Just when I thought the best that could be extracted from writing is combining idioms and speech figures and then garnering praises from random individuals on the web, like “Dude you can write!“.
A long lost friend of mine pulled up and came through into my WhatsApp inbox from God knows where, after a long time off my reach. He seemed to be a baller so I was forced to inquire where all the riches were pouring from, to my surprise, my guy is a writer that makes nothing less than $3,000 online on monthly basis.
“Damn! Dude you serious?” I shouted my head off as the reply was like a bolt from the blue, though I had no credibility gap, I know there is a lot of money on the internet so the best I could just do was to sit down, be humble and try to factorize as many hints as possible from the main man.
I decided to have a dinner time with my guy, somewhere on the island, unknown to him, me, sharp guy, was trying to take a bite of his knowledge. I know he’d see this *Tongue Out*.
So I decided to summarise our discussion on here, I believe no matter how little, there’s always a takeaway point from this content. Read patiently.
My Discussion With A Freelance Writer That Makes $3+ Monthly
Heads up, he never really wanted me to mention his name, but he is Olajike K.J, you can guess the initials. He is a student of Mapoly, I’m not sure you know the institution, but who cares about that?
Below are some of the highlights of our discussion:
ME: I never really knew you to be a badass writer, I’m not sure though. But let me ask, is writing a talent to you or a skill?
OLAJIDE K.J: Haha, see this guy. In this age, almost everything that matters is a skill. If even one person is able to learn it, if even one person is able to use effort and training to get good at something, it’s a skill. In that sense, writing is a skill. But it’s entirely possible that some skills are easier for talented people to learn. As for writing, yes, it’s easier for talented people to learn how to do it, but anyone who is motivated can learn.
ME: Oh, I saw you sitting on the fence right there… So did you learn writing? Or you were born with the talent?
OLAJIDE K.J: Well, I believe I’ve always been a talented writer. But there’s a difference between talented writing and good writing. However paradoxical it sounds, good writing as a set of structures (that is, when the writing is good and nothing more) which often produces most bad fictions…. Talented writing is, however, something else. You need the talent to write fiction. So good writing is what I was able to teach myself, then combined with talented writing makes me a pro.
ME: Cool, So how do you get your clients? As I believe there are so many good and talented writers out there who are ignorant of the fact that they can make good money on the internet with writing.
OLAJIDE K.J: Actually, it’s a digital world, you don’t need to look for clients, you only need to look for platforms where the clients are looking for writing services online. I use majorly three platforms, I do creative writing and proofreading on Fiverr, same on Upwork and also on Peopleperhour. I’m still looking at exploring more options of freelancing websites, but I’m too damn occupied for now.
ME: That’s some massive combination. Any hint? Or secret tips I probably do not know of?
OLAJIDE K.J: You are a freelance O.G so I expect you to understand that there’s no real secret out there. It’s either you know how to do it or you don’t. It’s either you cash out or you don’t. There are always two things involved. The major point is that you must know what you are offering, and if you are good at it, you’ll definitely have clients coming back, and that’s the basis of making money online as a freelancer.
ME: Okay great, like how much do you charge for writing, on average?
OLAJIDE K.J: It’s relative. There are so many factors to be considered. First off, it depends on the platform, for instance, Fiverr is relatively cheaper than other platforms. Also, it depends on the client, some clients are willing to pay more for good contents compared to others. And it also depends on the nature of the content, creative or not, the quantity and the depth of research.
ME: Oh, then it seems I can’t get a general reply for that. So what’s the maximum amount you ever charged for a content writing task?
OLAJIDE K.J: Well, earlier this year, I charged $400 for a content of 1,500 words. And that has been my highest in this hustle so far.
ME: As someone that’s also the freelancing hustle, I understand that it consumes a lot of time, especially for someone like you that’s earning big. How do you cope with school?
OLAJIDE K.J: Well, guess you didn’t know I’m a part time student in school so being a part of other activities never really affected me. Though I have a freelancer friend that takes school seriously, I don’t know how he manages his time and combines school and work.
ME: Where do you find your inspiration? Are there any particular places or incidents you draw on when you find yourself on the writing desk?
OLAJIDE K.J: I don’t plan my contents in advance, I just write them as I go along. My approach is to create the ideas and then see where they want to take me. That may sound rather anarchic, but it has worked so far up to now. You just have to trust that the “ah, so that’s what happens” moment really will come along. I’m usually writing at least two contents at once, that’s weird? I know right.
ME: Any official publication?
OLAJIDE K.J: Nothing really, about fifteen short stories, four novellas, some short journalism and two novels.
ME: Do you manage to write every day?
OLAJIDE K.J: I do write, in some way, every day. It always feels like I’m doing it for the first time though. It seems as shocking and pointless and important and repugnant than it ever was.
ME: What advice would you give aspiring writers?
OLAJIDE K.J: Get to the bottom of exactly what it is you want to do and focus only on how to do that. Everything else is a distraction. You can be the queen of the writing group and get a big round of applause every week but if you don’t address your own central concerns I suspect you’ll end up frustrated and might never make money online as a writer. Our inner worlds are so complex I think you’re only ever chipping away at it at the best of times so I’d say focus on that.
ME: How do you advise aspiring writers to get started as freelancer writers?
OLAJIDE K.J: Well, there is a lot to mention. But I recently read your post on How To Make Money Online In Nigeria as a writer and I think you covered it all.
e moneME: Wow. Thank you for that. If you could invite three people from any era to dinner, who would you choose and what would you cook (or hide the takeaway containers)?
OLAJIDE K.J: Hmmm. I’d say, Peter Cook, Richey Edwards and Fattkay (*wink*), those are the people whose works have really inspired me. I would cook this salmon dish which I wheel out on occasion, though it still needs tightening. Peter Cook could offer scathing witticisms on the quality of my rice. Haha.
ME: Lol… Any Nigerian writer you look up to?
ME: Thanks a lot for your time. I appreciate. When I grow up, I wish to be like you.
OLAJIDE K.J: That’s mockery. We both know it.
That’s that on that. It was a lengthy conversation but I’ve been able to summarise as much as possible. I hope you gained one or two things from that.
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