Making a Living at Freelance Writing — Here’s How I Do It

Sorry, No $5K per Week Secrets Here

Michael Stover
7 min readOct 20, 2019


My wife and I on vacation.

I am one of a growing number of people who make a decent living by freelance writing. I adequately support a family of four, including health insurance, a new car, eating out several times a month, season passes to Dollywood, and a nice beach vacation that included our first visit to Bryant-Denny Stadium to watch an Alabama football game. We don’t have loads of money, but we live well. And for that, I am truly thankful.

This is not one of the many articles I see that share how to make $5,000 every week on Medium or through some other writing venue. I’ve read many of those; perhaps you have, too. While there are some nuggets I can use in a few articles, most of the time the advice given isn’t realistic for me. In other words, what they are doing is not something I can duplicate in my current situation.

Instead, I’m going to share some principles that helped me start freelancing part-time and build my business into a full-time endeavor that provides my family and I a comfortable, realistic living.

Am I satisfied with my current income and the state of my business? No; there are goals I have yet to reach, both with growth and with income. But talking to many freelancers, and hearing from many who receive my monthly newsletter, they wonder if they can ever reach the level I currently enjoy.

This is not a step-by-step how-to of doing what I do. If you want to see a sample of my daily routine and what guides how I set up my daily work, I’ve already written an article on that.

Instead, here are some key principles that have allowed me to grow my business to its current state. Like the $5,000-per-week gurus, maybe you can glean…