Are you looking for freelance writing gigs that are actually worth your time?
Long-term success as a freelancer is all about finding (and retaining) clients who are willing to pay for quality (and not just quantity). Unfortunately, sites like Upwork get a bad rap from clients who are only focused on identifying the cheapest provider.
Building off our recent post, “How to Find High-Paying Jobs on Upwork,” this article offers pre-filtered links for writers seeking worthwhile opportunities online. Specifically, you’ll find freelance contracts in the following specialities:
- Web Content Creation
- Creative Writing
- Technical Writing
- Academic Research & Writing
The Logic Built Into My Filters
Before I share the job links, allow me to briefly explain what you’re clicking on. My purpose for writing this article is actually twofold. Of course, the most obvious reason is to help freelancers like yourself find good-paying jobs (over 1,000 opportunities below!) and bypass the riffraff. The second motivation is somewhat selfish: if I wanted to do some prospecting (currently too busy, though), I would use these links myself. Please note the following:
- I don’t apply for writing jobs that are less than $100
- I also don’t apply for “Entry Level” work
- I prefer hourly gigs, but that’s usually difficult to find on initial writing engagements
- It’s best to sort opportunities by “Client Spend History,” in my humble opinion (money talks)
- Don’t work for new clients on Upwork; you want clients with a proven feedback history and solid client reputation
If you would like to adjust your filters, it’s relatively easy to do so. Simply click the links below and then adjust the settings you see in the lefthand margin. (More on how to do that here.)
Important: before you can view the following links, you will need to sign up for a free Upwork account.
Most writers these days have done some form of blogging. As most marketers understand, blogging is one of the best ways to help clients create visibility on Google and the other search engines. If you are a gifted writer, understand how to do basic keyword research, and are relatively efficient, blogging could be an excellent opportunity to get your foot in the door with new clients. Most articles will have an upper budget limit of $150, but you might get lucky and find a client who wants a series of posts.
Web Content Jobs
Much like creating blog content, writing web copy is a growing field for many content professionals. Technically, blogging is a subset of web content creation. There may be some overlap between our list of blogging jobs and the web content list. However, many clients think of “web content” more as permanent page-type content. If you’re thinking in terms of WordPress, “blog” content is usually added as “posts” while “web content” is often built as “pages.” Web content writers need to have a keen ability to connect the client’s value proposition to the needs of the prospect.
Creative Writing Jobs
Love to tell a story? Creative writing is certainly a unique skill within the writing profession. Not only are you expected to present the facts, but more importantly, you need a knack for thinking outside the box. In addition, some clients use this Upwork section to post content jobs that don’t exactly “fit” the previous two categories. For example, foreign language and sales writing jobs sometimes pop up in this section.
When I think of copywriting, compelling sales emails and marketing literature come to mind. On Upwork, copywriting jobs tend to be aligned with B2B organizations, which also typically means a bigger budget for the services that you provide. Before applying to these jobs, be sure to brush up on your ability to convert readers into leads. Strong familiarity with value propositions and calls-to-action is important.
Are you a technically-minded person? Love to write proposals, whitepapers, and support documentation? Then a technical writing job might be a great fit for your skills. Having recruited for technical writers myself, it’s actually quite difficult to find qualified freelancers in this niche. Thus, the budget for technical writing is typically much higher than other writing functions.
Academic Research & Writing
Are you an expert on the medicinal value of organic supplements? Know a lot about history or genetics? For writers with very specified knowledge, this is an excellent (yet quite eclectic) group of freelance gigs. Most writers will likely bypass this category, however, it is worth noting there are hundreds of academic writing opportunities. My guess is that these pay pretty well and probably have fewer competitors than the blogging category.
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