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How to Earn Dollars Writing Short Sentences and Fillers Part 2
If you have not read my first article on this subject
Please click on the following link,
then come back here to continue
Finding Ideas That Work
Write about something you have personally experienced yourself. How it affected you and your family. It could be how you felt and coped with an illness or your most embarrassing situation. Your experience at the birth of your first child and how it affected you.
Try to find a unique angle to this subject, be it the humorous or catastrophic side of it. It could be this opinion of yours that you read in your next magazine or paper and be paid for it.
Read, read and read. While reading an article you may find something that will trigger another idea or use a printed article in a similar way by changing the topics.
Reply to letters or articles you read in a magazine with your own opinion on a particular subject.
Use your camera and find unusual circumstances. Look for a misspelt sign, one with a humorous angle, celebrities, or your children's comical experiences etc.
Listen to people chatting on the bus or train for snippets of conversation that may be useful. Keep a notebook and write down any ideas you think of before you forget them. You may not have a use for it now but next week or month it may be important.
Read other magazines or school newsletters for inspiration. Listen to children's funny sayings. Kids come home with a mountain of funny questions, so innocently asked, that you could use or reword.
Writing Readers Letters
Keep your letters, short and sharp. Thousands of newspapers and magazines have a letters page. You only have to look in your local newsagents to see how many there are. Some pay from $10 to $50 for this service, others give prizes or different incentives.
You can write an original one yourself or reply to one, or you may comment on a wonderful article that was in their last issue concerning a medical situation or similar. That is good publicity for them and shows that the magazine has a loyal readership following. I can't stress enough that you must read each publication before you write for that particular column. This is the best and easiest way to start earning a regular income from different publishers. And you can write about anything at all.
(My published Example)
After signing a legal document, I noticed my name was incorrectly spelt, so I mentioned the error to the lawyer. He assured me that he had felt it must be correct since my husband (of 28 years) had told him how to spell it.(Signed: EH. WA)
This is another good way to start of your writing career. You could earn a regular income if you become diligent and again study your markets. Check what a particular magazine, newspaper is using in their small spaces. Or even try the larger companies which put out a trade bulletin each month. Keep your eyes open for these opportunities.
Fillers can vary in size. They are called this because they fill those little gaps in between adverts or when an article selected is actually smaller than at first thought. So they need a small article to fill that gap before going to print. A sentence can be as small as three words. As long as those three words create action or make a statement.
These can be in the form of jokes, crossword puzzles, cryptic puzzles, and very short paragraphs or articles etc.
You may notice that your local paper doesn't cater for the keen gardener. Do you have lots of tips and tricks of how to plant or grow certain vegetables or plants? Before you contact the editor with this suggestion you would need to do a well thought out draft of ideas for topics. Once you have organised the articles with enough interesting information for the next 10 weeks or so, then contact the editor with your submission.
(my published example in children's world)
How Many Lives
Our sons cat Blacky had been run over. A week later an identical black cat arrived at our home. Master Three asked: "Daddy, did you dig him up again?" The cat promptly made his home with us . We call him Blacky Two. Signed EH. WA
Find Ideas Before You Start Writing
Write down a list of different ideas, when you have finished researching all the facts. Again check with the publisher's guidelines. Is the article you are going to write suited to that particular market you have chosen?
Start writing, making sure you keep sentences and paragraphs short and to the point. Keep it in the context that editors prefer.
Write your article and send it to a publication that best suits this particular topic. Don't be discouraged if it is rejected. Find another target if it's still rejected, review what you have written and see where the problem is. Can you improve it by deleting a sentence or altering it in some way? Ask a friend to read it and give their opinion; they may suggest a different angle.
Preparing Your Work
Keep records of where you send articles to. Make sure you know where everything you write is, or has been sent to at any given time.
If using a computer, use double spacing and a standard font, Arial or Times Roman. Leave an extra space between paragraphs. Print out on A4 paper. In page set-up leave a 3 cm Left and right margin. (You can check the guidelines as to what each editor prefers)
Don't be tempted to use fancy fonts. If your article has a photo, make sure it suits the article, and be aware that most publishers don't return photos. If sending by email, which some publishers accept articles that way now, add pictures etc by attachments.
Presentation of Your Article
Make Sure you Include all of These
Example of Page
Your Phone Number
Use single spacing for this
The Editors name (or section of magazine)
Address of magazine
Type of article
No (250) words
Name of Article
Your name (the writer)
Check for Spelling & Puctuation Errors
Do not send anything with spelling errors or corrections. If necessary, start again. Include the page no's and your name on top right hand side of each page.
If you are sending pictures. Mark on bottom left of page
Enclosed (1 Picture)
Put your name on back of picture in case it gets separated from your article. Enclose a stamped self-addressed envelope. Keep a copy of everything you send out.
If of course you get to the larger article submission. Use a cover page with name, address, and name of article, word count and name of author. If you are using a pseudos (a name especially used for writing other than your own name) then use that instead of your own name.
(My published example) a local newspaper
There is a need to quickly eradicate all the dead long grass from the edges of our streets, not just the major streets.
Surely, the unemployed people in our community could do this? Therefore creating employment and limiting the immediate danger of fires caused at times by dropped cigarette butts.
This would also lessen the dangers of children and adults, as they walk along, from being bitten by snakes hidden in the long grass.
Signed: EH. WA
Keep a Record of Ideas
Think; write down anything that pops into your head. Get any ideas no matter how insignificant they seem at the time down on paper, by doing this other ideas will evolve. Read the papers, magazines, trade bulletins, comics, anything at all. Ideas will come. Again listen to other people and take in everything you hear. Yes, write in a book, or keep a journal of anything at all. It's no good saying I'll do it later. You won't remember your wonderful idea, and it will be lost for good.
This is something you can do anytime while washing up the dishes or doing the ironing or any of those mundane jobs-Mowing the lawns or putting that washer in the leaky tap
Some people find they can write better at night, others are early bird writers. Try to write something every day. It doesn't have to make sense, just write whatever comes into your head. Weeks later it may jog something else in your brain.
A good writer makes sure he makes every word count. Make a list of every point you want to make, when you have finished writing your article, check the list and make sure you haven't forgotten the main point that you wanted to make in the first place.
Cheap laptop to Write and Save your Writing
Now!! Let's Get Started
Whatever you write, it needs to grab your editors attention. The first thing they see is the title of your article or filler. So the title is very important and it has to catch your reader's attention.
To write a short article about an incident that happened at the zoo. Choose the best impact title for this from the two options below:
A Snake at the zoo. Snake escapes Zoo enclosure.
As a reader I would pick no 2. It grabs your attention, you want to know more. Where did they find the snake? How did it escape?
With any writing, cut the wording down to the barest minimum without destroying the message you intended to make for your reader.
Read the following sentences:
‘Joey went outside and played with his mates in the park.'
‘Joey played with his mates in the park.'
They both say the same, but the second is more direct.
As you can see the word ‘outside' is unnecessary if he is playing in the park.
Be careful when editing your work. Don't use repetitive words unless it is to draw attention to the most important points.
Sometimes a writer is too close to his/her own work to see the mistakes. You may have meant to say something, but by leaving one word out the result may be entirely different. Put your work aside for a week or two before sending it away. You can then look at it from a fresh perspective.
This time, read it aloud. If you stumble over the words, it needs to be revised. Something is wrong. Re-read it and ask your self; would a different word or phrase improve it? Does it make sense? Is it saying what I intended? If you have written a humorous article - ask yourself, will it make people laugh?
When you are satisfied; Re-write, check your spelling with a dictionary or type it up without any errors and use your spell check if using the computer.
Sample suggestion only
Keeping Accurate Records
It is very important before posting anything out, to purchase a small book and enter the following details of the article or filler etc, date sent, name of article, where sent to. Then as the responses come in enter whether rejected, accepted (include dates) and amount of payment for your records.
This is very important, so you don't resend an article to the same place twice, but also to know where each article is at any given time. You will need an accurate record of your income for the taxman.
No you don't sit idle waiting for a reply. Start work on another reader's letter or article or submit a joke or a crossword to another magazine. Never send the same thing out to two publishers at the same time. Be patient, it could be 3-6 months before you hear anything. Keep writing and send work out.
Editors reserve the right to edit your article if short of space.
Ideas for Special Occasions
Think of special times of the year. Valentines Day, Easter, Christmas, Weddings If you are thinking of writing for these make sure you submit articles at least six months before the event. Editors are very busy at these times of year.
For Christmas, there are literally thousands of articles waiting for you to write about. For instance: suggestions for new ways of decorating the house, recipes, lighting, drinks, gift ideas, Christmas trees, greeting cards.
You could send in ways to amuse children over the holidays. The same goes for Easter, decorating eggs, gifts ideas instead of giving loads of chocolates; send in ideas of how children can make things themselves.
Larger businesses like to produce a newsletter advising staff of production, products, new ideas, and personal success and staff members' achievements, interesting events happening in the company. You could add a jokes column etc. Companies believe these newsletters help bind staff together with interesting snippets of all types of information and events.
Before starting, try to locate one or two of the newsletters to study in your community and understand what type of information they require.
Do it Yourself Articles
With the advent of unemployment these days more and more people are doing things themselves. So if you know of some small thing that you can do and give clear (safe) directions that anyone can understand, then try writing this up. You may know an easy way of propagating plants, or a simpler, different design for making cushion covers.
My husband made a shelf-tidy under my computer hutch for all the envelopes and miscellaneous items. (It was a great idea but I tend to overload it.) Put these Ideas down on paper and find a market for them.
Always find a market before you write the article. Why you say? If you don't, then you may have written the article for nothing and you wasted that time.
Earn Money Writing Articles Online
There are many sites that allow you to write articles online. You can earn ongoing income year after year from Google Adsense. Start writing now and you will still be earning money from articles that you write now in ten to twenty years from now.
Join Hubpages its where you are reading this and is a great friendly place to learn how to earn money writing online writing experience. There are heaps of people waiting to help you if you need help. Just read the information or ask in the forum.
Join Info barrel is another great to earn money writing online from. The main thing when you start is to read how others are making money this very same way. It will not happen overnight but it will happen if you put in the hard work.
Good luck and start writing!!