Thursday, August 27, 2009
Monday, August 24, 2009
o Popularity of the article;
o Number and quality of inbound links to the article;
o Topicality and newsworthiness of the article content;
o Usefulness and applicability of the article content;
o User response to your articles, such as positive reviews and comments;
o Degree of specialization of the article content; and
o Quality of the writing.
You get paid per article. Your article's earning potential can be based on a combination of several elements, including the amount of times it's been viewed and its category. The more useful your articles are to the reader, the more money you could make. Check out our tips and guidelines, like adding photos, and eHow's most-requested topics page for How To ideas.
Monday, August 17, 2009
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
Stay on Top of the Topics People are Interested In - Keep abreast of topics that the public is interested in right now as well as the topics that are coming up in interest. For example: green living, frugal living, the economy, health care, living healthy and weight loss are hot topics. Those are also topics people will be searching for next year. A quick glance at any search engine homepage, such as Google or Yahoo, will give you an idea what topics are the most searched. Keep an eye on topics that look like they may be hot in the future. Before the housing market went bust, I began writing articles on the housing market because all indicators pointed to it being a hot topic. Watch the news, read blogs and take note of what customers are requesting for articles so you can stay on top of the subjects that will sell.
Start with the Basics – All articles should have a beginning, middle, and end. The first one or two paragraphs should state the topic of the article and what problem you are solving. The middle paragraphs gives information on the topic that was brought up in the first paragraph and helps solve the problem. The final paragraph, the summary, should quickly summarize what the article was about and give the article a clean end. Unless the customer asks for a specific writing style, try to use these three stages when writing articles so they look professional.
Keep Your Article about one Topic – The topic in your title is the topic you are going to stick with for the entire article. Don’t let other topics seep in that will muddy the article and make it confusing or too long. Let’s say your article is on “How to Sleep Better at Night”. Give specific answers to this title such as make the room darker, close out noise, try using lavender on your pillow. Don’t start stating other facts or statistics on sleep that do not have anything to do with the article. Save that other information you learned about sleep for another great article instead.
Use Paragraph Headings – Paragraph headings help break down your article into sections so it is easy for the reader to scan through and find the information he wants. A typical 500 word article should have 2 to 3 paragraph headings to break up the article. Use key words from the paragraphs following the heading when writing the heading.
Find Reputable Sources – Any basic college writing course instructor will ask you to find at least three reputable sources for any paper that you write. That concept applies to writing to sell articles too. Use sources from reputable organizations, associations, government agencies, universities or medical facilities. For example: If you are writing an article on heart disease, find reputable information from places such as the National Heart Association, the Mayo Clinic or a reputable research article. When searching for reputable information on the Internet, use the advanced search option and key in the source area you want your information from such as .org, .gov, or .edu. This will help you find good sources without wallowing through all the other sites.
Use the Sources in Your Article – Always back up any statistics or research results by stating where you have found this information. For example: “Research conducted by the National Heart Association found that 32% of men who experienced erectile dysfunction had some form of heart disease within the next five years”. (Not accurate stats, just an example.) This gives your article much more credibility than stating, “Research found that 32% of men…..”. Also, use quotes by prominent people but always state within the sentence the source of the quote. Example: “In an article titled “Erectile Dysfunction and Your Heart” on MayoClinic.com, Dr. Emily Notingburg stated that, “Thirty-two percent of men who experienced…”. (I made up this source for the example.) For more formal articles you will want to include the link for your source at the bottom of the article page.
Write Concisely – Use as few words as possible while still getting your point across. Always proofread your articles several times to check if you could re-write a sentence to be more concise or even a whole paragraph. Don’t just add words for the sake of a word count. Instead, use your words wisely so customers don’t feel you are just padding an article with useless words.
Watch the Word Count – Unless you have been asked to write an article that contains 1,000 words, it is best to keep articles between 500-600 words for Internet sales. People who purchase articles for their website are looking for articles that fit well into their website or blog and don’t want it to be too wordy. If you have enough material for a 1,000+ word article, break it down into two different articles for twice the sale potential.
Proofread Articles – Proofread your articles at least 3 times before submitting them for sale. Don’t just count on spelling or grammar software to find mistakes. Some of the best articles can sit and not sell because the writer didn’t proofread enough and they don’t look professional.
Check for Plagiarism – You know that you wrote the article from scratch but you did use resources and read other articles to obtain your information. It is always best to use a plagiarism checker, such as Article Checker or Copyscape, before submitting an article for sale so you are not embarrassed later if you accidently copied a phrase.
Submit Your Article and Move on to the Next - Submit your well-written article and move on to the next article. No matter where you are selling your articles for up-front payment or residual income, the only way you will make money writing is by writing the perfect article and going on to the next. If a re-write is requested or the article is rejected you will already have more on the way to sell. Also, instead of getting mad about re-writes use these opportunities to hone your writing skills. The editor isn’t saying you are not a good writer; the editor is saying that you did well but need a few changes. Every writer, no matter how experienced or educated, sometimes needs help with their writing. Keep writing and soon you will be earning good money as a freelance writer.
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Sorry it's been awhile since posting. We had an emergency this last week and it halted all of my writing. As you all know, I walk with my dog in our local state park everyday. She is my constant companion and we enjoy our walks. Last Wednesday, as we passed a couple with two large dogs the husband lost control of his dog and it attacked my dog, Chessie. I had her leash wrapped tightly around my hand because we are working very hard on heeling and when the other dog pinned her to the ground it made me bend forward too. The owner grabbed his dog and I tried to pull Chessie away but then he let his dog go again and again the dog grabbed my dog. Then the wife, for some reason, lost control of her dog too which joined the fight and there I stood in the middle of three dogs fighting. I was knocked to the ground at this point by the dogs and my hand opened up and the leash unraveled off of my hand allowing my dog to run away. One of the other dogs chased her. My dog does not like to be away from me, so she had run under a bench to wait for me and the other dog once again pinned her and that is how the owner got a hold of his dog. But at this point my dog ran off into the woods and by the time I caught up to the spot where the bench was she was long gone. Aussies are known for being fast runners, an she is. I quickly called my family, since Chessie will not go to a stranger, and we combed the trails for hours calling for her. She still had her harness and lead attached, so we were fearful she would get caught up on a fallen tree or something in the woods. She was nowhere to be found.
Finally, after four days of searching the woods (there are 1,600 acres in the park) and walking the trails, the state park workers let us know that someone had finally spotted our dog so we were able to pinpoint an exact area to search. Late on Saturday we found her, no harness or leash still on, dirty, but in fairly good shape. She was hungry and tired and her paw pads were worn down from her searching for us. Since then I've had her to the Vet for a check-up, and except for a few scratches and cuts, and a mild infection, she is okay. She is scared to go outside at night now and fearful of being in wide open places so she walks the edge of trees and bushes and the house instead of in the middle of our yard - like a wild animal would. It will take some time to help her feel safe again and I'm not sure yet if she will ever want to walk in the park again. But she is here with us and that is all that matters.
As to the people who couldn't control their dogs, we didn't call the police or do anything to them but we should have. They lied to the state park officials that I had lost control of my dog and never once told them that their dogs attacked. When I talked to the state park workers and told them she was attacked by the dogs, they were very angry at having been lied to because of safety reasons. The campgrounds were full of people, many with children, who could have been hurt by these dogs. If the state park ever did anything about these people, I don't know and don't care. On the first day, right after this happened, the other dog owner said he would be happy to "take care of the problem and make some sort of resolution", meaning pay us off. I told him the only resolution I would accept is finding my dog. He didn't like my answer. He also didn't like it when we confronted him about lying to the state park and not telling them he and his dogs were the cause of my dog running away. I will give him and his family credit for helping to search for our dog that first day, but in the long run that actually did more harm than good. They probably scared her deeper into the woods as she is afraid of strangers if we are not with her. After that first day I just didn't want any more to do with them.
Accidents do happen, but I am a firm believer that if you own very large dogs you should be able to handle them correctly. I always have a heavy harness and heavy leash on my dog so I have control of her at all times. She only weighs 50 pounds so I am able to hold her back if I have to. These people lived under some fairy tale belief that their big dogs were incapable of ever hurting anyone or anything. All dogs, no matter what their size or weight, are capable of attacking another dog or person. I also believe my dog will not attack another person or dog, but I still always have a firm grip on her at all times just in case. It is arrogant to believe your dog will not attack. These people were irresponsible to be in a public place and not have better control of their dogs. I am hoping that by writing this, some people will think twice about believing their dogs are above behaving like a dog.
I do have to add that the State Park officials were very helpful and rode the trails searching for our dog. They let us put a poster up in the office and they told every visitor to keep an eye out for our dog. It was their phone call that helped us narrow our search and enabled us to find Chessie. We are very grateful to them and all the campers at the park who kept an eye out for our dog.
Thanks for letting me share this story and I will try to get back to writing about writing soon.
Sunday, August 2, 2009
Writing Site: Constant-Content
Daily Article: Writing Site Review
Saturday, August 1, 2009
I just posted an article on eHow titled: How to Check Your Articles for Plagiarism before Publishing or Selling. The article describes four very useful sites you can use to check your articles to make sure you are not unintentionally plagiarizing another writer. They are also useful for checking your blog or website URL to make sure no one is plagiarizing you. If you publish articles on various sites, you can use these article checker sites to make sure no one is stealing your articles too. They are very useful tools that I think you will want to use.
I cannot complain about payment at eHow. I made a little under $20.00 for the 7 June articles plus the 3 July ones that did show payment. That is roughly $2.00 per article in residual income. Now, I realize I can go to CC and earn $20+ per article, if I write one that is in demand and it sells, or I can go to Demand Studios and earn $15.00 per article up-front. But I will continue to earn money from my eHow articles for several months, or years, so I am betting on that bringing in more income in the long run. I think I have a good start at eHow and am looking forward to what my July articles bring in next month.
If you are writing for eHow or any residual site, I have found some things that help to bring in views to articles. Many residual sites are also community sites where people are sharing ideas with one another and also trying to promote their own blogs, websites or writing. This is good, because it gives you an audience that is willing to read your work and visit your blog or website too. Some ways to build your residual income are:
- Make friends on residual sites. Recommend them, leave comments and rate their articles. Be nice, though. You are not their editor, you are their friend. I've found that most writers on residual income sites are more than happy to return the favor of reading your work too.
- Read your friend's profiles, and visit their blogs or websites when you have the time. It only takes a few minutes to click on over to their blog and leave a comment. In most cases, they will do the same for you. It's always nice to have new members on your blog.
- When friend requests come your way, be sure to pop on over to their work and make a few comments. This is your opportunity to get more views and comments too.
- Recommend interesting articles you read on your own blog. If you come upon an article that you think your readers will enjoy, put a link on your blog. It's nice for all of us to help each other.
- Don't forget older friendships. I try to go through my friends at ehow and read and rate a few articles each day along with making new friends. You can spend 5 minutes a day and read the reward of many more views on your work.
I also like to look over articles by people who have been on eHow for a long time and who are doing well in the earning area. This gives me ideas on how to improve my earning potential by seeing what topics earn the most for them. Always be open to learning new strategies.
Lastly, type into Google or Yahoo "eHow reviews" or "earning on eHow" to read other bloggers tips and ideas on how to be successful eHow writers. You can do this for any residual site. I've learn a lot from forums and bloggers and am always willing to learn more.
Good luck with your residual income. I would love to hear how all of you are doing in your quest to earn money writing.