Importance of a Blog for a Freelance Writer

Our society today is constantly coming up with various ways to make our lives convenient. The great thing about these modern times is that we have the technology to make it into a reality. That may be the microwave ovens that we use to heat our food in a matter of seconds. Or it could be that simple remote control that enables us to sit lifeless on the couch and still be able to flip through channels.

Importance of a Blog for a Freelance Writer

Photo Courtesy of Stuart Miles for FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Or it could be this blog that I am maintaining for my professional career.

I was writing a finance article the other day about the importance of tools in keeping your accounts in order. I suddenly thought about the tools that I used as a freelance writer.

We have a lot of tools that are essential in writing. That includes our laptop, reference materials, dictionary, thesaurus, grammar and spell check programs, Copyscape and a lot more. To be successful as a freelance writer you need to possess the right ones to help you create high quality output.

Of all the tools that you need, I realized that a blog is one of the most versatile and useful in helping me with my professional growth.

As a writer, we all need that journal-like tool that can we can use to store our thoughts and ideas. That is what your blog can be for you. In truth, it can be anything that you want it to be. You can post your own opinions, your photos, and even what you ate for dinner. And you have the freedom to share your personal thoughts about your professional life as a writer.

For me, I use my blog, earnathomeph for a lot of reasons. If you are a writer who wishes to be a freelance writer, feel free to browse through the different uses that I have for by blog.

My online portfolio. Initially, I set up my blog to be my portfolio. Most clients would want to see a sample of my writing so I need an online presence that will allow them to view my articles anytime they wish.

Sample protection. Not to scare you or anything, but there are sneaky clients who ask samples from you and use it without paying you for it. Be wary of them. If I have to submit a sample, I always pick one that is already published on my blog – and it is usually in PDF. Some of them ask for new samples based on their preferred subject. I usually do not agree to submit unless it is paid. If they simply wish to see my writing style, my blogsite should suffice for that.

Professionalism. Another use of my blog is for me to appear professional. My clients will not think twice about my credibility as a writer.

Earn on the side. My blog can also be a source of extra income. Advertisements can be placed on blogs and your visitors can click on them if they wish. You can earn through PPC commissions.

Help others with your experiences. This is my favorite of all the uses that I have for my blog. I have directed friends and acquaintances to my blogsite if they wish to know more about freelance writing. Although my blog does not have hundred of articles (yet), I can assure you that my posts are based on my personal experiences and topics that I know will be useful to freelance writes like me. I hope that people who come to my site can learn valuable lessons from what I have gone through.

These are only few of the reasons that a blog can be useful to you. Feel free to explore the possibilities that a blog can bring your professional life. If you need a tip, wordpress is the easiest platform to create a simple site. Click here to learn more about creating a blogsite.

The Odesk Work Diary Invasion of Privacy

The Odesk Work Diary: Invasion of Privacy?

The oDesk Work Diary is a tool riddled with controversies – at least for contractors. Employers love it because it is a great way to monitor and check if the contractors they hired are spending quality time to accomplish the job assigned to them. It is their assurance that they are not paying for time spent surfing the net or visiting social networking sites.

It is a different story for contractors though. Let me give you the two sides of it.

Invasion of Privacy

On one side, a lot of contractors did not like the oDesk Work Diary. They feel that it is an outright invasion of their privacy.

Here’s the thing. When you work from home, you give up on a lot of benefits. You give up paid holidays, the employer’s share in taxes, health care benefits and other relevant perks that comes with being employed.

You give all that up for one thing: freedom. That is, freedom to work where and when you want to. The where part is not really the problem – it’s the when part that is bothering some contractors.

Truth is, freedom is your one big benefit when you work remotely from home. With the oDesk Work Diary, you take that away from us. You get to see when we work – how fast or slow we do it. The basis for payment is no longer reliant on the quality of the work but also how long it is accomplished.

Assurance Guaranteed

On the other hand, contractors cannot object to the fact that the Work Diary does guarantee payment. If the screenshot shows an image connected to the job at hand, then the employer does not have a reason NOT to pay you.

Using this tool gives contractors an arguable proof in case of disputes. And we call know that in disputes, proof is everything. Since you have screenshots of what you did during the work week, the employers does not have a choice but to pay their dues – simply because you were true to your end of the bargain. You worked hard for it.

The Odesk Work Diary Invasion of Privacy

Photo courtesy of oDesk

My POV

Personally, I like the Work Diary. I started out getting fixed priced projects and I can still remember the anxiety every time I submitted a project. Will I get paid or not? It is not a stress-free feeling.

This is why I am now opting for hourly jobs only – because of this feature. I strongly believe that it is a win-win situation on both parties.

Re the freedom to work when I want to, I still have that. I make it a point that I get employers who understand that I need to work day hours MY TIME (UTC+8). If they want me to work during THEIR work hours, I usually decline the job offer. Rare cases like meetings and telecons are acceptable.

So all in all, the oDesk Work Diary is a good tool. It is effective in the sense that it offers assurance for employers and guarantees payment for contractors. I believe that is the bottom line when you work remotely.