Becoming A Professional Writer

As you may have read in my previous post, I recently lost my main source of income. I was doing contract work from home that entailed rating content returned for particular user searches. The goal was to help the search engine improve its metrics. My work contract ended so, here we are.

In college, I earned a Bachelor of Science in Psychology because I wanted to understand and help others, but I struggled so much throughout college I decided not to pursue it any further after graduation. I spent the decade after college mostly in the Insurance industry because that’s what my parents did and I didn’t know what else to do, but I never enjoyed it. After I had my son, I decided I was going to work from home and after a long effort of trying to find consistent work, I found my most recent job. It was wonderful because it allowed me to stay home with my very young son but, I didn’t really enjoy it either. While I am qualified and skilled at administrative work, it doesn’t satisfy my creative side at all.

What I do know, is that I have always been a writer. Maybe not professionally, but it was always my strongest subject in school and it’s always been my most profound and eloquent means of communication. I have always loved to write and I am well-skilled at it. As I found myself grieving the loss of income and scrambling to apply for as many similar types of jobs as possible, I felt a sense of dread within. Sure, I could keep doing what I’m doing, but will it ever make me happy? All evidence to the contrary. Perhaps, I thought, it’s time to stop doing what is easy and attempt something truly meaningful to me and who I am. So, I’ve decided to pursue writing professionally.

Ok…now what?

I have done a lot of research over the years on how to break into the writing profession and just quietly decided not to proceed with any of it. Not anymore! Here is what I’ve learned and what I will be doing:

1. Start a blog! (Hi. You are here!)
2. Network with other writers via blogs you enjoy and writing communities.
3. Create a portfolio of different pieces of writing related to the field you want to be in. This can be published pieces but if you’re mainly an unpublished writer like myself, a few samples of your best stuff will do nicely.
4. Create bid letters to send to organizations, websites, publications you’d like to try to work for.
5. Get the creative juices flowing…read the writing of others in a similar field that will help inspire your own, unique work. Journal. Anything that will help get the fire burning within to create!

I hope to be able to share more with you as I learn and hopefully be able to give some wisdom to future writers who might stumble onto this blog! Thanks for reading.