Things I Wish Someone Had Told Me as a New Freelancer

When you first start out as a freelancer, nobody tells you much. Everyone who is in it figured it out on their own and generally acts as if you should too, or pay them to tell you. That’s fine. There are some things, though, that newbies should be helped to avoid. They are, after all, just needing to make a living.

So, I thought I would write a piece about the things I wish someone had told me before I went and wasted my time on them. I am sure there are many, many more. If you think of one as you are reading, or have questions about it, please leave a comment so someone else can find it and avoid the problems you had.

So, here they are, the things that I wish someone had told me when I set out to become a freelancer.

  • How good my writing actually was. This is not to brag, but once you get around a little, you will understand that the bar is not really very high. A lot of site’s editors want to make you feel stupid. Somebody should have told me that.
  • ·         Bid sites are not a “scam” but they won’t support American writers with a decent wage either. I spent a lot of disappointing hours writing proposals on these sites.
  • ·         Anyone who spends a lot of time telling you what an expert they are, likely isn’t. This takes a while to figure out, but once you start to notice that it’s only been three months and the “gurus” pictures have all changed, you get the hang of it.
  • ·         You don’t really need a middle man. Approaching the end user directly is the best approach.This is probably the biggest lesson of all, but once I learned it, things got a whole lot easier and started making sense.

There are so many things you learn just in doing a job every day. We don’t really think of everything we know, since so much of it just becomes automatic. From time to time I like to stop and look back and remember how I learned things. If you’d like to read more of my experiences and conclusions on these issues, the rest of the story can be found at