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The Freelance Writer's Handbook: How to turn your writing skills into a successful business [Paperback]

Andrew Crofts
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
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The Freelance Writer's Handbook: How to Turn Your Writing Skills into a Successful Business The Freelance Writer's Handbook: How to Turn Your Writing Skills into a Successful Business 4.0 out of 5 stars (25)
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Book Description

4 Jan 2007
Now in a fully updated third edition, The Freelance Writer's Handbook is the essential book for everyone who dreams of making money from their writing. It will appeal to all aspiring writers, whether they want to write as a full time profession, or simply to supplement their existing income through writing. This inspiring guide will also benefit professional writers and journalists who want ideas on how to find new markets for their work. Helps you to decide what to write and how to sell it· Packed with advice on ghostwriting, travel writing, fiction, short stories, television and radio scripts, newspaper and magazine journalism. Includes valuable information on agents, making contacts, interviewing skills, potential markets, how to get commissioned, and much more. Covers the latest developments in web writing, blogging, and online publishing.

Frequently Bought Together

The Freelance Writer's Handbook: How to turn your writing skills into a successful business + No Contacts? No Problem! How to Pitch and Sell Your Freelance Feature Writing (Professional Media Practice) + The Writers' & Artists' Yearbook 2013 (Writers' and Artists')
Price For All Three: 37.45

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Product details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Piatkus; 3rd edition (4 Jan 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0749927631
  • ISBN-13: 978-0749927639
  • Product Dimensions: 13.7 x 21.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 218,182 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Andrew Crofts is a ghostwriter and author who has published more than eighty books, a dozen of which were Sunday Times number one bestsellers. He has also guided a number of international clients successfully through the minefield of independent publishing.

Andrew's name first became known amongst publishers for the stories he brought them by the otherwise disenfranchised. Travelling all over the world he worked with victims of enforced marriages in North Africa and the Middle East, sex workers in the Far East, orphans in war-torn areas like Croatia and dictatorships like Romania, victims of crimes and abused children everywhere. He also worked with members of the criminal fraternity.

The enormous success of these books brought many very different people to his door; first came the celebrities from the worlds of film, music, television and sport, and then the real elite in the form of world leaders and the mysterious, powerful people who finance them, arm them and, in some cases, control them.

As well as using traditional publishers to reach readers he has also experimented with e-books, publishing, "Secrets of the Italian Gardener", a novella which draws on his experience amongst the powerful and wealthy, and "The Fabulous Dreams of Maggie de Beer",(a prequel to his traditionally published "The Overnight Fame of Steffi McBride", now filmed and appearing in episodes on YouTube's This is Drama channel).

His books on writing include "Ghostwriting", (A&C Black) and "The Freelance Writer's Handbook", (Piatkus), which has been reprinted eight times over twenty years.

Throughout his bestseller, "The Ghost", Robert Harris quotes Andrew's seminal book, "Ghostwriting". Harris's book went on to become a major movie by the same name, directed by Roman Polanski and starring Ewan McGregor as the eponymous ghost. The opening lines in Robert Harris's book sum up Andrew's philosophy:

"Of all the advantages ghosting offers, one of the greatest must be the opportunity that you get to meet people of interest".

Product Description


A very useful, totally practical guide ((Daily Mail))

About the Author

Andrew Crofts, one of the world's most successful freelancers, has been writing for over 30 years. As a travel writer he has visited the most exotic corners of the earth. As a journalist he has written for the national press, women's magazines and business journals.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
54 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring 19 Sep 2003
This is without a doubt the best book I have ever read on the subject of getting assignments as a freelance writer.
There's no padding or 'fluff' in here -- Mr Crofts' gets straight down to the nitty gritty of how to get work.
This isn't a book for people who want to learn how to write. It's a book for writers who want to make a decent living from their craft.
Highly recommended.
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36 of 36 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No rose tinted glasses here! 25 May 2006
Like many people I have read libraries of guide books for would-be writers. This, undoubtedly, is one of the best. I read it cover to cover in a couple of hours and then went back the next day to learn some more.

Clearly expressed, in logically structured sections, this book will certainly guide you through the process of finding the right topics to write about, the right people to pitch them to and, most importantly, how to cope with the rejection while waiting for the really big break-through.

The good news is that if you read this book and follow the advice then you won't even notice the rejection slips - you'll be too busy working on the next article that you are going to sell!

One to read and keep, making sure you re-read it regularly.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Lacked depth of knoweldge 21 July 2010
I bought this book after reading the reviews and felt compelled to write a review myself. I was expecting an all meat and no fluff guide, but unfortunately, the reverse is true. While there were some good tips scattered throughout, in general the book was more like an overview of the world of freelancing than an in-depth guide on how to excel in this area. In particular, the section on magazine writing was terrible. It literally glossed over the types of markets with absolutely NO advice on pitching or how to break into the market in the first place.

As a freelance writer myself, I am always on the lookout for ways to improve my writing and open the doors to more opportunities, but this book really was not it. This book is fine if you want general advice, but not if you are a freelancer looking to improve their career. I would strongly suggest you get 'How to pitch and sell a freelance feature' by Catherine Quinn and also 'The Copywriting Sourcebook' by Andy Malsden. And the ultimate would be Peter Bowerman's 'The Well-Fed Writer'. This should be the bible for ALL freelancers looking to exploit new avenues.

As someone who has built a successful freelance career in less than four months, I found this book to be patronizing and condescending to most freelance writers. We KNOW you need to research well, and we KNOW you can turn one article into several. It's not rocket science. Don't waste your money and buy a proper freelance book instead.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Top-notch Nuts & Bolts Guide 3 Sep 2006
If you want to get involved in the actual business of freelance writing there is no better guide on the market. Andrew Crofts is well known in the book trade as a ghost writer and it is seldom that he doesn't have a book in the best-seller lists, even if it doesn't have his name on it.

Unlike many books on writing, this book actually tells you how to write for a living and is not full of the normal obsequies to editors that usually plague books like these and reveal a definite bias to the amateur.

Not much use if you want to write a heart-felt labour-of-love novel, otherwise excellent.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Plain, simple, effective 3 Oct 2002
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Andrew Crofts' book demonstrates why he has succeeded as a writer. It's a masterpiece or plain, simple, effective writing, encouraging readers to go out and win. His style is easy going, with not a trace of patronisation. He pulls no punches in telling you it's a tough world out there, but he really does show you how your experience can be different from the 99% who'll fail. Add to that that it's a highly readable book and what more could you ask? After all, if you think you can do better, he shows you how to go about proving it.
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30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
Since I bought this book I have had numerous articles published. Andrew Crofts is a realist, with sections on "Learning to Bear Rejection" as well as inspirational stories of people who've made a success of writing. The best bits are the practical tips, eg on how to sell stories; how to tell if your idea for a story is a good one; and even such nitty gritty stuff as keeping good records. Not every chapter will apply to everyone, but the book as a whole is a valuable compendium of sensible advice.
My favourite tip: the best way to handle rejection is to have so many projects on the go that there's always something to be optimistic about.
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspirational! 1 July 2004
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Andrew Crofts doesn't pull any punches. He knows how hard it can be to make it as a writer, and makes sure you know it too! The he goes on to tell you how to maximise your chances, giving you all the know-how and tips he has gathered over his long-standing career. Not for the faint-hearted, but definitely for those who really want to make it. User-friendly, and deeply inspirational!
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35 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five stars is not enough 22 April 2003
I am amazed by this book I bought today and have almost finished in hours. It's readable, fascinating and written by an expert. The author shows you what the pitfalls of freelance writing are, how best to equip yourself against them and how to adapt to them. He also offers something else, a magical addition, positivie thinking. The tone is not : "Well.. I suppose you COULD DO IT.' But 'In spite of all the bad stuff, you will do it." There's no secret contained within this book. Fantastic advice and helping the beginner writer to find confidence in themselves. Crofts is the voice in the head which says "yes you can." The voice you always believed most of all.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars In fact it's packed with so much useful information, don't miss this...
A gem of a book. If you think this is the direction you want to go in with your writing, don't miss this book. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Suzi
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as the above, but still useful
Not as indispensable as the WAAYB but still useful. Proablem with all these things is, you can basically get all the info online anyhow. Still, nice to have an actual book.
Published 6 months ago by Jamie
3.0 out of 5 stars Six years is a long time in publishing
I find it really hard to believe that a book like this, which offers so much to the aspiring freelance writer in principle, should have been left to become so woefully out of date. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Hal Marshall
5.0 out of 5 stars The Freelance Writers Handbook.
I have not had time to read it all yet, but what I have read so far is excellent. Thank you. I do not need to compare it to anything
else as every thing I have had has been... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Veronica Gilkes
3.0 out of 5 stars Not ideal if you're completely new to writing
Like many other reviewers, I bought this book on the basis of rave reviews. It starts off well, in an easy to read style, and I found the first couple of chapters inspiring, but as... Read more
Published on 30 Nov 2011 by Doonie
2.0 out of 5 stars Very dated and unrealistic
I bought this book on the strength of the reviews here, and I'll admit to being disappointed.

The book has dated very badly (it recommends sending your work on... Read more
Published on 15 July 2011 by Rosey Lea
3.0 out of 5 stars a little disappointing
I was a little disappointed with this. It is written entirely from the point of view of one person so is built around his own personal experience and expertise. Read more
Published on 8 April 2011 by CM AK Bentley
5.0 out of 5 stars Honest, Informative, Inspiring
Perfect book for the freelance writer.

Suitable for beginner to professional. Andrew Crofts highlights every area of writing you could possibly imagine. Read more
Published on 7 April 2010 by B. Tyson
5.0 out of 5 stars Dog-eared with use?
I read so slowly that most books are dog-eared by the time I finish them, but my copy of the Handbook still looks new. Read more
Published on 15 Dec 2009 by I N Seyssel
2.0 out of 5 stars Common sense called for
I selected this book after ploughing through a myriad of reviews on amazon, as I was looking for a general guide to working freelance. Read more
Published on 5 Aug 2009 by Mr. D. P. Swinfen
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Does this 2011 edition differ much from the 2002 copy? 0 18 Feb 2011
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