Q: I’m a small-business owner looking to hire a freelance writer to create content on my behalf. How do I know the writer will be knowledgeable in my field or niche?
A: You don’t, but that’s no reason to panic or run the other way. In most cases, unless the material is extremely technical, the freelance writer does not need to be knowledgeable in your field, but will conduct research. Skilled freelance writers know how to find and use reliable sources. More importantly, they know how to write with authority. Excellent writing both informs and makes the reader feel the source is trustworthy and competent.
What’s more, there are several phases in the writing process. Freelance writers go through several steps when composing even a simple blog post.
- The step when a writer plans what he or she will write, makes an outline and does research is the prewrite stage.
- Next, the writer composes a rough draft, putting all ideas onto paper or into a Word document.
- The writer then goes back and makes changes, correcting issues such as flow and word usage and fixing any areas that are confusing or need more information. This is called the revision stage.
- The corrected draft is left to sit for a few hours or ideally a few days before it is edited. Leaving a draft for any length of time makes mistakes more apparent to the author.
- Finally, the document is ready to be turned into the client or published on the client’s behalf.
Have a question about what writers and editors do? Contact me to submit your question. It will be answered in a future post.