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52 of 53 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stop being a starving writer and make good money doing what you love.
I really do not remember how I found out about this book, but it has literally changed my professional life. I have been a full-time writer and editor for about two years and was plugging along with billings of $3-4K a month; but within two months I looked at my billings and they are now at $7-8,000 a month! Just me! Wow! I didn't start from scratch as many people who...
Published on June 24, 2010 by Pamela H. Owens

versus
95 of 109 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Take it with a grain of salt
I had bought Bowerman's original edition and picked up the newest one last year. It's obvious he missed the "freelance collapse" of 2009, as much of his advice just doesn't pan out now. I've been writing for commercial markets since 2005, and after a fantastic year in 2008, I'm making 1/4 of that the past two years...and I'm commanding money in the top pay bracket...
Published on May 12, 2010 by V. Vankooten


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52 of 53 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stop being a starving writer and make good money doing what you love., June 24, 2010
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This review is from: The Well-Fed Writer: Financial Self-Sufficiency as a Commercial Freelancer in Six Months or Less (Perfect Paperback)
I really do not remember how I found out about this book, but it has literally changed my professional life. I have been a full-time writer and editor for about two years and was plugging along with billings of $3-4K a month; but within two months I looked at my billings and they are now at $7-8,000 a month! Just me! Wow! I didn't start from scratch as many people who read this book will be doing; I already had in place some of the basics. But I was able to take Peter's recommendations and double my billings! I live in one of the states hardest hit by the economic meltdown.

I did not read the previous editions, so I cannot compare this newest addition to those. I just know that Peter starts by blasting the "starving writer" meme and helping people to realize that writing is both a skill and an art that cannot be done by "just anybody with a computer". Although Peter lets people know that although they do not have to be professionally trained writers to become well-fed writers, they do have to do the work necessary to become skilled at the craft of writing and the business of marketing themselves.

Peter gives step-by-step instructions on how to build a well-paying writing business for yourself using all of the latest tools and techniques available. Most importantly, all through the book, directly and indirectly, Peter reminds writers that they are WORTH charging real rates. This is not a get-rich-quick scheme; but solid advice on building a real business at a nice even pace over the next several months.

I did raise my hourly rate from $55 to $75/hour and my per word rates from $0.10 to $1.00 - $1.50 per word, but more importantly--I almost exclusively charge by the project and use my hourly and per word rates as just benchmarks. I have almost more work than I can handle AFTER I changed my rate schedule.

So, if you are one of those writers who is struggling with less-than-U.S. minimum-wage writing projects and trying to compete with people who charge or will only pay $0.01/word or less, get this book NOW. Then get a yellow highlighter and a pen and paper--remember those?--and read, highlight, take notes and read again. Then stop complaining about the economy and overseas competition and revise your entire business to not only reward yourself with a decent annual compensation ($60,000- $100,000 or more) before the end of twelve months, but also a well-balanced work life.
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95 of 109 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Take it with a grain of salt, May 12, 2010
This review is from: The Well-Fed Writer: Financial Self-Sufficiency as a Commercial Freelancer in Six Months or Less (Perfect Paperback)
I had bought Bowerman's original edition and picked up the newest one last year. It's obvious he missed the "freelance collapse" of 2009, as much of his advice just doesn't pan out now. I've been writing for commercial markets since 2005, and after a fantastic year in 2008, I'm making 1/4 of that the past two years...and I'm commanding money in the top pay bracket. Companies just aren't hiring and are pulling it in-house or cutting advertising/marketing budgets altogether. Not that it's his fault, but do realize that the market right now is different than the one he is writing about.

I also have some credibility issues with a writer who doesn't know the difference between "phase" and "faze" and a few other basic homonym differences. That's freshman college stuff.
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42 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great resource, January 1, 2010
This review is from: The Well-Fed Writer: Financial Self-Sufficiency as a Commercial Freelancer in Six Months or Less (Perfect Paperback)
I bought the first edition of TWFW several years ago, and hesitated before buying the new version -- would it really have enough new information to make the purchase worthwhile? Actually, yes -- this time around, Bowerman has inserted plenty of examples from other writers so that, whatever your challenge, you can find a story from someone whose background or experiences are close to your own. Because Bowerman comes from a sales background, I always felt a little overwhelmed by his cold call methods in the first book -- easy for him! But in the second book, there are plenty of examples from people who loathe the idea of picking up the phone to drum up business -- and that's just one example. Lots of tools, lots of ideas, lots of good stuff -- now I have two books that are dogeared from overuse!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Primer on Operational Aspects of Free Lance Business, October 10, 2009
By 
P. Wallace (San Francisco, CA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Well-Fed Writer: Financial Self-Sufficiency as a Commercial Freelancer in Six Months or Less (Perfect Paperback)
Peter Bowerman is the soul of generosity as he lays out everything one needs to know in order to run a successful free lance copywriting business. From cost benefits to the client, to demystifying sales and marketing and cold calling, Peter shows how any ambitious and decent writer can promote their copywriting business and achieve a steady stream of work projects.

Peter is well-qualified, with 31 plus years in sales and marketing, which is key to achieving success in this field. As such, Peter explains prospecting for clients and following up with them, and all the ingredients necessary to mount a successful marketing strategy.

Peter writes in-depth about the ins and outs of securing copywriting work from business-to-business and business-to-consumer clients: client meetings, pricing, networking, document types, smaller copywriting markets, and what it takes to get major league copywriting rates of $125.00/hr. and above.

Peter includes plenty of success stories from other copywriters who have read his book(s), and how they met the challenges of getting their free lance businesses up and running. He also includes a plethora of copywriting resources.

All in all, you will be a well-fed reader by the time you're done with his primer on running a free lance commercial writing service.

To sum up, Peter offers several packages of copywriting resource material, including The Deluxe Well-Fed Tool Box and the Well-Fed Writer's Time-Line. I have only scanned through these materials, because I'm so inundated with resource material for copywriting through Peter's professional affiliations that it will take some months to absorb it all. But, I can assure you that you'll find more meat and potatos, i.e., practical resources for setting up a successful copywriting business.

The only downside (if there truly is one) is that Peter doesn't cover the legal aspects of doing business (taxes, fictitious business names, business licenses, etc.), and I was initially looking for this information too. But that information is easily obtainable through your local Small Business Administration, which offers on-going courses in all legal matters of setting up a small business.

If you're a writer of at least average ability and serious about starting a free lance commercial writing service, I highly recommend Peter's book as a go-to resource for your daily free-lance business operations.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book , a "must have" for freelance copywriters, July 13, 2011
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This review is from: The Well-Fed Writer: Financial Self-Sufficiency as a Commercial Freelancer in Six Months or Less (Perfect Paperback)
Best business book I've ever read, a truly step by step process (or the only book I've ever read that comes close to one). "The Well Fed Writer" is very detailed and exhaustive, as well as fairly up to date with internet and web resources. I loved "The Four Hour Workweek," but this is 10 times better. Many outstanding direct examples for marketing your freelance enterprise and very specialized for commercial copywriting business. Bowerman's style is clear, easy to read and very pragmatic. There is even a section on how to start your copywriting business if you are a part-timer. The only drawback is that "The Well Fed Writer" does not focus on how the copywriting process in itself (although there are hundreds of examples and weblinks in his book), but "The Copywriter's Handbook" focuses more on copywriting style and writing techniques. If you need to know how to start up your copywriting business, from web design, generating sales and referrals, networking, building your portfolio, managing invoices and interacting with clients, then "The Well Fed Writer" is definitely the book for you. A "must have" for any freelance copywriter, particularly one starting his/her career.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Quite the guide for getting started when you're at square-one, November 16, 2009
This review is from: The Well-Fed Writer: Financial Self-Sufficiency as a Commercial Freelancer in Six Months or Less (Perfect Paperback)
The starving artist is not a stereotype one needs to live in. "The Well-Fed Writer: Financial Self-Sufficiency as a Commercial Freelancer in Six Months or Less" is a guide to breaking into the lucrative and flexible world of freelancing as a writer in commercial venues. An absolute must consideration to anyone who wants to pave their way in life using their skills with a pen, "The Well-Fed Writer" is quite the guide for getting started when you're at square-one.
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not Just a Rehash of the First Edition, December 31, 2009
This review is from: The Well-Fed Writer: Financial Self-Sufficiency as a Commercial Freelancer in Six Months or Less (Perfect Paperback)
Typically I don't buy "update" editions of books I already have, as they tend to have most of the same information. Not so with "The Well-Fed Writer." Peter Bowerman has included plenty of new information in this edition, much of it based on "lessons learned" from his own business and feedback from readers who have shared their ideas and experiences with him (which he gratefully acknowledges). Bowerman delivers the "nuts and bolts" information you need for starting and running a writing business in an entertaining, reader-friendly way. At the same time, he's honest and upfront about the effort and work required. "If it were easy, everyone would be doing it." Keep this book close to your desk--anytime you're having a procrastination-type day - just read a chapter and it'll motivate you to get off your duff and start making calls.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Out of Date, December 3, 2013
This review is from: The Well-Fed Writer: Financial Self-Sufficiency as a Commercial Freelancer in Six Months or Less (Perfect Paperback)
I urge people to read the review by V. Take It With A Grain Of Salt and the thread of comments there before deciding to buy this.

This book primarily advocates cold-calling to generate business.

Cold-calling is archaic. It positions you as a needy service provider, rather than an expert professional.

With social media, the Internet, and the current state of marketing, cold calling is a poor choice for the professional service provider.

I would strongly recommend copywriter Dan Kennedy's great book No BS Sales Success For The New Economy.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A Wordy Book, December 13, 2011
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This review is from: The Well-Fed Writer: Financial Self-Sufficiency as a Commercial Freelancer in Six Months or Less (Perfect Paperback)
A very informative book and lots of motivation.
However, it's very wordy.
Too much unnecessary chit-chat before getting to the real meat of things.
Book should have been edited down.
But, overall, it accomplished what I needed to know and may help in my efforts.
I'm not sorry I made the purchase!

Jim
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Kelly Wibbenmeyer "Any Tom, Dick, or Harry Can Get a Job", November 24, 2009
This review is from: The Well-Fed Writer: Financial Self-Sufficiency as a Commercial Freelancer in Six Months or Less (Perfect Paperback)
The Well-Fed Writer is a well written book which was a very easy read. Mr. Bowerman was very clear and to the point about what tactics he employs to be successful and he also flat out tells the reader that you could be more successful than he is...it just takes more effort.

Well written and enjoyable to read!
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The Well-Fed Writer: Financial Self-Sufficiency as a Commercial Freelancer in Six Months or Less
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