“According to the National Writers Union survey in 1995, the median income for freelance writers was only $4,000 a year. Just 16 percent of freelance writers pulled in more than $30,000 a year.” Ouch. Jenna Glatzer doesn’t glorify the freelance writing profession; rather, she opens with the truth and then dares you to beat the odds -- with the assistance of her book, Make a Real Living as a Freelance Writer: How to Win Top Writing Assignments.
It helps that Glatzer is a freelance success story herself . “When I was 24 years old, I bought my first house in New York. On a lake. And a I own a truck and a boat, pay for my own gut-wrenchingly expensive health insurance, and manage to have enough left over to start investing in real estate, plan for my retirement... All of that comes from the money I earn as a freelance writer and editor.” She adds, “If I can do it, you can, too.”
Okay. How? Start by reading this humorous, insightful, practical, hands-on guide. Initial chapters show you how to come up with marketable ideas, where to sell them, how to match the perfect idea to the perfect market and eases newbies into freelance lingo -- BOB is not your neighbor, unless he’s found at the back of the book!
If it sounds somewhat similar to countless other “how to freelance write” books you’ve pulled off the shelf -- think again. Each chapter is followed up with an assignment guaranteed to fire those stagnant synapses and kick your mind into creative gear. Glatzer generously peppers the text with quotes from editors and other writers, as well as incorporating her own wit and hard-earned wisdom. She doesn’t scrimp on advice.
From queries to reprints, interviewing and becoming an editor’s favorite freelancer, Glatzer shares the secrets that have allowed her to write for hundreds of magazines, become a contributing editor at Writer’s Digest, act as editor-in-chief of AbsoluteWrite.com and still find time to write a host of best-selling books. Clever quotes, such as Mary Heaton Vosse’s “the art of writing is the art of applying the seat of the pants to the seat of the chair,” punctuate Glatzer’s running dialogue.
And that’s this book in a nutshell. It’s not dry “how to” guide, it’s a conversation with an extremely prolific freelance writer who wants to help you flourish. That doesn’t mean she’ll sit and hold your hand while you weep over another rejection letter; in fact, Glatzer barely touches on rejection, focusing solely on success. What she will do is provide you the information to crack the code and find your “writeful” place in that top sixteen percent. Excuse me now, I’ve got to be back to work and start winning those top writing assignments!