Freelance Writer and Editor Conference Registration Open

Make Your Own Luck

The 13th annual Be a Better Freelancer® conference, will be held September 21–22, 2018, in Rochester, NY. There’s also an option for adding an additional workshop on September 23. For details, go to program, speakers and registration.

This outstanding freelancer conference is organized by our own Ruth Thaler Carter of Communication Central, and it features some of the most interesting freelance speakers, writers, and editors. It’s a great place to go for networking, updates on the latest software and methods, and plenty of good marketing advice.

Download the 2018 Communcation Central conference brochure (PDF)—you’re going to love this!


Tax Help for Writers

Writers: Prepare Your Taxes Properly

NAIWE’s CPA in residence, Carol Topp, is offering a free webinar Thursday, January 19, 2017. Carol claims she can explain federal income tax in clear English. Come hear her try!
Get the link to the webinar on Carol’s Facebook page

  • Tax deductions
  • Special tax rules for authors and publishers
  • Record keeping tips

This webinar is loaded with examples to make your writing business less taxing.

Here’s the announcement for “Writers: Prepare Your Taxes Properly.”

Join me for a free webinar for writers on Prepare Your Taxes Properly.

Thursday Jan 19, 

6 pm ET.

This webinar will be recorded and a link to the recording will be sent to all who register. 

How to Self Publish: October Teleclass with Peter Bowerman

Peter Bowerman, Writer, Self-Publisher, NAIWE Expert

Join us for a NAIWE Teleclass!
October 16, 2013, 3:00 p.m. EDT

Instructor: Peter Bowerman with
NAIWE Director Janice Campbell

Don’t miss this compelling one-hour member teleclass with Peter Bowerman, the Well-Fed Writer and Well-Fed Self-Publisher. He’ll be sharing his self-publishing expertise and talking a bit about what has changed since the first edition of The Well-Fed Self-Publisher was published. Peter is a commercial freelance writer who has published over 250 articles and editorials, leads seminars on writing and is a professional coach on both commercial freelancing business start-up and self-publishing.

New article on Peter’s blog:


Successful Self-Publishing Demystified
How to Turn One Book into a Full-Time Living

Landing a publisher is harder than ever. Even when you do, count on anemic royalty
rates, 18+ months to publication, giving up the rights, and still doing most of the
marketing yourself! Meanwhile, self-publishing has become more viable and potentially
lucrative than ever before.

Join Peter Bowerman, veteran commercial freelancer, popular speaker and successful
self-publisher of the multiple-award-winning Well-Fed Writer (
and Well-Fed Self-Publisher ( titles, as he shares proven strategies
for production, promotion, and enhanced profitability (thanks to multiple income streams
from spin-off businesses!) that have yielded 70,000+ copies of his books in print and a
full-time living since 2001.

The Well-Fed Self-Publisher by Peter BowermanA brand new, updated edition of The Well-Fed Self-Publisher: How to Turn One Book into a Full-Time Living is now available. This eagerly anticipated how-to guide to making your book a commercial success – minus the big publisher or hefty marketing budget – chronicles Peter’s own successful self-publishing path, where he indeed created a full-time living for more than five years (and counting). For more details, visit:


Peter Bowerman, a veteran commercial writer, is the self-published author of the three
award-winning Well-Fed Writer titles (, how-to “standards” on
lucrative “commercial” freelancing – writing for businesses for $50-125+ an hour. He
chronicled his self-publishing success in the award-winning 2007 release, The Well-Fed
Self-Publisher: How to Turn One Book into a Full-Time Living, and its newly released
2014 updated edition.

He’s had 300+ articles published, speaks regularly on writing and publishing, and is a
professional coach for commercial freelancing and self-publishing ventures. Check out
his book titling service at

Teleclass Details

Members will find call-in information for the classes in the member area of the website. You will find it by logging in at the top of any page of the site, then going to the Member Area link (more menus will drop down from here), then to the Member Benefit and Discounts link. NAIWE teleclasses are totally free for members ($27 each for non-members).

If you are not a member and you would like to join in time for this teleclass, you may click on this “Join NAIWE” link to do so.

If you would like to register for this single teleclass only, you may do so for $27 by visiting the Teleclass page.

Develop Your Writer’s Portfolio: A Teleclass with Ruth Thaler-Carter

Ruth Thaler-Carter, NAIWE's "I can write anything" Expert

Learn how you can develop an effective online writing portfolio with NAIWE Expert Ruth Thaler-Carter.

Join us for a NAIWE Teleclass
May 1, 2013, 3:30 p.m. EDT
Instructor: Ruth E. Thaler-Carter joined by
NAIWE Director Janice Campbell

Developing an Effective Writing Portfolio

In the past, a freelance writer’s portfolio was a notebook or binder holding copies of published works, called clips (for “clippings,” as in articles clipped out of the newspaper or magazine where they were published) that writers toted along to in-person interviews. In today’s electronic age, freelance writers often need—or want—to present their work to prospective clients, agents, editors or publishers whom they cannot visit in person. Today’s portfolio has to be more flexible and beyond faxing or mailing a couple of  published articles.

This one-session class will look at ways to develop an effective, modern portfolio that creates opportunities to share your work, both published and in-progress. You’ll gain insight into what a portfolio should contain, as well a ideas for how to present it most effectively. You might even find yourself inspired to spend the afternoon adding things to the Portfolio page of your NAIWE member site!

Members will find call-in information for the classes in the member area of the website. You’ll find it by logging in on any page of the site, then going to the Library link, then to the Expert Teleclasses link. NAIWE teleclasses are totally free for members ($27 each for non-members).

If you’re not a member and you’d like to join in time for the teleclass, you may click on this “Join NAIWE” link to do so. If you would like to register for the teleclass only, you may do so by visiting the Teleclass page. We hope you’ll join us!

Carol Topp Wins TAP! 2013 Scholarship from NAIWE

Carol Topp, CPA: Taxes and the Freelance Writer or Editor

Carol Topp, CPA

We’re delighted to recognize Carol Topp, CPA, the NAIWE Accounting for Freelancers Expert, as the winner of the TAP! 2013 Scholarship. She’ll be joining us at the Technologically Advanced Publishing Conference in Orlando, Florida, just three weeks from now, and will be a guest at dinner with NAIWE Director, Janice Campbell.

There are still a few spots left at this conference, and we’d love to see you there (NAIWE members are invited to join us for dinner). You can register at If you are in publishing or work with those who are, you’ll leave this conference with information that can help you make 2013 your best year ever. We hope you can come!

Jim Sutton: NAIWE Member of the Month, April 2012

Our Member of the Month for April is Jim Sutton of Creative Solutions. Listen in to the recording below as we interview Jim on The Freelance Life. He shares some of the online networking skills he teaches others to help improve their online networking for profitability.

A self-described onion networker, who is passionate about networking and helping others master the skill, Jim built his LinkedIn network to 3600 direct connections in 6 years.  He has successfully managed complex learning management systems and led the creation of performance-based qualification programs.  To help improve the skills of job seekers he is currently facilitating a weekly interview preparation session.  He lives in Venetia, PA, is married and has a degree in computer systems and a masters in Training and Performance Improvement.

Tax Expert Carol Topp, CPA, to talk about Taxes for Freelancers

Carol Topp, CPA: Taxes and the Freelance Writer or EditorNAIWE members are invited to join us on Wednesday, 22 February, for a special call with our Accounting for Freelancers Expert, Carol Topp, CPA. Bring your accounting and tax questions, and Carol will answer as many as possible during our hour together. In Tax Tips for Writers in 2012 she’ll cover:

  • Anything new in taxes?
  • Mileage records
  • Business use of the home deduction
  • The IRS doesn’t email (scam alert)
  • Tax software can lie to you
  • When do you need a CPA ?

This members-only program will air on February 22, 2012 at 3:30 EST.

Carol Topp,CPA, is an accountant and the author of Business Tips and Taxes for Writers. Through her writing, speaking and consulting, Carol converts confusing tax rules and business language into clear, easy-to-understand English for readers. Visit for tax tips and business articles for the writer, blogger, freelancer and author.

Business Tips and Taxes for Writers by Carol Topp, CPABonus: We’ll give away one copy of Carol’s new book, Business Tips and Taxes for Writers, to one lucky teleclass attendee. If you’re a member and would like to enter but can’t be at the teleclass, just e-mail a question for Carol to, and you’ll be included in the opportunity to win the book. If you don’t win, the book is available from the NAIWE Bookstore.
3:30 pm EST on Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Members will find call-in information in the member area. Just log in at the top of any NAIWE page; click on the “Library” link, and then the “Members-Only Blog” link. We’ll send a reminder via e-mail as well. Be sure that you’ve whitelisted * (an asterisk, followed by in your e-mail program so that you receive the message.

If you’re not a member and you’d like to join in time for the teleclass, you may click on this “Join NAIWE” link to do so. If you would like to register for the teleclass only, you may do so by visiting the Teleclass page.

Member Teleclass & Book Giveaway: Laurie Lewis on “What to Charge”

Laurie Lewis, the NAIWE Pricing ExpertFreelancers: Do you have questions about how to quote a job so that you’ll be earning what your work is worth?

Have you ever quoted a job, then found that it was a lot more work than you expected, leaving you with very little profit?

Do your palms get sweaty when a prospective client asks, “How much would you charge for this project?”

Join us on Wednesday, September 21, at 3:30 p.m. EDT for a special Members-Only Teleclass in which NAIWE’s Pricing Expert, Laurie Lewis, discusses strategies and techniques for creating fair, reasonable, and profitable price quotes. You’ll gain insight into:

  • Setting rates
  • Assessing fees dictated by clients
  • Evaluating your pricing experiences
  • How to dig for information before quoting a fee
  • The pros and cons of different pricing methods
  • Two rules of pricing and why following them will guarantee you pricing success
  • How to keep records that will enable you to maximize your profits
  • How to analyze your income retroactively
  • How to raise your rates

What to Charge by NAIWE Expert Laurie LewisThere’s no way that Laurie can cover all you need to know in one short hour, so during the teleclass, we’ll give away one copy of Laurie’s book, What to Charge: Pricing Strategies for Freelancers and Consultants, to a member who joins us on the call.* If you’re not the lucky winner, you can find What to Charge in the NAIWE Bookstore.

Members will find the call-in information in the Members-Only section of the NAIWE website. Just log in at the top of any page of and go to the Library. Click on “Expert Teleclasses,” and you’ll find the information you need. Remember, our expert teleclasses are always free for members. Non-members will find additional information about the teleclasses on the Member Teleclass page.

*Details: You must be a current member of NAIWE, and be present on the call to win. The winner will be randomly chosen by caller number (for example, it could be Caller 8 or 17 or 53, which is the way our conference call service identifies callers). Remember, all you have to do is be there Wednesday, September 21, at 3:30 p.m. EDT to enjoy this informative teleclass and have a chance to win.

NAIWE 2011 Summer Challenge

NAIWE Summer Challenge 2011Summer has started, and we know it can be an off-season for many freelancers. You don’t have to watch your business slide backward, though. To help you maintain momentum while working with a fresh schedule, we’d like to invite you to enlist in the NAIWE Get It Done 2011 Summer Challenge. Take this summer to learn, grow, and get ready for a busy and successful autumn.

There are three parts to the challenge:

  1. Read three books that will stretch your mind and inspire your creative spirit.
  2. Finish one project that’s been nagging at you for longer than you care to admit.
  3. Brainstorm a new project that will bring you an additional stream of income, then take the first step to make it happen.

If you’re going to take part in the challenge, here’s what to do:

  1. Post the challenge button on your website or blog (right-click to copy and save it to your hard drive).
  2. Write a post about what you plan to read and do to meet the challenge.
  3. Link the button to this post and/or paste the address of this post next to the button so visitors will know how to find the challenge for themselves.
  4. Leave a comment below with your URL so that others who take the challenge can visit your blog or website.

All of this will help drive traffic to your website during the notoriously slow months of summer, and it will help to keep you motivated. And because the challenge stays up all summer, your ideas will be able to inspire others to jump in and get something done, too.

Of course, we have a few suggestions for books to read and things to do, but we’d also love to hear your recommendations. Some of our book selections aren’t new, but they’re good. If you haven’t read them, grab a lemonade and head for the hammock!

Books to Boost Creativity and Business Skills

Books to Strengthen Your Craft

Projects You May Want to Tackle

  • Claim your name on major social media sites (LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter)
  • Register at Digg, Stumble, and other sharing sites so that you can easily share interesting blog posts (including your own)
  • Update all your social media profiles
  • Connect with people in your industry, either on social media or in real life (or both)
  • Get a professional headshot for your website and blogs
  • Sign up for a free account so that you can update all your social media accounts with one click
  • Add content to your website and blog (more content equals better search engine rankings)
  • List your business on Google Local so you’ll show up at the top of search results for your specialty
  • Finish a book or article that’s been on the back burner
  • Knock out a few annoying little projects that just need to get done
  • Reorganize your office and make it a place where you feel inspired to do your best work

Ideas for Additional Streams of Income

If you have other ideas, feel free to add them in the comment section. Be sure to sign up for The Edge, NAIWE’s newsletter, for updates on the challenge (sign-up box is in the right column). And in the midst of all, remember to enjoy your family and friends. Summer comes only once a year.

June Member of the Month: April Michelle Davis

April Michelle Davis of Editorial InspirationsOur Member of the Month for June is April Michelle Davis of Editorial Inspirations. April has recently celebrated her tenth year of editorial freelancing. She has a strategic approach to her career that any freelancer would benefit from studying. She shares many tips in this interview, and even more in the audio version that aired on The Freelance Life. Here’s the recording:

Q: Please share a little of your professional history with our readers.

I have been a freelance editor, indexer, and proofreader for 10 years. I have a master’s degree in publishing from The George Washington University, a bachelor’s degree in English from Messiah College, a certificate in editing and a certificate in book publishing from the University of Virginia, and a certificate in professional editing from EEI Communications. My clients are both authors and publishers, and I work in a variety of genres.

Q: How and when did you make this business a reality?

I officially began my business in May 2001, but at that time I had little experience. I was literally working on books for food. I would edit books for authors, and they would buy me breakfast while we discussed ways to improve their manuscripts. From that, I worked in-house for a few years while obtaining my certificates and then my master’s degree. And at the same time, I worked to build my freelance business. In 2007, I had enough clients to quit my day job and freelance full time, and that is what I have been doing since.

Q: What’s the most important lesson you’ve learned so far in your career?

To be successful at freelancing, I have had to learn to be very determined. I am a stubborn person, so this does come easier for me, but sometimes I just get tired and want to give up. However, after an hour of feeling that—not even an entire evening—I know that I can’t. I love what I do, and it is my passion.

When I teach high school students, I ask them what they love to do. After they respond, I ask them how they can do what they love and make money. I have always loved books, and I have found a way doing what I love while supporting my family. That is key to not having just a job. Editing, indexing, and proofreading is not a job or even a career for me—it is my life. I live and breathe it.

Q: Are you working on any special projects you’d like to tell us about?

I just finished up a year-long project revising a volume of ten books. During this past year, I edited the books, made corrections in InDesign, corrected any layout errors, input proofreader changes, indexed the books, laid out the indexes, and wrote and laid out a compilation index. This volume is in its seventh edition, and I worked on a few of the older editions as well, so it has been great seeing this volume progress through the years.

I have also begun teaching a lot more. I host Editing 101 and Editing 102 classes, which are specialized classes designed for those who are in the editing industry (or who want to become freelance editors). Editors who have been in the field for more than twenty years have told me that they are great refresher courses, and people thinking about entering the publishing industry have been able to make educated decisions about their future. More details about these classes are on my website:

Q: What are some of the teachers, books, or authors who have influenced your professional life in a positive way?

Barbara Hart was my first editing teacher at the University of Virginia. She was very tough, and it was tougher for me because most of the students in my class were seasoned people in the publishing field, whereas I was just getting into it. I learned a lot from her, and I still have all of my class materials that I periodically review.

Q: As a seasoned professional, what advice would you offer an independent writer or editor who is just beginning a career?

People don’t always want to be mentors, and even when people find mentors they don’t always know what to do with them. However, I found it greatly valuable to take many classes both related to my degrees and certificates and other classes not related to them. From those classes, I did more than just learn the content. I critiqued the professors. I examined their qualities to see if I wanted to pick up any of them. I examined the way they edited, managed their business, or marketed, and I decided whether I wanted that to become something that I do. Therefore, I recommend finding mentors in everyone—even those people who don’t want to be your mentor.

Also, the publishing industry is incredibly difficult to enter. You need to stay determined. You will fail multiple times; learn from these failures and continue your efforts.

Q: What inspires you?

I love when authors and publishers send me packages. I still get excited to see a package at my front door step. I grab it as soon as I see it and run to the kitchen to grab the razor blade. I have to open it right away. And there, sitting in that brown cardboard box is a beautiful, shiny, new book that I helped to create. In the foyer of my home, immediately outside my office, I have a bookshelf that everyone must pass when entering my home. This bookshelf is only for books that I have worked on. I don’t brag about them and show them to everyone, but if someone asks about those books, I light up and begin showing them my work. If someone asks what I have worked on, I take them to my special bookcase.

Q: How has your membership in NAIWE benefited you professionally?

I have been a member only since the beginning of the year, so this is a difficult question to answer. However, I do have Google analytics on my website, and in those six months that I have been a member, several people have gone to my website from my NAIWE web page. I think that’s pretty good considering that I am still working on my NAIWE blog to get more content up on it. Also, when I Google my name, my NAIWE web page is listed six, bumping another April Davis to the second page and making a Google search for “April Michelle Davis” include on the first page nine of ten web pages about me.

Q: Is there anything else you’d like to share?

Whether you are new to the publishing industry or have been in it for years, you can always learn new things and can grow professionally. Remember to stay current with the industry by taking classes and networking. With the publishing industry changing so rapidly with technology, those who don’t will be left behind.

April’s member website is