How To Make Money Writing: Monetize Your Creativity
Anyone who has been writing to get paid knows how tough writing can be. More often than not, employers at traditional writing jobs undervalue your work.
You’ll hear them say that if you are looking to make money, writing is not for you.
They’ll tell you that writing is an art and you can’t put a price on art.
But that statement doesn’t help when your rent is due or when bills pile up incessantly on your desk.
“How to make money writing?” you might have found yourself asking in exasperation.
Don’t worry, we’ve all asked this question at one point or another. Be it wanting to learn how to make money writing online as a profession or how to make money writing on the side, we’ve all been there.
More often than not, it is difficult to make any money writing because we don’t know where to turn. Where are all the legit websites and content buyers where you can write and get paid instantly? Is there anyone looking to pay you for your words?
Be it a poem about your love for William Carlos Williams, a listicle about the most underrated Game of Thrones characters or a beginner’s guide to programming, there are people who find value in your work, and they’ll pay you good money for it.
You just need to know where to look. And that’s what I am here to do, to give you some tried-and-tested ways you can write and get paid instantly.
I have experimented with some of these ways myself to make money writing, and I know that they work.
How to Make Money Writing a Blog
A blog is the best platform for any writer to showcase their work, and every writer needs one. Especially if you want to learn how to make money writing, starting a blog should be your first move.
The best thing about a blog is that it is among the most fun ways to make money writing. Your blog should preferably be centered on a niche—relationships, business, technology, pop culture—or you can write about anything you find interesting.
Let’s start with the basics of how to make money writing a blog.
Once you have set up a blog (you can do it even if you have no technical know-how), you have to write useful and enjoyable content that will establish you as an authority in your niche. Then you need to grow the right readership to make money writing a blog.
Just ask yourself what kind of person do you want reading your blog and where those people would be online—forums, other blogs, podcasts, and so on. Make a list of these platforms and start engaging with potential readers.
Once you have covered the basics and built a solid foundation there’s no stopping you from making money writing a blog.
I am happy to tell you that you can make a full-time income from your blog, and there are many ways to do it.
How to make money writing a blog? Some easy methods:
Once your blog gets enough traffic, brands in your niche will want to advertise themselves by placing ads on your blog, and it is the most common way to make money writing.
You link to a product being sold through some other site and if someone uses your link to purchase that product, you get paid instantly.
Bloggers also make money by participating in sponsored conferences or meet-ups. They can also promote and sell their own services to make money from the blog or by selling their products like eBooks, software, or even physical products.
There are multiple indirect income streams to make money writing a blog. For example: once you cultivate a good following for your blog, you can get paid to be a consultant or host events.
You have to make sure your blog has content your readers find useful or enjoy reading to make money writing a blog post. There are some essential dos and don’ts of blogging to ensure your blog has quality content and a unique voice.
How To Make Money Writing A Book
Another great way to make money writing online is to write a book. While publishing your books via traditional publishers might not make you any money, publishing your work online certainly will.
Now there are several platforms you can use to make money writing a book, but Amazon self-publishing is among the most popular.
Though you don’t need to be a professional writer to self-publish a book, you need to produce good work for readers to buy it. The basic how-to to make money writing a book is to figure out what kind of book you want to publish. Genre novels and easy reads do well in ebook formats, much more so than literary fiction. Some popular categories are self-help, romance, travel, fitness, and so on.
But exactly how to make money writing a book?
Once you are done writing a good book, you need to write a pithy blurb to attract the readers, and you need to decide what type of self-publishing you want to go for. The easiest way would be to go with an e-book as that’s a format that allows you to write and get paid instantly.
You make money writing e-books in the form of royalty. Price your book and price it right. The royalty Amazon offers depends on the price the e-book goes for—up to 70 percent—which also means your book needs to sell for you to make money.
There are other ways too, such as Amazon self-publishing–where you get 60 percent royalty minus the publishing costs—Barnes and Noble’s Nook Press, and Smashwords.
If you are only just starting to learn how to make money writing a book, you need to focus on building a readership and creating a brand rather than making a lot of money. Make sure your books aren’t priced too high and that you get as many good reviews as possible. This is a great way if you were wondering how to make money writing from home.
How To Make Money Writing Erotica
People enjoy indulging their vices by reading erotica, and writing it doesn’t take a lot of skill or start-up costs. That makes writing erotica one of the easiest ways to make money writing from home.
There are many people that are making upwards of a thousand dollars per month writing erotica online, and there’s still a lot more demand for it.
So how can you make money writing erotica? One of the ways to do it is to self-publish erotica e-books the same way you would other e-books. (See above)
To finish a whole book doesn’t even take more than 5 hours, and writers sometimes publish four to ten times a month depending on how successful they are. That’s why how to make money writing erotica is a question even the non-writers among us find ourselves asking?
Like with other e-books, research to find the right niche. There are different categories of erotica—bdsm, interracial, Victorian, paranormal, fairy tales. You could experiment writing a book on any of these categories.
With erotica, you don’t have to worry about optimized content or marketing your book. The money you make is a mix of royalty from selling a new book and passive money from old books. That means as long as you keep writing hot, steamy stories you’ll make money writing from home.
How To Make Money Writing Poetry
Writing poetry is another way to make money freelance writing. There are several online platforms that pay good money for poetry. If you enjoy writing poems, why not make some money out of it rather than leaving your poetry collecting dust?
Here are few ways how you can make money writing poetry online.
You can post your poetry on sites like Gather.com, Poetry Foundation, The Sun, and Crazyhorse, among others, to make anywhere between $10 and $300.
Another way to make money writing poetry, if you are worried your poetry might not get selected on these platforms, is by selling cute poems to greeting card companies. You can just post a listing on Fiverr for custom poem writing services starting at $5 for people who want custom poems for Valentine’s Day or birthdays.
Just the way you would with a blog or with other kind of content, you can make money writing poetry too. Set up a blog for your poems and make some revenue through AdSense. Not many poem readers click on the ads, so don’t expect to be making a lot of money.
Make money writing poetry by selling physical products with your poems. There are always people looking for short, inspiring poems they can put up on their office walls or living room. Print and frame personalized poems and sell them on Etsy.
People also love t-shirts, hats and tote bags that reflect their personality. You could sell these products with print-on-demand poems to make money writing poetry.
There are many ways to make money writing poetry, but if making money is your primary goal from writing, other kinds of writing work better than poems. But if you want to make a little money on the side and enjoy writing poems, give it a go.
How To Make Money Writing Short Stories
While you can write short stories for traditional outlets too, it’s not a profitable journey. Highbrow magazines like The New Yorker and other fiction markets get hundreds of submissions and are highly competitive.
But even though it looks as though the short story market is dead, it still makes for a great launch pad for writers looking to eventually publish their novels or work of fiction.
There are many literary magazines that pay you for short stories and fiction. It’s just a matter of finding what would be the best for you. If you are writing contemporary literature, magazines such as Black Warrior Review, Agni, Glimmertrain, Carve, The Iowa Review take submissions where you can submit once, twice, three times a year depending on what the submission dates are. These platforms not only work as a launch pad but are also an answer to the question: how to make money writing short stories?
Analog, Asimov’s, Clarkesworld are prestigious magazines in the sci-fi genre. If you are into Science Fiction, Dystopia or Fantasy, you could submit your short story to one of these magazines and make money writing from home.
If you write flash-fiction, you might want to look into submitting your story to Flash Fiction Online. They accept all genres and pay well for super short stories too.
Sites such as Yourstoryclub.com not only pay you for your short stories, there are also reward schemes—best writer, story of the month or editor’s choice—that they run allowing writers to earn more than just what they would make as payment for their stories. Try out one of these ways and see what the best way is for you to make money writing short stories.
How to make money Freelance writing
The ways mentioned above are among the many ways you can make money freelance writing. Be it poems, stories, e-books or SEO optimized content you could make money writing and get paid instantly.
But where do you get started to make money Freelance writing either writing articles or advertising copies? To get freelance work as a writer requires that you know people who are looking for writing services and that they know you and the quality of your work. So you have to market your services and sign up to sites where service buyers are.
Sign up to sites such as Fiverr or SEOClerks. This is where freelance writers looking to make money writing congregate. Digital marketers, startups, tech companies and brands are always looking for people to write about their business or products. Signing up to Fiverr is a great way of linking with these buyers. The volume of the work you get will depend on the quality of the content you are producing and the reviews you get from buyers.
Content sites are also a great way of polishing your writing skills. With practice, you can move on to other freelance writing work such as writing articles for magazines or writing e-books.
How to make money writing online
Everyone can agree that writing is not the most profitable profession. With the amount of work that goes in to it, the monetary outcome is never satisfactory. Until even a decade ago, writing was limited to writing for traditional platforms, which meant a lot of hard work and not enough money to make a living.
Thanks to online writing platforms that’s changing now. Here I will list digital platforms that you can produce written content for to make money writing from home.
As the guidelines for these sites differ, be sure to read the instructions carefully. Read posts that they have been publishing to see what gets accepted for you to make money writing articles. But be sure to write something fresh.
You can make money writing articles about how Judaism applies to daily life to portray Judaism in a positive light. They pay $200 per article.
They are always looking for new authors to write about web design. You can write fresh articles on web design for $200.
Babble pays for submissions on a wide range of topics such as parenting, entertainment, beauty, travel, food, fashion, and so on.
If you are a writer in Texas with experience in the hospitality industry or event management, you can make money writing articles for Big Grey Horse. You have to write 600- to 1000-word article in the first person.
This site is run by Jessica Pineda and is all about caring for birds. Articles for this site pay $100 to $400 depending on the length.
Pretty self-explanatory, isn’t it? This site accepts articles about the CEO life—success stories, lifestyle, etc.
This is a great site for non-experts to make money freelance writing. You can write on any topic of your choice—from fun facts to unsolved mysteries—to make anywhere between $100 to $1,500.
This site features articles about business and ways to become a successful businessperson, such as time management, setting priorities, coming up with ideas, and so on, for $50-$100.
If you enjoy reading books, you can publish your book reviews on BookBrowse for $50 for a 600-word review.
They haven’t got an outright payment rate, but if pre-arranged you can get paid for writing guest posts about marketing, HR and business.
Cicada is a great platform for people who want to experiment with creative content. The site publishes young adult literature like comics or essays.
ClearVoice encourages freelance writers to build their own brand and connects them with brands that are looking for freelancers. The site also publishes articles by freelancers so you can write for the site itself.
Write articles about databases for up to $200.
It is a food blog, but it features more than just recipes. It has got everything from how-tos, interviews, diet, and workout regimes. This site is about overall healthy living and pays up to $160 to writers.
Write about experiences in your life—college, relationships, friendship, studies—that have stood out, and get paid $100 per article.
If you are someone with a love for travel and cultures and your love for writing comes through in your writing, you can write for this site. They are always looking for creative, well-written content on cultures and cuisines.
This site is targeted at professional women and strives to help them earn more and be more financially aware. It pays up to $150 for business and women articles.
They accept a variety of articles—feature articles and essays—and pay up to $200.
If you live in North America or are traveling through its deserts, you can get paid to write travel articles about the biodiversity and culture there.
It pays writers for posts about deals and consumer credit. From a legal perspective on consumer credit to new information about credit cards, this site features informative articles and pays guest writers around $50 per article.
It’s all about getting the most value out of your money for frugal living. Their focus is on “living better for less,” and if that’s something you are into, share your unique ideas on the site and get paid.
The articles on this site are targeted towards online retailers. Informative posts about industry trends or online retail how-tos are published. They are not accepting applications right now, but keep checking to see when applications open.
If you are interested in writing about sustainability, energy and ecology, environmentally ethical business practices, you can get paid up to $180 per article.
Again, this site too features articles about personal experiences of success or hardships. It pays $100 per article.
Write well-researched, insightful commentary on religion, politics, pop-culture, feminism, and so on, for up to $200.
All about the expat life—life abroad, issues that affect expats. The articles are usually 500 to 1000 words, and the pay has to be negotiated beforehand.
This site aims at creating an environment where writers get work and receive fair payment for their work. You can write about writing or writing jobs and it pays $30 to $150.
This site is about all the different ways parents balance work and family. 1500-word blog post about tips for entrepreneurship or being a successful freelancer can make you $100.
It features articles targeted at small business owners and their own customers, and you can get paid up to $200 for an article.
This site publishes ideas for US expats to make some income and pays $75 per article.
You can join their team of Freelance writers and write articles and book summaries. Read their guidelines first.
If you live in New York City, write funny, insightful articles about it to get paid. The site pays $50 to $150.
Write essays about the Christian faith for better living and about faith and prayer for $250 per post.
Write exclusive articles about healthy living—ageing, exercise, yoga and meditation, nutrition, parenting—to make $150.
If you are an SEO or digital marketing expert or are knowledgeable about creating websites or graphic design, write an article for Income Diary. They pay up to $200 for good articles that are relevant and useful.
If you are a techie, you can write posts about Check Point Firewalls or F5 load balancers and make between $50-$100.
If you love drinking wine and writing, write a guest post about it for $50.
This site features articles aimed to help parents and pregnant couples. Make money writing articles offering fresh perspectives on these topics.
Write about knitting patterns and tips for knitting for $120 to $200.
Less than perfect presents: Get paid about $100 for parenting posts, tips and advice—from cooking healthy meals to being parents to teens.
You can write about politics, health, pop culture, pretty much anything that is a part of your life to make money freelance writing. The site pays $100-$200 per article.
This site pays for varied perspectives and inspiring, life-affirming essays about being visually impaired.
If you are not an experienced writer, but want to make some money writing, why not write lists for $100 per post?
The blog pays writers $75 to $150 for articles answering how to make money writing and becoming a successful freelancer.
They publish guest posts by invitation only. They publish articles about marketing and business. Keep checking their website to see when they start accepting guest post pitches again.
This site publishes articles about agriculture, plants, people, and agricultural technology, and you get paid about $150 per article.
This is The New York Times’ Modern Love column and articles about modern relationships get paid up to $300.
Guest posts about making and saving money pay up to $150 per article.
From short 800-word articles to long investigative articles about refugees, sexual assault or legislation, you get paid to write well-researched articles.
There’s a large readership for the Observer, and you can get paid $100 for articles about culture, entertainment, and politics, among other things.
You can send OZY an email and pitch your idea for an article.
Write articles on topics related to family and parenthood for $50 to $150 per post.
If you are an expert at saving or investing and wish to share your ideas with others while making money, this site is ideal for you.
This journal publishes content—poetry, fiction and non-fiction—about people living with disabilities.
Write articles on women’s interests like beauty, fashion, DIY and weight loss and make money writing from home.
They publish articles about mental health, but you only get paid if you arrange that beforehand with the editor.
Another site for SEO, content writing and digital marketing posts. They pay writers $50 per article.
Be it college students or bargain shoppers, Refinery 29 is always looking for a wide array of freelance writers. Get paid $75 and more for articles and slideshows.
You can be a freelance contributor for Salon in any of these areas: news, politics, entertainment, life, culture, business, innovation and satire.
Love traveling and food? Write about it for up to $150.
Write about configuring, integration and developing software to make $100 to $300.
This magazine publishes short features and personal essays about women’s issues, anywhere between 750 to 1200 words. However, it is not accepting articles from people living outside Charleston.
If you are a WordPress expert write tutorials, and if not an expert you can still make money via SlickWP by writing WordPress reviews.
If you have significant experience working as a freelance writer, you can write for Smithsonian Online and make up to $600.
This is a guide to help moms with children. If your content is helpful to a first mom, that’s even better.
You can share your personal experience with mental health issues or tips for better mental health for $50.
You have to send an email to submit story pitches. You can get paid up to $250 per story.
You are a gamer? You want to write about it and make money? Try this site.
There is a wide range of topics you can write about for this site. From the criminal justice system to feminism to dinosaurs you can write about pretty much anything as long as you offer a unique insight.
Every issue of The Introspectionist revolves around a theme. It’s a women’s magazine and features in-depth, informative articles related to women’s lives. You can make anywhere from $25 to $200 based on the length of the article.
If you are a WordPress expert, write blog posts about WordPress design to make $150 per post.
The Salt is NPR’s food blog about the relationship between food and how it affects our culture, and they pay up to $200.
Write about the Jewish faith, news and ideas, and you can make up to $1000 depending on the length of your post.
This site aims to provide resources for the right ways of traveling. Read their guidelines and write travel articles for $100 to $150.
Share your coding, design, illustration and photography knowledge and make up to $100.
Write about different aspects of writing from becoming a better writer to freelancing or publishing and making money as a freelancer.
This site revolves around Christian faith, and pays up to $375 for articles about marriage and family life.
Write practical travel guides for work, study, volunteering and more and make up to $150 per article.
If you want to write short stories (less than 500 words) write for Upworthy.
This site is about ways to live a balanced, happy life, and it commissions articles from freelancers on these topics for up to $300.
Vice covers everything from food and fashion to pop-culture, and you can get paid to write on any of these topics.
This is another column on The New York Times, and all the articles are about family for each of which you can get up to $100.
This site pays 6 to 10 cents per word for content about WordPress
This site pays $50 per article for content on various topics.
This site is always looking for articles with fresh perspectives on WordPress written by WordPress developers and customization specialists. Writers get paid up to $200 per article.
This site too is all about writing, from tips to jobs to ways to get paid to crafting the best articles, and it pays up to $100 per post.
They host a quarterly writing contest that you can participate in or write articles about the craft of writing, writing tips and how-tos, among others.
YourTango is all about relationships—love, marriage, dating, sex, divorce, and articles are usually 500 to 1200 words.