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Saturday, November 03, 2007

Review: The Greatest Freelance Writing Tips in the World

I was pleased to be invited recently to the book launch of The Greatest Freelance Writing Tips in the World. This is the first published book by my near-neighbour Linda Jones.

Linda is a highly experienced newspaper journalist who now runs the PR and journalism agency Passionate Media. She is also a student of my Quick Cash Writing course, and kindly wrote in the acknowledgements section of this book, "Thanks to Nick Daws for inspiring a more 'rounded' writing career, when all I feared I was fit to write about was local news." Aw, shucks, Linda, it was nothing...

Anyway, I got my copy of the book at the launch (along with several plates of the very nice buffet). My first impressions were highly favourable. Unlike earlier books in the Greatest Tips series I have seen, The Greatest Freelance Writing Tips in the Worldis in small hardback form. It is beautifully designed and produced, even including a ribbon for use as a bookmark. Full marks to the publishers for making such an excellent job of a book that sells for just 6.99 UK pounds (around $14.00 US).

Of course, the main thing with any book is the content. As you might expect of a writer with Linda's pedigree, The Greatest Freelance Writing Tips in the Worldis exceptionally well written. The book is particularly strong on freelance journalism. As I do not have a journalistic background myself, I found these sections especially informative. The book really does make you feel that writing features for top newspapers and magazines is an attainable goal, and the advice on pitching an idea in particular is invaluable. This applies all the more so as Linda does this sucessfully herself every day - so she really does walk the walk as well as talking the talk.

Other sections of the book look at interview and research skills, writing for the Internet, and commercial writing (writing for business clients, in other words). Again, this is all stuff Linda does regularly herself in her day-to-day work. Her advice is based on years of experience, and it shows. Again, I made quite a few notes in these sections.

Of course, in a 160-page book not every aspect of freelance writing can be covered in depth. There is not much on fiction writing, book writing, or writing for the broadcast media, for example. However, if you are interested in freelance journalism and related areas - and these are often the best fields for new writers seeking to establish themselves as freelances - The Greatest Freelance Writing Tips in the Worldoffers essential guidance for (as noted above) a very modest price. It would also make a nice Christmas present for any would-be writer!

LATE ADDITION - If you visit this page of Linda Jones's blog, you can read more about the book launch and see a slightly scary picture of me engrossed in reading it!

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Anonymous Linda said...

Hi Nick,
Many thanks for your balanced and very positive review. I think it's fair to say that your course got me thinking about all of the markets out there.

10:23 PM  
Blogger Paley said...

I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I dont know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


7:09 AM  

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