Contest for Writers: Win Free Copy of ’40 Ways to Market’ Audio

Carol Tice

40 Ways To Market Your WritingAre you a writer who’s hoping to ramp up their marketing next year — but you missed my 40 Ways to Market Your Writing Webinar with Anne Wayman from About Freelance Writing?

Well, you’re in luck. Now, there are two ways you could get the 40 Ways information — free!

Way #1: If you sign up to get this blog on email, you’ll get a 14-page PDF report on the 40 Ways, free of charge. Just my thank-you for signing up and participating in the great community of writers that visit this blog. The PDF is packed with links to resources and lots of “power tips” on the best ways to use these marketing techniques to help grow your writing income.

If you’d like more than the PDF — you’d like to hear the complete audio recording of the Webinar, to get more details and hear the questions we answered live for participants — you can also purchase the one-hour audio recording and get the free PDF report thrown into the deal.

I have one more free offer to make. Anne and I are gathering feedback now to shape our next Webinar, How to Break In and Earn Big as a Freelance Writer. So:

Way #2: I’ll give away a free copy of the 40 Ways audio recording to the writer who leaves the best answer to the following question:

What is (or was) the most difficult thing for you about breaking into freelance writing? Leave your well-written comment below to win the free audio. Deadline is midnight PST tonight, and I’ll announce the winner on the blog tomorrow. Closing the comments for this post after that.

(Consolation prize: I’ll email everyone who leaves a comment on this post a special 25%-off discount code for the Webinar — regularly $36 — that’s good until Christmas. Give yourself a holiday gift and get your questions about freelance writing answered live.)


  1. Glad Doggett

    When I first began freelancing, I think my biggest challenge was a lack of clips and by-lines. It was the proverbial chicken and egg thing — how do you get assignments with no clips in a professional portfolio; and how do you create a professional portfolio with no clips?

    And running a close second — where to find paying gigs? I wish I had had a guidebook to how to find paying writing assignments.


    • TiceWrites

      Fortunately, now there is one — Make a Living Writing: The 21st Century Guide. More than 200 pages of tips and concrete strategies on how to get paying gigs today, starting from scratch.

      Thanks for getting our contest started off, Glad! Wondering if you could add a bit about how you solved the no-clips dilemma?

  2. James

    Without a doubt, the hardest thing was, and continues to be, believing in myself.

    There are so many people out there who want to tell you what you're worth as a freelancer. You're only worth $15 a post. You're only worth $10 an hour. You're a dime a dozen.

    When I broke out of this mentality and convinced myself that I'm worth more than that, my business exploded. I picked up several new clients from pure confidence and determination, and I haven't looked back since.

    Don't let anyone else tell you what you're worth. You're worth as much as you think you are.

  3. laurieboris

    At heart, I'm a fiction writer. When I'm in flow, the story and its characters take all my attention. Twice I've nearly burned down my house because I've left a pot on the stove and gone off to write "just for a minute." Balancing a full-time job with this love of my life (after my husband, of course), while not always easy, had become manageable. I had clear-cut boundaries. On the job, I worked. At home, I wrote (and tried not to run off when pots bubbled on the stove.) Then I lost my job. One of the toughest challenges I've faced in building a freelance business was creating boundaries at home, since both types of writing are done in the same room. When I write my novel during “business hours,” I feel like I’m cheating my clients. When I'm working for my clients, I fret that I'm not spending enough time on my fiction-writing career. But, since I’ll soon be a published author, pre-marketing for the book and writing the next one are also part of my freelance business, and take up a great deal of (unpaid) time. I’ve experimented with several time-management strategies, most recently devoting day parts (or whole days, when necessary) to my various tasks. But I’m still learning to balance these things while taking good care of my current clients and searching for new ones.

    • TiceWrites

      Ha! I'm no longer allowed to use the teapot — I have to boil water in the microwave. Have a row of burned-up teapots…

  4. laurieboris

    Funny! Because I have chronic shoulder pain, I used to keep a hydrocollater in a pot of hot water on the stove. I let the water get too low and caused a small fire. So my husband bought me a microwavable heat pack. Once I put it in and didn't realize a twist-tie was stuck to the fabric. It arced and destroyed the microwave. I'm much more cautious now. Mostly. 😉
    My recent post More Words We Love To Hate

  5. sondibruner

    When I started freelancing, I was also working a full-time job and it’s definitely a challenge to juggle both. What I found most difficult was arranging interviews, as many people are only available during daytime hours, when I was expected to be at my desk.

    I usually worked through this by flexing my lunch hour or breaks to accommodate my reporting – for example, taking lunch earlier or later in the day. I’ve let my employers know about my freelancing and thankfully, they have been supportive, as I never let it affect my performance.

    I’ve asked interview subjects if we could talk in the evenings or on weekends, and in many cases they were agreeable, especially if I explained that I was also working full-time. Since I live on the west coast, I’ve spoken with people on the east coast at 6:00 or 7:00am my time, so I could finish interviews before I had to be at work.

    Now, I am leaving my job to return to school and focus more attention on my freelancing. I’m really excited about having a more flexible schedule to arrange interviews! 🙂

  6. Chris Winters

    The hardest thing for me is ramping up from zero. Since I lost my staff editing job, I've had to start from scratch, making new contacts, working on pitches, seeking out story ideas more aggressively than before. The transition from editor—when some story ideas literally were waiting for me in my inbox in the morning—to a resource-less freelancer (as in, I don't have the imprimatur of "managing editor at…" anymore) has been a challenge, but one I'm feeling more confident with. We'll see when the mortgage comes due, and if those contacts I'm making can be turned into paid work, but I'm not unduly worried about it. And the days at home has given me some extra time to, in theory at least, work on my book and other projects. (Assuming "other projects" doesn't include multiple games of Facebook Scrabble and other time-wasters).
    For right now, clips aren't the problem, lack of motivation isn't the problem. It's more a question of perseverance, being able to make this work over the long haul, or at least until another staff job opens up. But by then, who knows? Maybe I won't want one.

    • TiceWrites

      Hi Chris!

      Facebook has Scrabble? Don't tell me stuff like that!

      But Chris — what about also seeking freelance editing work? Seems like that would be a natural add-on.

  7. Joanne

    I started writing long ago on an old Royal typewriter. I graduated to an electronic typewriter, a word processor, and finally joined the rest of the world on the computer. Keeping up with technology and teaching myself how to use it for my writing was a huge challenge. My next big obstacle is to learn how to make videos. I read the book that came with the camera but it made little sense.

    Before the computer days, my hardest task was to break into the national magazine market. I found a source of free magazines (a laundromat in town), studied them and tried to write for them. My first sale kept me writing and striving.

    I joined a writer's group and started getting a lot of critiques on my work, mostly negative. That hurt but I learned from them and steadily improved my writing. I started writing for Helium and expanded to Associated Content. There is so much to learn!

    The next step is always my biggest challenge. More technological skills, better writing skills, more interesting subjects to write about, and keeping up on the newest things all present different facets of the never ending struggle of a writer. Write on!!!!!!!!

    • TiceWrites

      Not sure if you have magazine-level clips why you're writing for places like Helium and AC…but I'm with you that there's always more to learn. For me the blog tech stuff is a bottomless pit.

  8. Natalie L. Komitsky

    The most difficult part of breaking into freelance writing was convincing myself that the consistent praise and returning business I was getting from substantive editing clients was proof that I could cut it as a writer. I had never had the desire to dig around to find hidden details behind the daily news, nor could I see myself as a fiction writer. I also have a bit of an aversion for the pushy "buy this thing-a-ma-jig and your life will be complete" sales copy, which I assumed to be best paying freelance work available. As it turns out, I'm doing well as a result of my circumstances. Where I live, English is not the primary language but it is common among the elite classes and in business. My BA in English, Nonfiction Writing and Editing combined with a good presentation of past writing, editing and project management work gets me in the door. Once I've proven myself to a new client, I usually have a place on their short list. I'm just building up my client base now, which of course takes time.
    My recent post CYA 101

  9. Synolve

    Me. Plain and simple. The biggest obstacle and most difficult thing for me to conquer or overcome are my own thoughts and my own fears. While I'm listening to the muse inside my head, I can hear the fear beating back every word. Everyone has heard of the starving artist, but no one really wants it to be me, myself, and I. That's my ultimate fear. That if I write it, they won't come. If they come, they won't like it. If they read it, they won't return. If I write, I'll starve and I won't make it. I think this is the fear that keeps me from truly writing and from truly living my dream because I can't see the pot of gold at the end of my words and I am too overwhelmed to simply begin…
    My recent post Thanksgiving- Our simple plan

    • TiceWrites

      I think you're not the only one who feels that way, Synolve! Thanks for coming over and visiting the blog.

  10. Steve Thomas

    I have to say that the hardest part of freelancing is, I'm not doing it. To be honest, I have known about it for a long time, but until recently, had not thought about it seriously. I was sent to this site through a Problogger post. Since then (would you believe yesterday?) I have given this some thought.

    Now the problem seems to be how to get started and do I have the skills that it might take. I am not new to writing, since I seem to have been in school longer than Harry Potter has been in Hogwarts. I have just not been writing professionally. I have three blogs and write for pleasure (since I haven't been able to interest anyone in my writing!).

    Freelancing sounds like a good fit for me, but I need to know more about it and improve my writing skills! I know it can be done, it's just where I am now.
    My recent post Where Do You Write

  11. TiceWrites

    I love how whenever I'm giving away free stuff, nobody retweets the post — trying to keep the competition down, eh?

    May I kindly ask that people spread the word about this? I'm hoping to get as many comments as I can because it's helping me learn what to include in the next Webinar.

    Thanks folks!

    • richwheeler

      Darn! You have us figured out!
      I'll RT and FB ya.
      If I ever get to the bottom of the page.
      My recent post Keeping Up with the Geeks

      • TiceWrites

        Thought it was a plot…but I'm onto you!

  12. Synolve

    I just RT on facebook and Twitter! Thanks for sharing what you need! You and Anne give so much! I'm happy to also give in return!
    My recent post Thanksgiving- Our simple plan

    • TiceWrites

      Really appreciate it.

    • TiceWrites

      Well what the rip…thanks Jack!

  13. Susanna Perkins

    Years ago I freelanced for a couple of different magazines and several business-related weekly newspapers, and kept myself as busy as I wanted to be.

    Then my husband and I added an “ours” — a fifth child — to our “yours and mine” family and I took some time to be home with the baby. A non-writing opportunity came along that seemed too good to pass up. I really enjoyed working without the constant sell.

    Fast forward nearly two decades, and the financial meltdown forced me back into freelancing.

    The intervening years have been very stressful and I have lost confidence in my ideas. No ideas, no pitches. No pitches, no work.

    My big problem, in a nutshell, is me. I need to re-learn how to get out of my own way. It’s not the writing that’s the issue, it’s the selling myself.

    Help! I need an agent!

  14. richwheeler

    As an engineer who can write, I hate to do things half-baked. You might notice that, as you read this simple suggestion that has turned into an essay.

    When I lost my job, I read up on freelance writing. "Gung-ho! I found myself!" Then I started my business plan. I recognized the need to develop processes, analyze the market, develop marketing collateral, create rate sheets and cost estimating forms, and develop several types of budgets. I also came to realize that I had to thin my list of possible services to match my background.

    That's when this overwhelmed, nascent freelancer decided that it would be easier to stick with my day job, if I could replace it. Over a year later, I'm still saying, "if."

    I've narrowed my freelance writing focus to two types, both of which tend toward hourly employment. That simplifies things tremendously. Now the business plan and more specific studies can wait.

    My recent post Keeping Up with the Geeks

  15. richwheeler


    The biggest remaining hurdle is economic. Unless I can find telework, I will have to relocate at my own expense — and my potential jobs last weeks or months while paying a third to half what I used to make. It's another budgetary and logistical tsunami of unknowns.

    So… some things to consider for future endeavors:

    – Business plans for writers
    – Topics and templates ancillary to business plans, such as market analysis, marketing plans, rate sheets, processes, marketing collateral, cost estimating, and budgets
    – Classes to take and skills to develop for each type of writing
    – Matching your background and personality to the type of writing
    – How to find telework that generates real income
    – How to live with contract jobs

    The preceding folks' comments are great. Please forgive me if I've duplicated any.
    My recent post Keeping Up with the Geeks

    • TiceWrites

      Wow, it's like a Dickensian serial! I can't wait for the next chapter.

      Rich, I've worked with quite a few mentees now who are in small towns, or around the world. There's plenty of telework out there. You should think in terms of finding it rather than blindly relocating to some new town where you know no one and have to start your networking process all over again anyway.

      • richwheeler

        Dickensian? Shucks, I was going for Clancyish. Except, his chapters are shorter.

        Thanks. I'll refine my search.

        I couldn't sign up for the 40 Ways PDF 'cuz I already subscribe.
        My recent post Keeping Up with the Geeks

        • TiceWrites

          I'm going to need to find a workaround for that situation — since I think some folks are unsubscribing now so they can subscribe over again and get the freebie. For now, sending it to you myself!


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