In The Well-Fed Writer and The Well-Fed Writer: Back for Seconds, Peter Bowerman claims to be capable of teaching his readers how to achieve financial self-sufficiency as freelance writers in six months or less. Sound impossible? It is if you you're confining your notion of freelance writing to short fiction and journalism. Bowerman is a freelance commercial writer, a writer of corporate or business copy, and in his books he leads his readers step by step down the road of learning to do the same.
The Well-Fed Writer, an award-winning Writer's Digest Book of the Month Club pick in 2000, has been rendered somewhat obsolete these past six years. Bowerman says as much in his sequel, which includes, as Appendix A, a summary of the book's progenitor. My recommendation: buy The Well-Fed Writer: Back for Seconds, read Appendix A first, and then proceed to the rest. You don't need the first book.
Peter Bowerman self-publishes these books. (his latest book is The Well-Fed Self-Publisher) so aesthetically, they are not much to look at. But what Bowerman lacks in design polish, he more than makes up for with the content contained inside. For the attentive reader, Back for Seconds is no less than a master-class in how to get yourself off and running as a freelance commercial writer. From conception to fulfillment, and in language plain and simple, Bowerman lays out a step by step process that even the most common sense-challenged creative can understand and follow.
First, he dispels the fear that many writers have around - ugh - selling their work. For a writer, sales is often a dreaded boogieman, but Bowerman does an effective job by including ancecdotes from other writers describing how they reshaped their approaches and perceptions of the sales process. Following this, the book walks readers through each step towards establishing themselves in the commercial writing sector. Touch points include web marketing, cold-calling, direct mail, networking, and a whole host of special scenarios for those readers who believe that their peculiar circumstances might keep them from this venture.
Even if you're vaguely considering life as a freelance copywriter, Bowerman's book is worth picking up as it is chock full of extremely practical tidbits and resources including a cold-calling script, links to opportunities to help build your portfolio, a section on how the U.S. Postal Service to help with your direct mailing campaign, and more. As a freelance commercial writer, Peter Bowerman is living the dream; as an evangelist, he's turning us all on to it.
Visit Peter Bowerman at www.wellfedwriter.com