6 Tips for Writing Success

To be published and build a profitable writing career – or interesting hobby – you must be resourceful, determined and totally professional in your approach. Here’s how.

Specialise in one or a few subjects

wooden desk with typewriter, stationary and pinecone on top

List the subjects in which you have a particular interest or expertise. You may be surprised to learn that you know more than you originally think.  Include valuable or unique life experiences you have had, such as surviving illness, completing courses, gaining specific skills, or experiencing different cultures, and then use this specialist knowledge to write your articles, stories or books. Having a specialised and unusual field of expertise will open up opportunities for you.

Be resourceful

You can sell articles and stories using the same basic idea – over and over again – by exploring and re-writing a researched subject from a different perspective to suit the specific interests of the readers of different publications.

Research carefully

man staring at a wall of research

Stick precisely to the guidelines for contributors – available on the publishers’ websites. Each publisher or publication has a particular style and format of writing, and the freelance writer is expected to follow these guidelines. Many writers fail because they have provided material that is not suitable for the publisher or they have failed to follow submission guidelines. Do this research before writing your piece, and tailor your writing accordingly.  

Submit your best work

Proofread your work carefully, checking your spelling and grammar, and making sure every detail is considered. It is helpful to put aside your work for a couple of days before your final check. This means that you can read your work with a fresh eye. Make sure factual information is correct. Do not insult someone by spelling their name incorrectly. You face ridicule and even legal action if you give unhelpful or inaccurate advice. Ask yourself – what will your target reader want to know about this subject? Never copy others’ work. However, you can use facts that you find, unless it is creatively used in a database.

When you contact an editor or publisher, keep your communication concise and relevant. Be business-like in your approach.

Start small…

enjoy the little things in life

When you start out as a freelance writer, you may be tempted to submit your articles or stories to the highest paying, best known publications. It can be wiser to target smaller publications, which may help you to become published faster, gaining the valuable experience and kudos that you need for future submissions. Consider approaching specialist and trade publications, county magazines, or small-press journals. Write for your local magazine or journal, or charity newsletters.

Be Determined

If your work is rejected, try again. However, use these rejections productively to assess your working methods and see where you can improve. Most editors do not say why an article or story is rejected, but often, it is because the editor has enough material or may have already commissioned a similar piece. So do not be disheartened.

Why not give yourself a head start by signing up for a writing course at the Academy for Distance Learning? There is a wide range of courses to choose from. Happy writing!




ADL Success Stories – Dairy Cattle Farming with Annabella Baker

Education opens doors to success windows of opportunity and in at least one case, gates to new possibilities. Such is the case with ADL success story Annabella Baker.  Originally from Italy, but now living in the UK, Annabella faced a tragedy all too familiar to many when she lost her airline job during the Covid

Read More »

Horticulture – Learn the Basics: Three Problems for New Gardeners

Gardens are hard work.  Behind every immaculate lawn and carefully tended flowerbed is a never-ending struggle between nature and gardener. Of course simply leaving the garden to its own devices isn’t really an option; Untended, plants will grow freely for the whole of spring and summer and even into autumn. Worse yet, an uncared for

Read More »

Henry Hoover’s Broken Plug

Some stories of educational achievement soar into the heavens.  Of individuals who through hard work and toil overcame the challenges in their life to achieve. Certainly, at ADL we’ve seen and helped many individuals achieve their dreams through completing a course which helped them get a place at university or begin a new career. This,

Read More »

King Charles and the Grey Goo

If you’ve been in the UK over the past weekend you might have noticed you had a day off on Monday (or looked on enviously as other people had a day off).  The coronation of a new monarch in Charles the Third means a new era. One that the Monarch is especially keen does not

Read More »

Could You Be a Personal Trainer?

If you’re looking for a side business or career that combines a love for fitness and a mentoring role. personal training might be for you Personal training is at it’s heart all about being able to help people live healthier, happier lives.  By combining physical exercise with essential lifestyle changes like diet they help their

Read More »


Scroll to Top


To speak to one of our course advisors, please enter your name and phone number below and click the "Please Call Me" button. We will call you back as soon as possible!

By submitting this form, I provide my consent to ADL to contact me via email or telephone, regarding the course I selected. All information provided is protected in conformity with our Privacy Policy.


required fields are marked with *

By submitting this form, I provide my consent to ADL to contact me via email or telephone, regarding the course I selected. All information provided is protected in conformity with our Privacy Policy.