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Getting Started as a Freelance Writer

3.5  ·  Rating details ·  105 Ratings  ·  23 Reviews
This expanded edition goes beyond advice on making a living as a business writer to include the more creative forms of writing. There are new chapters on writing and selling poems, short stories, novels, and essays, plus a new section on cartooning. Existing chapters have been brought up to date. You learn to start, run, and build a freelance writing business doing whateve ...more
Paperback, 261 pages
Published February 1st 2008 by Sentient Publications (first published December 1st 2005)
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Feb 25, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2010
What arrogance. I think he gave some great ideas on beginning a freelance career. However, I became exhausted from constantly hearing about how much money he makes and that he has an army of assistants that cater to his every whim. Good for you, buddy. Now get off of the soapbox. This book should have been entitled, "Getting Started as a Freelance Writer and then becoming pretentious."

Sue Bridehead (A Pseudonym)
There's some contradictory info offered in here, so be aware that you'll have to pick and choose your wisdom from what's offered. But mostly extremely helpful. I culled a list of 25 actionable tips from this book.
Jul 23, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was the updated edition (I think!), but it wasn't very up-to-date. To even question whether you need a computer as a writer seems, well, silly. I got a bit tired of the emphasis on making money ('course, maybe that's because I still have a day job!). Some good info, and a quick read.
This book has some great general information on getting published and making money writing. The focus on money-making didn't really appeal to me personally, but the author is clearly an expert in this aspect of writing. At times I was annoyed with the repetition of information and examplars. It felt as though the author took his own advice of recycling his material into different articles and then putting them together to repackage and sell, in this case without a ton of regard for overall effec ...more
Frank Barrett
Apr 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I just finished Robert Bly's Getting Started As a Freelance Writer. This is another must have for people interested in writing both for profit and for fun. Not only are there tips for getting published, but there are also tips for writing, staying on task, managing funds and staying passionate about writing. It's a great read that will stay on my short list of go to books for writing. My copy is now dog-eared, pages tagged, phrases and passages highlighted, and has been to six states. If you are ...more
Jan 05, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: writing-editing
I tremendously enjoyed reading this book. I am starting a new career as a copy editor/proofreader, but have an interest in related fields—writing, in this case. I originally started reading this book more for the "freelance" aspect than the "writer" aspect; however, this book opened my eyes to a much wider variety of professional writing opportunities than I had previously considered. The information is presented in a well organized manner and written in a way that is enjoyable to read. It is a ...more
Rachel Giesel
Apr 07, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book has endless information. I will be frequently referring to it and consider it a valuable resource for my freelance writing career. It thoroughly covers many important aspects of freelance writing and being an independent freelancer, as well as marketing strategies and how to write other pieces such as novels, essays and poems. Definitely recommended for those interested in starting a freelance writing business.
Oct 13, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This little book was quite a surprise. I have read several "how-to" books on writing and the authors seem to talk all around the "how-to" part, giving the reader mostly bull to wade through. No so with Getting Started as a Freelance Writer. The author was generous in his secrets to success, giving easy-to-follow tips, websites, and resources. If you're wanting to give up your day job to become a writer, I would recommend this book.
Oct 14, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
It wasn't very helpful to me because it was mostly about the author. What little advice there was given was vague. The book was mostly about how the author was a millionaire and how much he liked to pay other people to do things he didn't want to do. It was like reading one long business card for the author.
Amber Ziegler
Robert Bly's book was a great first freelance writing book for me to read. Although he's a very serious writer who writes mostly for very business-y clients, he covers all the basics of freelance writing. Anyone wanting to learn more about freelance writing should start with this book and then supplement their knowledge with an additional book or two on the topic.
Rachel Willis
Apr 18, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Wow, does this guy like to ramble on about his assets. I really don't get why some authors feel the need to spend half the book boasting about themselves. If this were an autobiography, maybe I'd have been interested. However, this was supposed to be about freelancing. One star only because I'm required to give it. Really should be .5.
Amanda Ball
This book is full of useful tips and equally full of what comes across as a sales pitch. But I'm not even sure what he's selling. Regardless, it's definitely a worthwhile and informative read for beginners.
Sep 28, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
While the author covers the basics of getting started in freelance writing, he also comes across as very smug about how much money he makes and how volunteering and other pursuits are a waste of time. I found this off-putting and not inspirational.
N.L. Riviezzo
A fairly useless book. The author spent most of the pages 'tooting his own horn' and bragging about his successes. Good for you but meaning to those who are trying to start out in the business. There are a few useful bits of information here but they are quite buried under Bly's ego.
2/3rds shameless self promotion and bragging about his income, 1/3rd useful information.
Diane Parkin
I have the updated version of this.
Oct 12, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: help-on-the-job
Extremely helpful and informative. The first "guide" to actually inspire me to try harder. Not a bad beach read as well :-)
Kay Mcgriff
Aug 01, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I learned much from this one, and am still learning thanks to the resources shared in the end. There is solid information on both the writing and business aspects of freelance writing.
Jul 19, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: writing, 2011
This was more about Bly bragging about how much money he makes freelance writing than actually giving any advice on how to get started.
Sep 18, 2008 rated it liked it
read it...had some good info...not as easy to read as Get a Freelance Life
May 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent helps and guidelines in to the freelance life. Lots of personal insights from Mr. Bly, and also contains a host of reference sources to help any writer.
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Diana Williamson
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Jason Scott
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Matt Barrington
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Kevin Ruhland
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Jun 03, 2017
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May 02, 2012
Rick Spinos
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Feb 18, 2013
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