Freelance writing is the career of choice for many parents who want to work at home. Working at home allows parents to be with their children which is why many mothers, and fathers alike, choose to be freelance writers. Freelance writing allows you to have a flexible schedule, and to not miss out on events and milestones in your children’s lives. You can earn a suitable income freelance writing if your are productive enough. Here are ten tips, or techniques, that will help you to increase your writing productivity.
Consider freelance writing as a “real” job. Anything you do that makes you money is real. Just because you don’t have a boss telling you what to do and when to do it doesn’t mean it’s not an actual job. Be your own boss. Set goals and deadlines for yourself and follow through with them. Setting goals and deadlines will help you to increase your writing productivity, as will taking your job seriously and considering it actual “real” employment.
Use a planner or a journal to schedule out your work week. Commit to writing so many articles per day, or to taking on so many projects/clients per week. When you create a schedule it will help to keep you on track. You will know what has to be done, and when it has to be done. A schedule can be a great motivator as well, and it will help you to increase your writing productivity.
Create an office to work in. This can be a nook off of your living room, dining room, or den. It can be an unused bedroom. Set up a table or desk for your computer and shelves for your books, supplies, etc. Creating an office gives you a chance to have a professional and organized work space. Having a space dedicated just to work will help you to increase your writing productivity.
Set your work hours carefully, and accordingly. If your phone rings off the hook between 8 am and 10 am then choose to not work during those hours. However, if your children are napping between 1 pm and 3 pm it is a great idea to schedule those two hours as work hours. To increase your productivity as a writer you must be able to find time to work each day when you will not be distracted.
Choose to do other things such as cleaning, laundry, dishes, or playing with the kids during the times of the day when you are most likely to be distracted. When it comes time to work, you will have a sense of relief knowing that you were able to get everything else done that you needed to do. You will feel less overwhelmed by what needs to be done. You will be able to focus more clearly on your work and that alone can increase your writing productivity.
Work every business day and then consider weekends over-time. Treat freelance writing as as if it were a “real” job, as mentioned in technique 1. At a real job an employee must be present, ready, willing and able to work every day. If you truly want to make a good income freelance writing. you must work every day. Knowing this, and choosing to put forth the effort every day will increase your writing productivity a lot.
Take breaks between articles or projects. It’s perfectly acceptable and alright to get up and stretch your legs. You won’t get fired for a five or ten minute break every hour or two. You will lack in creativity and possibly lose your writing position though if you are stressed and burned out from NOT taking breaks. Writers who take small breaks throughout the day tend to produce more high quality work. Writers who do not take small breaks tend to get more rejections. Several short breaks through out your work day can definitely help you to increase your writing productivity.
Don’t forget to take good care of yourself. Just because you work at home doesn’t mean that you can’t dress nice. I actually recommend dressing each morning as if you were going to work. It makes you feel more professional. Also, remember to eat and sleep well. A person’s mind cannot function properly if the person is not well nourished and has not had enough sleep. Taking care of yourself will help you to increase your writing productivity.
Don’t try to take on more than one article/project/client at a time. Work on one thing, get it done, then move on to the next task at hand. Keep a visible list of things that need to be done, or include them in your schedule. As you complete each one cross it off of the list. When you take on more than one article/project/client at a time you cannot possibly give each your full attention. Your work will suffer. Focusing on one thing at a time will help you to increase your writing productivity. You will get more done and your work will be of a higher quality.
Reward yourself for a successful week. If you complete all of the tasks you had scheduled for the week take yourself out to dinner or treat yourself to a new outfit. Small weekly rewards for a job well done give you a little pat on the back. They make you feel like you have met your goals and are becoming successful. Feeling good about your current work habits will help to increase your writing productivity in the future.