How to Handle Rewrites Like a Freelance Writer

Since October is the season of facing monsters, let’s talk about what most freelance writers fear and dread during every project; Revisions, rewrites and criticism. Dun dun dunnnn.

Have no fear, rewrites aren’t so scary. And they’ll happen more often than you think.

Setting the Scene

You are a freelance writer, working your hustle. Whatever material your buyer needs written, you put a considerable amount of effort into it. Once completed, you are proud of your finished piece and send it off for review. You’re left crossing your fingers that whatever you wrote is exactly what they ordered, no edits needed. Then, said buyer returns your work to you with notes. ‘Trim this, rewrite this section, change that, add more, fix this.’ Now, you are charged with perfecting your writing. And that may be a daunting task for some.

Has this happened to me? Oh yes, plenty of times. At first, corrections would hit me right in my ego and self confidence. Like “Maybe I’m an awful writer. My writing is garbage. I’m the worst.” Today, I just take it as a challenge. It’s a way for me to become a better writer. Actually, the other day, a repeat buyer sent me back an article with many crossed out sentences, to be deleted or rewritten. While yes, it stings a tiny bit, I cracked my neck and dove right back in to another round of writing, reassuring the customer that I could handle rewrites, no problem.

How to Tackle Revisions

When you are a writer, you have to expect, and be open to, criticism. I’ve seen so many writers get offended by constructive criticism. Don’t take it personally. Revisions are part of the writing process, especially in freelancing. At the end of the day, you are trying to fulfill someone else’s request. Therefore, you must collaborate with another person to achieve a goal, an awesome piece of writing.

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Often times, a client will give you their notes, aspects of your work they want to change. Those comments get turned into your to do list. Once you’ve received edits, go back to the original piece and pinpoint all the errors they mention. Remember, this is the second time you’ll be looking at what you wrote, so it will be with fresh eyes. Make adjustments at the buyer’s request, whether you agree or not. The customer’s always right, right? Once the piece is ready for review again, double check that checklist. Be sure you hit all the points noted and deliver exactly what the client wants.

And keep in mind, there can be multiple rounds of edits. Communication with your client is key.

Living Up to Expectations

It depends on who you’re working for, whether it be a one time buyer or a regular customer. Their expectations might be strict and precise, or might be laid back and they’ll accept anything. The more you interact with them, the more you’ll understand their standards. Trust me, I’ve received everything from minor editorial notes to a long laundry list of notes. It happens. The ‘under revisions’ stage is just one step in the writing process for freelancers.

Clients may offer some detailed instructions, or they may give you a vague topic to run with. Really understand what the buyer is looking for. And if you are feeling unsure about something, or confused about directions, asking a bunch of questions help. In my experience, it’s better to bother them with questions, just to be certain of what they want, as opposed to taking their request at face value and shooting in the dark.

Home Runs

In my experience as a freelance writer, nothing beats handing in work that is error free. When the client says “This is perfect! This is exactly what I was looking for!” It happens rarely, but when it does, I call it a home run, knocked right out of the park. I do a little happy dance in my seat. Savor those moments of sweet victory.

Offering your work up for review can be intimidating. And waiting for possible corrections while an article is up for criticism can be a bit nerve-wracking. I cross my fingers every time I send anything out. But, rewrites happen more often than not. And that’s okay. It’s not necessarily something you’ve done wrong, or not well enough. So, don’t feel discouraged when a paragraph needs rewriting. Remember your skills as a writer and revisions won’t be so scary.

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I want to hear from you guys. How do you feel when given criticism on your work? How do you handle the revision process? Be honest, and let me know in the comments.

Lady Jabberwocky

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What Materials I’ve Written and How to Stay Versatile

Hello, writer bugs!

A couple of weeks ago, the flash flood typist suggested I write a post about what kind of materials I’ve written. 

So, today I’ll be going over everything I’ve ever had to write for clients. And after, I’ll tell you how you too can be versatile in freelance business. By no means am I bragging out this one of a kind job. I just never realized how eclectic my work experience would become. 

As a freelance writer, I’ve been tasked with writing a variety of different materials. Most of the time, I’m either producing content that is informative or that sells a product/service. Frankly, you never know what you’ll get in freelancing.

Food and Travel Blog Posts

Side note: For food I had never eaten and places I had never traveled to.

When I first started out as a writer working from home, my first gig was an unpaid internship at a travel blog. Titles mostly began with “Everything you need to know about…..” or “The best…”. Since I wasn’t heading to Disneyland anytime soon, posts involved a lot of research and cross referencing other sources. Even relying on the commentary of park goers. What delicious dishes were they raving about? I loved writing about the food scene at the Disney parks. 

For the rides, I’d look into the history of the ride itself. What makes the ride special? What actually riding the ride was like? Sometimes, I’d look up grainy videos of sneaky park goers filming the rides. 

Product Descriptions 

Yeah, I’ve written product descriptions for two vastly different companies. One was for a hardware supply company. And I know nothing about tools. Frankly, It all looked the same to me. I had to really focus on what the tools were made of and what their function was. 

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The second time I wrote product descriptions was for an ice cream business. And between you and me, I’m highly allergic to dairy and never had ice cream. So there’s that. As a writer, I simply put the spotlight on the texture and the flavor of their sweet creations. Using specific details and adjectives paints an appealing image for a potential buyer. 

Photography Packages

Recently, I’ve been working on packages for a photography site. I’ve picked up an upbeat, catchy voice, similar to a used car salesman. I’m charged with selling a “product”. My words need to convince someone to consider purchasing a professional photography session. And with only 150 words, the result is bite sized pieces presented like an elevator pitch. Short, sweet and to the point.  

Comic Reviews (~700 words) 

For over a year, I wrote weekly comic book reviews for a nerdy website. Reading comics isn’t all fun and games. Following the site’s strict criteria and a rating system, I judged the art styles and the plot lines of some DC Comics publications. Also, I was exposed to other genres I never thought to read. And I liked expressing my dorky side through writing. 

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There’s a bit of pressure offering my opinion on published works and collaborating with editors. Like, who am I to say what’s a great issue and what’s a bad issue? I’m just a lady freelance writer. However, I did learn about the backend workings of composing an article. Tags, links, images, all those bells and whistles behind blog posts.  

Articles about Anything (~1,000 to 2,000 words)

Lots of different topics. Everything from Vegan snacks to Baby Shark. (Yes, the viral video baby shark).  I mean, I could have a post about the oddball articles I’ve written alone. I probably will eventually. When I was on Fiverr, I would just receive random orders from random people. Like party mix. Starting out as a freelance writer will seem like that at first. And hello, writer bees. Of course, I write articles here on Lady Jabberwocky for you lovely folks. 

Be Versatile and Flexible

With the freelance writer job, you are providing a service. Paying customers are coming up to you with their orders. Here’s the thing about freelancing; Some potential clients may ask for something “off the menu”, something you aren’t openly offering on your platform. You might miss out on an opportunity if you only write one type of written material.  

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Bear in mind, the more you offer, the larger the workload. Take that as you will. More money or more stress? (Not that I’m rolling in cash anyway). That being said, you’re allowed to turn down prospects that just aren’t up your alley. However, be open and flexible to other forms of content, any new experience can be rewarding. 

You want to reassure clients that you can handle anything they throw at you. 


What else do you guys want to know about being a freelance writer. For my fellow freelancers, what materials do you like (or dislike) writing? How do you stay flexible in your work? Also, I’m coming up on 200 followers. What should I do to celebrate? Let me know in the comments! I’d love to hear from you!

– Lady Jabberwocky

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