Disaster struck this week when my MacBook malfunctioned! As the inner workings of the computer ceased to work, many pages of creative writing and feature articles that were not backed up disappeared. Ironically, a pop up reminding me to back up my work had appeared earlier that day but typically I made a mental note and decided to do it later. If only I had known…
Hence the basis for this article. The freelance writer needs to consider many things within their career and some of them are basic yet crucial. If you really want to write then you need to take heed of the following five tips. They may sound obvious but learn from my mistakes this week.
Back up your work. It’s too late for me now but it may not be too late for you. Always back up your writing on a USB stick or other external hard drive. You may have spent many hours producing something wonderful and you do not want to see it disappear into a malfunctioning computers’ black hole of nothingness
Learn to type. How many words per minute can you write? If the answer is less than twenty then you really need some practice. Look online for some typing exercises and learn to touch type. It takes skill and patience but it can be done. By doing so you will write faster and produce more pages a day.
Find a comfortable keyboard. It doesn’t matter if you use a MacBook, Windows laptop or typewriter. You need to be able to let your fingers flow on a decent keyboard. For example my MacBook was perfect, the keys spaced out evenly to allow my fingers go to work like an accomplished pianist. Currently I am writing on a small laptop/tablet hybrid while the MacBook is in for repair and my fingers are cramping up, and I keep hitting the wrong keys. They are that small. Find a keyboard that suits you, keep it clean from dust and liquids, and enjoy writing on it.
Read something. A good writer is a good reader. If you are writing a novel then read a novel. If you are a blogger then read other blogs. If you write articles then read a magazine or newspaper. Other writers can inspire you to write. You will learn the writing process subconsciously as you read more. A bad writer will give you the incentive to produce something better. A good writer can make you feel excited at the possibilities of what you can create.
Write! I know this is especially obvious but many people call themselves writers without actually writing very much at all. Distraction and procrastination are the writer’s worst enemies and they contribute to unproductive days. So write something. The more you write the better you will get. Practice as they say makes perfect.