Do you have a website that showcases your work? If not, you need to get one. It isn´t that difficult, you can easily have a personal website up and running within an hour or two and the benefits are enormous.
For example, instead of having to send out sample articles every time you send a query, you can direct potential clients and editors to your website where they can see a variety of your work, plus information about you, your resume, etc. Most editors are far more impressed by a properly done website than by a Word attachment to your email.
There are several good, free places to host your website including Piczo, SiteKreator, and FreeWebs. Any one of these is a good place to start and you don´t have to pay a single cent!To start with, your writer´s website should have at least two samples of your work, preferably more. Even if you have never been published, posting examples of your work is a good idea. That way editors can see if you have the style they are looking for. Try to post at least one sample of each type of writing that you do. For example, if you write keyword articles, press releases and do translation work, include a sample of each.
A brief bio should also be included, along with a photo. This makes your site look more credible. While your photo doesn´t have to be one of those quarter turn, fake smile in a suit shots, you should avoid blurry or far off snapshots. A nice head and shoulders shot with a smile is best to show your professionalism and approachability.
If you have been previously published, it helps to include a Credits page on your website. Include any and all credits here, even if you got a story published when you were twelve. It looks more impressive if you can include links to the webpages where your work has been published online.
Another section that you might consider adding is a jobs area. Put your rate for each type of job that you feel confident in doing. For example, you could have Keyword Articles – $15-20. Just to give clients an idea of your rates. Or you can just include your contact information and negotiate afterwards.
Once you have your website going, use it all the time. Make it your sig line in your email and in forums when you post. The more it gets out there, the more people will see it and check out your website and possibly contact you with work! Well worth an hour or two spent uploading documents and photos!