Becoming a professional content writer was never my goal. I wanted to be a lawyer or an FBI agent or even a medical examiner. For about 5 minutes, I even wanted to be a special education teacher.
Math was always my best subject, but I could write a killer research paper. During my first year of college, I was constantly having my friends “proofread” my papers because I was so proud of them. While I appreciated a second, third or fourth pair of eyes checking for errors, I really just wanted my friends to see what I wrote.
During my second semester of school, I qualified for a blogging “apprenticeship” since I was part of my school’s honor program. Unfortunately, I was enrolled in too many credits, so I would have to pay another $1000 for this class that I didn’t need. I dropped it, but I still wanted to start a blog on my own.
For the next 6 months, I went back and forth trying to find the perfect name. Eventually, I settled on “Tea Addicts Anonymous” and launched my site.
Four months later in October of 2017, I landed a Journalism and Blogging internship with a company called “TheNuMiami” which has become SoundWAV Recording Studios. My work was well-received and praised by the clients.
At this point, I decided to look into starting my career as a freelance content writer. I met a girl on Facebook and she generously offered to mentor me and soon became one of my first clients.
I was still in college, so I picked up small writing gigs for about a year until I decided that I was going to take this from a one-woman-show to a full blown content writing agency. And there it was. Quill to Keys Content Writing was born.
Writing on the Road
Aside from writing, I have one major passion: travel. One of the reasons that I took the self-employed path instead of the consistent 9-5 path was that it gives me the flexibility to travel wherever, whenever. As long as I have wifi, I am good to go!
I am not a total digital nomad, and I am only traveling about half of the time right now. Up until this past May, I was stuck in South Florida because I was also a full time student. I am still getting used to working on the road.
My passion for travel has spilled into my work. I have personally settled into the travel niche. This means that I provide content that helps businesses in the travel industry connect with their target audience.
Even though I write travel content, Quill to Keys (my agency) serves businesses in all niches! We have a magnificent team of location independent writers who also have the flexibility to work from anywhere with wifi.
From Novice to Expert
I believe that some people are naturally wired to be better at writing than others (just like some people are super great at athletic activities or engineering or other art forms), but this is not to say that you cannot improve your writing skills.
Here are a few things that have helped me develop my writing skills over the years:
- READING! Although my reading has transitioned to mostly blog posts and other articles, I spent a solid decade reading anything that I could get my hands on. From the time I was a child until the middle of high school, I always had a book in my hand. I don’t read as much now because I can’t read more than about 10 pages before I find myself closing the book and opening my laptop to write something of my own.
- ACCEPTING FEEDBACK! Find somebody who will edit the crap out of your work. Constructive criticism has been the best teaching tool for me. My mentor was one of the first people who was not afraid to tell me what I was doing wrong, and I really appreciate her for that.
- WRITE! Yes, in order to get better at writing, you must write. If you played basketball, you’d spend hours practicing your dribbling and shooting. Writing is as much a craft as any other, so lots of practice is necessary.
- DON’T FORCE IT! If you’re trying to write and it’s not happening for you, don’t force it. Come back to it when you’re more inspired. I have days when I stare at my laptop screen and nothing appears. That does not mean that I’m a bad writer, it just means that I’m uninspired at that moment.
Try these four things and see how your results vary!
Building a Legacy
Antoine asked me to talk a little bit about the legacy that I’d like to leave with my writing.
Whew. That’s a big one.
I am 22 years old. I do have long term goals, but right now, I am having trouble seeing past 30. I would like to publish work that is valued for generations to come. A novel could very well be in my future.
I’m not totally sure of the legacy that I’d like to leave, but I know that I want it to be a positive one!
About the Author
Emily Krings is the owner of Quill to Keys, a content writing agency that creates blog posts, newsletters, social media captions and more for businesses in just about every niche. Emily specializes in travel content. She fell into the niche when she began to mix her passion for travel and her skill for content writing.To keep up with Emily, check her out on Instagram at @emilykrings or her lifestyle blog, Tea Addicts Anonymous.