10 Amazing Free Online Writing Courses

Free-Online-Writing-CoursesThe decision to pursue your freelance career is a huge step. Congratulations!

But… Now what?

Where do you start? How do you know what resources are good and what resources aren’t? Is every free report worth your time? Should you pay membership fees and dues to join forums?

We have been exactly where you are! Don’t stress. We’ve done a bit of research and have come up with a great list of free online writing courses and resources to give you a great starting point.

Want to know how to get more clients to write for? Click here for information on our workshop and start building your client list today!

Our Recommendations for Free Online Writing Courses

Some of these links will take you to a report – others might give you a video course to watch. There are some general resources as well as some specifics. Check out this list of free online writing courses… We’re sure you’ll find a few helpful hints!

  1. American Writers & Artists, Inc. is one of the top recognized resources for freelance copywriters. Their wealth of  information is endless and as a member you have access to an archive of helpful and original articles. Their most popular and effective program is called The Accelerated Program for Six Figure Copywriting. You can use this Test Drive and see if the full program is something that can help you get your freelance career up and going! This course is available online and is complete with testimonials, helpful audio files and exercises on the key principles you need to succeed. The program is invaluable and AWAI is offering a chance for you to try it out – risk free. Take a look!
  2. Copy Hackers Using Psychology to Boost Conversion. Authors Joanna Wiebe and Lance Jones provide you with a free eBook that discusses the psychological aspects of sales and how you can increase those sales. In it, you’ll discover tips and tricks – all based on human behavior and patterns - you can use to increase your conversion rate. There are case studies about human behavior and the psychology of buying, which started as a blog. The eBook is a condensed version packed full of useful information. Plus, you’ll receive a newsletter each week with more articles and resources that you can use in your day-to-day!
    Need help finding it? Look on the left hand side of the screen, scroll down just a bit. Provide your name and email address to receive your free download.
  3. All Indie Writers‘ Jennifer Mattern presents How to Write an eBook in Just 14 Days. In it, Jennifer promises to help guide and coach you through writing your own, unique eBook that you can write… AND launch in just 14 days. The layout of this guide is very well broken down and first helps you find the best subject, figuring out how long it should be and if writing an eBook is even the right thing for you to do. After that, Jennifer launches into an actionable, easy-to-follow plan to write and launch an eBook in a two-week time frame.
  4. Copy Blogger provides instant access to over a dozen eBooks that range in topic from Copywriting 101 to Landing Pages to Effective Marketing Strategies. You will receive a newsletter as well with more information to aid you along the way!
    Need help finding it? Look for the green button labeled Free Registration. Sign up is fast and easy!
  5. Udemy is a really neat resource for anyone looking to learn! But it is particularly useful to freelance writers for a few of the courses they offer. Rick Roberts has created a short, video course called Learn the Internet’s Oldest Profession – Cash for Content. There is a tutorial to watch which give you an introduction and overview of the freelance business model. This is a great place to get a bit of general information which can help you develop a better understanding of where you are personally and what the best starting off point for you and your business might be. You can participate in the discussion board to gain insight from other beginners as well!
  6. Another awesome course we found at udemy.com is called the Skool of Creativity. Not all of you are creative writers but being creative is vital to your success. Listen to Simon Jack as he tries to help you unlock the creative ideas that you don’t even know you have. You can hone in on those skills and ideas with a little bit of focus. Creativity can only aid you!
  7. Boost Blog Traffic. Here, Jon Morrow takes an interesting approach to his eBook 52 Headline Hacks. It’s no secret that to capture a reader’s attention you have to create an awesome headline. Jon discusses his idea of “stealing” to write powerful content and even better headlines. He lays out a bit of groundwork and also provides you with exercises to help you start  writing more powerful headlines. This is a fantastic resource!
    Need help finding it? Its the first opportunity on the page to provide your email address where the report will be sent.
  8. How Stuff Works. While this isn’t exactly a course, in her article, How Freelance Magazine Writing Works, Laura Schaefer gives you a few vital steps to freelance writing for magazines. She talks about brainstorming, writing a query letter and even your rights and gaining payment as a freelancer. If you have any interest in contributing to your favorite magazines, this is a great article to check out! She includes on the last page, a few more helpful links related to freelancing also.
  9.  Make a Living Writing. On this site, you’ll find a link for a 20-Week eCourse called Marketing 101 for Freelance Writers. This award-winning blog site is packed full of useful information for freelancers! The free eCourse is available to you after you submit your email address. In it, you’ll find strategies to get your name out there – to reputable sources nonetheless. You’ll
    learn exactly what markets are better suited for different types of writers and you’ll also receive excellent tips on how to start growing your income right away!
    Need help finding it? Look directly to the right hand side of the screen where you’ll see the box to give your email address.
  10. Daily Writing Tips. What is an absolute must for every freelance writer? To write! Every single day you should be writing. Sometimes you can crank out an article or a blog post no problem! Some days you are full of ideas! Other days… well, you’re just stuck. But that’s okay because you can always, always improve your writing skills. Maybe in your articles or your blog you don’t always use proper grammar but it never hurts to practice it – you need appropriate grammar and writing abilities for your proposals and your contacts! Give this a try – step up to the fun daily challenge.

What to Expect and How to Get the Most from a Free Online Writing Course

Not all of these free online writing courses will suit all individuals. The great thing is that on top of these free reports and courses, you’ll also receive free newsletters! You’ll see links to other helpful sites. You can find more resources that aren’t listed here.

There will be other options too – like programs you can purchase or blog forums you can join.

What you can expect to gain is a little bit more insight and a hint more knowledge. A free online writing course isn’t going to lay out every step of your new career path but it certainly can help get you started in the right direction.

Spend a little bit of time delving into these websites. Read further than just these specific courses listed here. You might find something we didn’t! Keep track of the courses you’ve completed and the resources you’ve used. It doesn’t hurt to keep that in your repertoire. Read and absorb all that you can!

What About You?

Have you found any free online writing courses? Were they valuable to you? Feel free to share the ones you already know about and if you venture to any of these courses listed, please do come back and let us know what you think!

Comments

  1. says

    Thanks Laura for this awesome post! I already starred this post so that I can turn to it when I have the time to sharpen my writing skills. I’m particularly interested in the Netwriting Masters Course and the Technical Writing course.

  2. says

    The (7) School of Journalism at Wikiversity, doesn’t really exist. It is only two webpages. The first showing all the schools courses. All of those course are “page does not exist” links, except the first, “History of Journalism”, which contains 4 paragraphs. As the page has not been updated since Aug 2009, clearly nothing is happening there any time soon. So, somebody got around to thinking about creating this, but didn’t actually get around to it.

    In fact, if you go to the Wikiversity Main Page there is a “Resources by completion status”, which shows 74 pages under “Completed Resources” and 334 pages under “Freshly started resources”, which includes the “Journalism Stream”.

  3. says

    Thanks James!

    I think you’re right. Someone has started the Journalism area and not finished it. It’s definitely something to keep tabs on and check later to see if anything has been added.

    My preference would be for one of the MITOpenCourseware courses, since those are based on actual college syllabuses. But, of course, it depends on what one is looking for in taking a course.

  4. says

    I want to check these out as well. Perhaps a follow-up article might be some affordable online courses where you get feedback from instructors. I’ve seen courses on mediabestro.com.

  5. says

    Thanks to everyone who is checking these out. Be sure to come back and share your experiences.

    BTW, James, I have learned the Technical Writing area at Wikiversity is much more complete. I probably should have linked to that one.

  6. John says

    I’m enrolled in a university’s technical writing certification program. Trouble is that this summer there are no classes offered that I need to complete my studies. I’m looking for college credit courses I can take online in “Critical Literacy”, “Medical Writing”, “Reports, Proposals and Grants” and “Professional Editing”.

    Does anyone know of quality courses I could take?

    Thanks

  7. Jenise says

    Thank you Laura for writing and posting this article.

    For a while now, I’ve been trying to find some type of training for freelancing jobs. I’ve decided to practice by posting product reviews and such on one famous web site. However, I’ve received negative and harsh comments about my writing. By over over my review, I’ve notice that most of my article have plenty of grammar errors and sentence fragments. By taking the free course that you mention in this article, I can improve my writing and hopefully, try again at product review and be more careful about my writing.

    Again, thank you Laura for the article.

  8. says

    The plant is General Electric’s first investment in Australian photovoltaic roof shingles energy, comprising of 150 MW of wind from offshore farms by 2030. 15 to $0 19 in Q3. The research isa product of the new posts will be based at its new photovoltaic roof shingles energy company. Actually today, we haven’t increased anything.
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  10. Connie Miller says

    I have not tried any of the courses yet but they do seem very interesting. I will update this post once I have completed one of the courses.

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  13. Tina says

    None of the creative writing course links in #10 work at all. It just says the page no longer exists or it never did. Maybe this post is a little outdated, as I can see it was made in 2010. Too bad. I’ve been trying to find good free online creative writing courses. And by “good” I mean reputable. *sigh* I guess the search continues. Thanks, anyway.

    • Ryan Domm-Thomas says

      Hi Tina,

      I’m so sorry for the disappointment. You are correct about the material being slightly outdated. Please be patient with us while we research some new resources to share with you all. We are currently revisiting some of the older posts to make sure the links are working appropriately and editing the ones that are not. Feel free to share what you come across and thanks so much for letting us know that this is one that needs our attention.

  14. says

    First of all I want to say terrific blog! I had a quick question in
    which I’d like to ask if you do not mind. I was curious to find
    out how you center yourself and clear your thoughts prior
    to writing. I have had a tough time clearing my mind in getting my ideas out.
    I do take pleasure in writing however it just seems like the first
    10 to 15 minutes are wasted just trying to figure out how to begin.
    Any recommendations or hints? Appreciate it!

    • Ryan Domm-Thomas says

      This question has so, so many answers because it truly varies for each individual. Here are some suggestions though, that I hope you will find helpful.

      1. Do a puzzle that will get your mind going. Like a crossword or a Sudoku puzzle. You can wake your mind up a little bit!
      2. Try some free form writing. You can even start with the sentence “I don’t know what to write” and see what else follows. This can be a really good place to start because you aren’t stressing about what to write – you’re justwriting. It gets your mind up and going.
      3. Find a writing devotional. These are easy to find in bookstores or online that can be sent right to your email. Each day there are different exercises and prompts designed to help you keep your creativity flowing. It’s simple and can be as short as 5 minutes a day.

      One other great piece of advice I’ve received is to follow a routine. This is helpful to get your head in the working, writing gear. If you sit down to your computer with a cup of coffee each day before you start writing then eventually your mind will form a habit. And not all habits are bad! Form a good routine and you’ll find good habits.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Download a free online course – aside from reading books, you can also download free online courses that are designed to make you a better freelancer by either targeting your marketing strategies, your skills, or your strategies when tackling the freelancing world.  For writers, I recommend checking out the online courses Laura Spencer compiled in her post at Freelance Folder, 10 Amazing Free Online Writing Courses. [...]

  2. [...] Download a free online course – aside from reading books, you can also download free online courses that are designed to make you a better freelancer by either targeting your marketing strategies, your skills, or your strategies when tackling the freelancing world.  For writers, I recommend checking out the online courses Laura Spencer compiled in her post at Freelance Folder, 10 Amazing Free Online Writing Courses. [...]

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