Julie Drost Lokun
5 Tips To Make Money As A Writer
Updated: Mar 27
I began my career as a journalist three decades ago. The longevity of my career is paved with unfettered ambition and making ends meet. At that time, I had just earned a $40,000 diploma and demanded a salary as an $8/hour professional writer.
Although I was never good at math, I quickly realized $8 an hour meant I would have to survive on a budget that did not include designer jeans. My diet consisted mainly of ramen noodles and Little Debbie cupcakes. While a decadent culinary combination to some- I hungered for more.
This insatiable desire to be impactful led me to pursue a degree in law. However, law was not my final stop on the career-crazy train. I wandered through various paths, from marketing to international visa advocacy. Yet, I felt most at home when writing. It allowed me to tap into my creativity and reach a state of flow. When I suppressed my creative side, I felt lost and unfulfilled, and my wardrobe lacked any sense of purpose.
As a seasoned writer turned CEO turned media maverick, I encourage you to think outside of the box. Writing well is a lost art and with the onset of AI (artificial intelligence), competition is fierce. Yet, your voice is one of a kind and the unique angle you bring to your pieces can be a game changer.
I have the opportunity to write for Entrepreneur Magazine, Mind Valley, and have several corporate clients who understand the importance of a skilled director of communications. Take a deep breath, and rethink your approach to being a wordsmith.
Take a look at your portfolio. Do an assessment of the content you are creating and determine who you can align with. Networks are essential and getting seen is non-negotiable.
Repurpose your content on Medium. Medium is the gold-standard blogging platform.
Start your own blog (LIKE THIS ONE). Visibility is everything and you want to make sure your skillset is searchable.
Pitch different outlets to create a regular cadence of content online. Better yet, get your story in old-fashioned print. A lot of this will be work done for free (at the beginning), but it is imperative you have a curated list of articles to pitch Tier 1 outlets.
Keep Reaching For More
There are several outlets and tools that can help new writers monetize their craft, including:
Freelance writing platforms: Websites like Upwork, Freelancer, and Fiverr connect freelancers with clients who need writing services. Signing up for these platforms can provide new writers with opportunities to build their portfolios, gain experience, and make money.
Pitching to publications: Pitching to publications is a great way for new writers to get their work published and earn money. Many publications, both online and print, pay for contributed articles. Writers can search for publications that align with their interests and pitch story ideas to editors.
Affiliate marketing: Affiliate marketing involves promoting products or services on your website or blog and earning a commission on sales. New writers can join affiliate programs, such as Amazon Associates or ShareASale, and promote products related to their niche.
Content creation for businesses: Many businesses need help creating content for their websites, social media channels, and marketing materials. New writers can offer their services to businesses in need of writing support, either on a freelance basis or through a content agency.
Self-publishing: Self-publishing platforms, such as Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing and Smashwords, allow writers to publish their own books and earn royalties. New writers can write and publish their own ebooks or print-on-demand books and market them on their websites or social media channels.
Get on GOOGLE- everything you do as a modern writer has to be with foundational knowledge that Google will get you farther as a professional. Be clear on SEOs and be clear on your strategy to be searchable as a writer.
The truth is, is that our journeys as creatives or writers may not see the initial ROI on the blood, sweat, and tears we invest. This initial capital will overwhelm you at points, however with appropriate mentorship, strategy, and getting uncomfortable the payout is tremendous.
You got this--Jules
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Why listen to me? Do your due diligence. GOOGLE ME: Julie Lokun.
Go ahead--see what you find. I advocate for creatives, authors, and entrepreneurs worldwide. In the meantime:
Julie Lokun, JD. a legal eagle and facilitator of dreams, is changing the trajectory of underserved entrepreneurs who are using their voice to make an impact. As a mom of four (4) boys, Julie has learned to leverage her power to lead a bustling household while also serving as the head maven of Crown & Compass Life Coaching. She adeptly "anoints and points" -- directing the strategic growth of businesses and professionals around the globe. Julie has delivered presentations on the big stage, and in virtual events. With a background in law, she teases through complex information and gets to the root of issues, telling deep, compelling stories that resonate with audiences far and wide. She is a celebrated best-selling author of the entrepreneurial series, Hustle Smart, the owner of The Mediacasters Publishing House with several bestselling titles, and a 5-star business coach. In the spring of 2021, Julie launched a swiftly growing podcast, Obsessed with Humans On The Verge of Change which is already in the top 2% of all podcasts globally.*