Creating a Freelance Business

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Image by Ivo Sandoval via Flickr

A freelance career can be a fun and rewarding one. Keep in mind that it takes a good 3 to 5 years to build a successful business, and be prepared to spend many, many hours a week working at it. It is wise to keep your ‘day job’ for at least the first few years, and to keep in mind that just because you do well for a year or two does not mean that you will continuously do well during those first few years. Perseverance does pay off, though, so keep working hard.

The first thing you will have to decide on is what type of freelance career you would like. An article writing career? An eBook writing career? A photography career? Perhaps copywriting is more your style. Or editing. Whatever you enjoy doing.

Next, sit down with a pen and a notebook. Use the first page or two for writing a description of your business, when you would like to start it and how much money you have on hand for necessary supplies, as well as possible business names if you will need one. (I do not have one.)

Another page can be used to list items you must have to start your business, and the next page will hold ideas you come up with for getting as much of what you will need as possible either free or cheap. This will save you money while starting the career.

Brainstorming ideas for your business is another activity that will help you to get started.

For instance, before beginning this blog for business or otherwise, I sit down and create a list of 21 posts to schedule for the 1st 3 weeks. I then make 3 lists of 52 topic ideas for the entire first year of any blog. (This meant that there are actually 10 posts per week for the 1st three weeks, plus 3 posts each week thereafter.)

Once the basic post ideas are taken care of, I make separate lists for: eBooks, Special Reports, eCourses, and Mini eBooks.

What plans you make will, of course, depend on your career. The blogging is only a part of my business. I also writing articles for others, so figuring out who to write for is always at the top of my Things To Do list. Finding clients/outlets is also essential.

Before beginning a freelance career:

  1. Find an accountant to talk to. See what will be needed for tax purposes.

  2. Set up a record keeping system for tax purposes.

  3. Look into local zoning laws at your town/city hall.

  4. Check into local, county, state and federal laws regarding your type of business.

  5. Talk to a lawyer if necessary.

  6. Acquire your business name.

  7. Purchase insurance if required and/or desired.

  8. Set up your work space.

  9. Acquire what supplies, electronics and furniture you need to start your business.

  10. Have business cards made.

  11. Create a website and blog for your business.

This is not an exhaustive list, by any means, but it will help you to get started in a career that is right for you. Feel free to share your freelance start-up experiences.

Shannon

  • Why I Love to Work at the Park (howtolivethefreelancelife.wordpress.com)
  • Keep Something to Work on With You at All Times (howtolivethefreelancelife.wordpress.com)
  • What is Your Freelance Business Routine? (howtolivethefreelancelife.wordpress.com)

About Shannon L. Buck

Hello. My name is Shannon, and I'm a single mother of two young adult daughters, and Memay to one precious Little Man. I work as a writer from my home in Orono, Maine, and as a Front Desk Agent at an inn. Writing is my life, second only to my daughters. I enjoy writing nonfiction, as well as fiction in a number of genres. At some point, I would like to travel. It would be a true writing adventure.