3 Unexpected Ways Your 9-to-5 Will Boost Your Freelance Writing Career

It goes beyond just boosting your income.

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Photo by Marten Bjork on Unsplash

Whether you have a 9-to-5 before you pursue freelance writing, or you work at a “real” job while getting your writing business started, you’ll receive many benefits from it.

The most obvious benefit is that you’ll make money from your regular job while you’re starting out as a freelancer. But there are other benefits too.

3 Ways Your Regular Job Can Boost Your Freelance Writing Career

It will give you an area of expertise to build your niche around.

“The riches are in the niches.” I don’t know who came up with that, but it’s true as far as freelance writing is concerned. I made a lot more money as an eLearning writer than as a “freelance writer.”

Before I started freelancing full-time, I worked in several roles on university campuses. That’s where the education part comes from. I decided to pair education with technology to determine my niche as a freelancer. That allowed me to get paid more than double the amount of money for the same types of projects.

If you work in any area related to marketing, you’ll have a leg up on the competition. But any type of job can lead to your freelance writing niche. I know a farmer who writes about agricultural tech, or AgTech. (Again, tech niches pay more.) I know a teacher who writes about EdTech. (Notice a trend here?)

It will give you contacts that might hire you for your freelance services.

When it’s time to end your 9-to-5, make sure you end on a positive note. That way, you can ask your network for referrals. I’ve found that when I ask someone for a referral, they often reply with, “actually, I could use your services myself!”

It will give you experiences to draw on in your writing.

Writing is about more than writing. It’s about the things we write about. The more experiences you have in a professional setting, the more topics you can write about with confidence.

For example, I’ve written about how to negotiate for better pay or how to approach your boss when a conflict arises. I wouldn’t have known how to do either of those things if I had gone straight from college into freelance writing.

As I said, you can receive these benefits from either a previous or current 9-to-5 job. And the next time you’re stumped about what to write about, review your resume and write about your professional experiences. You probably have some insight to share based on what you’ve done in the past.

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