Whether you are a professional full time free lance writer, or part-time hobby journalist, there are always some good tips that can improve your efficiency and raise your value to perspective employers.From work habits to environments, pay attention to your specific situation and find areas that could use some different approaches that will help you reach your goals.
1. Work environment.
Create a space that is organized to your needs with all necessary electronics and resources easily with reach. Keep 'distractions' to minimum when laying out this space. Televisions and other media players are nice, but will eat up your productive time. This also includes family and friends who sometimes don't recognize you are 'working' and should respect your space the same as if you were somewhere else at your 'real' job, because this IS a real job.
Not having a boss looking over your shoulder is great, but it can lead to procrastination and distractions eating up your day. Prioritize difficult or least pleasant jobs for the beginning of the day. It may be hard to get started, but once you get going, your day will get better and easier as you move through your tasks. Developing a realistic schedule with your own personal time-tables will help you organize the amount of work you have and the time needed to complete any given project.
3. Research compensation.
Spend some time asking around or looking into other sites that specialize in the market or media you are in which you are looking for your work to be published. Be realistic with the amount of experience you have under your belt, but as you develop your skills, don't be afraid to negotiate for what you believe your time is worth. Don't waste time on projects that pay little or nothing unless the subject matter or company is of a high interest to you.
When you complete a project, be pro-active in asking for a referral or reference. These don't have to be essays, a few sentences touching on your job performance will look highly attractive to potential new clients. Well worded references should be included in any online or traditional resumes. Not every project will require a feedback reference, but after large projects, or completed runs with a single company are finished, some words that reflect your peformance can be extremely valuable in procuring future work.
5. Work load.
While tempting to take as much work on as possible, often we underestimate the time projects might take. This will take some juggling as different jobs have different time demands. Deadlines are very important in the writing industry so making sure you over-estimate the time needed will help ensure you come in at, or even before, deadlines.
6. Deadlines. Meet your deadlines. This is important. Did we mention deadlines are important? Good. They are. Meet them.