or to be great to you because it will not happen.
Photo is Public Domain
Saturday, August 13, 2011
Last night fellow freelancer Amy Browne and I did our thing and hosted our radio show, The Freelance Connection, on Blog Talk Radio. We discussed a person who we have received several reports on that is not paying her clients. This is the very first thing we discussed at the very beginning of the show. Check it out and if you have had any experience with this client, feel free to drop a line in the comments and/or check out the ongoing thread about her over and Absolute Write and share your experience to help your fellow writers out.
Amy talked about Bestcovery, a great writing site that many freelancers are not familiar with and shared some info on the work they have available now.
I talked about the process of being hired on with LoveToKnow and the wonderful women I have had the pleasure to communicate with via email and phone so far during the process.
We also talked a bit about the new Writer's Evaluation Program taking place at Demand Media Studios. It ain't pretty, but it's honest folks. I will share some more thoughts on this program in a separate post this week because I am gathering information from folks who I know who were put into it.
Then, we chit-chatted about some other random writer stuff. Also, writers, editors and everyone else who spends a lot of time sitting for work, or just sitting, get up and move around. Do not sit for more than two hours at a time as it can have significant and dangerous health consequences. We talked about this at the end of the show. Amy herself was the victim of multiple heart attacks and her being a writer forced to sit a lot was a major cause of this. She, and I, want to encourage all of our fellow freelancers to get up and move. You just need to take 5 minutes every 2 hours and walk through your house, jump up and down, stretch, or anything that involves some movement. Please, your body and those who love you will thank you.
If you missed the show, you can click the link above and catch a recording of it at your convenience. The next show will be the second Friday in September at 7:00 p.m. Eastern time (I'll post a reminder closer to that time). We are also always excited to have our fellow freelancers as guests on the show, so if you are a freelancer and would like to chat with us in September, send me an email at email@example.com and put "The Freelance Connection Guest" in the subject line and we will talk about getting you on the show.
Until next time. Write on!
Friday, July 22, 2011
I am often asked about sites to write for. Most folks know about Yahoo Contributor Network, Demand Studios and BrightHub, so I will not talk about those in this post. Here is a large list of sites you can check out. If you have any info/feedback on any of these sites (positive or negative) drop a comment on this post. I am sure your fellow writers would appreciate the info! Be on the lookout for individual reviews of these sites throughout the coming months and further info on other sites and writing gigs.
Writer Access can be excellent once you land on a few Love Lists (happens rather quickly). The application is kind of a pain, but worth it IMO. This site is like Textbroker on steroids. Also, do not forget about Textbroker.
http://www.constant-content.com/. Put your Non-exclusives up for reprints folks. Let your reprints earn more for you. If you need some help with this site, shoot me a PM. This site is sometimes slow-going, but the right topics can do you good. I am going to be posting a few posts about it on my blog soon about how to increase your chances of making a sale, so stay tuned.
http://www.consumersearch.com/jobs - Very nice pay, but some work involved.
http://www.internetbrands.com/work-with-us/ - Similar to Demand, but less strict editors.
http://www.bestcovery.com/writers - Comes very highly recommended to me. There is a phone interview involved, but the staff is fantastic and pay is not half bad. Comparable to a YCN beat or DMS.
http://www.writersresearchgroup.com/ - Not sure if they are still hiring.
Pure Content - Not the highest paying, but constant steady work. UK-based company so you have to write in UK English. However, you can set your word processor to spell check in UK English, making this a breeze. Pay is once a month.
10dollararticles - similar to textbroker. Work is not always available so you have to check in often. $10 per article.
http://thecontentauthority.com/application-writers.php - Not clear on the details, but I know they definitely pay and that it is halfway decent.
Skyword: Upfront pay from Pampers, Daily Glow and Bounty is $10 plus revenue share. IBM is $40 upfront. You can also do Gather through Skyword through a PV/rev share program. I personally love this company and they pay twice a month now.
https://www.writersnetwork.com/ - Similar to Demand with slightly higher pay, but far less work at this time.
SheKnows and LoveToKnow also come highly recommended to me. I am not 100 percent sure what they pay, but I know for a fact that they definitely do pay.
A few others I do not know a ton about:
Sunday, May 15, 2011
Sorry for the late update, Blogger was on the fritz and I could not update as promised. Week Two was a struggle, but I made it and ended with $917. I used Writer Access, BrightHub (one article), Yahoo Contributor Network and Demand Studios. I also wrote a Gather politics article through Skyword, but that is still working it's way to earning.
I actually was able to work fewer hours last week and earn more money. For starters, I broke down how much I needed to earn per day to meet my goal and I did this by dividing $875 by 5. I wanted to only work 5 days. Or, at least strive for it. I ended up working just over 60 hours, but I took more breaks, had lunch with a friend, ran my own errands, etc. I was generally more rested. Those of you who know me well know that I have the habit of putting work ahead of everything. Well, this week, I took a different tact. I got all of my work done while also living a little. I carried this into to week three and once all of the math is done, I will further discuss this.
It is incredibly important to meet your financial and professional goals, but it is also important to stop and smell the roses as well.
Last night on the radio show I do with fellow veteran writer Amy Browne, The Freelance Connection, I also talked a bit about last week's challenge and how it went. We also discussed Panda and several different writing gigs you may want to look into if you are looking for other clients. We do the show on the second Friday of every month from 6:00pm to 8:00pm Eastern time. You can click the link above and listen to the recorded version of the show if you missed it.
I am short on time today because I have a few things I need to do for school, but I will be updating you on week three within the next 48 hours as long as Blogger doesn't go on the fritz again. I also have a series of posts coming up with a variety of tips and advice.
Also, really quick. During the months of June and July I will continue to share income-earning strategies and the like, but you of course are not going to earn money without clients, so that will be the primary focus: 20 minutes a day and an online portfolio. I will work to teach you how to score new clients with just 20 minutes a day and an online portfolio. I will help you build one and will share mine of course and will then share strategies and resources to help you fine and land new clients and gigs in just 20 minutes a day.
I will also be going through all of your comments and messages over the next two to three days and addressing those. So, no, I promise I have no forgotten about you. I just could not access them for a few days.
Until next time. Happy Writing!
Posted by R. Elizabeth C. Kitchen at 4:21 PM
Thursday, May 12, 2011
Sorry, been crazy busy. I will have a full update for last week and some other information for ya'll tomorrow. I just wanted to give you a quick post to let ya'll know that everything is going fine and on track. I made last week's goal and all is going well. I will break it all down tomorrow and will have more information.
Posted by R. Elizabeth C. Kitchen at 12:18 AM
Wednesday, May 4, 2011
First and foremost, make your research count. If you are doing separate research for every single article, you will naturally take longer to write each article. What I like to do is use one research session for multiple articles. This can and has been done thousands of times. Your topic will depend on how far you can break it down. For example, I can turn a good research session on heart disease into close to 100 articles (seriously, do some research), but research on ovarian cyst ruptures will only produce a handful of articles. So, from a single research session on ovarian cyst ruptures that took me 15 minutes because all I did was fact check because I already know the topic, I was able to write five articles that were credible, accurate and written with authority because I wrote them from the perspective of a health care provider (will get to this tip later). I spent about 2.5 to 3 hours writing, proofing, editing and submitting those 5 articles. Now, the heart disease research obviously would take me a lot longer. Thankfully, I know a lot about it, but still have to check my facts and triple check stats and read over studies. This is a larger project that I would spread out and write a few heart disease articles here and there and keep the research in a file. This way, I am remaining productive and getting my other work done too.
Write what you know. I know you've heard this 1,000 times and for good reason. When you write what you know you save time and you write with authority. Your readers can sense that authority and it gains their trust. And again, it saves you time. As many of you know, my background falls in health and medicine so this is what I mainly focus on writing. I can write an article on colon cancer symptoms in 20 minutes and spend 10 more minutes fact-checking (incredibly important regardless of how well you know the topic), proofing, editing and sending to article to my client. I just spent 30 minutes crafting an entire article from start to finish.
Work on your typing speed if it already is not fast. If you are picking and pecking at the keys, you will be slower. Just open up an empty file and start typing what you see around you, what's on TV, about your kids or pets, or anything. Just type. Practice, practice, practice. I was horribly slow with typing when I first started writing and as time passed and I practiced I got faster and more accurate.
I am going to end this here for today. There are more tips that I will share throughout the month, but I am against a deadline that I need to knockout tonight. Stay tuned for more tips on all things writing.
Image Credits: Roz Woodward
Posted by R. Elizabeth C. Kitchen at 11:14 PM
Tuesday, May 3, 2011
On OWL you can learn about general writing, subject specific writing, research and citation (different ways to cite like APA, MLA, AP, etc) and more. When you have about 20 minutes to spare, I highly recommend you check this site out and browse it. I also suggest you bookmark it for future reference. All of the OWL services are free too!
Image Credits: Minimil
Posted by R. Elizabeth C. Kitchen at 10:48 PM
Monday, May 2, 2011
Okay, so let's talk about this week. I am going to focus on the sites I used last week of course, but I also decided to try and give Examiner another go. Not sure why yet, but I have had a gut feeling for a few months now that I should revive my Examiner page and post at least two to three times a week. Call it women's intuition I guess.
I am also going to add some WriterAccess articles to the mix.
The month at a glance. I will continue to work the sites I discussed above. I will also be applying to new sites and private clients. As promised, any private client income will not be included in the $875 per week total. I will be doing the queries and sharing the experience and results with you only as a way to help you learn to do it. I will also share my experience and results with other sites I choose to apply to.
I also have several new blogs, and a few old, but neglected ones, that will take off this month thanks to Marie Anne St. Jean's new blogging challenge for May. I highly recommend checking that out if you did the A to Z Challenge and just are not ready to stop with the blogging challenges yet.
So all in all, week one was a success, minus $2.00 due to my severely lacking math skills. I am ready to take on May head on and am looking forward to all of you and your individual challenges and goals too. Please comment and share your goals and progress with all of us here on the blog. As always, if you have any questions, drop a comment and I will do my best to answer it.
So I leave you with a beautiful tropical beach. I cannot think of a better way to start a new month and a new week!
Image Credits: Image Source
Tuesday, April 26, 2011
Yesterday was a $74.00 day. So, I basically cut down what I need to make for the remainder of the week to $801.00. Yesterday was a typical Monday with lots of school and my typical Monday scheduling and behind the scenes work. I would have liked to knock out $125.00 though and have no one to blame, but myself. I was watching the NBA playoffs while working and got a bit caught up in the games.
Also, today, I am just now getting started with work at 6:32pm Eastern. This is actually a good thing because it allows me to show you that while I could just call it a day and do no work, I won't. I am going to put in the hours and knock out at least three BrightHub articles for a total of $30.00 bucks, my Yahoo Medical News article for $15.00, I have two more Yahoo Sports articles on deadline totaling $21.00, I want to get two Daily Glow articles in for a total of $20.00 and want to get my first Gather Politics written and submitted. I also have some research done for a Livestrong article so since the hard part it done, I might as well knock that out too. That would be $20.00. That would bring my grand total to $106.00. That puts me $20.00 behind where I want to be for the day, so I will either knock out another Livestrong article or do another two Daily Glow. I should do the other two Daily Glow articles because I have a monthly quota with them and planned to do three a day for the remainder of the month.
At this time, I am not including Gather in my totals because I will not know how much Gather will bring in until a day or two after the articles publish. Once I get rolling with them (I was literally just accepted) I will be able to better judge and figure in my income from them.
As long as I stay focused, I should be able to knock out this work quite quickly. Due to getting a bit behind the last two days, I will carry my week into Saturday. That is fine because I am used to not taking days off anyway. For this challenge my goal was working 5 days a week, but as we know, when building a career, you have to expect to work weekends, evenings and holidays here and there. I still do fully intend to take off Sunday and just work on my blogs and school on that day. We shall see though! I forgot how hard it was being a freelance writer and not using private clients. It really can be a lot more work due to the less pay per article with mills and farms. While I am already missing my private clients, I will absolutely keep going with this challenge because this is how I started so I know it can be done. It is like going home after not being there for a while. There is a comfort to it. The change of pace is quite nice though. The less strict guidelines and less "depth" (not exactly the word I am looking for) are really nice. I guess I just feel a bit more free because with mills and farms I am able to choose my own topics for the most part and can write for the layman. None of that technical stuff. It is quite nice.
So that is the gist of the update for now. If I don't get to writing, I will be up all night. Be looking for another one in the next 48 hours. I will probably stop by with other random posts with tips and advice as well in between challenge updates. And, remember, if you have any questions or comments, please leave a comment and I will address it. Happy Writing!
Photo Credits: Jill Chen
Posted by R. Elizabeth C. Kitchen at 7:03 PM
Sunday, April 24, 2011
Image Credits: Photodisc
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Saturday, April 23, 2011
So, I am going to show you how to be a full-time freelancer. No excuses. If you have the sniffles, get the Kleenex. If you are having a bad day, take that energy and turn it into productivity. If you want to be a full-time freelancer you have to treat it like a full-time job. Taking off willy nilly is not helping you at all.
Why $3,500 you ask? Well, it is $875 a week. $875 is an amount of money that is achievable and it is an amount that the majority of people could live off of. Now, for the next 5 weeks (rest of April and all of May) I am only going to write online content. No hospital work, no pharma work, no fancy stuff. I am going to make sure this is fair. Online content only. To make it even more fair and more in tune to really new writers, I will concentrate my efforts on content mills and farms. I will not even include my private client work in the $3,500 total. Basically, I will be farming it to show you that a no excuses, hard-working writer can make a living do this.
Now, for the last week of April, we will just look at making $875 of course. Then, for the month of May, we will focus on making the full $3,500. This is based on the online content terms. No medical trials, pharma, etc. I will take PayPal screenshots and all that so you will see where the money is coming from.
I am also a full-time student so I will talk about the challenges this presents. I will provide tips to shorten research and writing time, tons of links to cool resources, helpful tips and advice for you, info on the clients I am writing for during the challenge, etc. By the end of May, you should be able to mimic exactly what I did and succeed at it.
Main sites I will be concentrating on for this challenge include: Yahoo and YCN, Demand Studios (both Livestrong and Ehow to keep it fair because not everyone has Livestrong permissions), BrightHub, Daily Glow, Gather, Examiner (yes, I decided to give it another go), TextBroker, Content Current, Writer Access and I believe that is it. I will also be applying for new gigs throughout this time and will be reporting to you on this because all freelance writers should also be always applying for new gigs.
I will be reporting in several days a week letting you all know about my income, energy levels, who I have been writing for, gigs I've applied for, tips and advice, etc, etc, etc. You will basically be living vicariously through me for the next 5 weeks. I highly suggest you either follow my blog or bookmark it so you can find it easily.
Shortly, I will be providing you with my writing arsenal. Some sites I use religiously to ensure I am on point and on my game that provide tips and points that are critical for online writers.
I hope this helps some folks. I know I preach often about how you CAN be successful as a freelancer. Well, now I want to show you how it is done. Also, if you have questions or comments, drop a comment. I am happy to address them.
Photo Credits: Jorg Greuel
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
Photo Credits: Tyler Edwards
Posted by R. Elizabeth C. Kitchen at 8:11 PM
Photo Credits: Thomas Northcut
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Photo Credits: Brand New Images
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Photo Credits: moodboard
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Saturday, April 9, 2011
Photo Credits: Jupiterimages
Posted by R. Elizabeth C. Kitchen at 12:46 AM
Thursday, April 7, 2011
I see a lot of folks mentioning exhaustion. I can relate! As someone who has had one day off in 3.5 years (for a hysterectomy) and as a nurse, I want to share a few tips with you to help you try to feel as "un-exhausted" as possible. First, drink plenty of water. Sounds simple right? It is and it does help.
Second, load up on the B vitamins and vitamin C. All are water soluble so no chance of toxicity. Getting plenty of these vitamins will combat fatigue and strengthen your immune system to fend off illness. Also get a good multivitamin and talk to your doctor about how many days a week you need to take it. Many people do not need to take them 7 days a week anymore according to the new RDA guidelines. Women can usually benefit from vitamin D and calcium as well.
Third, get some exercise. Even just 20 minutes three days a week is good if this is all you have time for. Do more when you can, but just this 60 minutes a week, broken up every other day will help you beat fatigue. Simple things like 20 minute walks or playing some freeze tag with the kids is plenty.
Fourth, when you wake up in the morning, take 10 minutes to thoroughly streeeeeeeettttch. This will help to wake you up and help to knock out that grogginess we often feel. It also gets our blood flowing and brain working.
Fifth, eat as healthy as you can. High fat, high sugar foods weigh us down and make us tired. Nutritious foods give us energy to burn. A good cheap snack I love that gives me an energy boost an satiates is an apple with a little peanut butter.
Sixth. Get some sun. Now that the weather is getting nice. Well, not yet in Cleveland lol, but elsewhere. Nice weather naturally puts us in a better mood. Work outside if you can or next to an open window.
Seventh. Take an hour nap. I know many of us do not have an hour to spare, but if you do, use it for an hour nap. Just one hour can recharge you.
If you are like me and unable to sleep 7 to 9 hours a night, try to regulate your sleep cycles so that you can increase the quality of your sleep. For example, go to bed at the same time every night and wake up at the same time every morning. Your body will get used to this and your sleep quality will improve and you will feel a little better.
Hope these help. Love and hugs.
Your fellow exhaustee!
Photo Credits: Eastnine Inc.
Posted by R. Elizabeth C. Kitchen at 12:51 AM
Photo Credits: John Slater
Posted by R. Elizabeth C. Kitchen at 12:44 AM
Monday, April 4, 2011
Photo Credit: Yuri Arcurs
Posted by R. Elizabeth C. Kitchen at 2:39 AM
Photo Credit: ULTRA.F
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Photo Credit: Brand X Pictures
Posted by R. Elizabeth C. Kitchen at 2:30 AM
Sunday, February 6, 2011
I just posted a new freelance writing gig in the Freelance Writing Gigs section. Be sure to check it out and add another egg to your basket of clients.
Also be sure to stop by the Tips and Advice, Writing Tutorials, and Getting Started as a Freelancer sections for some new posts, and some great information for you as a writer.