Do you think every day to be a freelance writer? Is it always in your mind?
Don’t wait. Just START.
You’re a writer, NOT a waiter.
I understand a million things are buzzing inside your head like how to be a freelancer, how to choose my niche, how to find clients, rates, time management, and more.
But there’s ONE thing that I learned in my journey is: Jump In and take the first step. Don’t wait.
In this story, I featured an amazing freelance writer – Pooja Dubey. I hope you’ll love her story.
Read some more freelancers stories right here
Pooja Dubey: Writing is her Oxygen
Pooja Dubey is a content strategist, a freelance writer and a trainer who prepares freelancers to begin their journeys in the writing world.
She has over 9 years of experience in professional writing but her career began with marketing in 2007 and since then she has explored every arena that excited her including writing, data analysis, photography, training, website development… till she found herself settling with writing. She has helped many companies, individuals and professionals with her writing services.
Pooja loves to learn and share her knowledge with others which is why you will find her frequently blogging on LinkedIn pulse, posting answers to queries on Quora, creating resources on her own website, and helping learners through her online courses.
How Did the Journey Begin?
Pooja was always a learner and with her love for learning, she walked on the path that her dad had taken and graduated with a BE degree in 2000. However, this girl was very fond of her friends who were going for MBA, and since she was not sure of her calling, she joined the league to be with them.
It was during her MBA that she was exposed to the concept of blogging and her journey as a writer began.
But she was not always the writer material. As a kid, she was one of the introverts and very under confident – about speaking and about her writing skills.
Till the age of 20, she could not even make a single sentence in English language comfortably, and yet she kept dreaming about writing in the same language one day. Somehow, she came up with a plan to self-teaching the language as well as public speaking.
She doesn’t remember what changed her life, but she succeeded in commanding the language and also becoming confident enough to speak before the world. Today, she confidently delivers lectures to not just the students but also professionals and entrepreneurs.
She has been writing since she was a kid and she says, “Writing is my oxygen”. She always knew that one day, she will be a writer. “What could be better profession than something you love and can’t live without?” She says.
Throughout her career, she has been planning, was purposeful, and always kept adding learning bits to support her ultimate dream, or just to be what she loved.
She never liked conventions and never agreed on the thought that one should be focused only on one thing. She would rather experiment and do everything she loved.
She started her career in marketing (because it was interesting), then switched to business development (only to gain confidence and make new contacts), followed by market research (because she loved research), continued with data analytics (she loved the way insights are generated from data), explored photography (creativity always appealed her), and of course settled with writing, at last.
In writing, she has over 9 years of experience and has explored not just a variety of subjects and genres but also most of the formats. Her best catch is her ability to mold into any genre, any format and any style, giving equal justice to everything she writes.
She has done academic writing (written many 200-300 pages theses as well as books for institutes), creative writing (has written stories for kids, biographical accounts of entrepreneurs, and has done copywriting for companies), business writing (product description, blogs, website content, and more), and technical writing (case studies and whitepapers).
She speaks of her childhood habit of telling stories to everyone she could catch hold of. The spark was always there and all she needed was confidence and skills to bring out the stories.
Her first attempt to publish her stories was on Google Sites where she started a blog and wrote articles and stories. She came up with an idea to write episodic stories and started creating new episodes daily for a story she started.
She loved creating stories and her buffer increased as she started not just adding chapters to her story but also more stories until she realized that she had already crossed 400 pages on the website and there were more than 5 stories she was writing already.
Her job got her busy and she discontinued. That was when she started receiving emails from unknown readers who were following her blog. They asked her on email why she was not writing, and they wanted her to continue because they like the suspense she created.
Of course, she was not aware of her readers until that point. And that was her first turning point when she realized she had something to say which people were curious to read.
Then, there was no stopping. She soon expanded her portfolio to other platforms and explored eblogger, SiliconIndia, WordPress, Whatpas, and Shutterstock. Between 2009 and 2010, she also found herself networking with a lot of on social media platforms and meetup.com.
Meeting more people was an eye opener and she came to know about freelance writing. She started to explore it but was finding it challenging to get projects as companies were asking for published samples from clients.
As a person who would never quit, she came up with an idea of offering free writing service for a month to entrepreneurs. She got several responses and within a month, had her portfolio ready.
With this portfolio shown as samples of her work, she ended up getting assignments from two companies. Within a year, she got connected to an agency for academic writing and assignments started to pour.
She waited no longer and quit her job in 2010 to venture full time into freelancing.
Through her academy, she keeps delivering lessons and has even started a free learning group on WhatsApp for new writer. But these are her favorite nuggets:
- Writing is not about playing with words but more about experimenting with thoughts.
- You do not need to use complicated words to create an appeal. Simpler, the better!
- No matter how good a writer you are, first draft can always have hitches so never skip editing.
- Too much work can be very tempting, especially in the growing stage, but taking too much on plate can either get you exhausted, or you would end up compromising your quality.
- If you are a freelance writer, you are more than just a writer. You are a one-person company who should know how to market, negotiate, acquire clients, build relationships, plan for growth, and a lot more. So, be open to learning and doing more.
- Every writer is an artist so, instead of thinking like a typical .professional, who is only learning different ways to write, think like an artist who explores and has his or her own style.
Her Advice For Freelancers
Just do it! But only if it is your passion. If writing is not your passion but only a way to earn because you feel you can be good at it, you will quit after a few years.
So, choose writing as a freelance career if you really feel it is your calling. And if it is, be prepared to deal with all the challenges as this would not be an easy path.
Along the path, you will find many people who would keep telling you that writing is not for you, and that you should take up a better job which pays better (of course). What better job could be rather than doing something you love?
Stop listening and start writing. If you feel frustrated by what people talk, how about a poem that throws your frustration out? In time, you will grow with persistence!
Now It’s Your Turn!
So if you want to be a freelance writer, Start TODAY! Find your first client, then second, and go on.
Do you find Pooja’s freelance journey inspiring? Or want me to share your freelancing journey in my next article?
Just drop your thoughts in the comment section below! Thanks for listening to my stories!
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