“People always call it luck when you’ve acted more sensibly than they have.” –Anne Tyler
Freelancing isn’t for the faint of heart but it is doable. The trick is learning to make your own luck.
First things first, take advantage of editors and publishers looking for writers.
“Can you do how-to articles about writing?” No prob.
“Can you write reader’s theater on a famous American?” Definitely.
“What about prayers?” I can do that.
“Can you write tutorials for computer programs?” You bet.
At one time, I had no experience in any of these areas. Now, I have credits in each. I didn’t get these credits by shaking my head and passing on the opportunity. I got the experience because I found a way to link my experience to what the editor wanted.
How to articles? I’m a writer. I know how to write. I also know how to interview so I could go after the experiences of other writers to fill in my articles.
Reader’s theater. I’m a historian so my edge was the history. I also write nonfiction. That was a big plus.
Prayers? I pray and I can write short.
Tutorials? How-to articles for children. If I can explain something fairly complicated to a 3rd grader, the publisher was fairly confident I could explain something a bit more complicated to an adult.
Don’t get me wrong. There is always a bit of luck involved — being in the right place at the right time to find out about the opportunity is essential. But if you aren’t finding many opportunities to use your writing talents, work on keeping your eyes and ears open. Network on and off line. Seriously. It does work. I went to a conference a week ago. I have someone waiting to see my work. If I can do it, you can do it. With determination and a can-do attitude, you’ll make your own luck.