So, you have decided to start your location independent life and are looking to become a freelance writer? That’s great news! As a freelance writer, you get to pick your own assignments and write about topics that interest you. But, in order to get assignments and win over clients, you need to develop your writing skills and find your own voice. The voice that separates you from the crowd and makes you stand out. In this post, we are sharing with you how to choose the best writing course for YOU.
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What types of writing courses exist?
Uff girl, there are so many writing courses out there, that it would take me weeks to go through all of them. In fact, Gina over at Horkey Handbook offers a FREE list of more than 200+ freelance writing niches that you can choose from.
So, yea there are hundreds of writing niches but not all of them offer separate writing courses.
And for the sake of Travelbff and your sanity, we will only be looking at travel writing-, copywriting and regular freelance writing courses in this post. Why these three? Because my ‘research’ (i.e. asking the ladies in our Facebook group) showed that those three freelance writing jobs resonate the best with us travel babes.
Do I really need a writing course to become a freelance writer?
Well, this one is easy! No! You do not need a writing course to become a freelance writer.
So why take one? Well just as Bill Gates, Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg didn’t need a university degree to build multibillion-dollar corporations, they needed the community of like-minded people to develop their concepts.
While you might already be a decent or good writer you may miss the one thing that will take you to the next level and allow you to pitch real magazines and websites. i.e. Lonely Planet instead of Travelbff.
A good freelance writing course for any niche will help you to improve your writing skills and show you how to monetize them. And we all need that MULA right!
Again. No, you do not need a writing course to become a freelance writer, but you do need a writing course to become a good freelance writer.
Related post: 6 college degrees for girls that love to travel
What do I learn at a Writing Course?
A good freelance writing course will teach you different aspects of being a writer. They will include the following points but should not be limited by them.
- How to research for an article or story
Depending on the niche(s) you focus on, you will have to write about multiple topics. Topics that you may or may not be knowledgeable about. Therefore, some jobs will require you to do research to get familiar with the subject. Your writing course should prepare you for that, by teaching you how to research and construct these articles.
- How to find/ optimize your writing voice
As I mentioned before, one of the most important things to separate yourself from the crowd is your writing voice. It is the reason why people want to read YOUR article and not one of the many others out there. Luckily, we all have that writing voice and just need to finetune it for our readers. That’s what a writing course will help you do. Identify your strengths and help you showcase them!
- How to edit your articles or stories
Urgh, editing is my biggest nightmare, I can tell you that much. If it wasn’t for Grammarly you would find way more spelling mistakes than you already have, trust me.
As a freelance writer, however, you pitch your articles to clients that get hundreds of requests every month. And a spelling mistake does not look good on paper. Therefore, one focus of writing courses is editing. How to avoid grammar and spelling mistakes, but also how to optimize your text for your client and their audience.
So yea, if I wanted to be a travel writer I would definitely take the course, because of the editing part alone. Actually, I might look into it still, because I’m sure you guys don’t appreciate the mistakes either. Haha my bad!
- How to find agents, editors, and clients
Anybody ever tried to find a specific contact on a website? Yes? Well, then you know that it can be a pain in the %&$*.
Luckily, there are websites and communities where the right contact person for a magazine or website can be found. If you take a writing course with successful and knowledgeable instructors like Nomadic Matt for example. Then you can be sure that they will share such information with you and steer you towards the right people.
- How to pitch to a magazine or website
Last but certainly not least you will learn how to sell your ideas and articles to magazines. As much as you may enjoy the writing, at the end of the day if no one buys your articles it’s a waste of time.
Therefore, knowing how to correctly pitch a magazine or website is very important for your success. And it’s probably the one point on this list, you wouldn’t know how to without guidance.
What do I need to look for in a Writing Course?
That’s a good question because writing courses can be very expensive. And we don’t want you to buy into the hype of a course, just to find out that it wasn’t worth the money. To assure that you choose a course that provides good value for money, we identified a few specifics a good course should include.
- A focus on your niche
This one might seem like a no-brainer, but I can assure you that some of you will be tempted to make that mistake.
If you are dreaming of becoming a travel writer, you should not opt to take a novel writing course no matter how acclaimed and popular the course is.
Choose a course that will focus on your niche right from the start. That will help you to become an expert in that field and get you better jobs.
- A clear outline of the skill level required
There are different types of writing courses aimed at beginners, immediate and advanced writers. Before you sign up for one, assess your skills and choose a course that won’t be too easy or too hard for you. A course that is geared towards your level of expertise will be the most effective for you.
- Stalk the instructor
Yes, I said it. Stalk the instructor! Don’t just read the testimonials on the website, but also Google her business and brand to find out if she is as good as she claims to be.
Are the results she achieved #careergoals? Or maybe the results of her past course participants? And don’t feel bad for judging the course by numbers. A successful course will have those to prove its value.
- Do they use examples/ case studies?
This one is an important point for me. Many courses will sell you theory and success stories but fail to teach you practical information. I have fallen for those type of courses before and I was pissed.
Because at the end I knew what to do and why I should do it, but not how! So, the most important course feature to look for is whether it provides you with actionable content and detailed instructions/steps.
- Is there a community present?
The best course I have ever taken is hands down the Billionaire Blog Club.
I know I’m not close to being a billionaire blogger, but a girl can dream right. This course provides a super lit and woke blogging community that interacts all the time. Whenever you have questions or don’t understand something you can ask in the private chat and will receive an answer from one of the 600+ members.
And that’s what I wish for you too!
When looking for a writing course, you should find out if it hosts a community. It could be a private Facebook group, a weekly webinar session or something else. Because the benefit of a community is the connections and expertise shared with each other.
Now that we have covered how to choose the best writing course for you. It’s time to look closely at our three writing niches. And because we love you so much we searched the Internet for specialty courses on these topics.
Travel Writing Course
Contrary to popular belief travel writing is not the same as travel blogging. While a travel blogger writes for her own audience on her blog, a travel writer writes for different publications. As a travel writer, you, therefore, need to put a bigger emphasis on your writing. A travel blogger can lure people in with her pictures and her following.
Related Post: How to become a Travel Writer
Nomadic Matt’s travel writing course does exactly that. The course focuses on your travel writing skills and teaches you every step on how to become a good writer.
He offers the best writing course at an affordable price, by including not only his own expertise but also the knowledge of other experts through interviews and case studies. These people wrote for the crème de la crème in travel writing, such as National Geographic, BBC Travel, and Travel + Leisure.
So, they know what they are talking about!
Now you might ask yourself why I’m praising this course. Well, I personally took Nomadic Matt’s Travel Blogging course last year and was super satisfied with it. I learned a lot of new things and kick-started this beautiful blog and community that turned out to finance my digital nomad life. Yayyy!
Even though I finished the course a few months ago, I still have full access to the material and the private Facebook group, which is super helpful. The material is always updated, and the community of travel bloggers helps me stay up to date.
So, if you are interested in getting paid to travel, I suggest you look into Nomadic Matt’s Travel Writing Course NOW.
Freelance Writing Course
When I talk about freelance writing, I really mean any type of writing for any type of client.
One BFF told me that she writes content for magazines, but also blog posts for tech startups or ‘about’ pages on company websites. A good freelance writer doesn’t necessarily have to niche down but can dip into multiple industries.
That’s why for freelance writing I chose the writing course from Gina at Horkey Handbook. She shares an extensive knowledge of freelance writing for dozens of niches and how to monetize on them. Just check out her FREE list of more than 200+ freelance writing niches.
Gina’s course will help you to not only become a freelance writer but build your own freelance business. You will learn what type of writing to focus on, how to find jobs, and how to pitch companies.
So, if you want to build a kick-ass freelance writing business check out Horkey Handbook HERE.
Don’t be ashamed if you don’t know what copywriting means, because I didn’t either until a few months ago. Yep, this girl had to learn a loooot too!
Basically, copywriting is the art of crafting compelling content that sells to you and me. It’s a type of advertising often used online to get people to buy a product. Big companies spend a lot of money on copywriting because they want to sell.
And that’s where you come in as a copywriter. Knowing how to write a good copy and convert readers into customers pays off big time. Because you are able to win over established companies as clients.
Unfortunately, I didn’t find a paid course online that I felt comfortable with sharing. They all were either too damn expensive (ain’t nobody got 500 bucks laying around). Or the course description was too vague (i.e. bullshit).
But don’t worry I found something that makes up for it.
Neil Patel, the marketing guru himself, offers a Definitive Guide to Copywriting on Quicksprout, which I think is pretty great. The guide is free and doesn’t even require a sign-up. Whoop whoop!
If you are interested in earning big bucks as a copywriter, check out Neil Patel’s Definitive Guide to Copywriting for FREE.
At Travelbff we root for you and want you to create a life you truly enjoy.
And if that means that you need to leave your 9-5 and travel the world, then do it. We want you to know that living a location independent lifestyle is not as hard as you may think. It is not just for a select few, but for the ones that dare to live!
Do you have another tip on how to choose the best writing course for you? Please let us know in the comments BELOW!
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