Assembling the Framework for Your “Writer’s Life” Puzzle

Yesterday I revealed how planning a successful writing career is a lot like putting together a jigsaw puzzle …

The basics of persuasive writing are like the “corner pieces” of the puzzle. Once you get them in place, the next step becomes easier.

Today I want to show you the second step in assembling your writer’s life puzzle … creating the framework.

As a freelance writer, I think of the side pieces as choosing a niche.

This step holds your freelance puzzle together and gives you a framework for your business.

I remember when I finally settled on my niche … I had just joined Circle of Success, and included in the program was a mentoring call with Rebecca Matter.

I spent the time whining about my lack of focus and direction. I had no idea which niche was best.

Rebecca listened for a few moments and then confirmed what I had suspected all along – not choosing a niche was my way of procrastinating.

If I wanted my business to go from a pile of puzzle pieces to a recognizable picture, I had to make a decision and get started.

But, here’s the kicker …

Choosing your niche isn’t as important as simply having a focus.

You see, your writer’s life puzzle can be an image of anything. But, if you want to create a recognizable picture, you need to start somewhere.

Most people like to start a puzzle by forming the edges, because they’re easy to pick out. Just look for the pieces with a straight edge.

Choosing a niche can be just as simple. Look for the obvious things that stand out … the topics or fields you’re interested in or know a lot about. Or the kind of writing that seems the easiest for you, or with the most project opportunities.

If you’re finding this part difficult, you’re likely over-thinking it.

Just go with your gut!

That brings us to today’s action item:

Think back to when you first considered becoming a writer …

What did you imagine you would write?

Your answer is a great starting place for uncovering the ideal niche for you.

Keep in mind your niche doesn’t have to be anything original. Instead, choose something that has already proven to be profitable.

For instance, Business-to-Business (or B2B) is a niche that’s great for 99% of writers. The industry is huge, the competition is small, and it’s fairly easy to break into …

You can even take the short quiz here to see if B2B is right for you.

If you still need some help choosing your niche – or narrowing down your options – let’s talk about it in the comments.

Then join me tomorrow to talk about the middle section of your puzzle and how to start putting it together.

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Published: October 21, 2014

8 Responses to “Assembling the Framework for Your “Writer’s Life” Puzzle”

  1. Hi Christina,

    I am just at this point in my writing career, so your words are extremely useful! I have a background in environmental work, so was thinking of starting from there, maybe with a focus on fundraising and grant writing. Is that too narrow? I don't want to limit myself. I would be interested in working with other nonprofits as well. Should I broaden the type of writing? I think I could happily write newsletters and web content too. I'm finding this step challenging!

    Danielle VickOctober 21, 2014 at 2:37 pm

  2. I took the test... and still have some questions

    Guest (nancy)October 21, 2014 at 3:22 pm

  3. Hi, Niche is my biggest issue. I have been a social worker for over 20 years and owned my own business for 13. I know I want to be in the health niche, but that's so broad. I'm taking B2B companion series with Steve, but how do you narrow down your niche and then figure out how to break into it and what marketers to contact? Sue Morin

    Sue MorinOctober 21, 2014 at 3:54 pm

  4. I know I'd like to get into travel writing and also put together copy for websites (like my own mother's site, which I helped set up)...but then again, I'm not even sure what "web writing" is. I think I need to read up more on what web copy and B2B entail before I'll know what sounds really attractive. =/ It's such a big world, and I didn't even know it existed until about a month ago. So much to look at! Aah! Thank you for the quiz link, though. Helpful.

    RandiOctober 21, 2014 at 8:54 pm

  5. Christina, my 1st vision of writing pertained to traveling and photography. I have also been drawing since I was 5yrs old. I enjoyed art throughout school. I continued on with painting and airbrushing and really excelled. I enjoyed English classes the most when it came to education.I became interested in writing. However, sports and art were my loves. I then joined the military and writing fell by the wayside. I continued with my art throughout my life. Then somehow AWAI fell into my lap, like a gift from Heaven! So, this is where my present meets my past. I do enjoy writing. I just need to do more and more of it. So, I appreciate any guidance and support. Thank you for listening. Glen.

    Guest (Glen Myers)October 21, 2014 at 10:14 pm

  6. This article is in line with something on my mind lately. I am interested in the mental health industry and want to make this my niche. I have many years of counseling experience and this is a good fit. My dilemma is around how and whether I need to create a "sub-niche". We have been told we need to specialize in B2B, in web writing, in case studies, in direct marketing, travel, or a number of other areas. I can see that each of these niches can become a part of the mental health niche. This is too much to learn and too much to master. Help me to sort this out.

    Nora KingOctober 23, 2014 at 1:44 pm

  7. I took the test ... and failed!

    Whaaaaat?!

    OK seriously, the test clearly pointed me toward B2B.

    Well, I've recently decided (finally) to pursue email newsletters (based on Michael Katz's AWAI course). But that leaves the issue of who would be reading the newsletters ... consumers or business people (B2B)? Maybe a good fit for me would be email newsletters for companies (e.g., law firms) whose clients are businesses. I hadn't thought of that before...

    Guest (Jeff Soufal)October 24, 2014 at 10:56 am

  8. I'm afraid there is not a profitable niche that interests me. I've been a criminal prosecutor for 25 years- my only adult job. I've no interest in any major niche, (health, finance, pets, non-profit, etc.) and no experience in business. I just want to write and make money at it. I'mm stumped. Thanks for the great articles though.

    Guest (Dan F)November 1, 2014 at 10:26 am


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