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Five Major Challenges of Freelance Writing Students Face

Working at home sounds like a great idea, but are you prepared for the challenges of freelance writing? I've been working as a freelance writer providing college essay help for several years, sometimes in conjunction with another job and sometimes as my only source of income. I wouldn't trade writing for anything, but I've learned over the years that there are many responsibilities to working for yourself.

These five major challenges students face not only apply to freelance writing but also to any other freelance work that you might take on. When you leave the world of 9-5 jobs and have to find the clients yourself, there are many new difficulties. But the job also comes with its rewards!

Being your boss can be rewarding. But, before you take the plunge, think carefully about the downsides of starting your own business. You can always write part-time while working another job, but if you become a full-time writer you should be prepared for the good and the bad.

1. Finding Your Clients
The first (and possibly the biggest) challenge of making a living as a freelance writer is finding enough clients to keep you busy and engaged. The first rule of freelance writing students, or any other freelance gig, is that you shouldn't put all your eggs in one basket. While you may have a well-paying client that can cover all your expenses, how do you know how long that job will last? In these tough economic times, you have to consider the fact that a solid company may run into trouble and not need your services anymore. Having several good clients will keep you afloat if one goes down.

Many people start writing for websites where a community of writers can create their pages easily. It's a great way to begin establishing your web presence. Many of the top websites also take applications from writers, just keep your eyes open on the websites you enjoy. Although there has been a lot of change in print media, there are still plenty of clients for freelancers in magazines, journals, and newspapers.

You can be your client by starting your blog or website. However, it takes time to establish a good readership and start to monetize a blog. You'll need other clients or a day job while you work.

2. Finding Your Motivation
It can be tough to work from home. Not all of us are as self-motivated as we would like! I know that some days, I can get distracted on Facebook for far longer than I'd care to admit. But, I write online so getting rid of my internet connection isn't an option!

For me, getting organized and setting a schedule is critical for staying motivated. I set daily and monthly goals that I want to achieve with my writing. By keeping a spreadsheet with my daily targets for each website I write for, I can see at a glance what I've done and what I have left to do that day and that month. What's your secret for finding the motivation to write?

3. Finding Your Support System
Family and friends can be weird sometimes. They love you and want the best from you, but you may have people in your life who can be difficult when you make decisions they don't understand. Freelancing is often one of those times. Even the most well-meaning people might not understand how you stay home all day on the computer and don't work. Some people have trouble seeing past 9-5 jobs. Not everyone in your life will support your decision to freelance, but it is important to find a support system that understands.

Finding a community of writers is a great way to find a support system that gets what you are doing. Local writing groups are a good place for student support if you want face-to-face connections. Check the bulletin board at your local library or college and you may find some listings.

No matter where you find your support system, look for one! Your friends and family, a local group, or online communities can all be a support for you. Having a handful of people who get what you are trying to do will pay off when you are facing challenges.

4. Handling Your Money
One of the five major challenges of freelance writing tends to sneak up on people -- money. From planning a budget to handling taxes, there is not the same kind of stability in freelancing as in a day job so you need to carefully plan how to handle your money.

One of the first things to do before starting as a freelancer is to take a close look at your budget. Make a list (yes, written down) of all your expenses. You will need to know what the minimum amount of money you need to bring in is, and then add on extra for saving and paying taxes.

Taxes are a major challenge for freelance student writers because they have so many sources of income. I highly recommend speaking to a tax professional if you are serious about being a full-time freelancer. When you work for a traditional employer, they withhold money for your taxes. When you are self-employed, you need to pay quarterly estimated taxes to the IRS to cover your tax liability.

5. Replacing Your Benefits
Freelancing doesn't come with a 401K or health insurance. These are things you will have to plan for yourself. Luckily, getting an individual retirement account (IRA) is a simple task that most major financial institutions can help you with. Set up automatic monthly contributions to your account so that it grows a little bit each month.

Finding an individual health insurance policy is more difficult (and expensive). Individual policies are far more expensive than what a group or employer can negotiate.

About the author: Daniel T Anderson, a writer at EssayHelpOnTime. He keeps up with advancing technologies to get acquainted with the latest technological tendencies. Besides, Daniel is keen on reading modern literature and traveling.
Author: Daniel T Anderson