Should I Take the Plunge?
You won a prize in grade school for a short story or poem. You were a regular writer for your high school literary journal. You get nervous if there isn't a pen or pencil nearby in case you think of a good idea to develop later.

I totally understand. You have writer tendencies. But can you go freelance and make a living with your writing?

I recommend that, if you feel the stirrings of wanting to be a writer, then don't waste your time with "Do I Have What It Takes?" inventory tests. The first step to becoming a freelance writer is to boldly declare it.

It's not your job to decide what your mark in the halls of human history will be. Just take the step and stop worrying. Do it in public, in front of your family and friends.

Throw a party and give away notepads and pencils. At least mention that you're writing and going to get published. Start describing yourself as a writer whenever the opportunity arises.

They may laugh now, and that's okay. You've got the rest of your life to prove yourself. Write the date on your calendar. You will actually need the date for tax purposes, so the actual declaration is important.

If you're not sure freelance writing is for you, then read on and see what you think, but you may also want to ask yourself, "What's holding me back?

What am I afraid of?" You need to look those issues in the eyes if you're going to write for a living. Be bold. This is no business for shrinking violets.

What Is My Name?

Okay, making that first declaration is easy enough. You may want to consider a business name. Chances are that you'll go by the name Mom and Dad picked out for you at birth, but regardless, you'll have to make sure you're not using a name some other business is already using.

Anything other than your own name may need to be registered locally with the city offices as a business name, or through your state's Secretary of State. Check to see what rules apply where you live.

If you're planning on having a website someday for marketing purposes, it may be useful to you to do a preliminary search to see whether or not you could get a website in your name. If there's a conflict, then you won't have to change the name of your business plan writing services down the road when you're already established.

Taxes Already?

Even in the initial planning stages of your business, you need to keep part of your brain tuned into the IRS and their requirements. As a freelance writer, you will be a self-employed independent contractor. You will need to apply for a tax number for your business. You will have different tax forms to fill out than someone with a 9-5 desk job and a regular paycheck. You may have to make quarterly payments to the IRS in order to avoid penalties in April.

The IRS has a whole list of publications that will put you to sleep faster than sleeping pills, but they are necessary reading to get you up to speed on what will be required.

Not scared off yet? Good. In Part 3, I'll talk about setting up your writer's "resume" and we'll do some dreaming together about where you want your freelance writing business to take you. Nothing's set in stone at this point, but we do want to get things on paper or hard drive now.

Prepare now by setting up a pad and paper, or a new Word document. Write your name, address and phone number on top, just like you'd see at the top of a regular resume. Then wonder...where will freelance writing take you?

Author's Bio: 

Remember that kid who won the bike for selling the most candies at the school fundraiser? That was me. I’ve always had a gift for sales and finding a way to connect with people. At the moment I work as a marketing consultant to high-level corporations. What gets me going now is developing new marketing techniques to get in front of the customer as loyal to them. Enthusiastic about traveling and nature. I am also an avid reader