Your Top 20 Favorite Posts About Freelance Writing for 2012

Carol Tice

What should I be writing about on this blog? What information could I share that would stand the best chance of helping writers earn more?

These are questions I’m thinking a lot about lately. (And yes, please do tell me your thoughts about it in the comments.)

One way I try to figure out what would help writers most is by looking at the list below — the most popular posts of the year.

To create this list, I used my Google Analytics, and eliminated posts that originally went up before 2012. (I’ve also excluded posts from my Marketing 101 for Freelance Writers e-course — subscribe here to get those.)

I made it a list of 20 instead of just a top 10 because I wanted to look at more data on what readers like.

Take a look — bylines are mine except where noted. These are ranked by the number of pageviews each post received across the calendar year of 2012:

  1. How I Made Six Figures as a Freelance Writer
  2. How I Became a More Productive Writer by Doing This One, Simple Thing
  3. 10 Writer Websites That Kick Butt and Get Clients
  4. How I Got $25,000 Blog Subscribers From Pinterest — in Two Months Flat by Taylor Flanery
  5. 10 Mistakes I Made Publishing My Ebook — and How You Can Do it Better
  6. 10 Reasons Why You Can’t Make a Living Writing by Josh Sarz
  7. Are You Letting Sleazebag Freelance Clients Get You Pregnant?
  8. How To Get Great Blogging Clients… Even if You’re a Teenage Nigerian (featuring Bamidele Onibalusi)
  9. How to Dig Out of the Content-Mill Hole and Land a Client — Fast by Elaine Yue
  10. The 3 Worst Blog-Writing Blunders — Don’t Make These Mistakes by Danny Iny
  11. How to Win a Free Year in Freelance Writers Den (sorry folks, this contest has expired!)
  12. The 10-Step Guide to Fixing the Writer Website Fails That Cost You Clients
  13. 7 Ways the Make a Living Writing Blog Makes Money
  14. The 13 Business Bloggers All Freelance Writers Should Read to Earn More
  15. 7 Ways a Freelance Writer Can Create Retirement Income
  16. 3 Guest Post Pitch Emails That Got the Gig
  17. 5 Reasons Why Your Letter of Introduction Isn’t Getting You Writing Gigs
  18. Answers to 100 Freelance Writing Questions — Including Yours (still room for your question here!)
  19. How to Get Well-Paid Copywriting Jobs Without Being a Suck-Up by James Brown
  20. How One Writer Pulled Out of a Depression and Kick-Started Her Earnings by Sarah Protzman Howlett

A few thoughts on these (and a preview of what’s to come in 2013):

As with last year’s list, nearly half of these begin with “how.” This list also contains quite a few of what I’d call “example” posts, where I offer concrete evidence on how to do something — the actual emails that got a gig, for instance, or 10 examples of good writer sites. I’ll be looking to deliver more of this sort of specific, nitty-gritty info next year.

Short lists of do’s or don’ts were also popular — there are more lists of under-10 than of 10 or more. Presenting one single tip worked for you, too.

The other big shift I see is that many of these talk about blogging or writer websites. When I started this blog, all the posts revolved around finding freelance gigs the old fashioned way, where you go to work for a company or magazine.

But as self-publishing and blog-monetizing have emerged as increasingly viable ways for writers to earn, more posts are addressing this side of paid writing as well. Posts on ebooks and blogging were favorites, so you can expect more of that next year, too. I think of this blog as an umbrella for all avenues to paid writing.

I’m excited to see that six guest posts made the top 20 — apparently, you are loving the variety of fresh voices my guest posters bring as much as I am. Hoping to see even more of these next year.

I included the contest post as a reminder to myself that you like contests. As it happens, I love putting them on! So I’m definitely planning more of them next year…and the prizes are going to be tasty. Stay tuned.

Speaking of guest posts…my guest-post well is nearly dry, so it’s a good time to pitch me ideas. For those who don’t know, I pay $50 a post (and it’s pretty competitive to get an assignment, so bring your best idea we haven’t covered before!) Read my guidelines first, if you want a chance at getting a post approved.

What would you like to learn from this blog in 2013? Leave me your topic ideas in the comments.



  1. John Soares

    Excellent list Carol. You do a very good job at creating headlines that encourage people to click and read,and that’s the crucial first step to a successful blog post.

    I also plan to write more about blogging and websites in the coming year. WordPress and other blogging platforms have made it easy for freelancers to set up their own sites and start producing content, but there’s both an art and a science to the process.

    • Carol Tice

      No kidding, John — I found the posts I did on writer websites were real popular, especially when they had concrete examples shown of what to do and not. That seems to be what writers need. The more I show EXACTLY how you do something, the more helpful it seems to be.

  2. Nida Sea

    Always enjoy your posts, Carol. I’d like to hear more about blogging, finding the right keywords for new blogs, and marketing a blog. I’m learning so much from FWD, this blog, and the guest you had in December, Tom Ewer. It has really inspired me to revive some dead blogs I had back in 2006, and begin two new ones.

    The information and help from your site, Tom’s, and even updates from Danny Iny and Jon Morrow are enough to fuel my efforts. So, more blogging information and how to grow this side of passive income would be great. Thanks again, Carol!

    • Carol Tice

      Thanks for the suggestions, Nida!

      I’m sure I’ll have lots more to say about ebooks, since I plan to put out quite a few in 2013, so everyone can learn along with me as I try some new strategies on that.

      Maybe I’ll look for an SEO expert to do a guest post or two to bring us more up to speed on that. I have to say I’m woefully lax when it comes to checking out key words.

  3. Erica

    I get a lot out of your articles and those of your guest bloggers. Thanks. I would like to learn more about marketing a blog, making it profitable, social media marketing and establishing passive sources of income.

    But again, I always get so much out of your posts that you pretty have a loyal reader here anyway. Can’t wait to see what you come up with in 2013 (but I guess we have a whole to year to find out).

    • Carol Tice

      Well, you’re coming to the social media bootcamp, right? Starts next Thursday. See the sidebar to click for all the details on that (if you’re not a current Den member).

  4. Heni

    The one with the publishing mistakes has been really useful for me, actually I’m going to self publish my first ebook in the next few weeks but before that I want to get really prepared for that, the tips and advices in the post have been really helpful for that, thanks for sharing!

  5. Teressa Campbell

    I have enjoyed everyone of the posts I have read on your website. Ay plans for letting new members into the den anytime soon?

    • Teressa Campbell

      I should know better than try to reply to a post using the keypad on my iPad. Ay should have been Any.

      • Teressa Campbell

        …and everyone should have been every one… Sorry, i’m a little bit OCD about mistakes.

        • Carol Tice

          Then you should know about my universal forgiveness policy for all typos in comments! Really – it’s O…K…

    • Carol Tice

      Sorry — definitely not soon — we don’t open during a bootcamp and we’re just getting ready to start one on Thursday. Best advice: Be on the waiting list (or sign up for the bootcamp! Registration is still open.)

      • Teressa Campbell

        Thanks! I am on the waiting list and if I wasn’t in the middle of another online class at the moment, I would definitely sign up for the social media class. Hopefully I can sign up for the next class that you hold. Thanks again!

        • Carol Tice

          I hear ya…or just join the Den next time we’re open…best deal I offer!

  6. Phil

    I hope I’m not too late to get in on this good post.

    I’m looking for info like this…

    1) Agents: I’d like to partner with someone who specializes in sales, and who can find and manage the clients, while I stay focused on writing. We split the income or some other similar arrangement.

    2) Blogs: If the agent idea won’t work, then I probably need to learn more about making my own blogs pay.

    3) Mills: I get it that all content mills stink stink stink, 🙂 but which ones stink the least? Given that lots of people are going to work for the mills anyway, which ones should they try, and which should they avoid like the plague?

    4) Writing: Tips to make me a better writer are always welcome. For me, this is a good enough reason to join your club.

    5) Sales: I’m least interested in knocking on doors, cold calling, and trying to find clients. I’m sure it’s a good plan for many, but I doubt I’d stick with it, and I know that’s what’s required.

    • Carol Tice

      Hi Phil —

      Thanks for these great suggestions! I’d love a comparative post on mills…it’d have to be a guest post since I’ve never written for any of them…I’ll ask around in the Den if someone could give us a rundown on all the big ones. I do have a post coming up on what it takes to drive 1 million views on Examiner and earn five figures from your Examiner site — I met a top producer at NMX so I can report on that coming up.

      More on monetizing blogs is definitely in the offing! As well as a writing-tips series, which I think is overdue.

      As far as sales, are you getting my Marketing 101 series? It goes through a lot of the basics of the various ways to market yourself. And I’m sure I’ll be adding more marketing tips as we go.

      I haven’t run into anyone who’s used an agent yet…but if I do I will try to rope them in for a post.

      Thanks again for these —


  1. Monday Markets for Writers - [...] Carol Tice, of the “Make a Living Writing” blog fame: “[M]y guest-post well is nearly dry, [...]
  2. Around the Web « Fangs and Lasers - [...] “Your Top 20 Favorite Posts About Freelance Writing for 2012“ [...]

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