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Writers, Let’s Embrace the New Era—The Era of Entrepreneurs!

by David K. William | The Web Writer Spotlight: Nov 12, 2012

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Times have changed. The world is not what it was only a few decades ago. As the population of the world approaches 7 billion people, 3 billion people are employed and over 200 million are unemployed, according to The Global Employment Trends Report 2012. Think about this for a moment — 200 million unemployed people is an incredible figure. If you are currently job hunting, there is no denying that this is a challenging time to be looking for work.

If you are already employed and have a secure job you love, there's no guarantee that your current job will exist five years from now. Working for one company for most or all of your career-life is a dying model. Industries are struggling in current harsh economic times and many companies are shutting down. Millions of people in white collar jobs now live in perpetual fear of losing their jobs.

The world has gone digital and information technology has taken over. People are beginning to realize that the industrial age when factories and industries sustained employment is fast fading away and we can no longer rely on corporations and companies for employment. As a writer aware of the changing times, you have to embrace the beginning of a new era — the era of entrepreneurs!

 

The dawn of the entrepreneurs' era

 

As the industrial age takes a bow and exits the stage, the dawn of a new and exciting era begins; an era with unprecedented opportunities and possibilities. This new era is characterized by information technology and defined by entrepreneurship. Look around you. There is a dramatic increase in the number of people looking for ways to “make money” outside of the traditional 9am to 5pm job structure. Freelance writers, designers, agents, consultants, artists and other creatives are on the increase.  

Savvy entrepreneurs are taking advantage of the Internet to build thriving businesses that reach a global audience. Businesses, big and small, are beginning to acknowledge the new paradigm shift and are innovating new ways to ride the waves of the changing times. These individuals and organizations are growing their businesses online to unprecedented heights that were previously thought impossible to reach without huge investments of money, time and human resource. You must not be left behind. You must leave your mark in the new era.

 

A new wind sweeping across the world

 

Each year a large number of highly skilled, educated and talented work force enters the job market. Unfortunately, factories, industries, companies and corporations are not able to absorb them into the job market. These businesses no longer have capacity to pick people out of the trenches of unemployment. As a result, a new wind is sweeping across the world— the wind of being a "free agent.”

"Free agents” have a set of marketable skills that they take to the marketplace and offer to the highest bidder. They work on projects for clients or for themselves and leverage that to secure new opportunities. As a free agent, you are an entrepreneur and creative. You are always thinking up new ways to utilize your skills and build systems that generate income streams.

Get in on the front end of this “free agent” trend and you stand to win big in the era of entrepreneurs.

 

What this means for the writer today

 

Writers now more than ever before need to adopt an entrepreneurial mindset. In this new era, the only one you can count on is you, yourself. Count on your talents; your passion; your drive; your ambitions; your determination; your focus, your perseverance; your skills. Count on YOU! Not your employer or the people around you. It all boils down to who YOU are, what YOU have and what YOU do.

Your sweat, creativity and innovations will build the businesses and companies of the future, create employment to lift people out of the trenches of  poverty and generate wealth to improve the lives of coming generations. Your dedicated labor will curve out the change the world so direly needs to turn around present difficult economic realities for the better.

 

Become an initiative taker—a doer


Stop complaining about the state of the writing industry and instead do something about it. Apply all your energy, abilities and resources to reach your goals. If publishers won’t publish your book and you know your work is good, what is preventing you from self-publishing your own book? Get over being shy and take every step to self-publish your own book. If your book is good, proper marketing will get it in front of people and they will love and buy it.

If you write articles for websites and you can’t seem to find enough writing gigs or you just don’t like the pay for article writing services, what’s preventing you from creating your own content marketing startup that will not only empower  you, but also other writers and professionals? You really need to unleash your inner creativity and entrepreneur in order to take charge of your own destiny.

 

Unleash your inner creativity and entrepreneur

 

Writers have an innate creative, entrepreneurial mind that can make this world a better place. Offer your services unashamedly and unreservedly. Come up with innovative ways to market, establish and grow your writing business and career. Of course, this is easier said than done. The entrepreneur's road is not smooth sailing. It is full of bumps and potholes, but you must tread through it to reach greener pastures. Challenges breed innovation and innovation coupled with hard work and determination brings change and progress.

Mark Twain wisely counseled: “The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one." If you truly want to succeed in this new age, you must get up and fight for your dreams. When you're not completely committed to something, it's difficult to make any serious progress. But, if you are totally committed to something you believe in, you are unstoppable!

 

The new generation gets it

 

The last decade has seen a runaway increase in the number of young millionaires under 30 years of age. What’s even more mind boggling is that the number of millionaires under 30 years is expected to triple in the next 10 years. Justin Drew Bieber is, perhaps, the freshest representative of the new generation of young millionaire entrepreneurs. At just 18 years old in 2012 and only having been in the music industry for five years, Bieber is a singer, songwriter, musician, producer, actor and investor. The 18 year old Canadian pop sensation is completely committed to developing and improving his gifts and talents.

Bieber began tapping into his gifts right from the outset and he did not let challenges stop him from reaching his goals. He taught himself to play the piano, drums, guitar and trumpet. He put himself out there, posting videos of his songs on YouTube and performing openly in local theaters and schools. He made himself vulnerable to public criticism and ridicule because he believed in himself and his dream. Eleanor Roosevelt said: “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” You can see why her words are so true.

While searching for videos of a different singer, talent manager Scooter Braun, a former marketing executive of So So Def music label, accidentally clicked on one of Bieber's 2007 videos and was greatly impressed with what he saw and heard. Braun tracked down Bieber in Canada and helped him record his first full-length studio album named My World 2.0. The album debuted near or at number-one in several countries around the world and was certified platinum in the United States. This album was preceded by the single "Baby," which was top-ten worldwide. As of 2012, Bieber has grossed $150 million and sold 15 million albums.

 

The takeaway

 

Get back that childlike optimism, enthusiasm and fire you had in your youthful days. Spend time setting up income generating systems in the short-term to ensure you are more productive in the long-term. Don’t worry if you're not in your 20s or early 30s. The entrepreneurial spirit does not discriminate. Invest  time and energy developing your skills and embrace technology. This is how teenagers and twenty-something-year-olds have managed to make millions seemingly overnight.

Keep in mind that you don't have to reinvent the wheel or develop a completely new product or service to become a successful entrepreneur, although that would be nice too. What you need to do is find something you can do slightly different or a little better than everyone else. Cultivate a "lifelong learner" mentality and constantly invest in your future, especially in skills and talents that help your business and career grow. Add in your life experiences and lessons to date and you will flourish in this exciting new age of entrepreneurs!

See also: 5 Tips to Stay Totally Committed to Your Goals.

 


David K. William is a web writer, publisher and designer. He writes and publishes articles, reports and fiction for web and print media. David is also founding editor of WebWriterSpotlight.com. Follow him @DavidKWilliam.


 

Awesome responses

Absolutely! Even if your main focus is producing literary content, an understanding of the market and how to make your mark on it should be known. Don't just write a book: put it in eBook format; hardcover, soft cover, audio book, hold (writing) conferences and speaking engagements on the subject matter. You're not just selling a book, your're selling a brand--you!

The problem is that since most writers cannot earn a living from their writing, they have "day" jobs and have no time after their writing and their day job to spend being an entrepreneurs, especially if they have a family. Boyd Lemon-Author of “Eat, Walk, Write: An American Senior’s Year of Adventure in Paris and Tuscany,” "Digging Deep: A Writer Uncovers His Marriages," the author’s journey to understand his role in the destruction of his three marriages and “Unexpected Love and Other Stories. Information, reviews and excerpts: http://www.BoydLemon-Writer.com.

Yes, I agree. Writing career today and writing career 50 years ago are not the same.

David I totally agree with you. Authorpreneurship is what is needed to make it in today's world!

Most businesses started with entrepreneurs, even Boeing and Microsoft where I once worked. There is no reason to be unemployed in 2012. Thousands of books, CDs, seminars, even conversations with friends, are there to help. In many cases, we can even stay close to our comfort zones once we get up and running. For those who have traditional jobs, this is the perfect time to spend breaks and lunch hours planning an entrepreneurial venture--eventually, you might need it. But even if you don't, your own small business (or large) can be the most fun you've ever had. Most of us writers have already figured that out.

Love, love, love this post. While writing has changed over the past half century to be sure, it is STILL POSSIBLE to earn a living at writing. Working the 9-5 makes it more difficult, but writers always find a way to carve out more time to do the work they are called to do. Write at night, write on your lunch break, get up an hour early, scribble in a notebook while you're in line at the drycleaners. The point is, we can't wait for the perfect moment, the muse to strike, the right setting, for the kids to be quiet, etc. For writers to succeed in today's era we truly have to embrace the entreprenurial spirit, embrace new technologies, look to new avenues for publishing, and yes, return to the childlike wonder of our youth and use that passion to fuel our work.

Great post, times are changing. We must move forward.

Writers need to have a handle on business in order to run a business. Don't know if that is more true now than in times past, it's just that there are far fewer writer "jobs" than there once were, due to the serious consolidation in print publicatons, and electronic pubs have not filled the void in terms of "jobs." So a much larger percentage of writers are contractors today (no actual figures to support this, just "common sense" as the list of dead pubs continues to grow.

Couldn't agree with you more. It seems that half the time we're writing and half the time we're busy being entrepreneurs. I love both elements so am lucky - it certainly keeps me occupied! Thanks for the great article.

I'm sorry but I have to disagree with Boyd and agree with David on this one. Yes it is absolutely possible for a writer to earn a living without a day job. I am completely befuddled by struggling freelancers. I quit my day job to freelance part time so I would have more time to work on writing fiction. My freelance job quickly - and without even trying - took over my life. I was full time even on Day 1 of my new life and I eventually had to incorporate and hire a second full-time staffer. I'm now on the cusp of hiring a third. And I have NEVER advertised. I didn't even try to make a success of my business. It just happened on it's own. I don't understand how anyone can think there isn't enough work for freelance writers. (Imagine my results if I put forth a little effort!) Yes, I totally agree with the whole entrepreneurial movement. Quitting my day job was the smartest thing I ever did. Ironically, I still have little time to work on fiction. But I'm writing, I make a lot more money on my own than when I was employed, and I get to work in my pajamas. How great is that? :-) JJ

I really liked your article David and will go back and read a few more on your website. It all seems very relevant to me at this time, when I am embarking on a new business venture that revolves around my writing and editing skills. And Suzanne, I love your term authorpreneurship, I might just have to borrow it! Either that or 'mumpreneur'...

David, thanks for the article, it is so true you have to somehow harness that childlike fire and enthusiasm which can be difficult at times. Although I am a writer by day, and a graphic and web designer by night (my passion); it is hard to hold it all down. You have to really want it bad. My dream, has always been to work for myself and I won't give it up for anyone.

I totally agree with some of your earlier points about entrepreneurship in general. Our country can't absorb the numbers of displaced workers but it can accommodate innovation. That, coupled with our newly flat world (because of technology), make it the perfect time to employ our entrepreneurial skills. As writers, we have the added benefit of being a low-cost start-up. Other than a laptap and a good internet connection, we have few expenses. And the information highway has made it easier than ever to connect with potential clients. There is a living to be made as a writer but, as you point out, we need to be both creative and committed. Thanks for this article. Very well put.

Yes! A writer has to treat work like a business. It's the only way to make money in a tough economy

Very good article. I think the main ingredient is "stickability" You write an e-book, that's phase 1, but now the real work starts, the results are not always instant, and that is where one needs to stick to their guns and persevere, many bestselling books were not bestsellers, straight off the bat, but sometimes an event can happen and if you plug away, relentlessly then results will come. The softest drops of water will in time cut the hardest stone. Season Greetings

When I started as a writer I did it the traditional way: Wrote, submitted and got published or rejected. I got fed up of this slow process that didn't let me earn enough. Learning marketing changed my life because it's quite different to write something with the right idea in mind to sell from the start than follow guidelines, write down and wait for results. Marketing allowed me to move on and today I feel comfortable being an entrepreneur. Creativity, perseverance and patience are the key to success. It's a tough but rewarding path.
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