One of the things I’ve been planning on featuring here at my homepage is a few tips and tricks that I’ve picked up over years writing freelance.

It was back in 2004 when I completed my first freelance gig and while brainstorming another project recently I realised that I know more than I’d ever imagined.

While I might not know the secret of life, the universe and everything – or indeed how to call a sperm whale into existence above an alien planet – there is an amazing (and somewhat scary) 8 years of experience to be tapped.

As a result of this, I’ve recently started work on a completely different project, one inspired by this sudden realisation. This will take the form of an eBook that I will then list on Amazon’s Kindle Store; to begin with at least.

Part of this project involved me checking out links saved in my favourite bookmarks. As anyone who knows me will attest, I’m a bit of a hoarder; not as bad as my dad, but I don’t like to throw things out. Mainly, I think, because of this:

NOTTAGE (n.)

Nottage is the collective name for things which you find a use for immediately after you’ve thrown them away.
For instance, your greenhouse has been cluttered up for years with a huge piece of cardboard and great fronds of gardening string. You at last decide to clear all this stuff out, and you burn it. Within twenty-four hours you will urgently need to wrap a large parcel, and suddenly remember that luckily in your greenhouse there is some cardb…

[From The Deeper Meaning of Liff by Douglas Adams and John Lloyd, Pan, 1992. Online version here: http://lib.ru/ADAMS/liff.txt_with-big-pictures.html]

(And yes, there is a distinct Douglas Adams flavour throughout this post; no doubt subconscious as it would be his 60th birthday this year. It isn’t, of course, because he’s dead.)

So, back to the bookmarks. Since I began using the web 15 odd years ago I’ve accumulated quite a collection. I’m sure there are people with more, but I’ve got a lot of old websites that I rarely revisit hanging around.

The result of this is that I’ve found a lot of old links to websites that at one time I considered useful to becoming a writer. Among them are:

www.guru.com – the first place I ever found writing work
www.elance.com
www.freelancer.com
www.ifreelance.com

Now although I have them listed, Guru aside I don’t visit these locations anymore as I don’t feel they are entirely suitable for writers to find work; they tend to focus more on graphic artists and developers. There may also have been some membership element to one or two of these sites that I was uncomfortable with at one point.

Much more reliable – for me – have been the sites that I currently use to sniff out writing gigs:

www.freelancewritinggigs.com
www.bloggingpro.com
jobs.problogger.net
www.online-writing-jobs.com

Admittedly the first link will feature jobs from the other three plus CraigsList, but all in all it is a useful collection of sites.

Work online can be found through other means, but these are probably the first places I would check.

Meanwhile, I’m currently building a slightly larger list for the eBook, as well as checking through the various “call for submissions” pages I have saved, just to confirm that they’re still relevant…