"Freelance writing is not easy, but it is doable," say the authors of this primer. There will be times, they add, when there is no work. When there is no money. When no one returns your calls. Hardly sounds alluring. But if you've got the bug, or suspect you do, this is as fine a place as any to get a feel for the freelance life. The Complete Idiot's Guide to Publishing Magazine Articles
features interviews with freelancers and editors, and chapters on generating ideas, querying, writing, interviewing ("there's no such thing as a stupid question"), and developing a niche. Other sections give the inside skinny on the industry: who the big players are, who the top editors are, what firsthand accounts are worth reading. And there is even advice for dealing with taxes and contracts. Breathe easy: "The new media world still needs the old-fashioned writer." In fact, writing for the Web, the authors say, can be quite lucrative. Just be sure, for writing online as well as in print, to avoid committing any of the authors' "Ten ways to turn off an editor" (including: be a stalker, misspell the editor's name, balk at changes). And remember: "Persistent people make it as writers." --Jane Steinberg
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