Starting Your Career as a Freelance Writer - Moira Allen

Released January 2011

I've been a freelance writer for four years. Much of the information put forth in Moira Allen's guide is going to help a newbie. She covers the basics and delves into more advanced topics. However, the main focus of the book seemed to be on magazine writing and even manuscripts. She really didn't delve much into writing web content. That's where I make my money.

What you get out of Starting Your Career as a Freelance Writer is really based on what you plan to write. I've dabbled in magazine writing, but honestly, waiting for the pay to arrive doesn't fit my needs. My husband pays the majority of the bills, my income is simply there to cover groceries, gas and unexpected expenses. Not everyone is in that situation, so your needs are likely to be different.

I prefer a steady paycheck that comes in once a week as promised. That's why I stick to SEO work. There are downsides there too. Work loads can be sporadic. In addition, if you're creating the content for a specific website and they ask for 25 articles on virtually the same topic, it can get tedious. You have to learn to be creative.

Starting Your Career as a Freelance Writer is divided into sections:
  • Getting Started
  • Starting Your Article
  • Finding the Right Markets
  • Queries and Submissions
  • Rights and Contracts
  • The Online Writer (Focuses on building a website and blogging)
  • Expanding Your Writing Business
  • Commercial Freelancing (This briefly covers writing web content)
  • Taking the Plunge
Many of the questions writers struggle with are answered. The author covers issues like contracts and taxes. She details how to come up with an idea that magazines will buy. Guest authors appear throughout the book offering additional insight. Peter Bowerman is a name most freelance writers immediately recognize. He shares a few tips. She also does a great job with queries and provides many links to other helpful websites. For that reason, I highly recommend this book.


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