10 Online Gold Mines for Finding Paid Freelance Writing Jobs

10 Online Gold Mines for Finding Paid Freelance Writing Jobs

If you’re a freelance writer, the task of finding quality, well-paying gigs can be a daunting one. Where do you even start? How you can guarantee the jobs you’re looking at are legit instead of scams?

Let’s get the bad news out of the way first: the Internet is chock full of people who are willing to pay pennies on the dollar for hours of your highly skilled time. (Keep reading for some words of warning about these people.)

The good news is that we’re here to help you weed out the dreck and find the sites that are actually worth your time and effort. (Click to tweet this list.) Whether you’re a copywriter, editor, creative writer or anything in between, these sites offer the well-paying, reputable freelance writing jobs you really want.

Better yet? While some sites charge a monthly fee to access their job listings, all of the resources below are free.

So where can you find freelance gigs?

1. BloggingPro Job Board

Also listing a healthy dose of copywriting jobs (you can search postings by category), this board is, as the name suggests, right up a blogger’s alley. Whether you’re into health and fitness, pets, writing code or whatever else, you’ll find a steady stream of employers looking for blog writers versed in these and many other subjects.

2. Journalism Jobs

While most of the postings are (you guessed it again!) for those whose focus is journalism, you don’t necessarily have to have Lois Lane dreams to find a gig here. There are also editing positions, ad copywriting and other jobs thrown into the mix. Some are location-based, some can be done remotely.

3. MediaBistro

Check out the freelance section of the site for a wide range of jobs from industries like TV, PR/marketing, magazine and book publishing and social media — a little something for everyone.

4. FlexJobs

One of the top job boards for telecommuting, FlexJobs enables you to create a custom job search profile to meet your specific needs. Select your categories (there are several under “Writing”), your preferred work schedule, your experience level and more to hone your search results down to those that best fit what you’re looking for. You can also set alerts so you’re notified when new jobs matching your search criteria are posted.

5. Morning Coffee Newsletter

This weekly e-newsletter provides a nice compendium of freelance writing and editing jobs of all shapes and sizes from around the Web with competitive pay rates. Save yourself the time of scouring numerous sites and let this newsletter bring the decent jobs right to your inbox.

6. ProBlogger Job Board

Created by Darren Rowse of ProBlogger, an authority site on blogging, you know jobs listed here will be from serious employers who have an idea what good writing is really worth. Plus, given ProBlogger’s high profile in the blogosphere, you can often find jobs posted by some big-time blogs here.

paid writing gigs

7. Freelance Writing

With exclusive job opportunities as well as posts pulled from sites like Indeed and Craigslist, this board consolidates a variety of gigs for everyone from newbie to seasoned freelancers. If you don’t want to see jobs from a certain source (Craigslist, for instance, can sometimes be sketchy), you’re free to narrow your displayed results to exclude them.

8. Be a Freelance Blogger Job Board

Freelance blogger Sophie Lizard’s community forum features this board where writers and clients can share scoops on job opportunities. Each opportunity must pay at least $50 post or 10 cents a word.

9. The Ultimate List of Better-Paid Blogging Gigs

Lizard has also compiled a free ebook listing 45 blogs that pay $50 or more per post, broken down into sections like Writing Blogs, Food Blogs, etc. She also includes some good tips on how to approach these blogs, how to promote yourself once you’ve landed a post, and more.

10. LinkedIn Jobs

If you’ve already got a LinkedIn profile (and you really should), don’t let it just sit there. Networking goes a long way in the freelance world, and LinkedIn is a great resource to do some networking through common connections.

While you’re doing that networking, check out the Jobs section and sign up for email alerts when jobs are posted that match your interests. Many will be location-based, but who’s to say you can’t approach these employers with a proposal for freelance writing services? Maybe they need someone to fill the gap in the hiring interim, or maybe the job could just as easily be done remotely but they hadn’t considered that.

Pro tip: You know that “people who’ve recently viewed your profile” notification you see when you sign into LinkedIn? If you don’t recognize some of the names, why not reach out to them and say “I see you’ve looked at my profile. I’d love to explore if there are any ways we can help each other.” Can’t hurt to try, right?

Sites to avoid

Especially if you’re just starting out, it’s tempting to be lured into content mills like Demand Studios or free-for-alls like Guru, oDesk and Elance, where it looks like you might stand a better chance to land something even if you don’t have the biggest portfolio yet.

Don’t be.

While it may seem like these sites are your best best when you’re a newcomer, they’re largely a crapshoot when it comes to winning a project. These sites are a rush for the lowest bid, and you’re competing against hundreds if not thousands of other desperate freelancers prepared to sell their firstborn for the chance to write someone’s 250-page ebook. (Some writers have been able to make a decent buck on sites like Upwork, but they are often the exception rather than the rule and have usually invested huge amounts of time to make it happen.)

Even if you’re brand-spanking new to the game, no one deserves a gig that pays one cent per word. And chances are if someone is looking for the sort of writer willing to write a word a cent, they’re not going to be the best client to work for. Don’t sell yourself short just because you’re new. Have a little patience, keep persevering, and you will find those clients who truly value you.

Looking to get even more serious about your freelance writing. The Write Life published two e-books to help you find more paid writing gigs. Check out our shop to buy 71 Ways to Make Money as a Freelance Writer and Get Better Clients and Earn More Money.

This post originally ran in September 2013. We updated it in February 2017.

Kelly Gurnett is a freelance blogger, writer and editor; you can follow her on Twitter @CordeliaCallsIt.

Looking for freelance writing jobs? Check out The Write Life’s Job Board. Good luck!

be patient, persevere, and you will find clients who value you

Filed Under: Freelancing
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452 comments

  • Erik Matlock says:

    Thank you for putting this together. I finally crossed the line to paid writer, and now I need to lock in more steady work. Due to a knee injury, I am being pushed to go full time. Not a bad thing, I really enjoy this.
    I wanted to add another idea. If you are obnoxious or cocky enough, you can try what I did.
    I just emailed links and a short letter to every magazine I could find, that focused on my specialties. I retired from 20 years in pro audio, and one of my blogs is about that world.
    Two of the magazines picked me up. One is feeding me steady work. Both pay way better than the mills.
    I will be going through your list today. Hope to get a few more regular gigs.
    Thanks again.

    • That’s awesome, Erik! I don’t think that was necessarily an obnoxious strategy; having as much experience as you did in a particular niche means that you have more to offer a specialty magazine than someone with no industry training. I think what you did was smart — targeting magazines within your small, specialized niche. Well done!

  • Jason says:

    The idea of freelance writing is one that has intrigued for a long time now. Is the idea of making a go at freelance writing a legitimate venture for someone with out any experience in the field. I have no schooling in the field, and I have never written anything other than for my own enjoyment. Thank you and the other posters for the information you have compiled here.

    • Thanks for your comment, Jason. I’d say it totally depends on what you want it to be. Are you hoping to leap into a full-time, six-figure career? Then I’d say it’s unrealistic. But if you’re exploring your options and are willing to put a fair amount of effort, you could build a solid career.

      Take a look around the site, especially the Freelancing archives, for posts by contributors who have built their freelance writing businesses from the ground up. If you have specific questions, feel free to get in touch!

      • Mikey says:

        This is for Jason… I hear you Bro, I’ve no formal training either. I have been writing since I could pick up a Crayon, just for the love the art and craft. Being out of a job I held for many years, writing for pay seamed like a good Idea. I’m still learning the ins and outs of freelancing, but I have found my niche’ (actually there are a few) and my portfolio is growing. It is hard work for freelance newbies without a mortarboard, but the rewards are, or will be worth the effort. Keep it up!

  • david says:

    i hope i could find a suitable writing job 4 my self am a young student from africa nigeria precisely pls kelly are there jobs for nigerian writers…………………. thanks.

    • Russell Lee says:

      I’m just a visitor here today but I am a little familiar with problems relating to Nigeria. You should know, first of all, that Nigeria has a terrible reputation worldwide for fraud. This is one of your biggest obstacles. My advice: work hard to establish yourself as an honest, reliable and worthy writer, play down Nigeria as your country of origin (use “Africa” instead), and join a solid support group or community of like-minded writers (you will be judged more by the company you keep rather than the country that you’re from). Once you are “labeled” (good or bad), it will spread quickly on the networks.

      Your second obstacle is a scarcity of payment processors. Most people commonly use PayPal worldwide to pay or get paid. The last I knew, PayPal refuses to do business in Nigeria. However, AlertPay was established in Nigeria but they have also since morphed into something else. I don’t know what else to tell you about this as I don’t have the inside track on this.

      Do some research on useful payment processors, open an account with one and guard it fanatically. Hackers and key-loggers abound profusely in Nigeria and all your hard work could be undone in a single incident. Personally, I don’t trust public computers as found in cafes where all your personal information will be stolen.

      I think that writing assignments are available to anyone anywhere, regardless of where they live. However, the burden will be on you to establish yourself as stated above and to secure your work from destruction.

      Good Luck!

      • Sam Adeyinka says:

        Hey Russell, it’s good to see you here. 🙂

        Trust me you really know a lot about my country and it’s true that Nigeria is literally synonymous to fraud and what have you, which really saddens my heart as a savvy Nigerian populace that I am.

        However, I really do not agree totally on your suggestions of David playing down his country. I believe carving a good reputation for himself his the major ingredient.

        How would he do that? Simple! By networking with like-minded people on and off the blogosphere and being genuine in all of your doings and every other things in-between.

        Virtually everyone knows where I’m from and currently I’ll be kick-starting a project with some of my Indian and American friends. So it’s not really about the country is about the individual many times.

        Speaking about payment processing, I believe paypal is unwise, reason been that Nigeria is one of the biggest opportunities centrals. And excluding Nigeria is of course a foolish act.

        Well, there are several other methods of online transactions though and some of them are payoneer, wepay, 2checkout, Google Wallet, Skrill, Intuit, Propay, Dwolla, Braintree and the likes.

        So dude, you had better be wise and like the saying goes thus, “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.” Be wise man!

        Thanks so much, Russell for taking the time out to know about Nigeria and for trying to help David. It shows how big your heart is! 😀 😀

        Do have a magical year!

        Sam

        • Russell Lee says:

          While we do agree in principle regarding advice for David, it must be kept in mind that David has no professional reputation at this time. If he did, it would speak for him. I can also understand your loyalty to your country, but loyalty does not pay money. I live here in the USA and I network often with a number of people. I can tell you from first-hand experience, that if a novice from Nigeria tried to land a paying job, he would be quickly passed over by a vast majority of people because they fear and don’t trust unestablished Nigerians. American TV and banking bulletins warn customers daily of Nigeria scams.

          Therefore: Until David establishes himself professionally, he really does need to play down his country as I stated earlier because he’s going to have a tough time winning assignments when the employers are negatively biased against Nigerians. He will need to soften that fear by not using the “Nigeria” word.

          This is just my advice, having seen the problem first-hand. He can, of course, ignore my advice and proceed with his own strategy. It matters not to me.

          • david says:

            thank you very much russell and sam your advise have multivated me but as a novice in online writing where do you think is the best optiono or platform for me to start up……………thanks

  • Anna says:

    Thanks for all these sites! I’ve already had some success on Problogger.

    I’ve spent the better part of the past year writing articles at a rate of $12 for every 600 words. It was presented as such a great opportunity, but I see now that the pay really wasn’t good at all compared to the effort I was putting in, and it wasn’t worth it because it didn’t get my name out there as a writer at all. The client turned out to be very unprofessional and unethical as well – the project ended in November, and they have yet to pay me for the last couple of weeks, which totals almost $2,000.

    I thought that this $12 per article was so great, because previously I had done work for 25% of THAT rate on Elance – $1 for every 200 words. I regret spending so much time with that client, who was very demanding and sometimes expected me to be “on call”, respond to emails and write articles within 30 minutes – for about $2.50 for every 500 words too! The only reason I spent so much time working with this unethical client was that he had sent angry messages for getting articles done less than 15 minutes late a couple of times, and I didn’t want a bad review on Elance. The reason the articles were even late was that he was giving me 6000 words to complete a DAY, and there just wasn’t enough time to do that in 24 hours, especially with other assignments. I was staying up nights, working my butt off, and making about $25 a day. Finally, I said enough is enough and told him I was done – of course he required 2 weeks notice and I was stuck with him for another 2 weeks.

    One business to AVOID – No Doubt Marketing, owner Justin Stewart.

  • Anna says:

    Hi Kelly,
    Thankyou so much for this information. Writing is my passion but it’s just been me and my diary till now. I’ve been thinking of trying to earn something with my writing but I’m new to this world of online writing jobs and am a bit lost. I’ve been researching it for some time now and I’m so happy and relieved I found this page. I really was considering taking up one of those low paying jobs since I’m a novice and to be honest I’m actually quite critical about myself and I wasn’t sure about whether I’d be able to deliver. And after hours and hours of browsing and the irritating head aches resulting from staring continuously at the computer screen, I was beginning to lose hope. But after reading your post I’ve found courage to keep trying!
    Thankyou so much once again!
    Wish me luck!

    Anna

  • Jim Howard says:

    One of my best, most interesting clients posted the job on Guru.com, so it’s possible to find good work with good people there. Every so often, someone is actually willing to pay fairly, and of course the proposals immediately pour. Competition is fierce for the good jobs. But that’s true anywhere. I also got an ongoing gig through Guru that doesn’t pay very well, but that I really enjoy. I wouldn’t write the site off.

    One thing I like about Guru is the ability to create templates easily, so it gets less time-consuming to apply for jobs as you go. I know other sites do this, too, but Guru’s work very well.

    It’s true that many Guru and oDesk listings are in the “write my life story for 50 cents” vein, so you’ll find yourself snorting in disbelief a lot. But to me, it’s no different than looking for jobs anywhere. Most jobs are crap. Those are easy to spot. Good ones are hard to find, but when you land one, it’s worth it.

    • Great point, Jim — you often need to sort through lots of less-than-stellar jobs in order to find the quality ones.

    • I experienced the same as you, Jim, as far as guru.com. I found a few excellent decent to well paying prodents in paSt which worked out well. But you truly have to weed out all the bad ones.

      I may cancel my membership in near future because I see more very low paying small projects anymore.

      Good article and posts here.

      • David Russell says:

        Hello Easy Learning and Others,
        I suppose the best way to get ahead in this business financially, is define your goal, e.g., type of writing you will offer and make a map to get there.
        That being said, if one works for a content mill in the meantime, and have a vision disability requiring adaptive software, why is the playing field for advancement by a given entity not considerate of all contractors?
        Examples: Elance and Textbroker are noted to have highly graphical interfaces. In the case of Textbroker, its TB University material appears to not be readily accessible by those using adaptive computer ware.
        I hope a TWL insider, will have input to provide on this, as my aim is not to “squeak or bitch” pardon my language. Income improvement desired by yours truly, as it is for the majority also who are here!
        David Russell

  • Dexter Camba says:

    I am posting a similar comment I did in a LinkedIn writers’ forum.

    First, let me introduce myself – I’m an ESL writer from the Philippines, but proud to be able to write just as good as most native English writers (well, at least my over 25 x 5-star reviews in almost as many research-writing jobs, albeit in a bidding site, say so). I am more comfortable though in writing fact-based, in-depth-researched business and health articles – and not so keen with blogs.

    As a wannabe writer, I started at 64 in 2011. My long years (over 25) in offline sales/business development helped with starting up a freelance writing biz, albeit mostly with a low-paying bidding website. I didn’t mind however, for as long as income was progressive.

    You see my biggest challenge was I had to learn Computer and Writing 101 skills simultaneously in my sunset years. Still, with hard work and perseverance, I was poised to a great take off. It was short-lived however, when after an “on track and continuous climb” in 2011, my first year as a freelancer, my writing income suddenly “plateaud” then nosedived in 2012, even up to now. Google’s algorithm – Panda, Penguin and Hummingbird – changes are perhaps the cause?

    Based on my long years in sales, I believe that freelance writing, like any small business should take no more than 20% of a writer’s time, after an aggressive and sustained biz development no more than 6 mos. to 1 year. Personally, pitching is no longer my cup of tea – ironic perhaps as I have to admit burnout – after over 25 years of those – including cold calling.

    That I was able to do, as mentioned earlier on my first year, but am a loss in explaining how hard it is to find decent writing jobs now – despite my much-improved writing and computer skills – going into my fourth year. In fact, the light-at-the-end-of-the-tunnel seems elusive, and wish I had the luxury of time.

    Now, am in search of a writing website that works like a vendo machine, where a writer once qualified and registered – can draw a writing job from a queue. Pay per word would depend on writer’s skills – quality, originality and timely-delivery.

    Actually, in 2011 my first year as a wannabe writer was partly with Xoobiz.com, which worked that way. Recently, however the site seems to have closed shop.

    If anybody knows of similar websites (open of course, to ESL writers), I’d be glad to know. In fact, thinking aloud, wouldn’t it be a great idea if an enterprising writer would be willing to invest? I am willing to pitch in my two cents.

    Thanks for reading my comment.

  • Jason says:

    Hello,

    I appreciate your article. I have always loved writing, and have been disappointed with the sites you have said to steer clear of. After ten years of working in the medical field in an allied health modality, I have recently found myself injured, and no longer able to perform my duties.
    I have decided to do what I love to do from now on. Scary? Yes, I am new to the blogging/freelance world. But I am determined. And I have the knowledge as well as the skill.
    So, here we go! New Year, New life, New start!
    I do have a question, where does a new blogger start? I am being realistic in my goals. I know I won’t break six-figures, but I am hoping to earn enough to support my family, or at least supplement the income.
    I guess it is an exciting time, although uncertain as well. Does any of this make sense? At 3am, I am unable to sleep from the anxiety of an uncertain future. I have no degree, and I am afraid this is a roadblock.
    Anyway, I plan on checking each site, and hopefully grow a network of fellow writers. It is far past time to follow what I know I love to do.
    Thanks again. This was a godsend, and really gave insight during a dark time. Perhaps, sometime in the future, you may read something of mine. You are free to contact me for any reason as I am always delighted to make friends. And as I have said, this has been a godsend. Thank you so very much.

    Regards,

    Jason

    • Thanks for your comment, Jason! Great question — getting started can be the hardest part. Our Blogging section has some great posts, and I’d recommend checking out the sites we listed on our 100 Best Websites of 2014 for more great advice. Tom Ewer of Leaving Work Behind, Sophie Lizard of Be a Freelance Blogger and Kelly Gurnett of Cordelia Calls It Quits offer fantastic tips and best practices on their blogs.

      Best of luck in your new endeavor!
      Heather

  • david says:

    thank you very much russell and sam your advise have multivated me but as a novice in online writing where do you think is the best optiono or platform for me to start up……………thanks

  • BookMaster says:

    Way too many new writers fall into that trap walking into the cage and the steel door slams behind them. This is trying to get started in a writing career but with little or no experience, they fall to the predators that prey on them.
    These predators are making huge amounts of money off of the talents of these brand new writers who are desperate to gain experience. Beware!
    Even building a backlog of experience working for low pay shows up in your past writing life work experience. Not only are you undermining yourself but for everyone else that writes for a living, it only makes it harder for them to negotiate through those many low-paying sites and article mills.
    There should be a nationwide crackdown on this sort of thing. People writing for less than the national minimum wage is absolutely ridiculous.

  • William says:

    I just have to say that the three websites you excluded demonstrates your ignorance. I’ve been a full-time freelancer writer for the past seven years (I’m 27 now) and my bread and butter has been two sites – Elance and Guru. Odesk, although, is terrible. Elance is the primary bread winner.

    Via Elance I make about $200 a day. This comes from an average job price of around $90. Those jobs take me about two to three total hours to complete.

    The resources that you mentioned are complete crap. I’ve never gotten a job out of any of those resources even through consistent attempts.

    • Thanks for sharing your perspective, William; everyone has different experiences, and to each their own opinion.

      I think Kelly’s point is that it takes time to sort through the tons of less-than-stellar gigs to find the good jobs, and that time could be better spent. However, if you’re able to put in that time (or build ongoing relationships with the clients you find on those sites), then these sites could be a great addition to your business. Everyone is going to rely on different tools and resources, and our goal is to help writers learn about their options.

      We have a post coming up on what to look out for when using outsourcing sites and common mistakes new freelancers make, but if you’d be interested in sharing your experience with Elance or Guru in a post, check out our guidelines at thewritelife.com/write-for-us/.

      • William McCanless says:

        Elance has the highest quality freelance jobs you’re going to find anywhere on the Internet and they’re there every day. I bid on jobs there each afternoon at 3PM (the sweet spot for California time and East coast time) and always have at least two or three new jobs by the end of the day. These jobs typically consist of web copywriting, branding, sales page writing, promotional script writing (those little one to two minute explainer scripts), and ghostwriting. Those other resources are certifiably useless.

        The author also doesn’t mention the fact that those resources don’t offer protection to the freelancer, which is immensely important. Elance and Guru for example have an escrow system and an arbitration service in case anything goes wrong. A few months ago I did $700 worth of work for a client. They just dropped off the radar. I requested that the money be released from Escrow into my account. Even though they never responded, Elance automatically released the money after 14 days of inaction by the client. It’s these types of protections that make it a safer place to work for freelancers.

        In the case of Guru, I landed a great month-to-month ghostwriting job off there. I don’t get jobs as consistently on Guru as I do Elance and the jobs are also not as high quality as Elance, but when I do they are typically for large, long-term, big-budget jobs because there is a sore lack of talented people on Guru (unlike Elance, which has more competition).

        It doesn’t take a lot of time to make good money as a writer. I spend no more than one hour a day looking for jobs and I haven’t done anything other than freelance writing for seven years. I have no boss and make a comfortable living.

        I just think the reason there are so many broke writers out there is because of posts like these that don’t actually help. Literally the only two websites on the web where freelancers of every type ACTUALLY make money, are the ones the author decided to completely discount. That’s crazy to me. If you’re reading this — don’t pay attention to what was written.

        Look, here is a link to my Elance public profile, you can see how I’m rated, the huge portfolio I’ve been able to build up, the average monthly income I make. https://www.elance.com/s/w_mac/

        Again — if you’re a writer stay off the other sites that were mentioned and get on Elance or Guru (Odesk sucks — stay away from that one). They are the only two sites on the Internet that protect freelancers and have high-quality clients with great budgets from all throughout the world looking for freelancers every day. Hell, I even hire freelancers off of there when I need graphic design done or I’m too bogged down with projects and need to share the load.

        This post should definitely be changed. It’s not good to mislead people who are trying to make a career out of writing.

        • Check your profile resume content. You have typos in your copy when you’re talking about what you will do for your clients. Just wanted to let you know to spell and grammar check your profile page.

        • Lora says:

          I’d like to get started writing and would be willing to help you with your work. I like the fact that you write coherently with proper English, even though I see a couple of mistakes in your post. Thank you for letting your intelligence shine through!

      • William McCanless says:

        I also want to make one more quick point — quality clients DON’T pick the lowest bidder. Freelancers are the ones who think that’s true. They see low bids and think they have to be the lowest one or they won’t get the job. I always bid the highest or a little over the average bid amount. If someone has a budget of less than $500 and the lowest bid is $30 | average is $150 | high is $300, depending on the job I will either go to $200 or $400 (always above the average or the highest bid).

        Although I often get jobs that are $200 to $700 (I even get jobs wroth $5,000 or more for large ghostwriting projects, last year a client I met off Elance even flew me out to San Francisco, California so I could ghostwrite his book — paid the hotel room, plain ticket, everything) I typically find myself with jobs that are a comfy $90 to $120. These are usually tiny things like writing three pages of web content or writing a 60 to 90 second script. Things that take me about an hour to complete.

        It’s SO easy to just get maybe two or three $90 jobs a day. Knock your work out in three hours in the morning, and do whatever you want the rest of the day.

        None of those other job sites let you bid a price, protect you from crappy clients and let you get consistent daily work.

        And if you can’t get jobs off Elance, you’re not going to get jobs anywhere else because you’re probably just plain bad at selling yourself.

    • Scott says:

      Are you getting outside work from clients you connected with on Elance? I took your advice and checked out your profile. You’re getting rave reviews, obviously very good at what you do. I notice your “lifetime” stats don’t suggest you’ve been with the program for much over a year though, and while $13,000 in 12 months isn’t terrible, especially for freelance writers, it hardly reflects your claims of $200 daily, with consistent day-in day-out work. Especially if you take that cushy $5000 job out of the equation.

      I’m not writing to be snarky, but be honest and reasonable, and know when you may be the exception to the rule. The bottom line is that every nice job you get on Elance is another someone else won’t, and if you really are just fantastic at marketing yourself, I get the feeling you have plenty to market. This post is for those looking to break into freelance writing. Sites like Elance that work on bids are sort of like “Ebids”, where someone COULD save a ton of money by timing everything just right and outperforming some of the competition, but the vast majority of users won’t get what they’re looking for.

      Again, exception vs. rule. If you can actually land $200 worth of work daily for 4 hours worth of effort, than get to work saving for retirement or something! Surely your skills will be served much better elsewhere, instead of trolling a post that clearly wasn’t written for someone with your level of experience.

  • Anna R says:

    Thanks so much for compiling this list! I have a blog and have contributed as a freelance writer to a couple websites for years, but I haven’t gotten serious about it until now. I have actually found some good gigs on Elance – granted they are far and few between but I’ve gotten 4 or 5 well paying freelance jobs through them that were all actually kind of fun. They were more writing for marketing though. I guess I have a knack for weeding out the scammers! I’m also required to hire graphic designers for my work sometimes and I’ve found some good ones on Elance.

  • Great list, it can be difficult to find a good resource for “Real” Writing jobs, one of the things that I look for in finding good sites is any website that wants to charge the writer just to access “So called jobs” is a bad sign and should be avoided, any real resource will never charge you a fee to participate.

  • Brad says:

    I thoroughly dispute the claim that Elance is not a place to go for beginners. I made $200 in my first week on the site off of 3 jobs. It’s all in your ability to sell yourself as a provider of quality content. If you’ve got the right portfolio and ability to market yourself, Elance is a Goldmine.

    I quickly learned the lesson not to undersell yourself. There’s plenty of people on there that will pay $3-$5 per 500 word article (which is silly), so you’ve got to wade through the jobs. I had one client who I was willing to give a high amount of words (around 2,000) for low pay, but had to revise my proposal to 3x what I was planning to get paid because I didn’t fully grasp freelancing. So long as you deliver quality work (which I did), you’ll get rave reviews and lots of repeat business.

    • Thanks for your comment, Brad. As I explained above, everyone has their own experience and opinion — this issue seems to be a hot-button one. Some writers have found value in Elance and oDesk, and we actually just ran a post from one of them on how to best use these sites (http://thewritelife.com/odesk-elance-6-common-mistakes/).

      Thanks for sharing your advice, and I think it holds true for writers no matter where they’re finding jobs: it’s up to writers not to undersell themselves and to deliver quality work.

  • Jose FD Bautista says:

    Hi, Kelly. This is the nth time I am trying to find a really good advice and a reliable site for my writing. And I am going to really check those sites you’ve listed. But even before I proceed checking them out, I really appreciate the points you’ve raised in your article.
    Good a good shot of HOPE, thanks.

  • I think writers, especially new ones, need to value their skills and pitch to clients who are willing to pay decent rates, instead of trying to get work from the penny pinching cheap clients!

  • Monique says:

    Hi Kelly, I really appreciate your input.
    I’m am very passionate about writing and I plan on making a career out of it, so this information has given me alot of insight.

  • Aiden Stone says:

    Hey Kelly!

    I just happened by and caught your post… awesome advice! All to often people are willing to settle for less when they’re new and somewhat discouraged. I’ve been freelancing for a LOT of years, I have a couple of books on Amazon, and despite my experience I still have difficulties in finding gigs. You gotta have self confidence, stand your ground, and never settle for less than your worth! There are always people and agencies out there who take credit for the hard works of others and offer pennies instead of dollars. Check out who you’re pitching to, make sure they’re legit.

    Anyway… keep the faith!

    Aiden

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