Your Life as a Writer

For all writers new to the world of writing articles online, here are the 20 stages that you are likely to go through as you progress on your journey. Your particular path may go in a different order. You may have a different step or repeat a step, but chances are you will find yourself living through these stages as you go.

If you can learn anything in reading this article you are smarter than most people. The truth is that the best way to learn about writing online is to write online. Then again, you may discover a way to bypass a stage in the journey to get to your happy place faster.

1. You Can Do That?

The first stage is simple. At some point you hear this idea that you can make money by writing stuff online. Cool! Can you really do that? You wonder... You start with disbelief. You jump to hysteria, and back again. Eventually, you decide to give it a shot.

2. I Did That!

Finally you write an article. It is exciting! You see your work out there on the internet for the world to see. You don't even care that it took you over an hour to get it done. Pride swells as you review your work. You don't really know what you just did but it feels good.

3. I'll Be Rich!

You now decide that with a few more articles you will be on your way to riches. After all, you only need to write and wait and the money will start to roll in. Life is good.

4. Where's the Money?

After a few articles a thought crosses your mind. Where is the money? Wait a minute, you have not seen any clicks and you don't really even know how to get one. How long is this going to take, you ponder.

5. Why Doesn't Anyone Read?

You put 2 and 2 together and realize that you don't have any clicks because nobody is actually reading your article. But how do you get them to come, you wonder? This guy's article has 100 views and that girl has 1,000. Yours has 2. Hmmmm.

6. What's a Backlink?

Trying to figure out how to get someone to notice you, you stumble across the term backlink. What is this? Aha! A backlink helps my article get found. I'm on it! Off you go to creat backlinks.

7. My First Click!

You check your Adsense account for the 98th time of the day and notice a click. Your first click! Wow, that was easy! You once again decide that you will be rich.

8. Why No More Clicks?

After your last click some time goes by with no more action. It doesn't feel right since you have been making links and you got that one click. You wonder what to do next.

9. SEO?

Studying more to solve your issue you start reading about SEO. You realize that there is much more to getting readers than just backlinks. In fact, you read conflicting information about backlinks that make you question adding more backlinks.

10. I'll Write Over There Too!

Since you can create your own backlinks you begin to write at other article sites. In fact, in one week you sign up for a bundle of them and decide to dabble with each, spreading yourself a little thinner.

11. Keywords Are the Answer!

Now that you understand SEO you start paying much close attention to keywords. You now realize that it is actually important how people search and whether those searches match your keywords. You suddenly feel silly for writing that first article about something nobody will ever search for.

12. What Am I Doing?

With so many articles, accounts, backlinks, and keywords on your plate you become totally lost. You start to track articles and create a spreadsheet of all your work to keep up some sanity. You realize you should have done this from the start.

13. What's My Hourly Rate?

Now that you have your articles organized you figure out your hourly rate. Yikes! You now realize that you are not only not rich, you are working for free. You seek out some motivational articles about others' success to keep you motivated. It works.

14. My Blog Will Work!

Reading about others' success with niche sites you start a blog. In fact, you start 2 or 3 and write content for them. You decide you can do that on top of your passive income writing and be rewarded with income from everywhere.

15. I'll Be An Affiliate

Realizing that you can make money more ways and forgetting for a moment that you still don't have much traffic, you sign up for some affiliate programs and start using them in your articles. You now have multiple accounts, logins, and can't really remember where you added links.

16. What Should I Do Today?

With multiple writing sites, backlinking, affiliates, and keyword analysis, you now have days where you sit in front of your computer wondering what to do today. Should you write here or there? Should you do this or that? You watch TV.

17. I'll Get Up Front Pay!

You have had some clicks but realize that this will take a while. You join an upfront freelance writing site or two and start writing for up front pay. It feels good to get a paycheck, but you find it hard to write for passive income much now.

18. I Can't Do All This!

You come to the realization that you are now spread way to thin. You do a little of everything but you don't do anything particularly well. You feel disorganized and waste lots of time switching from one thing to another.

19. What Do I Like To Do?

You decide that you would really like to do one thing more than another. You make a decision to stop doing half of what you are doing and focus on the things you enjoy.

20. What's My Goal?

You settle into a few goals each week and month around things you enjoy and your performance improves. You are motivated, your work is of higher quality, and you are having fun. You know what passive income means now, how active income works to fill in the gaps, and how to get readers and clicks. You are finally on track.

There is a moral to this story. As I said, your path will be different, but you will reach many of these steps. Here is the moral that you should come away with. Do whatever you want. Don't worry about what everyone says and how they do it. There is a wealth of advice out there on how to be successful writing online. Some is very valuable. Some is not. I have my own, which you will find at the end of this article. Just remember this - the best way to learn about writing online is to write online. Having said that, here is some advice. Take it or leave it.

  • yes, you can make money online
  • yes, you can do well writing for upfront pay right away
  • yes, you can do well earning passive income in the long term
  • upfront pay and passive income can work well together
  • get organized and track your work
  • set goals that are achievable and track them
  • writing too much will burn you out faster than it will earn you passive income
  • you need to learn about SEO, backlinks, and keywords
  • you can write for fun too
  • make room for the writing you enjoy
  • don't do too many different things at once and you will stay sane
  • learn from your successes and mistakes
  • watch what others are doing and learn from them

If you can get to stage 20 fast you will be in great shape. If not, that's fine too. Everything you learn in the first 19 stages (of however many you go through) will make you a better and more efficient and effective writer in the long term.

Of course, you are unique. You may be an instant success. You may thrive on goals to write 100 article in your first month. That sounds insane to me, but more power to you. Whatever path you take, here's wishing you best of luck on your journey. Enjoy the ride.