Newspapers and Magazines
I used to have about 12 subscriptions to different magazines, and I didn’t even read some of them! That cost me nearly $200. As freelance writers we do need to study the markets in which we want to get published, but that doesn’t mean we have to subscribe to every publication we have our eyes on. Your local library will have past issues of various magazines and newspapers, and you can read them there for free. You can even take them home for a bit if you want to. You can also read back issues online, usually. Go to a local bookstore, and spend some time looking over the magazines and newspapers at the stand there. You’ll get plenty of ideas from the fodder, and learn your markets so your pitches to the editors will be relevant. If you do buy any magazines keep the receipt for your taxes. The cost is deductible.
Computers and Extras
Do you really need that new computer that will put a $3,000 dent in your bank account? Nope. As freelance writers we can go with a simple computer. It doesn’t have to be super fast (like gaming computers), and it doesn’t need any bells or whistles. Do some comparison shopping online before choosing your computer. Think about whether you want a desktop or laptop. Find the best deal for your computer. This cost is also deductible.
Then there’s the times I need to get something at Staples, my favorite store. I try to buy online so I can’t see all the cool paperclips shaped like hearts, Post-It pads, leather bound journals, and….I can get very carried away in that store. There are many things I could buy that I do not need. Think about need versus want before you buy something. You will save a lot of money when you stick by this rule. Before you go up to the register or check out online look at each item you have, and ask yourself, “Do I NEED this?” If the answer is no, put it back or delete it from your cart.
On the other hand, when there is a sale on something that you do need and use on a regular basis (such as printer ink, printer paper, notebooks, and pens) spend a little extra cash now so you can save later. 123 Inkjets has awesome deals. I like to stock up on my printer ink there because they offer a discount for bulk orders.
Buying in Bulk
I love to save money. I’m one of those extreme couponers, but not as good as those ladies on TV. I have discovered that buying in bulk saves me money, so I buy all of my office supplies once a year. I buy my printer paper, printer ink, notebooks, and pens all at once. I get great deals for buying in bulk and save time and money. I don’t have to think about my supplies all year. I love it.
How do you save money as a freelance writer?