Contest: Share Your Brilliant Productivity Hack for Freelance Writers

Evan Jensen

Brilliant Productivity Hacks for Freelance Writers. Makealivingwriting.comEver wonder how some freelance writers crank out content, market like crazy, meet client deadlines, and break into new niches?

You look at their success from the outside, and try to figure out what they’re doing that you’re not.

You try and reverse engineer it. If you can’t figure it out, you might join the pity-party of thoughts…“those freelance writers get all the breaks, or just got lucky.”

But you know what? That’s usually not the case.

Successful freelance writers usually develop their skills one query letter, one LinkedIn connection, or one letter of introduction at a time.

And it’s not a throw-spaghetti-at-the-wall approach to see what sticks. It’s a calculated approach. It’s work. It’s consistent effort.

If you want to move up, earn more, and make a living writing, you’ve got to set goals and develop ways of doing things to maximize productivity.

But what does that look like? Every freelance writer has their own way of doing things.

What’s your most brilliant productivity hack for freelance writers? Share your best tip for a chance to win. Here’s more about the contest rules and prizes.

My best productivity hack for freelance writers

If you want to ramp up your freelance writing business fast, send at least 100 LOIs a month.

When I did this, I pitched my writing services to health and fitness businesses. I checked in with freelance writing friend Denise Maloof for accountability, and hustled to hit daily, weekly, and monthly goals for about three months.

The results: I scored a bunch of one-off jobs and new writing samples. I made a lot of connections with potential clients and expanded my referral network. And I scored some long-term clients in the process. That wouldn’t have happened with an inconsistent or lazy approach to pitching.

What freelance writing goals and productivity hacks have helped you?

Some examples:

  • Send LinkedIn connection invites daily to editors or marketing directors in your niche
  • Pitch a new market (magazines/sites) in your niche weekly
  • Plan your day/week to prioritize projects and meet deadlines
  • Track how long it takes you to complete a typical assignment (blog post, article, case study, etc)
  • Establish a process for following up with leads or past clients
  • Attend at least one networking event per month and introduce yourself to new people
  • Use productivity apps to save time, organize research, reduce distractions, or write faster

Track and measure

You can track every one of these process goals and productivity hacks and measure your progress. It’s a powerful way to see what’s working and what’s not to help you move up and earn more.

If you’ve got a productivity hack for freelance writers to share, we want to hear about it.

Contest rules: Share your best productivity hack for freelance writers

What’s your best productivity tip or goal-setting hack for freelance writers? Share your best tips for a chance to win. Here’s how:

  • Post your best productivity hack or goal-setting tips in the comments below. Describe your process and share your results.
  • Only one entry per person.
  • Contest ends: Wednesday, Sept. 4 at midnight Pacific.
  • We’ll review all the submissions and announce the winners here and via email in about a week.

Prizes for the best productivity hack or goal-setting tip include:

Grand prize: A one-year membership in the Freelance Writers Den.

Runner up 1: A one-month membership in the Freelance Writers Den.

Runner up 2: A copy of the book: Start Here: 40 Freelance Writers Share How They Find Clients, Stay Motivated and Earn Well Today.

Forget about waiting for ‘good luck.’ Go make your own luck. It’s up to you!

And the winners are…

Grand prize: Juanita Nieuwoudt
Productivity Hack: Before you go to bed, write down two things you’ll do the next day. When you wake up, do it.

Runner up 1: Lisa Schulz
Productivity Hack: Work first, then play. I only watch TV while doing laundry and only watch YouTube videos or webinars while doing dishes. That way, it’s harder to fall into an everlasting binge

Runner up 2: Derek Thompson
Productivity Hack: Take a 10-minute screen break about every hour (Peppermint tea, bathroom break, etc.) You’ll give your eyes a break, boost productivity, and be able to work longer when needed.

What’s your best productivity hack for freelance writers? Tell us below for a chance to win.

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  1. Janet Herring-Sherman

    Having all my reference materials near at hand really helps me save time. Plus, by just knowing that they’re there, helps me to feel more focused when I sit down to write. For instance, I just took the J-School class where good tips and links were shared in abundance. Fearing I wouldn’t be able to track them down again, I went through all of the transcripts, handouts, homework reviews audios and gleaned all I could find. Now I have a handy alphabetized tool with nearly 100 of these gems. The document will live on my computer desktop for easy access. And since I’m a bit old school, I have a hard copy on my desk as well. Loving it and so glad I invested the time to create this make-my-writing-life-easier tool.

    • Carol Tice

      Love that you have a boil-down, Janet — but also remember you can download all the J-School materials as a current Den member (for just a few more days, so do it soon!).

    • Janet Herring-Sherman

      Carol — Thanks for the reminder about the downloads from J School. I have downloaded everything I could find. It was a good exercise for me to read through it all again in order to find the nuggets to pull out for my cheat sheet. Fingers crossed — I just submitted my query for my J School-inspired article. Janet

  2. Francine Gargano

    The way I keep myself motivated and productive has to do with environment. My creative juices and energy come from my surroundings. Dull, drab, low key environments will make me tired and my brain slow. Bright, fun, energetic environments keeps me hustling. So for example in the summer months I move myself outside. I enjoy everything my house has to offer, front porch, garden bench and backyard by the pool. Fall will find me wandering around side-of-the-road fruit stands and picking pumpkins then jumping in my car and jotting down notes to remember for my writing.I keep writing needs with me all the time. Winter is for sitting in my window seat with a steamy cup of hot chocolate and blanket writing like mad. When in the office I need nice colors, music or television, flowers and flavored teas!

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