Since I'm a freelance writer and a writing coach, people are always asking me, "How long should it take before I get my first big writing job?"
To me, that question implies that the person asking it is waiting for work, not actively seeking work.
And without actively seeking new jobs or assignments it can take a long, long time for a freelance job to simply fall in your lap.
If you really want to have a successful freelance writing business, and you have writing skills (for the types of things you wish to write), then there's no reason you can't have a great assignment within a few weeks or even a few days.
You simply need to go after the type of writing job you want.
And, as the more successful freelance writers know, many times the best writing jobs are never advertised.
Today take some time to identify the type of clients you want.
Then target these clients and market your services to them.
For example, if you'd like to write for small local businesses, get out the phone book and look for some of the small businesses you'd like to target in your area.
Write down the name and address for each business you want to target.
Next, see if each of these businesses has a website.
Go to the websites to get the contact information you need for each business.
You want to find out who the business owner is so you can address your LOI (letter of introduction) to this person.
Next, create a list of services you can offer these business owners.
Then, create a letter of introduction to send to them, explaining what you do and why you'd like to write for them.
Include your list of services with your letter of introduction.
Try to get letters like this mailed off to a dozen small businesses this week.
Next week, follow up by phone with each person you sent a letter to.
When you call, introduce yourself and then ask if they received your letter.
If they did, ask if they have any questions about what you do or what you have to offer.
And, most importantly, ask if they have any work you might do for them right now.
I realize that calling and actually asking for an assignment might be so far out of your comfort zone that you've never, ever considered doing this.
And a phone call might seem like it's too "old school" to use as part of any marketing strategy these days.
But a phone call works.
And it really isn't that painful either.
The Morning Nudge.
Suzanne Lieurance is the author of over 35 published books, a writing coach, and editor at writebythesea.com.
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