Writing is an online job it is possible to do really well when you have health challenges or any sort of chronic disability. You don’t need the ability to run five miles before breakfast: You just need a computer, some sort of affinity for writing and a specialty you like to write about.
Here are my five keys tips to becoming an online copywriter or ghostwriter and quickly making money or even making a living at it, as I have been doing since 2008.
1. Start “light” but not small
Give yourself extra lead time. Realize that if your health is unstable or a particular challenge slows you down, you will need to schedule yourself accordingly.
Resist the urge to push yourself or take on more projects. Allow for bad days, treatment days, recovery days or trips to the emergency department. Don’t take on too much, and keep your workload light till you can accurately gauge your perfect work balance. (You’ll find it!)
2. Specialize in what you do well
This doesn’t just mean “become a fashion copywriting specialist if your thing is fashion”: It also means “learn what you don’t do well—and drop the stuff that stresses you out or loses you income”.
For example, I no longer write blog posts for clients, because (tracking my time—including research and editing time) I discovered I usually lost money on writing blog posts. Nowadays, I specialize in eBooks and training courses.
3. Charge a competitive rate
Don’t let your health challenges erode self-respect. You are working for a living. You are doing everything you can do to provide great copy for your client—on time. Just deliver what you promise and say “thank you very much” for the payment.
4. Reduce stress
If you are living with any sort of chronic disability, you already have enough stress. Simplify your life. Remove anything that adds to stress, because stress can aggravate your condition.
That means removing clutter, people who stress you, self-inflicted responsibilities or anything that isn’t necessary to your successful functioning or happiness. This is one time it’s crucial to be “selfish” (and it’s not selfish at all!)
5. Get yourself out there
People may have already told you that you have to run a blog, create a Facebook Page, get Twitter and LinkedIn accounts, post via Instagram et cetera, et cetera. (It exhausts me just writing that sentence!)
While this may or may not be true, there is a MUCH easier way to network and connect with peers and potential clients and get yourself “out there”. Join an active, passionate online writers group or forum dedicated to the specialty you write about. Your specialty forum will keep you in touch with your clients’ audiences (and breaking news for your niche): Your writers group will keep you in touch with writing peers and potential clients, agents, and publishers.
If you write helpful posts and share helpful tips and resources, they’ll soon get to know you—and you’ll be building your reputation, socializing, making connections and having a lot of fun and “down time”, all at once.
Better yet, join a writers group or forum with a job board—like WriterHelpWanted. You’ll be surprised how effortlessly you pick up your first paying clients (plus lots of advice and training on dealing with same!)