The Five Most Realistic Ways to Make a Living as a Writer

The Five Most Realistic Ways to Make a Living as a Writer

You want it so bad that it dominates your waking thoughts.

You’re even afraid to say it out loud, in case you sound plain crazy:

“I want to make a living as a writer.”

(You can just imagine the snorts and smirks from family and friends.)

But it’s true — you’re no closer to reaching that goal than the day it first popped into your head.

So, who knows? Maybe the doubters are right. Maybe you are naive to think you could earn a living doing something you love, instead of something you just tolerate.

Except… that you’re not. Because people just like you are already doing it.

The problem isn’t your dream; it’s the way you’re going about achieving it.

Why Most Wannabe Writers Never Earn a Penny

Writing for a living offers a ton of advantages – you get to choose when and where you work, and with whom.

No wonder this promise of creative and personal freedom attracts so many people.

But the truth is that most of them don’t want to think about the practicalities of becoming a full-time writer.

They don’t want to think about the uncertainty, the rejection, the self-doubt.

They don’t want to think about all the small, unglamorous tasks that make life as a writer possible.

Deep down they fear their perfect dream will tarnish if they drag it down to earth. So it just hangs there in a shiny bubble, waiting for the day it miraculously comes true.

But let’s be honest — it just won’t happen. Or do you really think someone will approach you one day and say:

“Hey there. I heard from someone that you were thinking of writing something, someday, and I’ve love to pay you to see where that someday could lead.”

Of course not, but without a concrete strategy, that is what it would take to make your distant dream a reality.

Experience shows that vague plans fail. Grounding your dreams in reality is what makes them happen. Even if it means thinking about the things you’d rather not consider.

It’s not enough to say you want to make a living as a writer; you need to know how. You need a concrete plan to bridge the gap from where you are now to where you want to be.

And the more realistic your plan, the better. Don’t bet the farm on a path that only a small handful of super talented (or incredibly lucky) outliers have followed. Choose one that’s worked for lots of people.

If you don’t know what such a plan might look like, here are the five most realistic ways to earn a full-time living as a writer.

1) Write Articles for Popular Blogs, Magazines and Journals

Despite talk of global “content fatigue,” major publications — both on- and offline — must keep publishing content or die.

That means popular blogs, magazines and journals remain hungry for quality writing — and many are willing to pay for it too. You’ll need to hustle to find the best opportunities, understanding that success won’t happen overnight, but writing for these publications is still a realistic way to make a living as a writer.

Let’s start with the blogs.

Although writing for popular blogs (a.k.a. guest blogging) is still typically unpaid, with most writers trading their content for exposure, numerous exceptions still exist. For some examples, check out Carol Tice’s Make a Living Writing for a comprehensive list of sites that pay for guest articles.

Guest posts can also lead to other paid work. Take this blog as an example: we’ve approached several guest writers to create content for our paid courses, and paid them several thousand dollars for their work.

And what about the world of print? Is that still a viable route?

Traditional publishing has had a rough ride, but many consumer magazines are still going strong, and many of these publications still pay well for feature articles. Of course, you can’t expect to land a lucrative opportunity right away — you’ll need to climb the ladder via smaller, local publications, building your credibility as you go.

Likewise, trade journals crave quality articles within their narrow topic area and many are waking up to the more conversational, engaging writing style that writing for the web demands. Also, talented bloggers with proven specialist knowledge can often skip the ladder-climbing and break in with the right pitch.

In general, the secret to making this model work is being tenacious about chasing down opportunities and being efficient with your writing once you land them.

The people who follow this model successfully are like writing machines — they crank out quality content quickly and don’t allow themselves to get bogged down in any one project.

2) Create Collateral for Content-Hungry Businesses

In the last five years, content marketing — this concept of creating valuable content to attract customers and build credibility and trust — has undoubtedly gone mainstream.

The result? More and more businesses are getting into the content game. Some have a clear strategy, while others are just jumping on the bandwagon and hoping it pays off down the line.

This has created a market for smart writers who can write for a specific audience. These content-hungry businesses need articles, white papers, case studies — the list goes on. And they fully expect to pay for them.

Breaking into this market can be tough without a few contacts to get you started, but it’s not impossible.

Initially, you may need to jostle for attention with thousands of other eager writers in freelance marketplaces like Upwork.com. But with patience and hard work you can establish a track record of successful projects and break away from the low-earning masses.

However, this route requires a portfolio of content-related skills — not just an understanding of the target niche, but of marketing fundamentals and SEO too. In other words, you’ll need more than a laptop and a passion for writing to impress this crowd — you’ll need to persuade clients that you understand the bigger picture.

One smart way to differentiate yourself is to build your own platform, using blogging and guest blogging to demonstrate the expertise you hope to harness for others.

3) Become a Best-Selling Kindle Author

What about making it big as an author? Could that be your best route to a life of freedom as a full-time writer?

Well, it’s certainly more realistic than it used to be. Ten years ago, writing a best-selling book was a distant dream for most writers and self-publishing was often dismissed as a vanity exercise.

But today, thanks largely to Amazon and Kindle, the self-published book market is gigantic and making your living from writing books is far more achievable.

Enter, the authorpreneur — the author with an entrepreneurial brain.

Of course, more achievable doesn’t mean easy. If you have visions of publishing one book and retiring on the profits, you’ll be sorely disappointed.

To succeed, you need to be commercially minded and target an established market with proven demand from readers. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t follow your passion but be prepared to validate it first.

You’ll need to be persistent and prolific too — chances are you’ll publish several books before gaining any traction, and you’ll need sales from multiple titles to approach anything resembling a full-time income.

However, according to a report earlier this year from Author Earnings, 1,600 indie authors are earning $25K or above from Amazon book sales, and 1,000 published their first book three years ago or less.

But should you write nonfiction or fiction? Nonfiction is the most natural fit for the average blogger, and if you’re blogging in a popular niche, the chances are that books covering similar topics will also be popular.

If you want to find success as a self-nonfiction author, check out Steve Scott. Even though he’s recently switched his attentions to a regular podcast on self-publishing, his old site still has a ton of useful information.

Fiction writing is arguably tougher (and requires a rather different set of skills), but there’s no denying that your earning potential if you do hit it big, is much larger. And it’s no coincidence that the most famous self-publishing successes are all fiction titles.

For inspiration and direction visit The Creative Penn. Joanna Penn is a prolific fiction (and nonfiction) author and her site is rich with information about making it as a fiction writer.

But in either case, you need to be led by the market for topic (or genre) selection. And you need to be prepared to write multiple books before seeing any real results.

One major advantage of this route is that you continue to earn money from your back catalog, sometimes far into the future. Once you start to make a basic living from your writing, additional titles only build your income further.

The secret to making authorpreneurship work for you? Build an email list. Your existing fans are the perfect audience for your next book.

4) Sell Yourself as a Conversion-Focused Copywriter

Copywriting, in a nutshell, is writing that’s designed to make readers take a specific action.

Sales letters, video scripts, even product descriptions — these all need writing by someone, and they live or die on the results they produce.

Copywriting may not seem fundamentally different to other forms of writing, but in practice, it’s a discipline all of its own.

While there’s a trend towards more conversational, empathetic copywriting — moving away from the hype-fuelled “hard sell” — you still need a solid understanding of the principles of persuasion.

So unless you have a copywriting background be prepared to invest time and money in learning the fundamentals. There are some excellent books on the topic — CA$HVERTISING: How to Use More than 100 Secrets of Ad-Agency Psychology to Make Big Money Selling Anything to Anyone (affiliate link) is a good place to start. Copyblogger’s Brian Clark shares his favorite titles here.

The most famous training course on copywriting is probably AWAI’s Accelerated Program for Six-Figure Copywriting.

Notwithstanding the steep learning curve, the rewards of copywriting can be significant. A high-converting sales page might earn you $2,000, plus a slice of the revenues too.

As a bonus, a foundation in copywriting will also be valuable should you ever decide to sell your own products.

5) Build a Niche Blog and Promote Third Party Products

I’ll be honest — building a popular blog is tough. Really tough.

And once you’ve scaled your blog beyond a certain point, you might be surprised how little time you actually spend doing the thing you love — writing.

So if your dream is to build a six-figure blog, you’d better be as excited about the prospect of running a business as you are about writing your next post. (In fact, if you’re making six figures, writing is one of the things you should probably outsource.)

But there is a path to making a living from a blog where you still spend a good proportion of your time writing. And it starts with picking a blog niche where a large, passionate audience already exists and — this is crucial — where you can find successful products from trusted names to sell.

Promoting affiliate products is a much smarter way to start earning money from a blog than creating your own product. With an affiliate product, someone else has already done the hard work of validating the market, building the product, and enhancing it based on customer feedback. Someone else gets to handle the pre-sales inquiries, payments, refunds, and product support.

Many affiliate products pay high commissions too — 50% or even more — because the incremental production cost of digital products is essentially nothing.

The secret is finding the right products — ones that you can stake your reputation on. Pat Flynn is the undisputed king of passive income, earned (mostly) from sales of affiliate products — check out his video on Choosing Affiliates Products to Promote and How to Sell Them.

Ideally, you’ll know what products you’ll sell even before starting your blog because then you’re growing an audience that perfectly matches your offer.

Of course, you still have to do all the stuff that makes a blog successful — publishing great content, building your email list, reaching out to influencers, etc. — but writing remains a big part of the equation, i.e., creating the stellar content that brings people to your site.

Once you’re in a groove, you can think about adding your own products to the mix, using your writing skills and topic knowledge to deliver a specific result that readers are willing to pay for.

But when you’re starting out, promoting affiliate products is the most realistic, and least risky, way to make a living writing on your blog.

It’s Time to Choose Your Writer’s Path

Just stop for a moment and ask yourself:

“Am I sabotaging my writing dream by refusing to get real about the how?”

Because you know what… I’m tired of seeing talented writers stuck in lives they don’t love.

So the dreaming stops here — it’s time to decide once and for all.

Are you truly serious about supporting yourself with your writing, or is it just an idle fantasy to cheer you up when your regular job gets you down?

If you are serious, then decide: which of these five paths above will you follow? The article writer? The content marketer? The copywriter? The authorpreneur? Or the niche blogger?

If none of them feels like an exact fit, don’t worry, that’s normal. Pick whichever one’s the closest and try it on for size. Any discomfort is just the price of getting real.

Got one? Excellent.

Let’s turn your perfect dream into an imperfect reality — one where you’re making a living as a writer.

Just picture the faces of your family and friends when they find out. πŸ™‚

About the Author: Glen Long is the managing editor of Smart Blogger (a.k.a. chief content monkey). When he’s not creating or editing content for this blog or an upcoming course he’s probably watching Nordic Noir. Why not say hello to him on Twitter?

68 Comments

  1. val
    Oct 13, 2016 @ 10:33:57

    It takes a lot of practice to be a writer and you have to be eager to learn. I wouldn’t mind to acquire that skill. Do you have any article that will teach the process of becoming a writer?

    • Glen Long
      Oct 13, 2016 @ 13:20:53

      Hi Val,

      We don’t have an article that covers the entire process, but we have many on the topic of writing here:

      https://smartblogger.com/category/writing/

      Cheers,

      Glen.

    • Gail Gardner
      Oct 13, 2016 @ 23:09:58

      The fast path is to take at least one of the courses Jon Morrow offers on this site. Writers who are taking his courses are always welcome to guest post on my site because I know they’re serious and going to be above average.

      It can cost a lot to edit content, so the better the writer the less time and money it takes to get it ready to publish. Some writers need zero editing and know how to SEO images and the content so those writers can easily get contributor access and invited back regularly.

  2. Todd
    Oct 13, 2016 @ 10:34:32

    And you are going to teach us how to do this, right Glen? haha
    I love Smart Blogger, great blog.
    I wonder how many will do a little bit of a couple of these. I have been leaning a little bit towards the conversational copywriting, but with all of these, you have to learn how to write. And, with the online writing, I think writers need to have a little bit of copywriting knowledge.
    Once we settle on one of these avenues, it helps build our own differentiation.

    Great stuff!

    • Glen Long
      Oct 13, 2016 @ 13:25:26

      Hi Todd,

      Well, we’ll teach you some of the how. πŸ™‚ Some of these “ways” are outside the scope of Smart Blogger but I thought it was important for people to understand their options.

      And yes, I think you could absolutely combine some of these approaches. The content marketer and the copywriter would be a natural pairing for instance.

      You don’t have to confine yourself to one approach – but you do need to have some kind of strategy for earning money that’s grounded in reality.

      Thanks for your insights.

      Cheers,

      Glen

  3. Anthony Metivier
    Oct 13, 2016 @ 10:37:26

    Great post with solid tips.

    As someone who has had that kind of success on Kindle, it’s definitely doable. But I’ve seen a few platform changes that have changed the playing field dramatically.

    So if you’re going to go the Kindle route, please be sure that you’re using it to build an email list and invest your Kindle gold into a well-oiled platform that let’s you continue serving your audience at a higher level than you ever could on a third-party platform.

    • Glen Long
      Oct 13, 2016 @ 13:28:59

      Thanks Anthony.

      Yes, of course, you’re absolutely right about the email list – it’s a critical piece of the puzzle. I’d thought to mention it but the point was getting rather long.

      But I’ll make a quick edit because it’s too important too ignore – the model falls apart without it.

      Thanks for pointing that out.

      Cheers,

      Glen.

  4. Ayodeji Awosika
    Oct 13, 2016 @ 10:41:24

    Hey Glen,

    Once again Smart Blogger provides several doses of reality. I made my first $1,000 on kindle, but I didn’t publish a second one right away. Big mistake.

    Another note on kindle…

    The books don’t have to be that long. You can write and sell e books at 10-20k words. Steve Scott and Ryan Biddulph both wrote dozens of mini books and found success.

    Off to share!

    • Glen Long
      Oct 13, 2016 @ 13:34:30

      Hi Ayodeji,

      Congratulations on your Kindle success – that’s a great result.

      Excellent point about book length. I actually read a Kindle book promoting that very idea which was rather good:

      Write Short Kindle Books: A Self-Publishing Manifesto for Non-Fiction Authors by Nathan Meunier

      https://www.amazon.co.uk/Write-Short-Kindle-Books-Self-Publishing-ebook/dp/B00S1YER5G

      Highly recommended!

      Thanks for stopping by.

      Cheers,

      Glen.

  5. Cathy Hutchison
    Oct 13, 2016 @ 10:55:53

    Jon Morrow, I adore you. Thank you for being a continual source of inspiring, practical advice. I love it that every time I click on a link you send, it is focused, helpful and most of all actionable!

    • Glen Long
      Oct 13, 2016 @ 13:34:55

      Thanks Cathy. I’ll pass that on. πŸ™‚

  6. Peter
    Oct 13, 2016 @ 11:22:00

    Hey Glen,
    We are thinking of trying out No 5. Pat Flynn’s link will be useful
    Thanks! πŸ™‚

    • Glen Long
      Oct 13, 2016 @ 13:35:12

      My pleasure Pete!

  7. Joanna Jast
    Oct 13, 2016 @ 12:20:40

    Thanks for the great post, Glen.

    A bunch of interesting strategies. I’d say that #2 and #4 require robust knowledge/expertise beyond just writing well. And particularly with #2 – I’d be curious to hear from people who have done it, because it seems to me like a very narrow niche that hard to get into.

    But one more vote for writing books. And yes, while it is always a good strategy to have several books out there, it’s also possible to write a book that sells so well, you can live off it. It’s (almost) happened to me.

    You can also create products based off the book to further diversify and increase your chances of living off your writing.

    I’d recommend investing time and effort into understanding what people want and buy books on, as well as what’s already out there – so following the same principles of content creation that Jon Morrow (and you, and the whole team) writes about.

    • Jenni DeWitt
      Oct 13, 2016 @ 12:40:14

      I’ve found the most financial success with #2, simply by providing local companies with online content. My three years of experience in blogging place me in a valuable position to offer my “expertise” as they just start to venture online.

    • Glen Long
      Oct 13, 2016 @ 13:47:17

      Thanks Joanna!

      Yes #2 needs some domain expertise and #4 requires a deep knowledge of the target audience but that can be acquired with research and studying successful campaigns for the same audience.

      And #2 isn’t as narrow as you might imagine – but it takes some time to build momentum.

      You’re living proof that you can be successful with Kindle books – any tips for budding authors? How did you pick the topic for instance?

      Cheers,

      Glen.

      P.S. Here’s a link for anyone else who’s interested to read your book: https://www.amazon.com/Laser-Sharp-Focus-Concentration-Productivity-Fast-Track/dp/0473349337/

  8. Timmy Brain
    Oct 13, 2016 @ 13:42:19

    This Chief Content Monkey is something else. He always find a way to get me smiling at the end of his oft-powerful pieces.

    On my mark to Facebookland and Twitter City to share this gospel of making a living as a writer!

    Great piece, Glen.

    I like to be like you, one day :).

    • Glen Long
      Oct 13, 2016 @ 13:50:22

      Many thanks Timmy. I always enjoy your comments – they’re packed with personality. πŸ™‚

  9. Clement
    Oct 13, 2016 @ 13:49:25

    Excellent article Glen.

    I wish it had been available when I started out. I’m currently working as a content marketer (no.2) and as a conversion-focused copywriter (no.4).

    The key to my success was to learn from others and then apply what I’ve learnt. Building and growing my own brand and website gave me a valuable testing-ground for content marketing strategies and conversion-optimisation techniques. The experience and knowledge I gained helped me to impress clients and win jobs.

    It wasn’t easy, but the struggle was well worth it.

    Clement

    • Glen Long
      Oct 13, 2016 @ 13:54:25

      Hey Clement,

      Thanks so much for adding your voice to the conversation. It’s great to hear from someone else who’s already in the trenches, living the reality of being a paid writer.

      And I’m glad to hear you confirm that your blog helped you grow your knowledge and impress clients. I just popped across to your site and it looks like you’re getting strong engagement from your readers – nice job!

      Glen.

      • Clement
        Oct 17, 2016 @ 07:57:33

        Hey Glen

        Thanks for checking out my blog! I’m honoured. I’ve learnt so much from you and the other writers (monkeys?) at Smart Blogger.

        Clement

  10. Lisa
    Oct 13, 2016 @ 14:53:43

    I’ve been doing #1, #2 & #4 for several years. Have a core group of clients (small businesses and non profits) and editors who use me regularly. Diving into #3 this month and learning to write radio scripts at the same time.

    I had to learn a number of specialized skills to cobble together an income – however, this suits my personality. I wouldn’t last 6 months at a job where I just did one thing and didn’t have to force myself to keep learning. In any given week I can be interviewing for a column or article for print, writing SEO blog posts for niche businesses, writing marketing copy (appeals, newsletters, etc.) Or working on my fiction. Love it, but it took years to find a solid group of clients and editors and to receive enough referrals I didn’t have to continually hunt down work and hope I got paid.

    • Glen Long
      Oct 17, 2016 @ 07:59:14

      Hey Lisa,

      Sounds like you’ve done the hard work of breaking through and are now reaping the rewards. Love that you’re using a mix of these different approaches. Sounds like it gives you a lot of variety, but also you have more security too, not relying on one source of income.

      Thanks for your comment!

      Glen.

  11. Laura
    Oct 13, 2016 @ 15:10:41

    Thank you so much for this insightful and helpful post! I’ve been dipping my toes in different areas of writing for the last few years. I started off by writing a novel–which I’m still editing (hopefully to be done soon!)–but have tried my hand at guest-blogging and even just recently started my own blog. I do freelance editing as my main job, so that gives me the flexibility and lifestyle of a freelancer–which I LOVE–but in the end, WRITING my own content is my passion, and I hope to get to the point of a livable income from that someday in the not-too-distant future. Thank you again for this!

    • Glen Long
      Oct 17, 2016 @ 08:02:09

      Hey Laura,

      Awesome that you’ve almost finished your novel. So impressed by the dedicated that takes. πŸ™‚

      And it’s great that you’ve enabled a more flexible lifestyle through freelance editing.

      Best of luck shifting the focus to your own writing – you’ll get there I’m sure!

      Glen.

  12. Rhonda Swan
    Oct 13, 2016 @ 15:50:34

    Great info and lots of value here. Way to encourage others to live unstoppable!

  13. Donna Merrill
    Oct 13, 2016 @ 16:47:47

    Hi Glen,

    I found this particularly interesting because I have so many blogging students who tell me they want to be a “freelance writer.”

    I’m never quite sure what that means.

    My own writing is consumed with writing my blog, some unpaid guest posting and writing my own training info courses which are, really, far more video than text.

    So, I usually end up telling them to look for the “mills” that churn out copy for paying clients, but only pay writers something like 3 to 6 cents a word.

    That’s a tough way to earn an income, and is why it’s commonly referred to as “beer money.”

    You’ve given me a much more hopeful perspective on just what “freelance” might mean to my clients and students and I’m sending them to this article first, before we talk more seriously about their options.

    -Donna

    • Glen Long
      Oct 17, 2016 @ 08:05:05

      Hey Donna,

      My suspicion is that some of your students who want to be freelance writers don’t really know what they mean by that either! πŸ™‚

      I hope this article puts a few of them on a realistic path to achieving their goals.

      Glen.

  14. Felix Abur
    Oct 13, 2016 @ 18:15:58

    Making the transition from content mills and bidding sites like Upwork has been really tough for me. But it’s very encouraging noting the steps you recommend here. Especially about copywriting. I need to master that. Thanks Jon

  15. Catia V5 download
    Oct 14, 2016 @ 00:47:24

    Probably safe to say that #1 can help you make a living at just about anything πŸ™‚ Great article

  16. Andrea Pisac
    Oct 14, 2016 @ 04:32:17

    Hi Glen, excellent post. I especially appreciate the way you shed light on the behind the scenes aspect of managing the writing career! I have been doing #1, #2 and #5 for some time. I quit my academic career as an anthropologist and started a travel writing blog (the two overlap hugely though it may not be obvious). I had to change my writing style a lot – in a way hide the wordiness of the academic talk to attract a wider audience. But once local business and magazines noticed me, my academic background and my research expertise combined with travel topics are exactly what they are willing to pay for. I’d say it’s not always easy to choose a single path. It’s important to become aware of your own unique skills and then position them inside a niche. πŸ™‚

    • Glen Long
      Oct 17, 2016 @ 08:09:53

      Hey Andrea,

      I think academics who learn to write for the web are in a strong position because they have knowledge and credibility that others without a formal grounding in their topic lack.

      Sadly though, many struggle to adopt the more casual, engaging writing style that online readers demand.

      Cheers,

      Glen.

      P.S. I love your tip “become aware of your own unique skills and then position them inside a niche” – great advice!

  17. Akhand Pratap Singh
    Oct 14, 2016 @ 07:20:04

    Hi Glen, very informative post for the all the writer for making money online got too many new things today. Thanks for sharing πŸ™‚

  18. Theodore Nwangene
    Oct 14, 2016 @ 10:40:52

    This is mind blowing Glen,

    Indeed, there’s a lot of money to be made as a writer. Although, writing can be a very tedious profession as a starter but once you’ve honned and nutured your skill, the opportunities are endless.

    I’ve followed Steve Scott on all his kindle publishing guides back in the days and man, that guy really knows his stuff.

    The good news is that I finally published my first ever kindle book this week and so far, it’s already doing well.

    I have about 12 reviews so far and was able to take it to #1 best selling book in its category within 48 hours of launching (Although, i was giving it out for free).

    I plan to be publishing new ones as often as possible too, let’s see how it goes.

    A great post again Glen, thanks for sharing.

    I’m still

    • Glen Long
      Oct 17, 2016 @ 08:10:58

      Congratulations on your Kindle success Theodore. That’s great to hear and inspiring for others. πŸ™‚

  19. Kim Orr
    Oct 14, 2016 @ 13:43:47

    Ah Prospero!
    This is such stuff as dreams are made on. And you give us the reality of how to apply ourselves to make them come true so that our little lives will not just be rounded with sleep.

    This is a keep-and-refer-back-to post as we progress.
    Thanks Glen.

    • Glen Long
      Oct 17, 2016 @ 08:11:31

      Thanks Kim! πŸ™‚

  20. uthman Saheed
    Oct 15, 2016 @ 14:47:46

    Writing for popular blogs is nice but its really difficult to achieve. Getting a popular site to accept your post seems impossible as a blogger.

    • Glen Long
      Oct 17, 2016 @ 08:15:39

      Hi Uthman,

      It’s easier than you think. We’ve been teaching students of all abilities to do it for years. Here are a few tips:

      1) Study what’s popular on your target blog before making your pitch. Don’t think only about what you want to write about, but what their audience loves reading about.

      2) Study headline writing and spend time crafting great headlines for your guest posts.

      3) Pitch two or three different topic ideas at the same time to increase the chances of getting a positive response.

      Hope that’s useful!

      Cheers,

      Glen.

  21. Stephan
    Oct 16, 2016 @ 09:33:25

    Thank you for showing several ways to earn money as a writer. I think your advice about trying several ways makes sense to me. I don’t really know by now in which direction I will go in the future, but it will surely have something to do with writing – in one way or the other. Thanks again for your inspiring article.

    • Glen Long
      Oct 17, 2016 @ 08:16:14

      No problem Stephan. Glad to have given you some concrete options to pursue. πŸ™‚

  22. Kurt Roswell
    Oct 17, 2016 @ 00:42:11

    Great article, Glen. I would certainly love to be a best-selling kindle author someday.

    Quick question though, there are times I feel that writing (especially for corporate requirements) is becoming a tedious process. I was just wondering what makes you passionate about writing?

  23. Glen Long
    Oct 17, 2016 @ 08:22:31

    Hey Kurt,

    If you’re writing about a topic you’re not particularly interested in, yes, it can become tedious.

    I guess I’m fortunate in that I am interested in the topics I get to write about.

    I find it’s also motivating to think about the possible transformation for your readers. So even if you’re not super passionate about a topic, maybe you can be passionate about what your writing helps your readers achieve.

    Another thing to help keep your writing passion alive is to have a side project you dip into from time to time when your enthusiasm lags.

    Does that help?

    Cheers,

    Glen.

    • Kurt Roswell
      Oct 18, 2016 @ 03:58:40

      “I find it’s also motivating to think about the possible transformation for your readers.” – this definitely helps, Glen. Sometimes I find myself focusing on getting this article done or that post polished – this attitude seems to add a lot of unnecessary pressure and adds to the “tediousness” of the task.

      I can imagine your advice – shifting the focus on how I can help change the life of my readers – shifting some of that pressure away. Thank you very much, Glen.

  24. Sathish Arumugam
    Oct 17, 2016 @ 11:32:10

    Hi Glen,

    Writing is an art. Everyone will not be blessed with this talent. Many people love to write and want to live as a passionate writer.

    Most of the writers were not aware of the excellent opportunity. You have given a good five ideas for writers to get into their dreamed way

    The links you provided in your content was also very informative and worthy suggestable. By reading your article, I opted the Second way you suggested.

    Thanks for your post πŸ™‚

  25. Shekhar Chugh
    Oct 17, 2016 @ 14:03:40

    Well, I was not aware that we can make a wonderful career in the writing field. I only thought about technical career for making a lot of money. But now, I have realized the importance of writing. Thanks for sharing this.

  26. Bhuboy Villanueva
    Oct 18, 2016 @ 06:42:58

    Thanks for giving the different options to earn from writing. I am not much of a writer myself, but need to learn and do it as I am only starting my niche site. But, in time, when I am earning from it, I will definitely outsource it and focus on the thing I love most, running a successful online business. Thanks for this

  27. Elna Cain | Freelance Writer
    Oct 19, 2016 @ 21:50:56

    Glen,

    I like your breakdown of the different ways to make a living a writer. For me, I’ve found my sweet spot writing digital marketing content for small business and solopreneurs. I can collaborate with them and help them with their content marketing strategies, which helps me hone my expertise skills πŸ™‚

  28. Wilf
    Oct 20, 2016 @ 12:12:21

    An encouraging read. Thanks. I found this article while searching Google for writer’s blogs and generating income as a writer. I actually landed on the Stephen King post.
    I shall bookmark this site as a daily resource for motivation. Thanks πŸ™‚
    Something I’d add to supplement the list is to write a daily journal. I’ve done this for years and it keeps the creative juices flowing and helps me to experiment with my ‘voice’. I write for children in the main but am working toward more adult material.
    Cheers.

  29. Ravi Chahar
    Oct 21, 2016 @ 01:29:05

    Hey Glen,

    In today’s era of inline business, people are trying to build their authority as a writer. They want to make a lot of money.

    I totally agree with you that if a writer doesn’t have the strategy then it won’t be a work for him/her.

    Writing the guest posts for the popular blogs can help a lot. The more people would come to know about the writing style and the knowledge you have.

    Thanks for sharing this guide.
    ~Ravi

  30. muhammad usman
    Oct 22, 2016 @ 12:50:18

    The quickest way to make money online is by writing. But the quickest way is generally like writing for a few dollars per 500 words or so. As a writer, if you fall for that trap, you will be doing only donkey work. Try to establish your brand as a writer. Determine your own pricing and you can see that writers can earn quite notable money.

  31. Emenike Emmanuel
    Oct 23, 2016 @ 15:49:12

    Thanks for sharing. I think you’ve touched my life this very moment.

    But one thing is annoying me right now. And that’s the fact that virtually all the blogs I visited today on how to make extra money for myself as a writer have been telling me about Affiliate Marketing, yet I don’t belong to any of them.

    I’m looking at registering with the web host I hosted my blog, but I want to know: will my use of free WordPress theme have negative effect on my quest? Can an affiliate program ban me for not using a premium template? What’s the effect? I need your honest opinion. (You can visit my blog to see what it looks like)

    Thanks.

  32. Garry Mattoc
    Oct 24, 2016 @ 06:39:43

    I have just removed my ads from my blog. It was looking too spammy. Now the focus is on my calls to action. I am finding that affiliate sales and content marketing are working for me. My long term goal is a membership site.

  33. Nicolas Puegher
    Oct 24, 2016 @ 21:22:31

    These are amazing tips for writers. I am a blogger I’m not sure if I’m a writer just because of that, it feels like cheating because a lot of people spend a lot of time studying for a killing writing experience while I was studying a whole different career.

    Still, I love to write and all these tips are fully welcome, thanks for sharing.

  34. Ravi Chahar
    Oct 25, 2016 @ 05:05:22

    Hey Glen,

    There are many writers who are making enough money to make a living. Becoming a kindle author is a great idea.

    But every writer needs to have the qualitative writing style. People like to read the content with the worth appeal.

    There are many freelance websites which are hiring the writer and provide the money.

    Glad to know more about it.
    ~Ravi

  35. Pankaj Singh
    Oct 26, 2016 @ 04:58:25

    In this world of writers, Only innovative writers make their benchmark. I think that, the more a writer can explain things easily, the more he/she become successful.
    However i am totally agree with your points glen.

  36. Fahad Mirza
    Oct 26, 2016 @ 12:01:49

    Thanks Glen really informative and useful piece of content and it clearly show how much efforts you have made to create this content.
    Keep it up!

  37. Vittoria Dmowska
    Oct 27, 2016 @ 01:02:54

    On balance. You have to be happy with your own work β€” but when you’re asking other people to give you their time and attention, then you owe them some degree of quality and usefulness.

  38. Garry Mattoc
    Oct 31, 2016 @ 05:50:38

    Being a writer is hard. What most people want to be is an author. You know, the sort that attends cocktail parties and is fawned over by fans and publishers and media moguls. Also plenty of sex is to be had from said fans, and there’s all of the adulation in the press and in readings and signings. But writing? That’s fucking drudgery. Few people want to actually do that.

    • Transport George | Onehalf AU
      Nov 02, 2016 @ 23:53:38

      I couldn’t agree more Garry! Some people even hire talented writers to become a “published author”.

  39. Chetan Gupta
    Nov 02, 2016 @ 02:45:01

    Hi Glen

    Agree with your 5th point. It would be much better to make a niche blog and promote third party product rather than promoting own product when someone wants to make quick 6 figure income.

    Niche blogs are attracting so many internet marketers nowadays and they are doing well with it.

    Indeed a great Idea and also Thanks for sharing Pat Flynn’s video. πŸ˜€

  40. Adeel Akhter
    Nov 03, 2016 @ 04:51:34

    Great article.

    You talked about affiliate marketing. Is there any way to explore affiliate marketing opportunities in services industry? Especially in small business domain?

  41. SM ZAMAN
    Nov 13, 2016 @ 08:22:20

    Lucky to place at # 65

    Hi Glen,

    After reading your post, I became tired!

    NO NO your writing was interesting, but I became tired of scrolling down to 64 for leaving a comment.

    By the way, now I’m feeling quite comfortable & writing a comment.

    All the 5 points are doable & every writer should try out them.

    Thanks & keep sharing.
    SM

  42. Mdu Rohtak
    Nov 14, 2016 @ 22:38:16

    E-book and blog writing are the most effective of all. I’ve actually earned quite well with those two forms.

  43. Kim-NutritionPro Consulting
    Nov 30, 2016 @ 21:52:03

    I have been writing for my blog for almost a year. In January I will be guest posting then I think writing an ebook should be my next step. This post was helpful and gave information I wasn’t aware of.

  44. Rajat Dhameja
    Dec 02, 2016 @ 02:22:41

    In today’s age of blogging, freelancing and article marketing, everyone has become an author. Quality works rarely go unnoticed.

  45. uthman Saheed
    Dec 02, 2016 @ 23:57:29

    Thanks for this wonderful post. Most guys who wanna take freelancing as a career do make serious mistake of not choosing a particular niche to promote their skills.

    You can’t just claim to be a writer in all niche and be successful. Let clients know you for something you are extra ordinarily good at.

  46. Junaid Shahid
    Dec 04, 2016 @ 04:55:39

    Hey thanks buddy, another great piece of work. You really have much knowledge on writing and have great use of wording in your articles.