Are You Getting Paid What Your Words Are Worth

By: Marlene Affeld

computer-1583432__180Although the economy seems to be improving, there are still a lot of people unemployed or under-employed. Are you one of the many that are attempting to supplement your income as a freelance writer? Are you looking for fair compensation for your efforts? Are you tired of working for peanuts?

When first getting started as a freelance writer, it is easy to become discouraged. It seems that most of the assignments available offer a pittance rather than a real income. To establish one’s self as a successful freelance writer does require patience and persistence. Although the completion is fierce, a diverse array of companies offer fair compensation and steady work for talented writers.

Whole Life Magazine relies on freelance material to fill its pages. They are currently seeking writers to submit articles on natural healing, green living, alternative healing, social responsibility, sustainable food, personal growth, spirituality and the environment. Compensation for an 800 to 1200-word article varies from $150 to $200 dependent on the topic and the author’s expertise and experience. Additionally, Whole Life Magazine has many regular departments that pay from $75 to $150 depending on the research required and the writer’s experience. The City of Angels section features 200 to 400-word articles and pays $35 to $35 depending on length and subject. The BackWords section features 750-word personal essays, highlighting milestone events or life-changing moments in the life of a writer and pays $100. Send a query via e-mail to abigail@wholelifemagazine.com.

If you work or play in Honolulu, Hawaii, Honolulu Magazine hires writers to provide material about the city and surrounding island. Honolulu Magazine publishes stories about local history, sports, lifestyle trends and personality profiles. The pay scale is impressive. They pay $600 to $1,800 for featured articles and $100 to $600 for short stories. Submit a query letter, resume and writing samples to A. Kam Napier akamn@honolulumagazine.com, or contact Honolulu Magazine managing editor Michael Keany mike@honolulumagazine.com.

WritersWeekly.com purchases articles for two separate publications: The Write Markets Report and WritersWeekly.com. They seek passionate writers to contribute articles on how to find markets and increase writing income. They are also looking for articles about home-based businesses and self employment opportunities for writers including ghost writing, self-publishing, resume writing, technical, scientific or corporate writing. They pay $60 for a 600-word article.

Fresh Healthy Vending pays $15 to $25 for articles or blog posts. The company is currently seeking writers to craft feature articles for their family of websites. At Fresh Healthy Vending, your writing efforts are appreciated. Writers are given their own author-credited column and produce insightful articles about the company’s healthy vending machines. If you need a reputable site to build your portfolio, develop your writing skills and earn substantial money at the same time, visit their site and submit a resume and cover letter.

ReliableWriters.com pays .025 per word or $10 for a 400-word article. To apply, send an e-mail to info@reliablewriters.com along with your resume and writing samples. All writers must speak English as their native language.

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Job Opportunities For Talented Writers

computer-1245714__180By: Marlene Affeld

Had you asked me a few years ago, if it were possible to make a living by writing online content, I would have responded with an emphatic “No!”? Today, my answer is a resounding “Yes!”

Tried of “pay-to-join” sites that turned out to be “scams”, I searched for paying sites hiring content writers. I sent off dozens of applications. I polished my writing skills. The turning point came when I found several legitimate sites that value their writers and offer fair compensation, editorial feedback and an opportunity to build your writer’s portfolio.

If you have earned a Bachelor, Masters or Ph.D. degree, consider applying at EssayWriters.net. The company requires excellent writing skills and dedication to deadlines. Skilled writers receive $16 per page. Bonuses are available for high-quality work.

A leader in freelance writing services, Academia Research offers an excellent opportunity for writers to demonstrate their expertise and experience. Academia Research pays the highest fee per page in the industry. They provide 24/7 editorial assistance and an endless list of available assignments.

If you are searching for a freelance writing job that pays what you are worth, provides security and offers opportunities to grow as a writer, go to UvoCorp.com and register. Talented writers can make up to $50 per hour. The application process consists of a detailed questionnaire, grammar test (TOEFL basis) and a sample five-paragraph essay on an assigned subject. Sample essays are judged on uniqueness, grammar, and consistency. If you can meet UvoCorp.com’s high standards, this is one of the best writing opportunities available.

AcademicExperts.US, online assistance and expertise agency, seeks academic experts from all parts of the world to help to high school and college students in Masters and Ph.D. programs. An MA or Ph.D. degree is required in your area of expertise. Applicants must complete a four-hour online exam and provide proof of their degree. Writers earn from $7 to $31 per page. Editorial support is available 24/7 to assist you with any questions on your assignments.

Research Writer offers an excellent opportunity for exceptional writers with an MA or Ph.D. and a commitment to deadlines. The company provides direct communication with their writers. Editorial comments are helpful, supportive and consensus-orientated. If you want to build your portfolio and be known for your area of expertise, writing for Research Writer is the ideal format. Research Writer seeks writers that are self-disciplined, self-motivated and highly ambitious. Writers must excel in APA, MLA, and Turabian writing styles.

Be paid for your knowledge and creativity while you perfect and enhance your writing skills. WriterBay.com is hiring writers to produce top-quality dissertations, term papers, essays and research papers. If you have polished writing skills and a sincere desire to increase your income, apply online. WriterBay.com offers editorial support and approval of your application within 48 hours. Applicants are required to have at least a bachelor’s degree. Writers with higher degrees can choose higher paying assignments. WriterBay.com offers an excellent salary of up to $20 per page and a flexible working schedule.

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Replace Your Day Job

flowers-871685__180If you can weave words in a concise, entertaining and lucid manner, have a passion for research and a dedication to deadlines, writing from home is an ideal way to supplement your income or replace your day job.

Transitions Abroad is looking for articles on living and working abroad. They are especially interested in articles about teaching English abroad, volunteering, internships, international careers and long-term travel. If you are a passionate world traveler with a talent for writing exciting content about your journey, Transitions Abroad is seeking to hire authors to write about budget travel, women traveling alone, vacation home travel, responsible travel, senior travel and food and wine destinations. The average pay per article is $100.

Blue Mountain Arts accepts submissions of poems and greeting card copy. They seek creative, original and fresh reflections, insightful poems and verse. They pay $300 for a published poem used as a greeting card. For a book published poem, they pay $50. They are looking for poems for all major holidays as well as children and adult birthday cards, graduation cards, wedding cards, thank-you cards and get-well cards.

MootMagazine.com is a newly launched online magazine featuring the iconoclasts, outcasts, misfits and just plain weird people that populate the planet. Nothing or no one is off limits. If you are creative, write with wit and humor, excel at research and want to build your writer’s portfolio writing for a publication that is offbeat, outrageous and irreverent, submit a sample article. Moot Magazine pays from $25 to $300 per article, dependent on depth of research and author’s expertise.

TutToaster.com hires writers to submit articles and tutorials. They invite writers to create “do-it-yourself” guidelines for home repair projects, cooking and crafts. TutToaster pays from $50 to $200 per article and encourages authors to submit their own photos to illustrate instructions.

Content Corp is presently hiring freelance content writers to submit articles on health, lifestyle trends, finance and computer. Prepare a cover letter to spotlight your talents and submit a writing sample and resume.

Good Old Boat

Writer Bay

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Write Your Way To Financial Independence

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By: Marlene Affeld

During difficult economic times, many people struggling to meet their financial obligations. Unemployment in many states has risen to record highs. Jobs are “few and far between.”

If you have dreamed of finding a way to share your life experience and be paid to do it, writing online can make your dream a reality. It’s a great way to make some extra income. In time, freelance media writing may replace your regular job.

Forget stressful commutes, office politics and someone else directing your schedule. When you write online, you work for yourself.

There is an insatiable demand for fresh online content. Site owners seek writers capable of meeting deadlines and producing a continuous supply of new articles. Fresh, original content is required to improve the website owner’s search engine rankings.

Website owners use social media sites to expose and promote their products or services. The incredible growth and popularity of sites such as Twitter, MySpace and Facebook drive Internet marketing in an entirely new direction. Website owners need writers to produce original content to keep their social media pages updated.

Wide ranges of online writing jobs are available. However, an innumerable number of very talented people are competing for these jobs. Many writing sites do not require applicants to hold a college degree. Some sites require applicants hold a minimum of a bachelor’s degree or have extensive experience in their niche market. Other sites seek authors with an advanced degree.

You will do best if English is your native language. You can work from anywhere, on the beach, curled up in your pajamas beside the fireplace or from an Internet café.

The secret of success is to treat online writing like a “real” job. If you work “8 to 5”, then write from “8 to 5”. Once you get into the rhythm of writing daily, you will enjoy the structure and order it brings to your work. Put on your “thinking cap,” consult a thesaurus and write some snappy copy.

Because you can work from anywhere you can access an Internet connection, online writing is a perfect job for the person that likes to travel, desires a flexible schedule or who lives in a remote location and must telecommute to work.

Online writing is a perfect part-time job for “stay-at-home” moms or dads. Parents can make a living working from home, spend quality time with their children and avoid expensive childcare. You can even write from the playground or while the young ones are taking a nap.

Online writing requires a dedication to meeting deadlines on time and producing error free copy. If your work is “perfect” when submitted, your time isn’t wasted with rewrites. Online writing jobs are plentiful, but to land the best jobs, you will have to polish your skills and do an outstanding job, sometimes for not a lot of pay. It takes time to find the right position to match your skills and interests. With a bit of research, you will find that there are a lot of viable options. Online writing can be a lucrative career, offering freedom and a way to express your creativity.

Getting Started

Refresh and update your employment resume. Highlight positions that involved writing.

Build a portfolio of your writing samples. Write different types of articles for various niches. Create “evergreen” articles, essays, product reviews, and “how-to” manuals. Proof each sample carefully and make required corrections. You only have one chance to make a terrific first impression. “Blow your own horn” and publish your articles on your blog or website. Use social media networking sites to promote your articles across the web.

“Don’t Put All You Eggs In One Basket”

On some sites, writers can address virtually any subject. You are limited only by the limits of your imagination. You choose the topic and the direction of the article. You will likely have to write a minimum number of words. Sites that accept “create your topic” articles typically pay based on a revenue share from monies received for advertising that runs in conjunction with your article. Some sites pay per submission. Other sites pay both. You can write for immediate payment or build a cache of articles that will pay you month after month.

Many online writing websites allow you to select from a selection of assignments. The website picks the topic. This is great if there are lots of choices in your area of expertise. You are in trouble if the choice of articles is restricted or eliminated. Always have 2-to-4 online writing websites where your submissions are welcomed.

Finding legitimate writing sites that pay fairly for time invested is difficult. There are lots of jobs out there. Online writing jobs vary greatly in application requirements, expectations and compensation.

Article Writing

About has established a stellar reputation as one of the best sites on the Internet for writers. Their standards are high. If you can “make the cut” the pay is high and dependable. Become an expert in your favorite topic. About is always seeking new guides.

KingTutz offers great opportunities for freelance writers with a background in business, marketing or economics.

Proficient Writers seeks academics, teachers and other knowledgeable professionals to submit articles for pay. Compensation ranges from $7 to $15 a page. There is lots of work for everyone and the application process is fast and easy. Apply today, write articles tomorrow.

Writers pH, a company based in the Philippines, needs article and essay writers. You can work from anywhere, on your own schedule. They pay through PayPal.

4Writers offers fair pay for short articles and essays. A great place to polish your craft, work with skilled editors and develop a writing niche.

Academic Writers

Prospect Solution is a well-respected writing site for research writers and freelancers. They pay above industry standard rates. A college degree in your chosen writing field is required.

Other sites worth checking out include, Freelance Writing Service Asia Writers and Academia Research.

Essay Town seeks writers degreed in any academic field. They are especially in need of writers for economics, mathematics, physics and accounting. Candidates must be able to expertly write term papers, research papers, theses, essays, book reports, and dissertations. Pay is above industry standards.

Home to freelance writers from around the world, Freelance Writing Center, provides steady employment that fits most anyone’s schedule. Many writers consider writing for Freelance Writing Center a dream job. You can make an excellent income. Work full time or choose to write part-time, when and where you want.

Travel Writing

If your life experiences includes living abroad or extensive world travel, Transitions Abroad, is a great place to write about your experiences and earn an income to supplement your travel budget.

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Blow Your Own Horn Loudly! – 7 Ways to Succeed As a Freelance Writer

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By: Marlene Affeld

To succeed as a freelance writer, it is important to implement aggressive methods of self-promotion. Article writing, signatures, blogs, guest blog posts, and forum posts are excellent ways to generate new clients and obtain new writing assignments.

Article writing presents a double, but doable challenge. It is not just enough to get published. You have written a well-crafted article; now you must find viewers to access and read your words.

Writing compelling submissions that grab the reader’s attention provides an opportunity for you to create a steady stream of revenue sharing income from your articles, offering another sound reason to engage in article marketing.

To increase your chances of attracting and keeping viewers, create your personal profile page to showcase your best articles.

Write about your favorite topics; things you enjoy and find most fascinating. There is nothing more boring than trying to turn out well-crafted prose on a subject that does not interest you. Let your enthusiasm for the subject show in your words; think of writing as painting and every word a brushstroke.

Writing multiple articles on the same subject provides the opportunity to link your articles to other relevant articles you have written on the topic.

Always set up the link to open in new windows or tab, so visitors are not quick to leave your page. It isn’t necessary to always write a long article; but be sure to make it grab the reader’s attention.

When you have written and posted at least a dozen or more articles that you have linked to each other, you are ready to find some forums that relate to your topic where you will be able to make comments with a post signature that includes your profile page link.

Become involved in the discussions; ask and answer questions. If you can provide an answer through one of your articles, you can include the link or suggest that the answer is available through the link in your bio or signature. Do not spam. Always make sure your links are relevant to the discussion, your comments positive and engaging.

Set up a simple signature to attach to your e-mails that offer an abbreviated bio and a link to your writer’s profile page. It is important that you always provide a method by which readers can contact you.

Find blogs in your niche that solicit guest posts. Be a welcome guest and always follows the rules of guest posting. Guest posting is an excellent way to expose your work to viewers that would have never otherwise seen your articles. Most blogs will allow you to include a brief bio and a link to your writer’s profile page.

Promote your articles through social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Delicious, Reddit, and more. Ask friends and family to share your articles in their social media circles.

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Slow Down And Quiet Your Mind

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By: Marlene Affeld

With the frantic pace and incessant demands of a busy life, many people feel stressed, feeling there is simply not enough time in a day to get everything done they feel they need to accomplish. Stress and fatigue contribute to making us feel frustrated, impatient and irritable. Stress can even impact our health.

We have all heard the advice to slow down and quiet our minds, but we get so busy we fail to take the time to stop and meditate. Yet, meditation gives us more time by making our minds calm and focused.

Meditation helps us understand our minds by learning how to transform negative to positive, sad to joyful, and chaos to calm. Through meditation, we can overcome negative “mind chatter” and cultivate constructive thoughts. Think of meditation as a workout for your brain that improves your ability to focus. Improved focus means improved performance.

Dr. Deepak Chopra, one of the world’s leading experts on meditation, explains the benefits of calming the mind, stating, “In meditation, we get into this space, so we find infinite possibilities, infinite correlation, infinite creativity, infinite imagination, and infinite power of intention. That’s what meditation is really about.”

Breathe

Find a comfortable sitting position with you feet flat on the floor. If you prefer, you can lie down. It doesn’t matter what position you are in; the point is to be comfortable.

In an article, How to do Meditation and Yoga to Reduce Stress, adapted from Engs, R.C. Alcohol, and Other Drugs: Self-Responsibility, Tichenor Publishing Company, Bloomington, IN, 1987, the author notes, “Most societies have developed methods to passively induce altered states and the relaxation response. For example, in most religions, prayer and/or meditation is common. It is often done rhythmically and repeatedly and, when carried out for a long period, a relaxed or altered state is often reached.

This repeated form of prayer and meditation is common in Buddhism, Hinduism, and Roman Catholicism. Some other forms of passively induced altered states, besides meditation, are systematic relaxation, self-hypnosis, yoga, and biofeedback. Most of these alternatives, besides being used for tension and stress reduction, can also be used for alleviating insomnia. When using them for sleep, do them lying down. When you use them for stress reduction, sit comfortably in a chair.”

Close your eyes to help you focus on the inner workings of the body. Now take several deep breaths, slowing inhaling, then exhaling, while observing the sensations of your body.

Awareness

Remain aware of your breathing. If “mind chatter” or random negative thoughts run through your mind, don’t push them aside or dwell on them. Rather, just acknowledge the thought as a mote of harmless dust floating on the wind. Accepting your worries without responding to them emotionally removes their power. If a negative or sad though persists, make a mental note of it, dismiss the thought and return to your meditation. Continue to breathe deeply, inhaling for a count of four, exhaling to a count of six.

Deep breathing is integral to meditation. By paying attention to our breath, we stay focused in the moment. During the day, most of us take short, shallow breaths that deprive our bodies of oxygen. Just a few minutes of deep breathing can rejuvenate and refresh. Relax and connect with the gentle rise and fall of your chest. Visualize each breath you take in as white, healing mist. Visualize each exhale as riding the body of a vile, black smoke.

Relax and Rest

Removing your concentration from your breathing, just rest for a few moments as you center your thoughts on how relaxed your muscles feel and the steadiness of your heartbeat. Remind yourself that this is “your time” and for the moment, there is nothing you have to do but focus on “you”.

An Attitude Of Gratitude

Adopt “An attitude of gratitude” by focusing your thoughts on something you are grateful for, such as family, friends, or the beauty of the day. No matter how sad or sorry your scenario, you have many things to for which to be grateful. Give thanks.

A Fresh Perspective

Open your eyes, stand up, stretch, and go about the rest of your day with a fresh perspective and renewed energy.

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Promoting Yourself As A Freelance Writer

By: Marlene Affeld

working-690680__180To succeed as a freelance writer, it is important to implement methods of self-promotion. Article writing, signatures, blogs, guest blog posts, and forum posts are an excellent way to get more leads and writing assignments.

Article Writing

Article writing presents a double challenge. It is not just enough to get published. You have written a well-crafted article; now you must find viewers to access and read your words. Writing interesting posts that grab the reader’s attention provides an opportunity for you to create a steady stream of income from your blog, offering another sound reason to engage in article marketing.

To increase your chances of attracting and keeping viewers, set up a blog on your favorite topic. Write about the things you enjoy and find most fascinating. There is nothing more boring than trying to turn out well-crafted prose on a subject that does not interest you. Writing multiple articles on the same topic provides the opportunity to link your articles to other relevant articles you have written on the topic. Always set up the link to open in new windows or tab, so visitors are not quick to leave your blog. It isn’t necessary to always write a long blog post. Write 50-to-100 word descriptions and entice visitors to click on the enclosed link to your original article.

Forum Posting

When your niche topic blog has at least ten articles linked, you are ready to find some forums that relate to your topic where you will be able to make posts with a post signature that includes your blog or website link. Get involved in the discussions, ask and answer questions. If you can provide an answer through one of your articles, you can include the link or suggest that the answer is available through the link in your bio or signature. Do not spam. Always make sure your links are relevant to the discussion.

Signatures

Set up a simple signature to attach to your e-mails that provide an abbreviated bio and a link to your blog.

Guest Posts

computer-1149148__180Find blogs in your niche that solicit guest posts. Be a welcome guest and always follows the rules of guest posting. Guest posting is an excellent way to expose your work to viewers that would have never otherwise seen your articles. Most blogs allow the author of the post to include one or two links to their website or blog.

Track Your Visitors

Remember to keep track of where your visitors come from to see where to best concentrate your efforts. The majority of reputable web host companies provide software for log analysis.

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Getting Started As A Travel Writer

Are you one of those individuals who constantly thinks about yourlast grand adventure or is mentally planning their next “escape?”

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By: Marlene Affeld

Do you dream of becoming a travel writer, jaunting about internationally with a notebook, camera, and a laptop? Do you want to visit exotic ports-of-call and be paid for writing about your experiences? You may say that sounds like a fantasy from a storybook, exciting, intriguing, but too good to be true.

You can do it! Put the days of being tied to a cubicle behind you. More and more publications allow writers to telecommute, providing an opportunity to work wherever.

Don’t get me wrong! Travel writing requires effort and commitment. You will need to be flexible, self-motivated, deadline-driven, and willing to step outside your comfort zone at short notice.

Travel writing is hard work for low pay, and highly competitive unless you are good enough to stand “head-and-shoulders” above a pack of other eager journalists. A great many people do make a good living as travel writers. However, they are a small minority. Many are full-time travelers, part-time writers, working on travel assignments on the side. Like me, others are senior citizens, writing to supplement a pension or social security check.

Don’t decide to get into travel writing for the money. It just isn’t there. If you have a passion and love for travel and sharing your experiences with others, travel writing can be a significant second income and a lot of fun. Do it for the fun; not the money. If you don’t have “deep pockets,” be prepared to manage on a very limited budget – you will not earn much starting out and traveling when money is tight can take a bit of the fun out of the experience.

Prerequisites Of A Travel Writer

Do you have impeccable grammar? Is English your native language? Do you demonstrate fluency in another language? What experience, knowledge or skill set do you bring to the table? If you love to travel and travel regularly, you are already off to a good start.

Patience and perseverance are required. If not put off, and roving the world remains your goal, here are a few tips to help fund your journey through travel writing.

Write And Write Some More

Working as a travel writer, it’s your job is to ferret out intriguing destinations and tell a story in an engaging manner to pique the reader’s imagination; make them dream of traveling where you have gone. That’s heady stuff; another good reason to wake up in the morning put on the coffee pot and write.

You need to be writing constantly, not just for potential publication, but to hone and polish your word weaving skills. Write, then, write some more, always being sure that it is your original work. Use a grammar, spelling and plagiarism checker on each and every article. Get in the habit of reading your words out loud. You will find that you will discover errors or repetitive phrasing that your eye missed.

Write Your Passion

If you are not intrigued by the subject matter, it will be reflected in your writing. Who wants to research and write about something that bores you to tears? Write about your hobbies, children, your passion for organic gardening, or tips on training your puppy. It doesn’t matter what you write about, just make sure that it is something that your find engaging so your readers will too. Take the subjects that intrigue you and incorporate them into your travel writing.

Find a niche that appeals to your passion and become knowledge about the subject matter, then share your quest with readers.

Create Multiple Streams Of Income

Search out sites that will accept your submissions on a regular basis. The pay may not be the greatest, but if it’s a dependable source of revenue, don’t turn down the opportunity. Attempt to establish a relationship with several clients, so if one opportunity dries up, you will still have others that you can count on to accept your submissions for pay. As you improve your skills and build your writing portfolio, lower paying gigs are replaced with others that reflect the increased value of your work.

Here are a few sites that pay writers for submissions. Be sure to acquaint yourself with each website to familiarize yourself with their style and the type of articles they seek before submitting a pitch or query.

Create A Writer’s Portfolio

Create your own website to showcase your writing talents.

Apply For Online Writing Jobs

Matador Network

Matador accepts submissions. Authors are paid $40 upon publication. Visit their site for submission guidelines. Matador is a great place to showcase your talent.

Wanderlust

Wanderlust.co.uk advises, “We rarely publish narrative travel features on this site, but we do consider interesting blogs, inspirational round-ups, guides and advice pieces. Please ensure that you are familiar with the site, our style, and our audience. To suggest an idea, please email us at website@wanderlust.co.uk.”

Check out Travelicious.world – read other writer’s unique stories and submit your own.

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Merits Of Freelance Writing

images-1By: Marlene Affeld

Freelance writing offers an ideal method to supplement your income or a full-time vocation that allows you to work from home in your pajamas.

Set your schedule and work anywhere around the world with an Internet Connection. However, to do so, you have to find writing assignments. Let the worldwide web know you are available by showcasing your talents with a personal blog or writer’s website.

Select A Reputable Web Host

You may have heard it before, but choosing the right web host for your a writing site is crucial in establishing a viable online presence. Select a reputable web host that offers sufficient disk space and bandwidth to host all the text, images, video and data that you have on your site, both now and in the future. It is imperative that you have a well-designed site that functions smoothly hosted by a dependable web host that can offer high uptime.

Look for a host that offers, “live” 24/7 technical support and customer service. Glitches happen. The real issue is how quickly the problem is resolved. If your site is down, visitors can’t find you. It pays to read the reviews and to select a web host that offers dependable service as well as online tools to help you manage your site and analyze traffic. Your site it a reflection of your professionalism. You want it to be clean, crisp and uncluttered, easy to navigate and a glowing reflection of your writing abilities and quality services.

Avoid free web hosting sites. Your site will be bombarded with advertisements you can’t control. These busy ads distract from the professionalism of your site. Read the reviews. There are several reputable web-hosting companies that offer dependable service for a low-cost monthly fee. Scrutinize the hosting agreement carefully to avoid hidden fees or to avoid paying for e-commerce tools and services you do not need. Look for a host that offers a plan that allows you to add additional space or services as your traffic increases and your site develops.

An A+ Effort

Remember the adage, “Content Is King” when writing articles and posts for your blog or website. Craft titles that grab the readers attention followed by relevant, interesting, grammatically correct, and error free content the offers a new insight or perspective that will entice readers to become followers. Throw in a bit of wit or humor to establish your personal style. This is your change to “shine”. Content must be original and never published elsewhere. Never, never, never use spun or scraped copy, thrown together irresponsibly. Never hide text or links in images. Less than your best effort reduces authority and credibility.

Use SEO Tactics

Use your primary keyword in your title and gently sprinkle your keywords throughout your content. Always include a category related to your submission and tags that relate to your unique content before publishing. Make sure that every article you write has a bio link or other acceptable method of communication.

Post At Regular Intervals

Google and the other major search engines compete to offer users the latest updates on the search term they are looking for. If you post at regularly scheduled times, the web crawlers will recognize the pattern and will automatically increase the traffic to your site. Try to post as frequently as possible so that your site is always fresh and up-to-date. When visitors see that your last post was 17 months ago, they assume the content is stale and move on.

Submit Guest Posts

Search for websites and blogs that are seeking fresh content from guest bloggers. Carefully follow the Web master’s submission guides. There are many sites that require content to improve their PR rankings and happily pay for content. A link is included to your site in your author bio. Some sites offer a residual income through revenue sharing while others pay per post.

Use Social Media To Promote Your Content

Social media sites are designed to share intriguing and thought provoking content with friends, family and co-workers. Promote your articles on Twitter, Facebook and a host of other social networks.

Build Backlinks

Building backlinks is one of the most efficient ways to increase traffic to your site.

Submit To Article Directories

Initiate a web search to find reputable article directories in your niche market that rank high on the search engines. When sites with a high PR post your story, which includes the bio link to your site, you will soon see an impressive increase in traffic.

Create A Mailing List

Develop an opt-in e-mail list of your favorite clients and fans. As long as they have opted-in to receive mail from you, a friendly note is an excellent way to present your latest content and receive additional writing assignments.

Comment

Comment on high-ranking blogs and websites relative to your niche market. Ask thought-provoking questions and stir up some controversy. Request feedback. Respond to comments and start a dialogue. Popular posts receive high traffic and lots of comments. Your comment containing a link to your blog or website will generate additional traffic.

Advertise

Placing ads for your writing services in online free classified directories is another way to generate new writing assignments. Make the ad short and to the point, with a link back to your site. Update your bio frequently to improve your site’s rankings with search engines.

Network

Print up an attractive business card promoting your writing services. Be sure to include an e-mail address and the title of your blog and website along with your name, phone number and any other pertinent contact information. Include a link to your writing site. Network with friends and family. During these lean economic times, be willing to barter or trade. Look for opportunities to offer to write or edit reviews or advertising copy for local businesses in exchange for goods and services. Perhaps your favorite restaurants need their menus revamped, or the folks at the gym could use a new brochure. There are writing opportunities everywhere. Use your imagination. Be creative. That’s what writing is all about.

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The Perils Of Procrastination

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By: Marlene Affeld

I frequently find insight, inspiration, magic, and motivation in the words of others. Today, while musing about procrastination and the plethora of chores I must accomplish before the day is over, I found words of merit in a Chinese proverb.

“This one makes a net, this one stands and wishes. Would you like to make a bet which one gets the fishes?”

Do you shelve till tomorrow that which you should do today? I am often guilty of deferring action until a later time when it would be in my interest to “do it” now. However, I avoid work, wishing a task or problem would just “go away.” It seldom does! Avoidance frequently just makes the situation much worse.

We all put off mundane chores when something more important demands our focused energy. A hectic life requires that we prioritize, applying the adage of “first things first”. Prioritizing is not procrastination.

Procrastination is “behavior characterized by needless deferment of action or involvement until a later time or delaying making a decision when such a delay is counterproductive to our best interests”.

A recently published survey reports, “Twenty percent of Americans identify themselves as chronic procrastinators. For this segment of the population, procrastination is a lifestyle, albeit a counterproductive one. They fail to pay their bills on time, they miss appointments and frustrate their friends with their tardiness. They file their income taxes late and leave their Christmas shopping until the last minute. They avoid making decisions. A procrastinator’s maladaptive behavior causes anxiety and stress and often threatens their very lives when they delay seeking medical treatment.”

Individuals indulging in procrastination have a tendency to underperform in almost areas of their lives: professionally, family relationships and health. Struggling with it, repeatedly promising themselves that next time will be different, they vow not to dally and delay; a promise rarely kept.

Procrastination is worrisome when it impedes normal function. We need to address the problem of procrastination by evaluating the consequences of our delaying tactics. Have you lost a job, damaged a friendship, missed a financial opportunity, or damaged your health by “putting off until tomorrow what you should have done today?”

A lot of people use procrastination as a way of coping with the anxiety associated with either starting or finishing a task or action. Granted, we all procrastinate to varying degrees. We tell ourselves, it’s is okay to put off a chore or obligation that is too unpleasant, painful or stressful; we are busy, “too much to do in too little time”. Procrastinators tend to lie to themselves. We manufacture complex excuses, avoiding the unpleasant, difficult, or tedious. We will do it later.

“Nothing is so fatiguing as the eternal hanging on of an uncompleted task”. ~ William James

Procrastinators are optimistic about their ability to manage an obligation, keep an appointment or turn work in on deadline: reassuring themselves and others, “don’t worry; everything is under control; I will get it done”.

Therefore, applying this kind of thinking, there is no need to start) As an example, a procrastinator may have a report to prepare for work that is due in six weeks. It will only take a few days, so no need to start today. Procrastinators, wrongly lulled into a false sense of security, allow time to slip away.

At some date, they cross an imaginary marker and realize they are not in control. There just isn’t enough time to do the job they avoided.

At that point, they address the problem, but they are making progress only because they haven’t any other choice. Backs against the wall with no alternative, they get to work.

Progress is made, but freedom lost. Procrastinators rush during the final hours to complete an assignment, telling themselves and anyone else that will listen, they function best “when they are behind the eight ball”. Procrastinators justify the delay, explaining they enjoy the euphoric rush of a pressured deadline. What nonsense!

Procrastinators never learn if they could have done an enhanced job if they had only taken the time needed to finish the task correctly. The report presentation may have been acceptable, but was it their best effort? Because of the delaying tactics, procrastinators will never know.

Procrastination creates confusing mixed feelings: a minor pride of accomplishment, scorn for the employer who doesn’t recognize a sub-standard performance, and an underlying sense of shame and guilt for not doing their very best.

No matter what the scenario, the result is reinforcement. The procrastinator is frequently rewarded positively for poor behavior. “Look – I got the assignment done, no one knows I didn’t give it my best effort.” Consequently, counterproductive, time-sapping patterns are repeated over and over again.

images-3Procrastination extracts a high cost from others as well as oneself. Procrastinators shift the burden of responsibility onto family, friends, and co-workers who quickly become resentful. Research studies report, “Procrastination destroys teamwork and erodes cooperation in the workplace and personal relationships. Procrastination has a high potential for painful consequences leading to feelings of inadequacy, guilt, self-doubt and depression.”

Procrastinators present a greater level of alcohol consumption and excessive use of prescription and illegal drugs. This behavior manifests in generalized problems of self-regulation. The effect of avoidance coping modality underlies procrastination, leading to disengagement and substance abuse.

Procrastination Sabotages Success

Procrastinators experience difficulty seeking therapy, or finding an understanding source of support, due to the stigma and misunderstanding surrounding extreme forms of procrastination. The problem is often mischaracterized simply as a lack of willpower, ambition or just plain laziness.

Research on the physiological roots or cause of procrastination targets the role of the prefrontal cortex area of the human brain. This region of the brain is responsible for brain functions such as attention, creativity, and impulse control; acting as a filter, decreasing distracting stimuli from other areas of the brain.

Low activity or injury to this area of the brain may reduce a person’s ability to filter distracting stimuli, ultimately resulting in a loss of attention, reduced organizational skills, and increased procrastination. This is similar to the prefrontal lobe’s integral role in attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) where under-activation is the common problem.

Recognizing and acknowledging that we do in fact procrastinate and realizing how, and to what degree, it impacts our everyday life, is the first step in reducing its power.

Procrastinators can change their behavior. Keep working on it. You may still procrastinate, but as you consciously decide not to delay you will experience more freedom from stress and gain personal self-satisfaction.

Old habits are hard to break. When you succeed, take the time to savor the victory. Remember how good it feels to act decisively. It will be a helpful boost next time you feel in need of a bit of encouragement.

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