Many people have thought “I want to be a writer!” but rarely does that statement come to fruition. However, you can become a part time writer and even earn money by writing during your spare evenings and weekends.
Becoming a part time writer doesn’t necessarily mean you will write books. Writing the next great American novel is a fine goal, but the real money is offering your part time writing services to others. You can write articles for magazines, newspaper features, resumes, press releases, web articles and website content, advertising copy – all from the comfort of your home and your own computer.
Skills Required: Reasonably good writing skills, excellent grammar and spelling, creativity
Becoming a part time writer can be simple. You simply need to have reasonably good writing skills. You don’t have to be as clever as nationally syndicated columnist, Dave Barry, or write advertising copy as well as nationally recognized marketing consultant, Bob Bly. However, you do need to be able to string together words in a coherent fashion that is understandable to other readers.
Although English majors are good candidates for this part time business, an English degree is not necessary. However, you would do yourself justice to take a class at your local community college on English Composition or Basic Grammar. Brushing up your writing skills is always an asset for part time writing services.
If you wish to write articles for publication, you will need to tap into your creativity and develop great article ideas that will sell to magazine editors. Read lots of magazines and take note of article titles and themes. Then think of articles that would be a good fit for a specific publication and pitch it to the editor.
Startup Expenses: $0 – $1,000, depending on the tools you already own.
You need to have the right tools if you want to make money with part time writing services. First, you need to have a good word processing software program. Microsoft Word is industry standard which runs about $50 as a stand-alone license. Or you can download a free copy of Open Office, which is word processing software that runs on multiple platforms.
Internet access is essential. Whether you are updating your website, performing research, or emailing contacts, you must have a good high-speed internet connection. Home internet connections may run $45 to $75 per month. Of course, while it is great to have high-speed internet at home, you can access Wi-Fi with your laptop at most coffee shops and other retail stores.
Additionally, if you want to pitch article ideas to magazines, you may need stationery, stamps, and a good printer. An article query is usually only one page, and most magazines require that you send queries via U.S. Postal Service. Make sure you have a quality ink-jet or laser printer and mailing materials. $70 will get you a good, brand-new printer. Stamps, letterhead, and envelopes can run from $20 for pre-printed materials to $75 for custom-printed letterheads.
You might want a website to promote yourself. Websites can be easily designed with templates for free, or you can hire a web designer to create an online presence for around $100 to $500. A website should contain a biography about yourself, sample work, rates for various projects, and how to contact you.
Monthly Revenue: $400 – $2,000 per month
What can you earn from your part time writing services? It’s not uncommon for magazine writers to earn $1 per word or more for their published submissions, with an average $700 to $2,000 per article. However, don’t expect to earn the large dollars right away until you are an experienced and reputable writer.
Simultaneously, don’t limit yourself to published articles. You can write brochures, flyers, advertising copy, web content, web articles and blogs, resumes – all which can earn you money with your part time business.
Monthly Expenses: $50-$200
With the equipment and tools you already have, your home-based, part time writing services can operate with minimal overhead. Typical expenses will be monthly internet service, ink cartridges, paper, stamps, and other reoccurring office supply needs.