If you’d like to make money as a beginning freelance writer from the start, there are several websites that can help you do just that. This list does not necessarily contain a listing of every website out there that welcomes beginning writers, as well as accepting articles from more experienced writers, but it does contain some of the best. Writing for these sites won’t make you rich, and you may not be able to make a full-time income from them, but it can bring a steady flow of money and bring a part-time income, if that is your goal. (Some might say it is possible to earn a full-time income-as I did read one story on Associated Content from someone who said it is possible to earn a full-time income writing for this site.)
I have written for every one of these sites, and have had hundreds of stories online in my writing career on these and other sites. I had a background in Journalism, as I was a newspaper correspondent for almost three years and once write a few stories for magazines and newspapers before I wrote for the Internet. Many people have successfully written their first stories for the Internet, however.
One of the best to write for, at least as far as flexibility, is Associated Content. AC welcomes all types of stories, and offers upfront payments and performance bonuses. There are some topics AC won’t offer an upfront payment for, or at least not usually. For example, AC often will not pay for opinion pieces. It will pay for articles on many topics, however. I have written some stories for which I received only a performance bonus payment. I have also written and been given upfront payments for stories on things to do and see in Ohio, Colorado, and other places; technical stories about the computer, such as how to design a webpage with Microsoft Word, how to surf the web anonymously and others; profiles of athletes, and others.
The more your subject is in the news, the more popular it is, the more you will be offered for an upfront payment, and the more people will read it-resulting in a bigger monthly performance bonus payments. Technical stories about the computer have brought me the most in performance bonus money, with my story about how to use a computer to design greeting cards having been read by more than 20,000 people the last I looked. I do not write those kinds of stories myself, but I have read that stories about hobbies do well too. My story containing a quiz about the Super Bowl has been read by more than 13,000 people. AC has raised the amount it pays its top producers a couple of times. I have written almost 400 stories for AC, and my performance bonuses have almost doubled from about $20+ dollars a month to about $40. While that may not seem like a lot, remember the work has already been done, and the money comes in every month. I have heard of people who have written thousands of stories on popular topics getting paid $200 a month for a performance bonus, or maybe even more.
One of my favorite websites to write for is Textbroker.com. You don’t have the freedom to write about anything you want, like with Associated Content, but you will get paid more per word. If you register as a writer, you will pick the stories you want to write from a wide range of categories, such as travel, jobs, business, automobiles, movies, and many others. You will know when you pick your story how much it will pay and how long it has to be. The client who sees your finished article has the choice of accepting it as it is or asking for a revision. Most of the time my articles have been accepted as is, but sometimes a client has asked for a revision.
How much you earn will depend on your rating as a writer and how long the story is. After reading your stories, the editors at Textbroker will evaluate you up to five stars. Few people are given the best rating of five stars. You cannot choose to write a story that calls for a writer with a higher rating than you have currently. Naturally, higher rated writers make more money. My rating is 4. The few who earn a rating of five are considered professional, and those with a rating of four are considered excellent. Stories requested can range from under 100 words to many thousands of words. As an example of pay, if you have a rating of 4 stars and write a story of 800 words, you can expect to make more than $11. I have seen stories requested of a few thousand words from people who have visited a foreign country, and the pay offered has been over $20.
A while back my full-time 40 hour a week was slow for a very brief time, and I was not scheduled to work two days during one week. I wrote for about six hours a day for both days, more or less, for Textbroker and averaged about $35 a day for the two days. That is not as much as I would have earned at my regular job, of course, but it sure helped. You are paid through Paypal once a month.
The editors at Textbroker say it is not an absolute requirement to be a professional writer to write for the site-if one can spell, use proper punctuation, and has a love for writing. Stories have to be submitted as a text (such as Notepad or Wordpad) document, not in Word.
I also like writing for Daily Article.com. You can choose your topic. You set your own rate for each story, but if you ask for too much, a client will be less likely to buy. Daily Article will keep 20% of the money you earn for each story from someone who buys a story from the website, and you will keep 80%. I have sold several stories for $25 each, with the website keeping $5, and me keeping $20. I have sold some stories for a little less. Daily Article now buys stories directly, in addition to selling to others, for amounts starting at $8 each, but I have not sold any stories that way. You are paid through Paypal immediately when a story is purchased.
I have also written for Amazon Turk. I do not like it as well as the other sites and do not write for it as often, because those requesting the work often want more work for less money. I did, however, sell one story about the Vietnam War for $15, however, and that did not require a lot of work. Your payments are directly deposited into your checking or savings account. You can request a payment whenever you earn $10.
If you try any or all of these sites, I wish you well in your writing career. I did not list any of the sites that offer you the chance to bid against other writers to get jobs, because the work is harder to get, and sometimes does not pay as well. I did not suggest Constant Content.com, although some people say they have made a lot of money with that site, because those in charge take too much of your money as a commission and are sometimes too particular in the way they want stories formatted. Another disadvantage is that you cannot request a payment until you earn at least $50.