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Booklist In this era of entrepreneurialism, Atlanta freelancer Peter Bowerman shows those timid (but talented) souls how almost anyone can forge ahead as an independent writer. His advice is good, couched in brassy prose that is easy to read. He anticipates every conceivable question and issue, including typical charges, marketing oneself, types of available work, and deal Booklist In this era of entrepreneurialism, Atlanta freelancer Peter Bowerman shows those timid (but talented) souls how almost anyone can forge ahead as an independent writer. His advice is good, couched in brassy prose that is easy to read. He anticipates every conceivable question and issue, including typical charges, marketing oneself, types of available work, and dealing with deadbeats. There are great common-sense tips, too, in the psychology of handling clients who think they're writers, those with limited budgets, and others demanding creativity. Personal anecdotes make the life of the freelancer real; the author includes samples of cold-calling scripts, thank-you notes, and a story or three about starting a writers' group and partnering with other professionals. Book Description Dream of being a well-paid freelance writer? Long to carve out an enviable lifestyle with plenty of freedom, flexibility AND healthy income? But wait a minute…aren't the words "starving" and "writer" forever joined at the hip? Not anymore. How about a writing direction with plenty of work, strong and growing demand for good writers, hourly rates of $50-100+ ($60-75 average) and where all time is billed? No flat fees with vast, open-ended commitments of time. Translation? Less time working to pay bills and more time pursuing your writing passions. We're talking about freelance commercial writing - writing for business entities, large and small - the subject of The Well-Fed Writer, and quite possibly the answer for all aspiring writers who want to turn their love of writing into their living. The book was a triple-book-club-selection (Book-of-the-Month, Quality Paperback Book and Writer's Digest) and earned several prestigious awards in 2001: 1) Second place in the ForeWord magazine Book of the Year Awards (Career Category) 2) Honorable Mention in the Writer's Digest magazine National Self-Published Book Awards 3) Finalist in the Publisher's Marketing Association Ben Franklin Awards (Best First Book). Why commercial writing? In the past decade, two huge trends have sculpted the corporate American landscape: downsizing and outsourcing. Corporations are doing more with less: fewer people, less resources and smaller budgets. The workload is growing - especially with the exploding Internet - and many organizations rely heavily on freelancers to help them handle it. Why do corporations hire freelancers? For good solid economic and creative reasons. With a freelancer, corporations don't have to pay salary, benefits, and vacation time. But they will pay a freelancer $60-80 (average) for their time. In addition, they pay only what they need when they need it. And with a network of freelancers, they get a broad spectrum of fresh talent (hard to get with in-house staff writers used to writing about the same topics day after day) which they can form-fit to their specific writing needs. What's "commercial writing"? Marketing brochures, ad copy, newsletters, direct mail campaigns, video/CD-ROM scripting, speeches, sales sheets, proposals, web content, and so much more. Veteran commercial freelancer Bob Bly, known as the freelance writing "guru" for his 35+ writing titles, says of commercial freelancing: "I know of no other arena of writing so lucrative yet so easy to get started in." The Well-Fed Writer will take you step-by-detailed-step through, indeed, everything you need to know to quickly get your share of this exciting and highly lucrative arena of freelancing.


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Booklist In this era of entrepreneurialism, Atlanta freelancer Peter Bowerman shows those timid (but talented) souls how almost anyone can forge ahead as an independent writer. His advice is good, couched in brassy prose that is easy to read. He anticipates every conceivable question and issue, including typical charges, marketing oneself, types of available work, and deal Booklist In this era of entrepreneurialism, Atlanta freelancer Peter Bowerman shows those timid (but talented) souls how almost anyone can forge ahead as an independent writer. His advice is good, couched in brassy prose that is easy to read. He anticipates every conceivable question and issue, including typical charges, marketing oneself, types of available work, and dealing with deadbeats. There are great common-sense tips, too, in the psychology of handling clients who think they're writers, those with limited budgets, and others demanding creativity. Personal anecdotes make the life of the freelancer real; the author includes samples of cold-calling scripts, thank-you notes, and a story or three about starting a writers' group and partnering with other professionals. Book Description Dream of being a well-paid freelance writer? Long to carve out an enviable lifestyle with plenty of freedom, flexibility AND healthy income? But wait a minute…aren't the words "starving" and "writer" forever joined at the hip? Not anymore. How about a writing direction with plenty of work, strong and growing demand for good writers, hourly rates of $50-100+ ($60-75 average) and where all time is billed? No flat fees with vast, open-ended commitments of time. Translation? Less time working to pay bills and more time pursuing your writing passions. We're talking about freelance commercial writing - writing for business entities, large and small - the subject of The Well-Fed Writer, and quite possibly the answer for all aspiring writers who want to turn their love of writing into their living. The book was a triple-book-club-selection (Book-of-the-Month, Quality Paperback Book and Writer's Digest) and earned several prestigious awards in 2001: 1) Second place in the ForeWord magazine Book of the Year Awards (Career Category) 2) Honorable Mention in the Writer's Digest magazine National Self-Published Book Awards 3) Finalist in the Publisher's Marketing Association Ben Franklin Awards (Best First Book). Why commercial writing? In the past decade, two huge trends have sculpted the corporate American landscape: downsizing and outsourcing. Corporations are doing more with less: fewer people, less resources and smaller budgets. The workload is growing - especially with the exploding Internet - and many organizations rely heavily on freelancers to help them handle it. Why do corporations hire freelancers? For good solid economic and creative reasons. With a freelancer, corporations don't have to pay salary, benefits, and vacation time. But they will pay a freelancer $60-80 (average) for their time. In addition, they pay only what they need when they need it. And with a network of freelancers, they get a broad spectrum of fresh talent (hard to get with in-house staff writers used to writing about the same topics day after day) which they can form-fit to their specific writing needs. What's "commercial writing"? Marketing brochures, ad copy, newsletters, direct mail campaigns, video/CD-ROM scripting, speeches, sales sheets, proposals, web content, and so much more. Veteran commercial freelancer Bob Bly, known as the freelance writing "guru" for his 35+ writing titles, says of commercial freelancing: "I know of no other arena of writing so lucrative yet so easy to get started in." The Well-Fed Writer will take you step-by-detailed-step through, indeed, everything you need to know to quickly get your share of this exciting and highly lucrative arena of freelancing.

30 review for The Well-Fed Writer: Financial Self-Sufficiency as a Freelance Writer in Six Months or Less

  1. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    Yeah, I read self-help books from time to time. Sometimes a girl needs help. Sure, I might order it anonymously online and rip the unmarked package open in a dark room in my home, but I read them. More specifically, I’ve read quite a few self-help books about freelancing recently. But this last one, The Well-Fed Writer by Peter Bowerman, really gave me the confidence to stop freelancing on the side and take the plunge into a full-time operation. While many other freelance books play on the fanta Yeah, I read self-help books from time to time. Sometimes a girl needs help. Sure, I might order it anonymously online and rip the unmarked package open in a dark room in my home, but I read them. More specifically, I’ve read quite a few self-help books about freelancing recently. But this last one, The Well-Fed Writer by Peter Bowerman, really gave me the confidence to stop freelancing on the side and take the plunge into a full-time operation. While many other freelance books play on the fantasy of sitting at home and writing for The New Yorker and fending off rabid fans with a stick, The Well-Fed Writer focuses on something a little different and a lot more realistic: getting writers well-paying work that will allow them their preferred lifestyle and, over time, give them the freedom to work on their other goals and dreams. This book isn’t about how to write or how to write for corporations – it doesn’t cover how to write a brochure or a press release or an internal newsletter. But it does cover the business side of things (which most writers are naturally dumb at) like marketing yourself, setting rates, finding clients, keeping clients, and navigating your time and expenses. The book probably wouldn’t be helpful for someone who doesn’t already have a small foundation of published clip and who doesn’t have confidence in their writing abilities. It certainly isn’t for someone who doesn’t want to throw themselves into the freelancing lifestyle. But it is helpful if you’re pretty sure you have the skills and personality for the work but don’t know where to start. The book also has a very helpful set of appendices that show example of many of the topics covered, To sample mailers to sample thank-you notes. Everything, from the beginning to end, isn’t very glamorous, but that’s not what the serious freelance writer needs to hear. He covers the often-boring nuts and bolts of running a solo business. Although the book is a treasure trove of information, of which I highlighted roughly half of what I read, it is a little dated. It was originally published in 2000, and even in the last eight years, a lot has changes, especially in regards to marketing techniques and technology stuff. For example, Bowerman doesn’t discuss online opportunities for writing, setting up your own website, or web content writing jobs. (I heard he does cover more of this stuff in his newer book, which I have also secretly ordered online). The book does have a tiny bit of a smarmy infomercial sales tone from time to time and it does make things sound a lot easier than they actually are (for example, the subtitle is “Financial Self-Sufficiency as a Freelance Writer in Six Months or Less”) but in the end, it’s full of information that would have taken me years to perfect on my own. And, more importantly, it gave me confidence that, with enough hard work (and a lot of cold calls) I could trust myself to get this done.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Sincere W.

    To be honest, if I was to review this book based solely on readability, it would scrape by at three stars. You can tell that Bowerman enjoys writing... and that's not a good thing, especially when for a How-To book. As I was reading it, I was reminded of a line from True Grit: "not only does he continue to talk but he spills the banks of English." With that said, this book still deserves 4 stars because, frankly, the information works. I would've made my money back on the book within 3 days of ge To be honest, if I was to review this book based solely on readability, it would scrape by at three stars. You can tell that Bowerman enjoys writing... and that's not a good thing, especially when for a How-To book. As I was reading it, I was reminded of a line from True Grit: "not only does he continue to talk but he spills the banks of English." With that said, this book still deserves 4 stars because, frankly, the information works. I would've made my money back on the book within 3 days of getting it, had I paid the $20 retail price. But since I borrowed it from the library, I'm already in the green. I see two types of people benefiting most from this book: 1) Those that have never written professionally and are considering it as a career and 2) Those that are already professional writers and find themselves "filling the gaps" with content mill projects or peso-per-word SEO articles. If either of these scenarios sound familiar to you, you'll be pleased with this book. However, as a caveat, the approach that Bowerman advocates is more involved than the typical set-up-a-website-and-wait, or send-out-queries-and-wait approaches. You will have to pick up the phone and talk to complete strangers. Some of these strangers won't want to talk to you, and some may even hang up the phone. If that sounds intimidating, you might want to take a pass on this one. But if you're OK with talking to strangers, or at least can bear it, then this book is a solid guide for making a living in what's probably the 2nd best job in the world, right after stock car driving.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Robert Medak

    The Well-Fed Writer (TWFW) By Peter Bowerman If you’ve ever entertained the thought of being a freelance writer, or as Peter calls it, Freelance Commercial Writer (FLCW), this book will give you all of the information you need to start and run a freelance business. While most people think magazines when they hear “freelance writing,” TWFW isn’t about writing for magazines, but rather “commercial freelancing” – writing for businesses, large and small – a lesser-known and exceptionally well-paying f The Well-Fed Writer (TWFW) By Peter Bowerman If you’ve ever entertained the thought of being a freelance writer, or as Peter calls it, Freelance Commercial Writer (FLCW), this book will give you all of the information you need to start and run a freelance business. While most people think magazines when they hear “freelance writing,” TWFW isn’t about writing for magazines, but rather “commercial freelancing” – writing for businesses, large and small – a lesser-known and exceptionally well-paying freelancing specialty, where hourly rates can run $50-125 and more. The bad news is that, like any business, if you don’t do the work described in this book, you won’t succeed. TWFW provides all the information necessary for creating a thriving freelance commercial writing business, but you must follow through. Should you purchase it? If you have ever thought of writing for a living like this reviewer has, yes. The good news, according to TWFW, is that if you follow and implement the principles laid out in its pages, you can create an income that will allow you to leave the cubicle world and work from home on your terms. Reading TWFW is the first step. The book is full of information from someone who’s been there and done the work, and is helping others by writing this book. Topics covered include: Why become freelance commercial writers (writing for businesses) in the first place? The traits and first steps to becoming successful; sales and marketing fundamentals; all about websites; where to find the work; cold-calling; what to charge and how to get paid; networking; working in small markets (for those in rural areas); resources, and more can all be found in this wonderful book. This great reference should have a prominent place in your home office. It is within reach on mine. Read it before you begin and you’ll save yourself a lot of trial and error. Reading the success stories will show you it works no matter where you live. This reviewer lives in a town with a population of 1,600. For anyone considering writing as a way to make an income, this reviewer recommends purchasing this book. Also, check out The Deluxe Well-Fed Tool Box & The Well-Fed Writer’s Time Line (discussed in the book). This reviewer recommends this book for those thinking about freelancing (five-star rating).

  4. 5 out of 5

    Brad

    Great information and inspiration for anyone looking to operate a freelance business. The information is tailored towards writing, but the principles would apply widely. I was surprised to find a number of typos and errors, especially surprising since it's a book on becoming a professional writer. There were also a couple of instances where I felt the information was unclear, and others where I found it to be needlessly stretched out. With a better copy-edit, and generally tightening the book, it Great information and inspiration for anyone looking to operate a freelance business. The information is tailored towards writing, but the principles would apply widely. I was surprised to find a number of typos and errors, especially surprising since it's a book on becoming a professional writer. There were also a couple of instances where I felt the information was unclear, and others where I found it to be needlessly stretched out. With a better copy-edit, and generally tightening the book, it would have earned 5 stars. A fantastic book for anyone interested in freelancing, but I did find myself skimming through some sections to get to the meat. Nonetheless, worth a read.

  5. 5 out of 5

    DeAnna Knippling

    This was a roadmap book. Have you considered all possible commercial writing markets? Please do, here's how to get at them, here's what to charge. How to write well for those markets? Check out a different book. I feel like the author may have said some things that people don't want to hear. I found the book not what I expected, but insightful as a point of view. As a roadmap and a sanity check--great stuff. As a one-stop-shop for commercial writing, well, I may have had unreasonable expectations This was a roadmap book. Have you considered all possible commercial writing markets? Please do, here's how to get at them, here's what to charge. How to write well for those markets? Check out a different book. I feel like the author may have said some things that people don't want to hear. I found the book not what I expected, but insightful as a point of view. As a roadmap and a sanity check--great stuff. As a one-stop-shop for commercial writing, well, I may have had unreasonable expectations.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Mika

    A lot of the advice is pretty outdated so your point, but there's still enough here that's relevant to a writer looking to launch a business today. Just recognize the technologies and marketing techniques are all about 10 years old or more. But overall the book offered some powerful advice on how to build a successful writing business. A lot of the advice is pretty outdated so your point, but there's still enough here that's relevant to a writer looking to launch a business today. Just recognize the technologies and marketing techniques are all about 10 years old or more. But overall the book offered some powerful advice on how to build a successful writing business.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Kressel Housman

    Boy, am I glad to finally get this off my "currently reading" list. I'm not saying it didn't have good information, but slogging through it was a CHORE! I learned a few new things, but it was mostly common sense, and since it was written in the 90's, it was soooo dated. Forget the "consider getting a cell phone" thing - what about the recession? Maybe writers could charge $50.00 back in the day of the "employees' market," but with the 10% unemployment rate of these days and the closing of so man Boy, am I glad to finally get this off my "currently reading" list. I'm not saying it didn't have good information, but slogging through it was a CHORE! I learned a few new things, but it was mostly common sense, and since it was written in the 90's, it was soooo dated. Forget the "consider getting a cell phone" thing - what about the recession? Maybe writers could charge $50.00 back in the day of the "employees' market," but with the 10% unemployment rate of these days and the closing of so many newspapers, I was starving for more current information. Even still, I might try a few of his ideas for seeking work for myself, but I'm not at all hopeful. As I said, I have a feeling that the author who wrote Beg, Borrow, Steal probably reflects the truth about writing as a career much more accurately.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Teri

    This was step two of beginning my business. Step one was getting the license. Bowerman really does cover everything needed to start a freelance writing career. Now I gotta go do it!

  9. 5 out of 5

    Jeni VW

    This book is packed with tips that can be found elsewhere, given enough time and effort, but are conveniently collected into a guidebook to help readers jump start their freelance writing careers. Make no mistake: In order to implement and succeed with the tips outlined, would-be freelancers need to be committed to building a business and willing/able to do the work of seeking and signing clients, including networking, pitching prospects, and following up with leads. Anyone who wants to sit back This book is packed with tips that can be found elsewhere, given enough time and effort, but are conveniently collected into a guidebook to help readers jump start their freelance writing careers. Make no mistake: In order to implement and succeed with the tips outlined, would-be freelancers need to be committed to building a business and willing/able to do the work of seeking and signing clients, including networking, pitching prospects, and following up with leads. Anyone who wants to sit back, write, and not be bothered by the bottom line should stay away from self-employment, and this book lays that truth out clearly with its many suggestions and resources for getting started.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Chip Cook

    No one did more to help me deal with my fears going into the writing business more than Peter Bowerman. The newer edition is the one you want. I would imagine an even newer edition is in the works now (2018). The 2000 edition was written for the analog world. A business writer does not necessarily need to live in a big city, show up in person, and carry a portfolio along anymore. However, you can still get loads of good stuff from it. So, if you find it in a used book store, buy it and read it.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Walker

    A lot of the tactics in this book are super old-school, but work none-the-less. I bought this book when I first started my copywriting business 6 years ago, and it gave me the confidence and knowledge to keep going and build a successful freelance business. Definitely a classic and a MUST read!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Shelbi

    This was one of those “just keep reading and I’ll finish it eventually” books. I was hoping for something more about how to write certain styles, not how to build a business. Interesting if I ever do decide to go freelance, but I don’t really see that in my future.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Cheryl

    The no-excuses book for earning big bucks by writing for business and commercial clients.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Valerie

    Not a bad book, only three stars because as a fiction writer it didn’t have much for me. Anyone interested in writing non-fiction, however, will love how this book is tailored to their craft.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Becky Franzel

    Good advice--some a bit outdated, but overall a good guide to get ya started.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Erin Perryman

    Outdated info but overall a great place to start!

  17. 4 out of 5

    Rudy Brown

    Life changer!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Magdalena

    Whenever anyone asks me where to go for advice on how to become a freelance commercial writer, I send them directly to Peter Bowerman's website. He’s the guru on this topic. His book The Well-fed Writer was the best guide I’ve read to setting up a lucrative (that’s the well-fed part) copywriting business. It was so well-written, easy to understand and down to earth, that even if you didn’t want a career in commercial freelancing, by the end of the book, you were contemplating it. The book has no Whenever anyone asks me where to go for advice on how to become a freelance commercial writer, I send them directly to Peter Bowerman's website. He’s the guru on this topic. His book The Well-fed Writer was the best guide I’ve read to setting up a lucrative (that’s the well-fed part) copywriting business. It was so well-written, easy to understand and down to earth, that even if you didn’t want a career in commercial freelancing, by the end of the book, you were contemplating it. The book has now been re-released in a larger, more extensive version that contains both the Well-Fed Writer, and it’s equally well-written sequel, The Well Fed Writer: Back for Seconds. As with the first edition, and its sequel, the book is still enticing, down to earth, fun to read, and comprehensive (attributes that don’t often go together). The book comes with a range of extra tools too, from the online ‘toolbox’, to “side-dishes” (samples, case studies, quick guides and so on), to the very well-respected newsletter. In all it’s the perfect package for anyone contemplating this profession, and if you don’t know why you should contemplate this profession, chapter 1 will convince you. Other chapters include such things as the setting up of a business, sales and marketing, setting up a website, how to get new business, how to cold call (and why it isn’t so scary), how to do interviews, direct mailing and e-mailing, how much to charge, networking, dealing with smaller and rural markets, bumping up the rates, the different types of copywriting, and a welter of resources, links, and success stories. All in all it’s a fantastic package full of so much information that, if you do end up taking Bowerman’s advice and becoming a commercial freelancer, you’ll keep returning to the book for inspiration, ideas, and help. Each chapter is enriched by quotations and sidebars from some of Bowerman’s many colleagues, detailing innovative ideas, and information about what has worked for others. For example, copywriter Bobby Hickman provides ideas on how small firms can get noticed through expos, seminars, pro bono work, and coaching. Cecilia Sepp provides information on Associations and why they’re a good source of work. Other guests include the well-lauded Bob Bly, Casey Hibbard, and Michael Stelzner. There are also specific chapters for 'at-home parents' and niche practitioners. I particularly like that Bowerman puts his work into the context of his life, making it clear that you can control just how much you want to work, and set up a balance that suits both your personal, and financial needs. The book is pitched in such a way that it can be used by those who are just starting out, people who will want to follow it’s step-by-step approach from cover to cover, or those more experienced, who can gain ideas and inspiration from what is working well for Bowerman and his colleagues. Above all, The Well-Fed Writer is the still the best, most accessible guide on setting up a freelance copywriting business that’s out there, and this latest version is even better than previous ones. Review first published as Book Review: The Well-Fed Writer: Financial Self-Sufficiency as a Commercial Freelancer in Six Months or Less by Peter Bowerman on Blogcritics.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Terry Freedman

    The book is, in effect, a marketing manual for the would-be serious freelance writer. Thus there is much about how to choose products and services (free is not always second-rate compared to exorbitant, it turns out), and how to approach potential clients. There is good advice about website design and what you should provide on the site, a wealth of websites to explore, and guest sections by other writers (including a few I've come across in the blogosphere, and whom I respect as writers). There The book is, in effect, a marketing manual for the would-be serious freelance writer. Thus there is much about how to choose products and services (free is not always second-rate compared to exorbitant, it turns out), and how to approach potential clients. There is good advice about website design and what you should provide on the site, a wealth of websites to explore, and guest sections by other writers (including a few I've come across in the blogosphere, and whom I respect as writers). There are a couple of niggling things. One is that although Bowerman makes it clear that social networking is very important in today's economy (schools that ban them, please take note), he admits that he himself isn't a member of any of them. That is disappointing because he may have been able to distil into a few bullet points the best way of making contacts in such spaces from his own first-hand experience. As far as I can tell, there is no information about print-on-demand. Given that writers can be their own publishers these days, a section on that would not, I think, have gone amiss. There was a section about it in his companion book, The Well-Fed Publisher, in which he disparages the use of PoD (although at that time Lulu had only just appeared on the scene, and Bowerman himself had not used it yet). However, given the readability of the book, such annoyances can be overlooked. Although the jocular (in parts) tone can start to sound a bit forced occasionally, it more often has the effect of making you want to look up that website or read such and such a blog. Bottom line: Full of hidden gems and a cornucopia of resources. Buy it.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Mark Speed

    Bowerman's angle is slightly different from that taken by Six-Figure Freelancing, which I reviewed here: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show... What's changed enormously since both of these books were written is that the internet has sucked out the demand for freelance journalism. I know of plenty of professionally trained journalists who can't make a living at it. Content has moved to blogs, which are often free, and newspapers and magazines are closing everywhere. Bowerman describes how he spe Bowerman's angle is slightly different from that taken by Six-Figure Freelancing, which I reviewed here: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show... What's changed enormously since both of these books were written is that the internet has sucked out the demand for freelance journalism. I know of plenty of professionally trained journalists who can't make a living at it. Content has moved to blogs, which are often free, and newspapers and magazines are closing everywhere. Bowerman describes how he spent several months trying to crack it as a freelance journalist, ending up with about $50 for one column. Then he hit on the rich vein of corporate copywriting. He tells you how to go about getting your first corporate gig, how to build up your business, and gives you the templates for all the documentation you might need. He goes into great detail about how the business model works, including how to write a closed contract that prevents you from being exploited. It's not as inspirational as Six Figure Freelancing, but it'll get you earning.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Mary

    As someone who wants to make money freelance writing, but has no idea of where to start and how the business works, this book was a gold mine. It was pretty well organized, covered a lot of information, and gave me the confidence to get going, though there's still a lot to learn. Rant: I would have given it 5 stars, but one thing just drove me NUTS, and that was Bowerman's penchant for writing in sentence fragments throughout the book. Almost every section started something like this, "Got an ema As someone who wants to make money freelance writing, but has no idea of where to start and how the business works, this book was a gold mine. It was pretty well organized, covered a lot of information, and gave me the confidence to get going, though there's still a lot to learn. Rant: I would have given it 5 stars, but one thing just drove me NUTS, and that was Bowerman's penchant for writing in sentence fragments throughout the book. Almost every section started something like this, "Got an email a while back..." Now, I understand that he's going for a conversational tone, and as such, I'm all for an occasional relaxing of some grammar rules, but it was just too much. Just add the darn sentence subject already, for pete's sake. And I found upwards of half a dozen spelling/punctuation/usage errors. They were tiny, and many people probably won't see them. But it's a book about writing. For writers. Come on now. End rant. I really did find much to appreciate in this book, and it is well worth a read. Just be prepared to be a little annoyed if you're a grammar stickler.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

    I laughed along the way at the dated comments about technology (floppy diskettes are really important, and just you wait for CD and CDi technology to really take off!!), but the rest of the information really is sound. I wouldn't say this book gave me a ton of new info, but I wouldn't have been on the wrong track if I'd picked it up before reading other resources. The author included lots of details, and I got a handful of "light bulb" moments for markets that I hadn't immediately thought to inc I laughed along the way at the dated comments about technology (floppy diskettes are really important, and just you wait for CD and CDi technology to really take off!!), but the rest of the information really is sound. I wouldn't say this book gave me a ton of new info, but I wouldn't have been on the wrong track if I'd picked it up before reading other resources. The author included lots of details, and I got a handful of "light bulb" moments for markets that I hadn't immediately thought to include in my repertoire. I think his emphasis on hourly rate might throw off some readers, so be sure to research current billing trends. For example, anything less than $50/hr tends to be frowned upon these days, and you should avoid hourly billing at all costs. But other than the exact numbers, I think his advice is sound. Not a bad read. Definitely a good beginner's guide, but I'm not sure I'd buy a copy--stick with the library.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Tom Burke

    I saw a 30 minute video by Peter Bowerman a few weeks ago and was so impressed that I picked the book up from the library to learn more. After reading it I realized this was a resource I could not do without. I now have my own copy of this book as well as the sequel "TWFW: Back for Seconds" and even the highly recommended "Copywriters Handbook" by Bob Bly. "The Well Fed Writer" lays out simple, easy to follow steps on how to create your own freelance writing business. There is so much informatio I saw a 30 minute video by Peter Bowerman a few weeks ago and was so impressed that I picked the book up from the library to learn more. After reading it I realized this was a resource I could not do without. I now have my own copy of this book as well as the sequel "TWFW: Back for Seconds" and even the highly recommended "Copywriters Handbook" by Bob Bly. "The Well Fed Writer" lays out simple, easy to follow steps on how to create your own freelance writing business. There is so much information here that can help anyone from novice right up to seasoned copywriter. Bowerman stuffs the book with testimonials, real life examples, stories from the trenches and encouragement around every corner. If freelance writing is something you think might interest you, this book is a must first step.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Elaine

    The book was clearly written and offered a vast amount of concrete and helpful information and examples for the basics. The author has a chatty, engaging style that carried me through lots of detail. He is also a great cheerleader. I plan to read his bood on self-publishing soon. My copy was published around 2001 which made it outdated for salary expectations, computer systems, and the internet. I also thought the title was misleading, because "writer" and "freelance writer" are broad terms, cov The book was clearly written and offered a vast amount of concrete and helpful information and examples for the basics. The author has a chatty, engaging style that carried me through lots of detail. He is also a great cheerleader. I plan to read his bood on self-publishing soon. My copy was published around 2001 which made it outdated for salary expectations, computer systems, and the internet. I also thought the title was misleading, because "writer" and "freelance writer" are broad terms, covering many areas. Since I'm more interested in magazine freelance writing, much of this book did not apply to me.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Black Heart Magazine

    Great book on copywriting, and lots of excellent tips crammed into this volume on how to start your own freelance writing biz in 6 months or less (and with no experience, too!). I would've given it 5 stars, except that I still feel a bit lost here, wondering how to figure out which companies to target, and what to sell as my "niche," because I know that I've got lots of different types of writing and editing under my belt, but it's definitely a question of specialization. And then it's all just c Great book on copywriting, and lots of excellent tips crammed into this volume on how to start your own freelance writing biz in 6 months or less (and with no experience, too!). I would've given it 5 stars, except that I still feel a bit lost here, wondering how to figure out which companies to target, and what to sell as my "niche," because I know that I've got lots of different types of writing and editing under my belt, but it's definitely a question of specialization. And then it's all just cold calling. Ew! Perhaps my next book on the list should be C. Hope Clark's "The Shy Writer"!

  26. 5 out of 5

    Jessi

    I had read good things about this book, and being a freelance writer I felt compelled to see what it suggested. After my first copy was stolen from my porch, I picked up another and eagerly dove in. At first it made sense, gathering materials and all that, but then it got a bit dated, like recommending I have a computer and a fax, and a phone, things that are usually in every home now. Even though it was written in 2000, a lot of it feels dated, like talking about invoicing which is already hand I had read good things about this book, and being a freelance writer I felt compelled to see what it suggested. After my first copy was stolen from my porch, I picked up another and eagerly dove in. At first it made sense, gathering materials and all that, but then it got a bit dated, like recommending I have a computer and a fax, and a phone, things that are usually in every home now. Even though it was written in 2000, a lot of it feels dated, like talking about invoicing which is already handled by most freelance websites, like Elance.com. I read about 20%, skimmed the other 80%. It can be a good resource to have on the bookshelf, but not really something to read cover to cover.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

    Oddly enough, I think the most valuable sections of this book had to do with the emotional aspects of kick-starting a freelance writing career. The motivating comments to keep going when things get frustrating -- and they WILL get frustrating -- were helpful since I'm reaching a lull in work. The majority of the practical tips were outdated, however, since this book was written over a decade ago. Very little of the book is dedicated to the digital space or how to grow a freelance writing career/ Oddly enough, I think the most valuable sections of this book had to do with the emotional aspects of kick-starting a freelance writing career. The motivating comments to keep going when things get frustrating -- and they WILL get frustrating -- were helpful since I'm reaching a lull in work. The majority of the practical tips were outdated, however, since this book was written over a decade ago. Very little of the book is dedicated to the digital space or how to grow a freelance writing career/business via online resources and marketing techniques.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Jenn Flynn-Shon

    A necessary reference tool for any Freelance Writer. Some slightly dated material on web writing but that's to be expected in such a fast changing industry. The benefits of direct advice, tips, hints and examples from Bowerman's own arsenal far outweigh any material that isn't current for 2013. I will buy his follow up. Bowerman is a new favorite Author for me - a budding Freelance Writer - and I'm thankful for his simple language and easy to understand descriptions. A must read for any Writer w A necessary reference tool for any Freelance Writer. Some slightly dated material on web writing but that's to be expected in such a fast changing industry. The benefits of direct advice, tips, hints and examples from Bowerman's own arsenal far outweigh any material that isn't current for 2013. I will buy his follow up. Bowerman is a new favorite Author for me - a budding Freelance Writer - and I'm thankful for his simple language and easy to understand descriptions. A must read for any Writer who is also an entrepreneur!

  29. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    Outdated but still has solid, applicable advice. His warning about the dangers of chat rooms made me chuckle. You may have read similar advice somewhere else (though his is a great mix of practical and inspirational), however Bowerman's "if I can do this, anyone can do this" attitude might provide the motivation needed to jump into freelancing. Outdated but still has solid, applicable advice. His warning about the dangers of chat rooms made me chuckle. You may have read similar advice somewhere else (though his is a great mix of practical and inspirational), however Bowerman's "if I can do this, anyone can do this" attitude might provide the motivation needed to jump into freelancing.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Nichole Lawson

    I was so encouraged by this book. Just reading it made me feel like my dad was patting me on the head, telling me to be brave, and encouraging me to follow my dreams. All of that sentimental stuff! Seriously, though, Mr. Bowerman has written honestly and encouragingly. I am very thankful for the wisdom he shared.

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