Sunday, March 26, 2006

How to Freelance from Home Using the Internet

Every so often, I answer the following question -- again -- because it is the most oft-asked question that I get. A reader writes:

QUESTION: My son works for Spellmount, a publisher of history, and several years ago he suggested I should take up a job at home using the Internet to edit copy for books etc. I used to work with horses which was a very energetic job, but now that I am in my 50's I would like to do something that I can fit in at home.

Do you know of any outlets for this? I have not had any editing experience, but have O level English, Pitmans Elementary Typing, and (apart from the odd typists error which I always spot and correct!), I have always been considered very good at spelling. Don't worry if you can't help, but I would be very glad of any suggestions.

Thank you.
Yours sincerely,
ANSWER: Marion:

Thanks for writing in. Copyediting from home is not as easy as most people think. The work itself is not hard; it's the MARKETING for the work that takes persistence. Most employers, eg, publishers, want to see first-hand experience.

My best advice without being too longwinded is to start looking for jobs locally -- target local businesses, do a good job and ask for referrals. That's the best way to start with no experience.

Our Wednesday, February 01, 2006 blog post was entitled, "How to Effectively Target Neighborhood Businesses with Your Editorial Services." See this link: This is a good place to start researching and learning how to go about getting business.

Also, see our Freelance Writers' series, "Freelance Success Stories." Click here: Here freelancers tell how they got started and what works for them. Lots of first-hand insight from which to learn. This is why we started this series.

There is a ton of information on the Internet on this subject -- start by going through the blog. Our blog is all about the BUSINESS of freelancing, so you will be able to glean lots of information there.

Finally, know that it won't be easy, but with persistence, you can build up a steady clientele. This is a profession that will probably never make you rich, but can provide a nice comfortable living.

UPDATE TO THIS POST: I should have told the writer to visit the following page on our website: The section offers advice on marketing your freelance services. Most of the advice is free and/or low-cost and is easy to implement.

Y. Black, Moderator
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