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In this issue:
Correspondence and FAQs
Successful Freelance Health Writing, by Lev G. Fedyniak, MD
Correspondence and FAQs
1. Re: Training for Proofreaders
Questions we get frequently: "If I want to be a proofreader, is it best to
take a course, or can I do so without special qualifications?" And: "Who
offers courses for proofreaders?'
If anyone can help with these enquiries, please email your replies to
firstname.lastname@example.org, and they will be published in the next newsletter.
2. A Useful Resource
Dee Rimbaud wrote:
"I would like to recommend an online writers' resource that your readers will
find useful. It's the AA Independent Press Guide, which is at
It is a free resource, with detailed listings of over 2,000 literary magazines
and publishers and links to over 800 internet magazines. It also hundreds of
links to writers' webpages and online writers' resources."
Successful Freelance Health Writing
Like with any category specialization in freelance writing, the first
step is to be a good writer! If you havent laid a good writing foundation,
oriented to freelance writing, then first and foremost, DO SO NOW! What you
write as a health writer can literally impact thousands and thousands of
people, hopefully for the better. But that means you have to know your craft!
Writers come to health writing from a number of different
perspectives. Some see the vast potential in health writing as a specialty
niche where they can make an excellent living. It seems every time you turn
around theres a new health, fitness, nutrition- the list is endless- magazine
at the newsstand. Consumers cant seem to get enough information about health
and certain publications, particularly newspapers, are obsessed with health
topics. And thats GOOD NEWS for health writers. Successful health writers
earn upwards of $50,000 per year!
Other writers come at health writing from a more personal perspective.
Perhaps they or a loved one has suffered a particular type of disease or
illness and they want to communicate their insights, including treatment
methods, to the rest of the world. Or perhaps they are personally committed to
a particular health related cause. Still others may be in a medical, health or
health allied occupation and want to share their expertise.
All are legitimate reasons for wanting to get into health writing.
But, none of them guarantee success as a health writer.
To be a successful health writer, you need to follow a system that
involves an article idea, research, writing and marketing. And, quite frankly,
its the marketing that separates the successful form the unsuccessful health
writer. Too often, freelance writers are haphazard in the way they run their
business. And make no mistake about it- freelance writing IS a business!
First and foremost, you as a health writer (or any kind of writer for
that matter) must produce health features that people want to read. That means
not writing over their heads, explaining difficult concepts in a way they will
understand, using real life examples and making it interesting!
Choosing a topic thats timely wouldnt hurt either! Like in most other
categories of writing, there are trends in health writing. Specific topics are
hot, often because of some significant research breakthrough or because a
superstar has developed a particular disease. These topics then cool down to
be replaced by something else, only to re-surface again later down the road.
Developing a sense of these trends will help you to sell more articles.
Dont discount topics that interest you simply because theyre not hot. They
may well be hot in another part of the world or in a magazine that specializes
in the topic. And certain topics are always timely- Alzheimers, advances in
cancer treatment, cardiovascular topics, and others.
Then, DO YOUR HOMEWORK. The kiss of death in health writing is not doing the
research to get your facts straight. Read the research, contact the authors
directly as well as other experts (getting a useable quote is always a great
help in writing your feature). Doing the research and then explaining it in
terms the average non-medical consumer can understand is the key reason health
writers get paid as well as they do. So dont skimp here. And make sure you
use research from both sides of a topic to give your article balance.
Keeping up-to-date with the latest markets in health, fitness, nutrition,
alternative health, etc. is critical to your success. Spend time at your
Barnes & Noble Mega Store and browse through the magazine rack. Dont limit
yourself to just specific topics of health. Many other magazines use health
features including womens and mens magazines, parenting magazines,
publications aimed at seniors and many more. Open your mind to other
possibilities and think globally. Jot down email and website addresses, fax
numbers, editors names, types of articles the magazine favors, etc., which
helps you to create a database of potential markets.
One last thing. By writing about health, you offer the knowledge of a
treatment or procedure, or the knowledge about ways to prevent the disease or
illness, or inform people about a new advance or procedure, not to just a
limited few, but to thousands and thousands of people. Even hundreds of
thousands of people can be impacted. That has an enormous universal value that
can save countless lives. Health writing is therefore, a way of being of
service to humankind that shouldnt be underestimated.
Lev G. Fedyniak, MD, Dr. Lev, began his medical career in alternative
medicine before going on to take his medical degree. He has also been a
freelance writer throughout. He can be contacted at DrLev@HlthMed.com .
To learn more about how YOU can be a health writer, sign up for Dr. Levs FREE
weekly Health Writing- Tactics & Strategies Newsletter and receive the
"Beginning Health Writing" 7-step eCourse FREE! Just click SUBSCRIBE (or send
a blank email to email@example.com ) and join this fast growing
niche in freelance writing right NOW!
Work currently posted on our public job board,
Contract or permanent positions available, short or long term assignments.
(Posted to job board, 3 May. Location: Auckland, New Zealand.)
Freelance or ex-journalist or market researcher with strong interviewing
(Posted to job board, 26 April. Location: Sweden & Saudi Arabia)
Acceleration is looking for a content development individual or team to
research, plan and write the content required to be published within mining
(Posted to job board, 24 April. Location: Melbourne, Australia.)
We are now accepting applications for contract writers to help create our
online educational content
(Posted to job board, 21 April. Location anywhere.)
Moscow based journalist required.
(Posted to job board, 18 April. Location: Moscow.)
Admotor is a part of a large portal system of highly popular web sites, that
belong to Millennium Rise Inc., and they collectively feature several
thousands of articles written by professionals and experts in business-related
subject fields.It is seeking writers.
(Posted to job board, 11 April. Location anywhere)
Grassroots Research, a department of RCM Global Investors is currently looking
for freelance investigative journalist who live in Italy, Japan or Korea.
(Posted to job board, 11 April.)
China based journalist required.
(Posted to job board, 6 April. Location: China.)
Writers and editors: Please remember to check the job board regularly, and
note also that to get timely access the full range of jobs posted at
Writerfind you will need to sign up for our fee-based mailing list service.
Jobs are posted to members of this mailing list immediately they come in. You
can sign up at www.writerfind.com/premiumjobs.htm
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Last updated 25 July 2006 NZST