Still Dreaming of Being a Freelance Writer?

Carline Anglade-Cole

Still dreaming of being a freelance writer?

Well, I’m going to show you how to conquer – and even embrace – your fears … get off your butt … and make it happen!

Let me warn you right now … I’m not pulling any punches. Not holding back. Not accepting any excuses. And, taking NO prisoners.

So, STOP READING NOW – if you can’t handle the truth!

Because, the truth is: If you’ve been seriously thinking or dreaming of becoming a freelance writer – you’re your WORST ENEMY.

It’s not your spouse. Not your family obligations. Not “the market.” It’s Y-O-U!

And, I’m going to show you how to get out of your own way – and turn your dream into a reality.

So, let me apologize NOW – because I plan to step on some toes.

But, what I’m going to do for you this week is going to be a life changer – and I mean that in a GOOD way!

And, what I’m going to do for you right now is what a few folks did for me back in 1999 when I took the leap … I said goodbye to a 9-to-5 job with a STEADY paycheck and (yikes) BENEFITS, like a 401K plan, paid holidays and vacation time, and sick leave!

(I thought I was an adventurous, free-spirited person – until the thought of losing the stability of a REGULAR paycheck made me feel woozy!)

I wanted to take the freelance jump YEARS before I mustered up the courage. I was scared as heck – and that fear gave me the “out” to create all sorts of excuses like:

”We need the money.”

“Our four kids will starve.”

“I’m not ready.”

“What if I suck?”

But then, one day, I SNAPPED! I started hearing “voices.”

And those voices were coming from people like:

My husband Mick – who said “Hey, honey, we started off in a one-bedroom, roach-infested basement apartment in Hyattsville, MD, and we were happy – so, we can always go back to it if we have to …”

Clayton Makepeace – the #1 copywriter working for Phillips Publishing – who said, “You got talent, kid – now get some guts …”

My friend Denise – who said, “Giirrrllll … are you serious? That’s awesome – you can do it! … and I’ve got food whenever you need it!”

So, my first assignment for you this week is:

Create your own cheering squad.

Get rid of – or at least tune out – the haters … and surround yourself with a support system – a small group of people you trust and who believe in your dream.

So, when you start to get in your own way … pick up the phone, email or pop into one of their homes and get that encouraging BOOST – and even the kick in your pants you need – to stick with your goal!

I’ll tell you the truth: Without my support group – I would’ve chickened out and never fulfilled my dream. These folks gave me the nudge … push … and even shoulder to cry on – when I needed it!

You’re going to need people like that in your freelance life, too!

So, line up your cheering squad! And, let me know what obstacles you’re facing that are preventing you from experiencing your dream of the freelancer’s life – so we can tackle them together! Share your comments here.

Right now is the absolutely BEST time to make that freelance leap!

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Published: August 10, 2015

58 Responses to “Still Dreaming of Being a Freelance Writer?”

  1. Ms. Anglade-Cole,

    This post came just in time! Wow! AWAI really helps you every step of the way. This article is like Divine Intervention. To keep this quick, I've gotten out of the way by decluttering and sorting my working space. Loads of paper to prove of my past regrets and failures. Also, I have absolutely & completely deleted my inbox from my old & current e-mail accounts. I am clearing the way to go on this journey of the WRITER's Life. Gotto run as there is much more decluttering to do!

    Regine Baptiste

  2. Hi Carline! You are kidding about living in Hyattsville, MD, right? That's too close for comfort; I am working through the Accelerated Program from beautiful Landover. Cheerleaders would be nice and they start off fine, but don't stick. I won't, can't depend on them. It's the same with so called accountability partners. I am plugging away without either one. My goals can't wait for them.


  3. I am really interested in freelance writing. However I don't have the required registration fee. Please I am asking for help to pay for the funds and even if it means giving back when I start ending or not paying me until I have fully worked for the stated amount.

    I'd really appreciate if I am considered



  4. I use song lyrics to write, and can describe anything with them.

    ( I'm so glad I found you. I saw the sign and it opened up my eyes. )

    It was suggested that I establish a support group.

    I just want you to know who I am. I'm radio active.

    If you don't want to see me again I would understand. It was like the Lord spoke right to me.

    I just want you to look at me and see that I can be good enough.

    There's something magic about you, don't you agree? You will make me what I am.

    Guest (Song Echo)

  5. I am beset by fears right now. I just got cleared to earn, and haven't made a whit of progress.

    I know I need to clean up my profiles, pitch harder, work smarter, but fear - and other psychological afflictions - leave me paralyzed!

    Thank you for this week's segment on conquering our fears, Carline #HUGS Kitto

    Guest (Kit)

  6. I'm currently recovering from major surgery. I have lots of time so I'm spending it going through the basic copywriting course. When I'm recovered I'll have finished the course ready to go to work as a Freelance Copywriter. It's very helpful to hear stories of success. It lets me know I can do this. I'm very excited about what's ahead, but also intent on learning the skills and techniques that will make me a good Copywriter.


  7. What about facing health crises that slow you down? Anybody out there experiencing this?

    Kay Coulter

  8. Carline, I'm so ready - but I'm the sole source of income. Do you mind sharing how much you saved before making the jump? I've just been abysmal with saving, but I have an inheritance coming in soon. I live in Alaska and it's very expensive. Oh, I have a million excuses and really only one or two people to give me support. I lived a free life when I was young, now I'm 64 and want to enjoy these years. I have no retirement, so I have to work.

    Guest (Skywalker P)

  9. Hi Carline,

    GOOD to see you're here to do BUSINESS! That self-talk you experienced in the early days ties us all down for a spell I guess. Thankfully I'm over that hurdle. However, I have to resume a teaching job to make up for a lack of cash flow from copywriting. Things are starting to happen for me I'm feeling confident that I'm on the right path, doing the right things.

    I look forward to hearing your brutally honest words this week. And I hope to meet you at Bootcamp too!!

    Guest (Lee Nourse)

  10. Looking forward to reading your articles this week, Carline! You always give great, actionable advice. Thanks!

    Elizabeth Blessing


    Guest (Agrih)

  12. I have been a member of AWAI for about a month now. It seemed to be the answer to my prayers. I have wanted to be a writer since I was about 6 years old, but I allowed other people to talk me into getting "a real job" that I have hated forever! I am unemployed and can't seem to contact with a "real job" now, so, I guess the Universe is telling me this is the time for me to become what I was meant to be all along! Thank you for your article!


  13. Not sure how to begin and I am very nervous but I love to write and be creative.

    Top Notcher

  14. After August 28th, I'll have no job as I'm being made redundant. I welcome it as I've been wanting the freelance writing life for years now.

    What's holding me back affects a lot of writers, fear of failure. But I keep this thought in mind, 'Every writer was where I am now and one day I'll be where they are'.

    Copywriting is no different to any other profession. There is a period of learning, but I'm finding it hard to stop learning and start earning. Oh for a magic wand.

    Glenna Hale

  15. i DO have my "own cheering squad," Carline. Forty one hundred Friends on Facebook. But the ones that start out as my most supportive are usually the ones envious of my success and quick to call me out on my ambition's ego-induced arrogance. Facebook, therefore, is like bubble wrap... A great protective cushion 'til all the bubbles are popped.

    Guest (Chris Morris)

  16. Thank you for your courage. I have been afraid if I could make it through writing, with your testimony I think I can do it. There are few things that give me a slow motion to this: Lack of website or money making website, how to get started or having live mentors to put me through. By the time I go through this year's booth camp, I shall know where to begin with, plus your personal advice. Daniel

    Guest (Daniel)

  17. I have joined to become a member of AWAI and checked off the templates indicating my areas of expertise. Today, I received and read several testimonials from successful writers. But, I need to know exactly how I get started writing for someone, obtaining clients, etc. Please advise as I am eager to get started with this venture. Thank you, Mary Burroughs

    Mary Burroughs-Creative Writer

  18. Good job, Carline! Thank you for the inspiration. I have a 16 year old daughter who is a great cheering squad. She brings me tea and asks how it is going. I have now finished three courses, am in COS, and plan to be at Bootcamp, but no clients yet. That is where I am. I have to realize that I need to put all that knowledge to work now!

    Kathryn Wenzel

  19. It's nice to hear stories of "the writer's life" that make it sound like being wealthy without having to do more than write a few pages a week, but even after you throw out those who just quit, what percentage hits the big time? How long before a beginner can expect to get a client and then regular work? Am I really going to have to spend hours reading a big book (or several) just to learn to write long, rambling letters with lots of ellipses, talking about the golden opportunities the client offers the target audience, which only a tiny percentage will actually get? 'cause that (for all I can tell)is what I keep seeing in the e-mails I'm getting from AWAI.

    Guest (OldDreamer)

  20. Thanks, Carline, for the much-needed kick in the pants. But I did sign up a few days ago for the session scheduled for Aug 11th and expect that it’ll be the kick-start that I need. I think if I can get some of these other projects under wraps (some of which are not even generating income!), my mind will be freer to focus on AWAI. So, thanks for the extra push! All the best to you in your continued success. Warm regards, Mama Edie, the Bilingual Storyteller

    Guest (Mama Edie)

  21. I'm stuck on the whole 'niche' thing. I want to help small businesses with Lead Generation but I'm unsure of where to start.

    Then I thought why not help out big businesses? They have more money and are more likely to be willing to pay.

    But, that's not really a niche, is it?

    I really enjoy writing emails. But, then I get stuck on marketing myself.

    Gee...I'm glad this is Tough Love Week. Hopefully you can smack some sense and clarity into me.

    Max Latimer

  22. It had been suggested that I establish a support group in becoming Freelance.

    We need someone to lean on. All the time I was finding myself.

    Now I await further direction for progress.

    Anywhere I go, there you are. I've got my head to the wall.

    I would like to show an example of my writing to someone relevant.

    Cracks run through these walls, but they still stand strong. And you'll find them next to me.

    I'm going no where. Remind me. I'm going to blow your mind like that.

    Song Echo

  23. Yes, Carline, I'm one of those people that is inundated with fear: fear of rejection, fear of not knowing how to proceed, etc. I've had the "Accelerated Program for Six-Figure Copywriting" for a while and have been working on the Restaurant Letter for a month. I can't bring myself to submit it. I think the letter is good...but what if it's not? I know I should just post it. And I have no family nearby to give me that extra boost I need. I look forward to your viewpoint this week. :-)


  24. thanks Carline for taking the time to give some encouragement to myself and others i think my biggest worry is will i be good enough, with limited funds will i be able o market to get good customers probably all the usuall stuff. I think once i do my first job i will be okay

    Guest (ronald)

  25. Kudos Regine! ( hey, I have a cousin named Regine!)

    Great first start - now get some butter 'cuz you're on a roll! :-)

    Don't stop - do something every day that will get you CLOSER to your goals.

    Remember a goal without a plan aint nothing but a dream! Make it happen, girl!

    Guest (Carline)

  26. Hey Kit - Look kiddo, you've got to embrace that fear and make it work for you! Take baby steps - and celebrate every accomplishment. If this is what you really want to do - you've got to really do it!

    Guest (Carline)

  27. To Skywalker P.
    I had 6 months of income set aside to help me take the plunge into freelance writing. That was my comfort level. You need to look at your finances - and even get financial counseling if needed - to determine what your comfort level is so you can take the plunge.

    Guest (Carline)

  28. Hey Lee, Make sure you come and say HI to me at Bootcamp!

    Guest (Carline)

  29. To Agrih, There's a lot of FREE stuff - from experts - available on copywriting. Take advantage of all that you can! Bob Bly, Clayton Makepeace and yours truly have lots of FREE advice on our websites. That can definitely help you in your learning process until you can afford to buy the paid stuff! Here's a hint: A LOT of the FREE stuff is EXCELLENT advice!

    Guest (Carline)

  30. Hey Glenna, No magic wand - just hard work, sweat and persistence!

    Guest (Carline)

  31. Hey Chris, What the heck? 4,100 friends is NOT what I recommended! And now you see it's not delivering what you really need. Ignore the haters! Just a handful of genuine support will take you a LONG way!

    Guest (Carline)

  32. To Kathryn, Would love to meet you at Bootcamp! Make sure you teach your 16-year old daughter what you're learning! 2 of my girls are now copywriters!

    Guest (Carline)

  33. To Old Dreamer, I'm not feeling your attitude! Got nothing but negativity from your comment.
    Look, if you want to "write long, rambling letters with lots of ellipses" you're probably not going to succeed in this industry.
    Definition of success depends on YOU. If paying your bills is your goal and you reach that goal - then you're successful - whether is $30k a year of $300k!
    If being in that elite group of high-paid 7+-figure copywriters is your goal - then you're probably not going to make it. Heck, even I'm not in that group. But I feel successful where I am - and even where I was in my 1st year of freelance writing!

    Guest (Carline)

  34. Yo Max!
    Start off by going where the money is! If you can get a gig with a large company - get it! Niche-ing yourself will come in time.

    Guest (Carline)

  35. Hey Rocky, Turn in that letter. If it sucks, AWAI will tell you. If it's good - they'll tell you too!

    Guest (Carline)

  36. Hi Ronald, You and I share the same fear. I ALWAYS wonder if I'm good enough! Guess what? It's that fear that keeps making me BETTER!
    So you're in good company. Now TAKE ACTION!

    Guest (Carline)

  37. In my heart I know I say what I really feel because they said it really loud on the radio.
    Call me Mr Blue.

    Everybody, have you heard, he's going to buy a Mockingbird. She has built-in ability to take in everything she sees while we sleep.
    Others jotting down notes.

    Isn't anybody going to listen to my story about the girl who came to stay?
    At last, I had to stop. I'm down to my last penny.

    She'll be coming 'round the mountain when she comes. Keep on when the voice starts up.

    Song Echo

  38. Carlie, I am ready, I am an experienced highly qualified PhD who has been writing all his life. I have published two books an dam working on three writing projects.
    What I want for new people like me are just two things that would put us in the way of success:
    1. Give me/us an example of written copy that was good and accepted/paid.
    2. Give me or help me identify my first client to target copy to.
    This would solve any misgivings and confusion for me and most other prospectives.

    Guest (Teboho Ephraim Motaboli)

  39. I need to take this leap of faith and get started on a dream i've had for a long time.
    I've always been a writer and i will do very well making a living out of it.
    I must say i'm a little nervous but, it's now or never.

    Guest (shenequa)

  40. Thanks Carline, I just started the program and considering the subscription industry. AWAI didn't have any samples to reference off of so I'm kind of going at it almost alone. You're right in your email the hardest part is getting started.

    Guest (1stalgorithm)

  41. To Teboho - to see examples of written copy that accepted/paid - check your mailbox!
    If you see a sales piece more than once - it means it's probably a control. That means it's a successful sales piece. Start studying these FREE samples that come in your mailbox. A copywriter was probably paid big bucks to write that sales piece. Learn from it. Look at the style of writing. Look at the headlines and subheads. Did it make you want to buy the product? If so, why? Then imitate that approach!

    Guest (Carline)

  42. More for Teboho...

    As far as identifying your first client. Figure out who are the key players in your industry. Try to get in the back door. How?
    Propose writing shorter sales copy to existing customers. AWAI can give you lots more info/instructions on how to do this. Also check out my website for articles that help you break into the market.

    Guest (Carline)

  43. Have the cheerleaders, have the time, have the desire, and doing the work. Just wondering if there are any other retired folk doing this?

    Guest (Sealover)

  44. Call me a domesticated professional (an unlisted unemployed in the statistics of employable). When I quit from my job of 15 yrs, I cleaned our house; organized the closet; and fixed the old fence. I've discovered the 30 uses of WD40—removing grime from grout on bathroom floors, silencing squeaky hinges and more. Watching HGTV on keeping up with the Joneses; a little design and snappy purchases from Home Depot stirred a compelling call of my creative genius :-)
    See, that was my main obstacle- life's beautiful distractions!
    My best cheering squad: a supportive family with all the positive energies of love and faith.
    Thanks for the wake-up call and putting a considerate amount of knot in my stomach. I AM now determined to PURSUE my passion.

    Guest (Tess)

  45. Thanks Carline, I really value your strong and direct advise. We are our own worst enemy....I know I am! I've only been in the program for a couple of months....but I am so ready to get started, I'm afraid of making a mistake and being disappointed by being turned down!! Wanting to find a niche that is not really popular and on the cutting edge is a goal of mine....But how to get started is also a challenge! I definitely need HELP!!

    Gemma Moore

  46. Come on and let it show. I want to be wanted.
    It seems the more I gave the less I got. I need to know if you feel it too.

    Let the spinning wheel spin.

    You are wonderful tonight. Play it back.

    So much time to make up everywhere you turn.

    Don't go changing to try and please me, I want you just the way you are.

    He's one in a million.

    Freeze frame. You've got it right.
    Do what's inside of you.

    When you start I feel we know each other very well. It's a wonderful life.

    Guest (Song Echo )

  47. A lot of response from a lot of people. Let's meet at the same place, same time.

    Who cares what games we choose, little to win but nothing to lose.

    I'm so glad I've finally found you. It's like thunder; lightning.

    Now I must pull it all together. I get up in the morning, look in the mirror.

    You made promises you knew you'd never keep.

    *> I never wonder where I am because I am always by your side.

    I've got the feeling something isn't right. Can't you hear my heart beat?

    Song Echo

  48. To Carline:
    Thank you so much for writing what you did, especially when you did. I was experiencing a moment of depression due to my physical challenges not allowing me to write.

    To Kay Coulter:
    I have been with AWAI's accelerated program for one month and I am just starting part 3. I have rheumatoid arthritis and diabetes. There's days where I can not write and have to wait for my body to allow me to do so.
    I am learning to be patient,and know my limits. I understand for there are times I doubt myself greatly.

    This program teaches you to make promises and then show the proof. I remind myself of this when I get into my challenges and doubts. We can succeed!! Look me up if you need someone to hold your arms up. I'll cheeryou on :)

    Guest (Amandula Garcia)

  49. I have been getting these mails and following up on all comments but I dont see any response to comments and also want to know if AWAI can be extended to people outside the USA.

    Guest (LECTURER)

  50. I don't really want to be a copywriter, I want to write articles for magazines. Christian magazines and book writing are my passion. I don't think I have the patience to work with a clients e-mails, resumes' etc. My desire is to write christian books and queries so I may learn how to send professional Queries to magazines. Thank you so much for your time,

    Sincerely, Elizabeth

    Guest (Elizabeth Sifuentes)

  51. I get around. If I could fly I'd pick you up.

    There's something that I want to say, but I've always been afraid. I'm up on a tight rope; one side's hate and one side's hope.

    It's all right. I started to give up.

    *> The magical mystery tour is dying to take you away. I'm mighty glad I found you.

    It looks like nothing's going to change, everything remains the same.

    *> Get back to where you once belonged. Take the time, do it right.

    Song Echo

  52. What could he be thinking of?

    What does it matter to you, when you've got a job to do you do it well. There's nothing better in the world, you know, than lying in the Sun with a radio.

    When I wake from dreaming is it really love?

    *> Get back to where you once belonged. If you've been holding back, take up the slack and get the things you need.

    What would you do if I took those words away?

    *> There'll be a lot of wine and money.

    You stole my heart but I love you anyway.

    Song Echo

  53. Hi Carline,

    Your greeting is so uplifting and and optimistic that I had to respond to let you know how excited I am to be on this journey.

    I just completed exercise two of the accelerated program -- The Wall Street Journal letter.

    For me writing is my COMFORT zone, but I want to know that I'm on the right track; and I think that I am with all the information that I am receiving from AWAI.

    I'm so impressed by all the presentations, success stories, and feel the presence of AWAI motivators at every turn.

    Thank you for the daily, unending support.

    Guest (Joan Jones)

  54. Greetings Carline,

    G. Eric Gaither giving you THANKS for your wonderful "hard hitting" stance as I prefer brutal honesty to the societal soft avoidance.

    I prefer to be frank and blunt, thank you.

    My Fears are clearly illustrated in, and for everyone, please reference Fears section in THINK AND GROW RICH by Napoleon Hill (1933)

    Number ONE: Fear of Success.

    Fears of Change and Poverty as well are dominant in most Humans therefore WE need each other in support of and for each other.


    G Eric Gaither

  55. All the thoughts in my mind are for you. Whenever I want you all I have to do is dream. I'm all alone with nothing to do.

    Not a word was spoken the day the music died. It leaves them crying in the isles.

    I threw away all those crazy dreams.

    I looked in the mirror and a red light was blinking.
    You're subliminal. I'm going to say it again, you're no good.

    Our love will last now until the end of time.
    I want to be your sledgehammer, why don't you call my name?

    Song Echo

  56. I am struggling so much with this! I'm unemployed and agencies don't even know what copywriting is. Everyone thinks I should stop doing something they don't understand and just get some kind of retail job.
    One of the things that attracted me to this program was the community and forum. Yet, I've had difficulty getting to know anyone and the forum is not user friendly. If there is any way I can reach out here for mentorship and support group, then I am sounding off a desperate cry for help!

    Leanne B

  57. Thanks for the inspiration I am retired and have been deciding what to do with all the time I have on my hands. I like to read and talk about what I read so I am going to give this a try and see where it leads me.


  58. I was working on Accelerated Six Figure Income, but when it was time to really write something ... restaurant letter, everything in my head stopped. No words would form, haven't in a month. I am frustrated. I stopped. I've read the books, I still feel I've found my purpose and passion, I love to write but ... . no production! I'm retired and want the Writer's Life.

    Linda J

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