Lazette Gifford
Publisher & Editor
zette@cableone.net

Website Review:

Finding Freelance Writing Jobs

By E. Edward Roberts
Copyright 2007 by E. Edward Roberts, All Rights Reserved


Do you use the web to find freelance writing jobs? It seems like it should be a simple thing, considering a Google search on "Freelance Writing Jobs" brings 130,000 clicks! But before you shout 'Alright! We've struck a goldmine!' you might want to examine a nugget or two.  

A quick review of some of these links will show you the downside of search engines' habits of selling the top locations to the highest bidder. Using Google as an example, the majority of the links on the first page are sponsored links, meaning Google was likely paid for 'top placement' locations.

Most of these links offer very little to the freelancer in search of paying gigs. That isn't to say these websites aren't helpful for freelance writers.  Many of them offer excellent resources, including tutorials, information sheets and articles on becoming a freelance writer but very little on finding potential paying freelance jobs.

That doesn't mean there aren't some good ones out there, though. Here are a few sites I've found that post paying freelance gigs, and directions on how you can find those listings since it isn't always obvious. 

I will also review a few other sites that claim to be great places to find freelance writing work, and tell you what I've found.

First Stop journalismjobs.com

OK, freelancing is not the primary focus of www.journalismjobs.com so there are usually not many potential freelance or telecommuting jobs listed each week. Generally, there are only between five and ten actual jobs to check out. But like anything else, you don't need hundreds of freelance jobs - all you need is one willing to give you a try! (Equally important, these are usually real writing jobs, so they will pay!)

Finding the freelance listing

Journalismjobs.com has four search fields across the top when you enter the job search area. The last one is keyword search. Click into the white box and type the word freelance. The hundreds of jobs originally displayed are now likely to be closer to ten. Some of those might be a false positive, meaning it found the word freelance but it was in the phrase "Not a Freelance position." But it only takes a moment to determine if this is the case.

Now, open another Internet window, or a new tab, and return to www.journalismjobs.com. This time, type the word "telecommute" into the keyword search. This may bring up more jobs, or it might find only the ones in the original search, which is why we needed to open two windows to cross check these listings.

But even if all the jobs are duplicates, www.journalismjobs.com offers you jobs at a much better pay rate than the "Freelance" websites seem to offer!

Downside: These sites are paying, so they anticipate drawing a seasoned writer. If you aren't one, make that clear in your cover letter but also make it clear that you can write. That starts by writing a good query letter, and using clips where requested.

Another good website

Another good website for finding potential freelance jobs is Writers Resource Center at www.poewar.com/freelance-jobs.  This site has a good listing of jobs that might actually work for you! Better yet, there are many more links on this site which are very helpful to first-time freelance submitters.

Sites that don't work for me

I don't get paid for my writing if I am spending my time on the web looking for jobs.  I only get paid if I get the gig, write the article, and submit it. So many of the sites listed as specializing in finding writing jobs leave me cold, as they have tons of pages, and lots of listings but they pay nothing. The many writing gigs turn out to be looking only for snippets, PR, web copy and they want to pay nothing.

One gets the feeling these sites are actually designed to lure you in so they can sell you something.

Sites not all that good for freelance jobs (IMHO)

  • Sologig.com
  • Guru.com
  • Freelance.com
  • Ifreelance

Why I say these things

Sologig.com sounds like a great idea for freelance writers looking for jobs but I certainly have never seen anything important start there! Guru.com is the same way. The jobs are small or pay nothing. Freelance.com hasn't connected to anything for paying jobs, either. However, all of these sites do offer other features beyond their job component that writers find helpful so don't write them off your writer's list!

While this next link is similar to the ones above in their job listings, there is a redeeming point to www.freelancewriting.com. It is the one site that every search engine will find when looking for freelance writing jobs. While I have no use for the freelance job listings posted there, there are many other great items on this site especially tips on writing and market related news.