When I graduated from college, I had a hard time finding a job that dealt with my writing degree.  There were no entry-level positions in my area and being that I was already working part-time, I wanted something that would supplement my writing and put more cash in my wallet.

I did some research and found several companies that were looking for freelancers to write blog posts for their community websites.  I took the first opportunity I could, because the position would give me the exposure I wanted, the experience I could use, and the money I needed.  This was my first experience with freelance writing and I have been doing it for over a year. 

When it comes to being an independent contractor like a freelance writer, you need to keep a few things in mind.  Is it legitimate?  Does it pay?  Will you get the exposure and experience you desire? 

Legitimacy: Making sure that the company you're working for is legitimate is an important part of your freelancing career. I actually knew someone who worked for the company I was going to write for; therefore, I knew that it was a legitimate business. If you write for someone you know nothing about, they could steal your work and not pay you. It's important to research every company you work with.

Pay: If you're going to freelance, you need to make sure that you get paid for your work. The real point of freelancing is to work independently while making money - some people live off of being an independent contractor - so it's important that you're compensated for your work. Usually, you will get paid per assignment; so as long as you complete your work, you should get paid.

Exposure/Experience: When you work independently you want to make sure that you have plenty of work to get the exposure you need to help your career. As a freelance writer, I have articles published in a local newspaper and blog posts on careone.com! Exposure will help you become more professional and develop into a more seasoned employee. Having consistent work and exposure will allow you the experience you need when it comes time to move on to something bigger. I have been a freelance writer for a year, which has helped me gain a good amount of experience.

Being an independent contractor is a great way to do what you love while making some extra money.  If you're looking for more work or just need something to help you through some hard times, consider freelance work.  It's a great opportunity at a great price!

What are some ways you make extra money?  Have you ever freelanced?  Please, share with all of your experiences and tips with us!

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10 Strategies for Today's Job Seekers

The Art of Networking

Mary Stolarik

Mary is a contributing writer for the Just Graduated & Starting Out blog. She is a recent college graduate, with an English Writing degree from the University of Pittsburgh - Greensburg, and she's in debt. Mary shares her experiences with job searching, managing her finances on a part-time job, and ways to save money along the way. Compensated CareOne Blogger.

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