Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Your Writer Resume

While trolling the job boards looking for a few good leads, I’ve noticed quite a few ads requesting resumes from potential writers. This seems to throw some writers for a loop. You expect a prospect to want to see your online portfolio (you do have one, right?) as proof of your writing skills, so you may wonder why a resume is even necessary.

Corporate state of mind

One of my biggest first clients was very new to the concept of working with a freelancer. We got along well and he appreciated the work I did, but he operated his business the same as he always had in the corporate world. Some of the systems used to operate a traditional business with employees don’t work as smoothly when you’re operating a virtual business using contract writers.

He required that I send him a resume because in his mind it outlined my qualifications much better than sending a sample to my work would. He felt that by having one I automatically established myself as professional. He also paid attention to how long I had worked with clients and related jobs to determine whether I was employable and reliable. He also happened to require a college degree so that info was there to review as well.

Traditional resume versus writer’s resume

The thing that distinguishes a writer’s resume from the typical job seeker’s resume is that it is meant to highlight specific experience more than provide details of your work history.

If you don’t have a current resume and need some help, here is some helpful information to get you started. I’d love to hear how many other freelancers regularly submit resumes for gigs.


Lori said...

Good post, Kim. What I find interesting is your client's insistence on length of time with other clients. We're not a long-term group. He was going to be disappointed. :)

My stepson needed to do the opposite transition recently. He went from actor's resume (line items of plays and roles) to a teaching resume. Lucky for him I do this type of writing every day. :)) There are distinct differences in each profession and each industry. The resume I write for the PhD today is totally different from the one I write for the consultant tomorrow.

I have a more traditional resume on hand for some clients, but I have my line-item resume for those who care to see the entire background without the details.

Kimberly Ben said...

Lori, I don't write resumes for others, but have certainly considered it after hearing from other writers how lucrative it can be given the current market.

Designed by Lena