6 Ways to Find Freedom AND Security as a Writer or Artist
It’s exhilarating to picture putting your AWAI training to work as a professional writer or artist, but it’s also daunting to think how much time it might take to start your own business, market yourself, and try to land clients. If you’re ready for the benefits and the freedom of the writer’s life without the uncertainty that can come from needing to self-market all the time, there are other ways to find clients and success as a freelancer.
Aside from traditional freelance jobs like blogging and graphic design, you might be surprised at some of the alternatives to translate your training as an artist or writer into a successful career. A search of FlexJobs, the leading job search website for telecommute and freelance job listings, revealed six interesting options for writers and artists who want to embrace the freedom of freelancing without the anxiety of constantly pitching clients.
The jobs profiled below are often listed as freelance opportunities, and you don’t need to start your own business or market yourself excessively to land them. As a bonus, these jobs are also telecommute jobs which typically don’t require you to work in a specific location, expanding your market for freelance clients and giving you more opportunity to grow your portfolio and your career.
Grant writer. Many nonprofit organizations need writers to help them secure grants and funding sources, and they’re moving their jobs online and searching for freelance writers. Grant writing jobs are ideal for people who like research, writing, and working under deadlines, and who have a genuine interest in the mission of whichever nonprofit they’re helping to support.
Newsletter editor. If you have experience in a particular industry, like finance, marketing, or health care, and you want to manage other writers, companies are starting to offer virtual newsletter editing positions. These freelance jobs are either part-time or full-time and they require writers who have a solid foundation in a particular field. While the bulk of work for a newsletter editor is editing other writers’ work, you may also have the option to do some of your own writing.
Freelance correspondent. Writers who like creating fresh and newsworthy content should consider a freelance job as a correspondent or journalist. More traditional news outlets and new, hyper-local websites are seeking experienced writers who have a knack for finding and getting to the bottom of interesting stories. Depending on the needs of the media outlet, you might be asked to cover a specific beat like local schools and school boards, or you may be able to choose which topics you write about.
Presentation designer. Knowing how important the visuals and overall look of a presentation can be, companies are now turning to professional artists with an interest in branding to create corporate presentations for them. This type of job requires artists who enjoy the creative side of corporate life and who have desktop publishing skills and a solid knowledge of PowerPoint.
High School Art Teacher. The virtual teaching industry has expanded tremendously in the past few years. As a telecommuting art teacher, you would work full-time or part-time with a new and growing segment: virtual public schools, which operate in 22 states and serve over 40,000 students each year. Virtual teaching jobs usually require teaching certification for the state in which the students reside and virtual teachers have almost exactly the same responsibilities as their in-class counterparts.
Magazine Illustrator. If you enjoy freehand or computer drawing and illustration, magazines — in particular, children’s magazines — want to hire you as a telecommuting illustrator. Usually a flexible job for freelancers, illustrators receive assignments on an ongoing basis and work from their homes. Once a magazine decides they like your work samples, you’ll be sent assignments on an as-needed basis, so if you’re looking for a flexible part-time job, this might be for you.
As you envision your career as a writer or artist, keep an open mind for all the possibilities out there. Especially if you’re not ready to jump into self-marketing just yet, freelance jobs are evolving from a once-hidden job market fraught with competition to a commonplace hiring practice for small and large companies alike. Starting your career in one of these fields can help you lay the groundwork for your future as a successfully self-employed writer or artist.
Brie Weiler Reynolds is the Content and Social Media Manager at FlexJobs, the leading site for telecommuting and flexible job listings, where AWAI Members receive 30% off using promo code “AWAI” at checkout. A freelance writer herself, Brie writes about job searching, career advice, and flexible and freelance work trends on the FlexJobs Blog, and she interacts with FlexJobs’ job seekers through social media. You can find her at @FlexJobs on Twitter.
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