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Writing for Money on Guru
Starting Your Freelance Career on Guru.com
I've been on HubPages a short time and have been thrilled to find several articles about freelance writing. Those articles have given me new ideas, new prospects, and new encouragement. I hope to provide the same by telling you about my experience with Guru.com.
Guru is a website in which writers can bid on posted projects. There are several levels of membership, including FREE! Simply upload your profile and start bidding on projects. Payment is secure through Paypal (Guru withholds a fee which varies depending on your level of membership).
I first joined as a free member several years ago and happened to get a small job that paid $25. I got less than that because of the fee withheld. Regardless, I was thrilled. That client was happy with my work and left positive feedback for me. Feedback and a good profile are important.
My husband encouraged me to buy an annual membership. It paid for itself in the first month through one short term writing job. While the bulk of my writing work today does not come through Guru, I have retained most of the clients I met there on different projects. Guru is a good investment of time, even if you don't buy a membership
Setting Up Your Guru Account
When you visit Guru.com, you will see that you can register either as a freelancer or an employer. Choose freelancer. The website walks you easily through each step. Don't use cutesy names. You'll see that some others do, but most of the Guru employers appreciate seeing a real name.
Consider also uploading a photo of you with your profile. If you are concerned about privacy, edit your pic to crop your eyes or a portion of your face to show. Adding a personal photo also gives the employer a chance to "meet" you -- to put a face with the Guru user name.
Tailoring Your Guru Profile
Your profile includes your resume, but don't worry if it does not already show professional writing experience. Whatever you do, don't claim to have experience that you really don't have. If you are new to writing, highlight other experience that employers might have you write about. Play up the company policies you have helped write, the church bulletin you voluntarily design, or the press release that you wrote for a club in which you are a member. It all counts!
In the meantime, get published online. HubPages is a great place to start because you can write about what you know. In no time, you'll have developed quite a portfolio of writing samples. Don't forget to update your Guru profile to show the links of your writing samples!
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Jobs You Can Expect to Find on Guru
There are a variety of jobs posted on Guru and not all are for writing. As a matter of fact, there are many categories of freelance work including graphic design, computer coding, translation, and editing.
Within the writing category, you will find all sorts of job posts. If you are new and not opposed to working for cheap just to get experience, you can find those jobs. Some job posts specifically say they will only pay $3 for an article of 400 words. Good paying jobs are there, too, though. Some are even long-term arrangements.
When you find a job you want to bid on, simply click the "Bid" button and follow the directions. You'll be given an area in which to explain your interest in the project, your relevant experience, and why you're the best writer for the job.
Getting More from Guru
More potential employers began contacting me once I finally made my own website. It's far from perfect and I tend to change it periodically, but it gave me a web presence as a professional writer. I use a program called WebStudio because it's super easy!
Right now, my website is geared toward SEO (search engine optimization) writing. At the time, that's what I was doing a lot of and what I enjoy. I'll be changing my website again soon to fit my changing interests.
If you don't want to make your own website, start a free blog. You can likewise use it to tell a little more about yourself and your writing work.
Getting Paid on Guru
Guru pays securely through Paypal. They even offer an escrow type payment opportunity where the employer can pay up front and the money is held until you finish the work.
The one problem I've had on Guru was an employer in another country who simply did not pay. I reported him to the company and shrugged off the loss. It was only $25. However, I also decided only to take jobs from people located in my country.
I was nervous at first about setting up a Paypal account. I set up a separate bank account specifically for receiving payments. It's worked out great, and allows me to keep my earnings separate from my regular bank account.