Finding Your Calling As a Writer, Freelancer, or Both: The Basics

Every artist has their own path. 

We certainly have decided to follow in the footsteps of our mentors and choose the one less traveled. It's been messy, and oftentimes much harder than we'd ever expected, but we're still here. Still kicking. Still free.
And we wouldn't have it any other way.

Here are a few of the people who gave us the kick in the ass we needed. We hope they'll do the same for you, and help you face your fears of the unknown, including the blank page. 

JULIA CAMERON

As the author of books such as The Artist's Way and The Right to Write, Julia's programs are a great place to start. Over the course of her 12-week artistic recovery program, you complete something called Morning Pages, which ask that you free write three pages in a journal every day to access your inner voice. In addition, there are Artist Dates (where you treat your artistic child to something special each week, whether that's buying a coloring book or going out to a museum) and exercises to help you overcome creative blocks and rediscover what's important to you. You can learn more at juliacameronlive.com.

JERRY CLEAVER

Instead of reading Stephen King's book On Writing, you should pick up a copy of Jerry's book, Immediate Fiction, instead. Trust us on this one. Amber had the great fortune to study with Jerry at his famed Chicago workshop, The Writer's Loft, and his advice changed her life.  Jerry was the kindest, most generous writing teacher a student could ask for, and his book is unbelievably useful as a complete writing course. He gets right to the point and clears things up, such as how to write fiction, find an agent, get your work published and cut through the bullshit. Unfortunately, Jerry is no longer with us, but The Writer's Loft lives on, currently being lead by his former students. If you're in Chicago, we highly recommend it. Learn more at thewritersloft.com.

SETH GODIN

We've been reading Seth's blog for over seven years now, and his books have shaped our lives. Of course, Seth produces content like a boss, so you have plenty of opportunities available to you, from his bestselling books to his marketing courses on Skillshare and his long running blog. If you want to start with his more recent work, which focuses on artists, we highly recommend you snag a copy of The Icarus Deception. But even if you don't want to make an investment in his books, at the very least you should subscribe to his daily blog. Finally, if you want to take the ultimate deep dive into his worldview and find out how to put his theories into action, we'd highly recommend his altMBA program. AJ just completed it in August of 2016, and it's completely changed the way we approach each day. Sometimes, change happens with a sprint - not a marathon, and this 30-day intensive program will put your creativity to the ultimate test.

JEFF GOINS

Jeff is all about helping people find their true calling, and his 8-week Tribe Writer's program offers a great opportunity for you to build confidence in your writing abilities and learn about building a fan base. His books, You Are a Writer and The Art of Work, are both fantastic, especially for those just getting started. And his website offers plenty of marketing & writing advice for those building their own writing business.

CHRIS GUILLEBEAU

Chris is our go-to writer for when we need a kick in the ass, and when you grab one of his books, such The Art of Non-ConformityThe $100 Startup or A Brief Guide to World Domination, you know you're getting something special. He focuses on three things: life, work and travel - but in unexpected ways. If you're looking for entrepreneurial advice, ways to rack up frequent flier miles, or build the life you've always wanted as a nomad and worldwide traveler, Chris is your guy. Meet this modern-day explorer at chrisguillebeau.com.