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3 Bulletproof Steps To Earn Income With Your Writing in 2018

I've earned more money this week than my first 1.5 years combined

Photo by Lionel Gustave

I've earned more money with my writing this week than I have in the last one and a half years combined.

The dream is simple — write what you want, when you want to and use that trade to sustain and comfortable living. From there, you can have the freedom to read, hang out with friends, travel and indulge in any leisurely pursuit that tickles your fancy on any given day.

The dream is blending entrepreneurialism with writing.

The dream doesn't manifest itself overnight, however. With a lot of the influencers, bloggers, and writers we see the finish line — the freedom, fortune and fame associated with it all. We don't see the toil, struggle, and copious amount of painstaking work that it takes to get there.

Too many writers have an "if you build it they will come" mentality. You think that just because you put the ether into the world the cosmos will align to bring you to the promised land. This of course is a fallacy.

"You will be way less concerned with what other people think about you when you realize how seldom they do."

— David Foster Wallace

Just because you start making and producing the work doesn't mean that people will care — let alone see it. You need to write, this is paramount. If you want to actualize a financial income through it, simply penning your thoughts and publishing it to the world might not get you there, however.

A great way to building the foundation of your financial income and spreading the notoriety of your work is through ghostwriting.

With ghostwriting, of course you are writing content that you don't get the direct credit you might be seeking, however, you are building a reputation of industriousness to the community of people that will actually pay you for your skills. The current market is paying on average a $36,000 per project rate for freelance ghostwriters. This is a pile of gold waiting to be mined.

This is way to separate yourself from the amateurs of the trade and start molding yourself into the professional.

As a successful ghostwriter, I have learned a few tricks, hacks, tactics and techniques in order to get clients and see my craft turn into cold-hard-cash.

Here are ways to work towards being hired for your first ghostwriting gig.

Write everyday — even if you don't want to

“You can’t have good ideas unless you’re willing to generate a lot of bad ones.”

— Seth Godin

I've been coaching a friend of mine. His name is Dustin and he runs a great personal finance blog that teaches how to teach and build financial independence through lesser-known investment strategies.

When we talk, he's aways dumbfounded by how I gain a massive amount of viewership (2.5 million + views) with my blogging. I told him there's no secret — just show up and write everyday.

Like a lot of bloggers, he still works a full time job and thinks he doesn't have the time to write.

I argue it's not about the time you don't have — it's the priorities.

Writing everyday isn't the same as writing well everyday. What you are doing with your everyday writing practice is simply building a portfolio and honing in on your skills as a writer. You aren't a great writer [yet].

Practice and build a portfolio so when you do have the opportunity to pitch your work to a potential client you have a swath of material to choose from.

Talk to everyone you can about your work

Photo by Joshua Ness

It's taken me a long time to come around to sharing my love of writing around with the people I come in contact with. I felt as if I was a fraud and that I can't call myself a writer simply because I write: I need credibility, commissions, notoriety and to welcomed into the circle of writers (whoever they may be).

The simple fact is, people don't know you are a writer unless you tell them. Potential clients don't know you may have value to offer them unless you speak up.

Luckily, I got my first commission over a few beers at a Chicago Cubs baseball game. I was talking with a friend about my writing and he said his company was looking for a ghostwriter.

I entered into an arena I didn't have any experience with and walked forward betting on myself that I could do this.

After a while, you submit your work to the client and the fear subsides — just like the fear you used to have before you hit the "submit" button with your passion writing.

Get on top of your pedestal and preach the good word to the choir — most won't care and a lot won't listen. Those few that are looking for it will respond in good favor.

Say "yes" even when you're scared

The first time I was presented with a freelance ghostwriting opportunity I was scared shitless.

I've previously written in depth how the "imposter syndrome" had me by the throat.

After dealing with the crippling anxiety that would first flood my consciousness, the thought that would always come second would take the shape of,

"Screw it… just maybe I can do this."

I ultimately would say "yes" to these opportunities where I was unsure I could pull it off.

I have this theory about human beings that tends to be binary. When you're back is up against the wall (you are in a bad relationship, you are in financial dire straits, you are relocating to a place where you don't know anyone etc) you have two options:
  • You can cower and crumble in fear, cry yourself to sleep and ultimately give up.
  • You can throw two middle fingers up to the world and tell everyone, "I can do this!"

Even when I've had no idea what to do, I've thrown the two middle fingers up. You build a sense of resolve and are able to show yourself who you truly are and what you have the potential to become.

If you're like me then perhaps you deal with these inflated thoughts of grandeur that blends with debilitating self-talk that tries to convince you that you're a fraud.

There's a middle ground that needs to be found in the midst of all of this.

Sure you want to scale the mountain and plant your flag at the peak of writer's dominance. It's going to take years to get there, however.

To help you climb the mountain faster you are going to need to employ your services to the swath of people looking for it. I've seen ghostwriting catalyze my writing and industriousness for the better. The takeaways and lessons that I've collected along the way are here to help you in your journey. I truly hope you've gained something from it.

👋🏻Hey there — I’m Jon

I’m a thinker, freelance ghostwriter and wine lover who writes articles about personal growth and psychological optimization. I also preach about monetizing your writing. Join over 1,200 readers getting my FREE Personal 6 day “Entre-Blogging” Course and my ongoing newsletters:


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