January 07, 2010

Writing Tips for Freelance Writers

I was looking through some bookmarks I have saved over the past year that helps with my freelance writing and thought I'd share them with you guys. You may already know about some of them, but in case you don't then I hope some of them will be helpful.

Proofreading is essential part of being a good freelance writer, and it can be what makes you or breaks you in this line of work. Even though there is no way to get around proofreading, there are sites to help you spot your mistakes before you do your proofing.

Grammar and Spell Checkers

Whitesmoke has helped me several times. It's a free grammar checker that you can copy and paste your work into and submit to receive results. Although it does check for spelling, I mostly rely on it for my grammar mistakes. Even though it has caught some errors I have overlooked, you can't rely solely on it for a perfect article.

Spellchecker is a site for checking the spelling on your articles. Copy and past your text in the box and submit. It will also check grammar errors. However, I have noticed some grammar error it hasn't caught, such as "their" and "there."  I also didn't realize when I first used spellchecker that it has a thesaurus checking tool.

Most word processing programs will also check your spelling and grammar for you. I normally use Microsoft Word when writing, but I have also used OpenOffice from time to time. What's nice about OpenOffice is it's free. Actually, in my opinion, it is the best free word processing software you can get. I just happen to already have MS Word on my computer, otherwise I would use OpenOffice all the time. They are very similar.

Passive Voice

I can say I have only noticed one thing I would like for OpenOffice to be able to do that Microsoft Word does for me, and that is pick up on passive voice corrections. Now if you would like to try out MS Word before actually purchasing the software, they have a 60 day free trial.

Speaking of Passive Voice, if you want to read more about how to use Microsoft Word to help eliminate or identify passive voice, then you should read this article. Also, if you would prefer some kind of tool to help with your passive writing, then you might want to try The Passivator.

Word Count

Many freelance writers know exactly what I am talking about when I speak about writing an article with a minimum word count. While MS Word has a word count built right in the software, there are times when you may be writing a quick article or blog post straight on a website and not in your word processing program. Then is when I use the Word Count Tool. It is a website that I have saved on my toolbar for easy access. I click on it and paste my content in the box and click submit and it gives me the word count immediately.

I hope some of these tips have been beneficial, and I'll post more as I run across them.


Anonymous said...

Great post! You should definitely follow up on this topic =D



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