Thursday, September 15, 2011

When Writing Gets Tough

I have a couple of writing jobs to finish in the next few days. Yet, I've only taken a few baby steps towards accomplishing them. I've found myself surfing and reading more than writing online for the past few weeks. There's too much to learn, too much I don't know about working through the Internet. Nevertheless, writing has been quite a rewarding experience for me since I started working as an online freelancer almost a year ago. 

Several ways to earn online
Online writing is equally challenging as writing offline.

I was amazed when I realized that there are quite a number of options for those who wish to earn online. As mentioned, writing is a way to do so. One can earn through joining publishing or submitting original articles to revenue sharing and upfront payment sites (See list under "Writer-to-Earn" on the right column of this site). Some engage in blogging, academic writing, copywriting, proofreading, editing, translating, and bidding for writing jobs.

There are also different means to earn among the tech savvy types. These include web designing, programming, developing software, and creating multimedia presentations or videos, among others. For those who are into teaching, there are companies that offer online tutoring, distant training, and curriculum writing. Customer service or call center agents, as well as telemarketing experts, also have a place in the Internet labor force. There's also money involved in affiliate programs with organizations selling different products and services. Clearly, the virtual world is akin to how the real world works - filled with variety and plagued with changes.

Metamorphoses in cyberspace

Reading books helps improve a person's ability to write.
Yes. Online technologies do change. The life or longevity of sites depends on the people who have created and have maintained them. It also depends on the patronage of Internet users. The world wide web is undeniably an extension or a product of the real world. Humans created it, sustain it, and can destroy it later on. What do these processes have to do with writing? Much, actually.

People are the producers of content on the Internet. Articles, news, historical accounts, video scripts, ads, etc. - all these are mostly powered by words juxtaposed by writers. They are essentially the wealth of search engines like Google. But like the real world, these words may or may not be true. Like people, there are sites that deceive or can cause havoc to one's computer. It's not always safe either, with incidents of identity theft and actual murders. 

Writing problems - What can be done?

Aside from income insecurity, writing has other challenges. Blogs like these are meant to be personal (unless it's a corporate one, of course). But for non-native English speakers like me, writing is hardly easy, especially when much research time is involved.

Time is gold even when working online.
Discipline is required when working as a writer. It helps nurture focus and commitment. Admittedly, I struggle with this because of my adventurous attention span.

I've realized as well that just like offline, time is gold online. One needs to be conscious of the time or hours spent writing a certain piece. There are also power and Internet costs involved which should be taken into account when taking a writing job. Moreover, too much computer time can take a toll on one's energy. Indeed, getting away from the computer is necessary to protect one's health and relationships. It is best to allot time for real-life socialization like having dinner with one's family or talking to a friend over the phone.

Definitely, a writer is not immune from a myriad of concerns. One needs to be patient, persevering, creative, and a constant learner. These are all easier said than done, of course. Nonetheless, I'm writing them down to remind people like me that succeeding and surviving in the online world also require hard work.

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