Deciding to write online can be frightening, exciting and more. If you have writing experience you are at an advantage but remember most freelance writers and bloggers have little if any such experience. They tend to learn as they go along. What has motivated you to write online could be earning pocket money, earning a living, sharing your experiences, participating in an online community, reporting news and more.Perhaps one of the most important considerations is where to write.
This may sound the least of your worries but it is not. In fact it should be a primary concern.Points to consider:
- Many websites claim that your work remains your property yet they will not let you remove it. If the site fails to live up to expectations you can move on but your work is stuck. You may have found a more lucrative site and want to put your work there but take care. Some sites will only accept original work. If you post the same stuff elsewhere your articles may be flagged as copies.
- Be careful of websites with vague promises of payment. You should be able to keep a running check on your earnings. Most sites have some formula for working out payments. The more obscure the payment system the more chance the site is a sham.
- Fair pay. You have to accept that writing online will often only pay peanuts but make sure you are not ripped off. Who wants to help a large corporation get rich for nothing?
- If the money you have earned on a website goes down have a re-think. There can be many reasons for such a change but many are warning signs that all is not well. If you have 20 dollars in your kitty, totting up nicely for the day the site pays out each month, there is no real justification for it dropping to 10 dollars. Personal experience of this was Digital Journal although the amounts used are examples. Staff members may kindly offer an explanation but it still does not sit well. If the management opt to count page views in a different manner or the like it should be from that day and not retrospectively.
- What is your niche audience? Are you passionate about news or animal welfare? Do you want to create a travel blog with tons of photos? Some site suit certain subjects and writers more than others.
The above are just a few points to consider. Here are some freelance sites which are ok but not all allow you to remove your work. Take care investing time and effort on any freelance writing sites unless you know the risks and understand the sites peculiarities.
Writing Sites which allow you to delete or remove your work:Allvoices.comHubpages.comSquidoo.comwizzley.com
Sites where you cannot remove your work:Digitaljournal.comHelium.cominfobarrel.comBear in mind that some sites pay "passive income" This means that your articles or reports continue to earn money with little or no effort on your part. There are usually some strings which can change from time to time. It is worth popping onto such sites, now and then, if you have work on there, simply to keep abreast of any changes.At time of writing infobarrel, hubpages and wizzley still pay a small amount of passive income, no strings attached.Writing online can be a minefield. If you are a prolific writer reports or articles can tot up quickly. Make sure you don't get caught out.Next installment to follow....................Perhaps your own blog would be a better
Do you write under your own name or like this writer do you prefer to use a pen name. A pen name may be chosen for many reasons. For this writer it was a lack of confidence in the early days of writing. Although that is not as bad as it used to be it is still there. Ideally it is best to blow your own trumpet and attract readers. Some of us do not find that so easy though.
So a pen name can help.
Having used the name of Ethel Smith
for more than 6 years it suits me. It has personal links and feels right. It is not the most SEO friendly name in the world though. The problem with the name Ethel Smith is that a famous organ playing lady was also called this. SEO, or search engine optimisation, is not so easy with such a pen name. Search for Ethel Smith and you will find thiswriter but you will also find "Weird Hammond Organ Lady Tico Tico". The odds are that the weird organ lady wil rank much higher.
Ethel Smith, the organ lady, was unknown to me until I began writing.
These days using my own name is happening more often but that's not so easy. Once you have chosen a pen name it is sensible to stick with it. You will soon gain a reputation and changing name mid-stream is not always a good idea.
If my real name, Eileen Kersey, had been in use fro day one I would probably have fared better. It is a little more unusual but there are others with the same name online.
So the best advice is give your pen name considerable thought. Each idea that springs to mind should be searched for online. If it is already in use, especially by a popular person or organization go back t the drawing board A pen name may be with you for many years, if your online writing becomes a long standing hobby or occupation. Of course, if you are lucky enough, or maybe unlucky enough, to have a name such as Desiree Shufflebottom, you will probably be a one off.
There is a line of thinking that pen names are a bad thing. That you should want to associate yourself with your work, otherwise it is unethical. To my mind that is bunkum. We were not all blessed with a wonderful education and an easy path in life. For some writing is a skill that develops in time. We are not all big heads after all.
The best advice seems to be to try to write using an individual and catchy name. It is one of the steps needed to become visible on search engines. Confidence is key and in time it will come.The above also applies with choosing a doman name for a website. TEK is problematic but it is here to stay now. In retrospect though it is not the best option.
A few ago a period of ill health meant that I was home more than ever before. As a person who had always worked full-time it was both lovely and difficult. The ill-health was a pain of course but all that time on my hands. What on earth was I going to do? Q - How long have you been writing for?
A - It feels like a lifetime
Up until this time our home PC was mainly used to play games, create databases and type the odd letter. However, our recent "Internet Connection" saw me researching all sorts of subjects. Partly looking for something to while away a few hours but hoping that I could earn a little money into the bargain, I began to write product reviews. As they say the rest is history.
Looking back at some of my early work it was truly dreadful. I had been good at English at school but that had been many years earlier. I soon became an ardent writer and with time my writing improved. Rushing headlong into writing ventures, I only researched so far. This meant that each site which I joined, was a learning process. A learn as you go along venture.
In the early days, I learned the importance of having a copy of your work. If a site folds, or your computer stalls as you are writing, your work is lost. it is worth typing a draft into Word or a similar programme, so that if the worst happens you have a copy.
The pen name, Ethel Smith
, which now feels like my alter ego was chosen for personal reasons. Now that my writing has improved, hopefully, Ihave stepped out of the writer's closet. We all have good and bad days. Some days confidence dives and creative juices refuse to flow., but that's life.
Online earnings can be good, bad or downright non-existent, but you live and learn. It is best to be selective where you write and only continue with sites that suit you. Writing online can be fun, a pain, social, isolated, creative, a chore and much more. You will need to at least enjoy writing or you may as well look elsewhere.
There are new sites and formats arriving all of the time but who would have thought that a site of my own would have been on the cards?
Many online writers begin to write for all sorts of reasons. For some the money is perhaps the main incentive but most people could earn more for working a few hours behind a pub bar, or the like. Part of the attraction is the freedom, the sense that you are working for yourself, the flexibility, the anonymity, being able to share your opinions and experiences, and having the chance to grow. You do not have to begin as an excellent writer but there is a chance you may become one.
Freelance writing is democratic these days and novices write alongside experienced professionals. In this way it is much easier to get a break as a writer, rather than trying traditional methods to get selected for writing assignments.
It feels like a lifetime?
Online writing invariably means that you reminisce, fall back on your experiences and share some of your memories. Perhaps this is why it feels as if I have written for longer than is really the case. It may only be a few years since I began writing online
but in so many ways it feels like a lifetime and it is doubtful I will ever stop.
'Tis Christmas Day nowBoth far and near
Yet in so many places
there will be little cheer
Spare a thought then
for others this day
Those with no smile nor joy
coming their way.
The sad and the lonely,
the sick and the poor
those fighting in countries
war torn and more.
If you are enjoying
a Christmas more blessed
is it because you are lucky
and you live in the West?
For all of our troubles
and all of our strife
most of us live
a reasonable life
Some may fare better
such is the way
but none should have nothing
this Christmas Day
Look in your heart
and share what you can
I bet you are stuffed
having eaten all but the pan.
But Christmas is more
than gifts and pure greed
it is about helping others
especially those who are in need
Even giving a little
can do so much good
and happiness is catching
unless you are made of wood.
'Tis the day before Christmas
and all through the house
everyone is stirring
even a mouse.
The kids are at it,
screaming and more
carol singers sing out
then knock on the door.
The phone joins in
springing to life
Husband’s still shopping
it’s a message for wife
There are no turkeys
anywhere to be found
he is trawling the shops
going round and around.
Mum goes back,
to yet more chores,
as the kids race round
slamming the doors.
The day continues
going from bad to worse,
Christmas or not
out slips a curse.
But in due course
the kids go to bed,
sleep is evasive,
Santa fills a child's head
The adults now have
to creep up and down,
helping Santa leave gifts,
without so much as a frown.
Finally they too
go to their bed
straight to sleep,
the sleep of the dead.
Two hours later,
or so it seems,
the kids are awake,
they can hear from their screams.
“Look what he’s brought me”,
shout Kerry and Pete,
whilst poor Mum and Dad,
simply wish for more sleep.
By Ethel Smith
is yet another Internet writing site. When this report was originally written Xomba had been undergoing some changes Its face-lift complete could it be the site for you?. It now has a brand spanking new interface which looks set to be a very good one. So fancy becoming a Xombie? Carry on reading and decide for yourself.
So just as on Hubpages you become a Hubber, on Xomba you become a Xombie. Cool, eh.
You may have read about Xomba before or even been a member but the new Xomba offers much more than it used to. When there are those things that you want to write quickly and less extensively than in something like Hub, Xomba could do the trick.
The old Xomba only had the option to post a Bookmark or write an Article. The new Xomba has much more including:
Linking a bookmark to your existing work elsewhere is not allowed. What this means is that you cannot post a link to one of your own hubs on Xomba. Such self promoting is not allowed. However, in your profile you are allowed some of these type of links.
The interface is simple to use and does include some useful tools these days. You can check your reads, rates, comments, boost to twitter or facebook, add images and videos, follow writers, add a profile and so much more.
Currently Xomba has the feel of a site which is going places. It feels so new. All such sites take time to grow into huge websites such as Hubpages or Squidoo. It is a friendly site with some rules but not too many. It could be a good addition to your Internet writing portfolio.
Xomba pays by adsense which means you can utilise an adsense account you already have.Note: Originally written in 2011 and correct at that time.Check out Xomba for any new updates.
If you are an Internet writer
trying to make some cash sooner or later you will come across affiliate
marketing. For this blogger it was her arrival at Hubpages that heralded this new challenge. Initially the whole kit and kaboodle was a complete mystery. In time some of the mystery has unraveled but there is still a long way to go. For those of you just starting out on the great affiliate adventure hopefully this brief article will help.
Having joined Hubpages or similar sites you will want to know how you can earn some money into the bargain. Unlike some online writing sites there is no hard and fast income from writing at Hubpages. Your earnings are generally achieved by membership to affiliate programs and referrals, if you are lucky. Hubpages does now have its own revenue earning potential but it is not huge.
Affilates that will offer you the chance to get paid are:
- Google AdSense
- Amazon affiliates
For this blogger the only affiliate worth any salt is Google AdSense
. That is not to say that it will be the only one for you which pays. A lot depends upon your target audience, your following, your writing, the topics you cover and the like.Kontera
ads proved a waste of time and effort.. The earnings potential was just so paltry. As the number of visitors grows Kontera could prove beneficial. It only appears to be profitable if you have a huge following.
Amazon allows you to pretty up your work with ""goodies" for sale but the returns can be poor. In common with many online writers Google AdSense is the big one. That said do not expect to be able to retire on your earnings. The important word with affiliates is PATIENCE
Google AdSense pays out once you have reached a threshold of 100 dollars or 60 pounds. Your first payout could seem to take forever. Over time this should improve. Remember that each time Google updates, such as the Penguin update, your affiliate earnings could slump even further.
For those of you who want big bucks affiliate earnings may not be enough. However patience is a virtue and you may want to actively manage you AdSense. There is a lot of information online designed to help you demystify affiliate marketing
and make the changes necessary for it to work for you.
It must be stressed that you need to be patient but also that it is up to you. Like any venture in this life, you will ultimately get out of affiliates, what you are prepared to put in.
Having decided to try your hand at making some money on-line where do you begin? Well many entrepreneurs consider freelance writing. That can be fun and earn money but there are a million and one writers all trying their hand at freelance writing. For those who are novices perhaps this article will help. There are no right or wrongs, just what works for you.
If you have bothered to take time to write on-line though why not see if you can make the effort worthwhile?
If you chose to write for fun, well good for you. The pressure will be off. For the rest of us let's take a look at passive income and what it means.
Passive income is money that you may earn with little or no continuous effort. Take for example the articles you create on websites such as Hubpages and Helium. If the subject matter is evergreen they could earn you money ad infinitum.
You may choose to update them occasionally, tweet them, or post a link on face-book but you do not have to if you do nott want to. Sometimes though this refreshing will gather new readers.
Choosing the right platform for you and your needs
Some freelance writing websites offer good money but need continuous effort on your part. You may find that each month the clock is re-set and, unless you are active on the site you earn nothing. It is up to you to work out if this suits your style and needs. If you are retired it may do so. If time is sometimes in short supply it may not.
It is no good choosing the most profitable site if it will not work for you.
With such a choice of writing sites available research the opportunities. Before you invest a lot of time and effort in any given website test the waters. If you decide its not for you then you have lost little or nothing.
Look for ones that fit your talents. What is your thing? Is it news, fashion, politics, fun stuff, products, travel or what? Choose the best platform for your style and skills.
We all have life skills. Many on-line writers have not received special training. It is all about using your knowledge and learning how to express it. It takes time but given the right amount of perseverance we all improve.
Expect some knock backs
When you write on-line there is always someone wanting to knock you. If it is valid then take it on the chin. However, if you feel it is someone bullying you, being over critical or the like make sure that the site's "moderators" are aware. Overly critical and abusive interaction often leads to members leaving or giving up. Don't let such people win. We all have something worth contributing.
Take the positive criticism and work with it. It could make all the difference as to how much you earn and how successful a writer you become.
Although you may have found a site which in effect offers passive income remember times changes. Many sites, including established ones such as Hubpages have had to change their rules lately. This is due to changes in Google and how we all use the Internet. When this happens you will have to update your work if you want it to still attract revenue. Ignoring any warnings from the site will simply mean your passive income disappears.
Sometimes there are other maintenance chores you will have to do to keep earning from your old articles, hubs and reports. Some will require you to read, rate and or comment on other member's work. Helium is such a site. If you do not maintain your rating stars there your old articles could become worthless. At Helium your articles are there for the long haul. You will not be able to routinely delete or move them.
This means that you must be conscious of any site's current rules. Such maintenance may be brief but essential. There are many other things to be aware of and learn but hey we are still learning too.
Try to diversify your writing. It can be hard writing on more than one site but it is always a good option. Sites come and go so this will prevent you being left high and dry. That said it could be a good idea to keep a copy of your work just in case.
When you write articles, reports, Hubs, blogs or what you will online social networking becomes an important tool. How else does the 21 st Century World know that you have written a new piece just waiting for them to stop by and read? Most freelance writers and bloggers online use Facebook and twitter as their primary promotion resources. Digg, Stumbleon and Pinit are also useful but twitter is probably the single most useful social networking tool.With a
carefully gathered following it is possible to make sure that your latest work is viewed by thousands of twitterers. Sure they might not all stop by your blog but they will receive a link and so many times retweet it to others. All in all a win win situation. There are downsides though, as all things in this life.When you first join twitter you will follow all and sundry. You may opt to always follow any twitter account that follows you. In time though that account may drop you. Most users are only allowed to follow 2,000 accounts until they have gathered a considerable amount of followers. You could pay to increase your following but what's the point in that? Earning money online is hit and miss these days. Do you really make enough to pay for twitter followers or to increase the amount you can follow?
It would be useful of course if you could check who is not following you and drop those accounts. Well you can.Manage Filter offers paid plans but also a free option which will enable you to see who is not following you back.
The site is easy to access and quick to get to grips with. Once the accounts that do not follow you back are highlighted you can simply choose not to follow.There are always some accounts which you may want to follow even though they do not follow you. Some will have reached their twitter limit for now and not be able to. That is why it is important to drop those who are no longer any use to you.
This will free up some space for people you really want to follow and who follow back.Identifying inactive twitter accounts is also useful. It is no good having hundreds of followers if they are no longer active on Twitter.At time of writing we have not encountered any issues with manage filter. You will have to authorize it basic access to your twitter account but nothing more than most of us do to some apps already.
Penguins are one of my favourite creatures. As an animal lover I do adore most critters though Many are so very beautiful in their own ways. So what has this to do with freelance writing online, I hear you ask?
For some reason each time Google updates, it gives its latest revamp an animal name. Not so long ago we had a Panda update and now it is the Penguin one. So do I still love penguins. Yes of course but I am not so sure about the the Google Penguin Update.
Sometimes it is easy to feel that Google chiefs just want us all to jump through various hoops. They move the goalposts time and time again. Just when you thought you had it sussed out, it is all change again.
Whilst this can be a pain it is unfortunately a necessary evil of writing online.
Too may spammers and the like ruin the online experience of others. Then there are some just trying to make a fast buck. These people often have websites that offer nothing new nor original. Well this latest google update is in many ways aimed at them. The latest Google Penguin update could see your visitor numbers hit. There is no easy answer nor quick fix.
Google are fairly secretive about each new release. If they were not spammers would simply find a way around each version. That said there are many places online where you can read about the update and garner a few ideas on how to maintain or improve your website ranking. Will it pay you to do so? Yes it will for sure.
This blogger has opted to print a rather long booklet offering some information. This will allow perusal at her leisure. Your website could nosedive but hopefully it will be briefly if you stay ahead of the game. The latest update appears to demand original work not articles that are posted all over the Internet plus it is aimed at rewarding quality.
Good luck. Read More Here
Tags: Google Penguin, update, Panda update, spam, webspammers, Google ranking