Freelance Writing for Creatives - Self-Study

Go from "Where Do I Start?" to "I Know Where I'm Going"

Hello, you wonderful creative person!

Tell me if you've heard this one:

You read an article online and think...
"I could write that!"

Guess what? You could! You just need to know where to start and how to keep going.

Sure, you could comb through Google for hours and get a bunch of conflicting advice.

But that's incredibly annoying (and you could end up doing $10 articles for Upwork and wondering why you ever wanted to write in the first place)

Or, you can find out how to consistently come up with ideas, pitch major editors, get more bylines, and build up a body of work you're excited to share.
 


Whether you’re…

    • An actor looking for work that uses your creative skills while being flexible enough to support you. Whether auditions are slim or you’re calling him Bobby DeNiro on the set of The Irishman II, you've got a gig that uses that creative skills you've spent years refining.
    • An aspiring TV writer who wants to use your vast writing background to get paid while your spec script is shopped around.
    • A creative copywriter who'd like to branch out from clients who cut all the fun things out of your copy.
    • A creative person who’s always wanted to write for magazines and papers but never knew where to start...

You’re in the right place! This class will show you that cool bylines and getting paid to write is possible. Even without a fancy degree, tons of published articles, and a rich husband to float you while you get started.

Imagine telling your family that you write for Huffington Post, Business Insider, or Vox. Imagine writing that article without a million thoughts of "this isn't good enough" haunting you in the background. Imagine living up to your creative potential and banishing "I should be writing more" from your vocabulary.

Even if you only write stories like "6 Canned Wines for Summer" or "Why Rocky IV is the Best Rocky Movie," you're completing projects, getting paid, and bulking up your creative muscles.

It would be easy to hit the gym if you got paid to lift weights, right? Well, freelance writing does exactly that.


Introducing...

Freelance Writing for Creatives
Self-Study Course

A At-Your-Own Place digital class with everything you need to know to start writing articles for magazines, papers, and publications —
even if you have zero writing experience.


Stop saying no to your ideas and experience the creative satisfaction of building a body of work 
(that pays some cash)

This freelance writing class teaches you how to write articles, pitch publications, and most importantly — gets you writing. Not thinking about writing. Actually doing it and getting it done.

You’ll complete at least 6 articles (in a timeline that matches the real world of writing), finish with a portfolio of samples (giving you the confidence to keep on writing long after the class is done), and pitch almost every week (to real deal publications like Huffington Post, Business Insider, Thrillist, Vox, Polygon, and other places my students have been published). You might get a paid assignment before you finish all the lessons (multiple students sold stories at Week 2).

Once you sign up, you get instant access to the entire course. You don't have to wait for a class to come along that fits your hectic schedule. This class you can take at your own pace and you have access to all the videos and downloads forever (unless the sun explodes or something).

By the end of this program, you will:

  • Complete 6 articles (creating a pretty sweet portfolio, that could also make you a little cash)
  • Know how to write a pitch that gets read and accepted 
  • Pitch like a pro (starting week 2, so you get lots of practice during class)
  • Build a body of work that’s out in the world and opening up doors to other creative opportunities
  • Create a personalized schedule to make writing and pitching easy (even after the class is over)
  • Never be out of ideas (okay, you might sometimes be out of ideas, but you’ll learn lots of brainstorming techniques)
  • Gain tools to fight all the “who cares about your idea?” and “why should you be a writer?” shitty voices in your head (we all have them, but there are ways to help those crappy voices settle down)
  • Write! Not just think about maybe writing someday. You’ll write, haven written, and keep writing in the future

“I got 3 articles picked up which makes me feel like I can really do this. Even if I didn’t, I’m so happy to have done the class for so many reasons. I’ve taken so many writing classes but Amber has a way of telling me things that feel new. The meditation tracks were awesome. Also the class was just super productive for me yet I didn’t have a complete breakdown. How did Amber do that?" 

- Julie Hoang

My students have been seen in...

Who the hell are you?

I’m Amber Petty and after being an actor for 13 years in New York, I got  tired of waiting for auditions to play “girl who’s unpleasantly surprised by scale” in Weight Watchers commercials, moved to LA, and started freelance writing. 6 years later, I write full-time, have appeared in The New York Times, Thrillist, Greatist, Parade, IFC, MTV, Bustle, Syfy Wire, and Snooki’s blog (jealous?). Plus, I've helped over 150 students start writing.

Years ago, when I started writing, I was  a mountain of "who cares what you have to say, nobody wants to hear from you, you're not good enough" — just never ending.
But, because I started freelance writing,  I had little articles to complete and doable projects that didn't feel super important (unlike trying to write a screenplay or a novel which felt very important).

Seeing my work get published, even when it wasn't the greatest thing ever (my usual metric for completing anything) I was able to start writing, build confidence and get paid while that was happening.  
So while it feels weird to say that writing Snooki's favorite pickle recipes helped me start a business and write for the New York Times — it absolutely DID.  

And who even cares about me! My students say it helped them write their screenplays pitch movies —even though that's not what the class is about. But my class helps you build resilience and strengthens your work because:
- you ARE regularly writing
 - you ARE putting yourself out there and
- you ARE getting in front of an audience that's so much bigger than your Facebook page  

And you're doing it with the support of my 6 years of experience and a group of wonderful peers ready to cheer you on.
 

"I got published in the HuffPost! That's freaking huge. I can call myself a writer and it's actually true. This has really boosted my confidence and encouraged me to keep pitching and writing.  This class really lit the way for practical and manageable steps to write and get published. It is well organized and helped me to take things in easy steps instead of feeling like I'm standing in a room where 100 pillows just exploded and I need to organize all of the feathers. The streamlined approach is so helpful and seeing, oh, I can do this and it's NOT a huge time suck or this giant deal." 

- Dr. Alice Kerby

Some happy words from former students

 Amber’s writing course was life-changing for me in more than one way. Not only did it teach me the ins and outs of freelance writing, but in 6 months I've managed to actually become a published writer, have no fear or trepidation about sending out pitches, have entered myself into worldwide writing competitions, and even started taking on clients and doing their social media. Now I'm working as a professional writer in a topic that I'm knowledgeable at!  Never in a thousand years did I really think anything like this could happen to me, so thank you. 

Robyn Hunt

This class transformed my life entirely. I studied writing in college and always loved it. This class pushed me to actually become a writer, which is a small dream I’ve always had. I already have 3 published articles and that's just what I got during class.

Cathy Stephens

 Better than a USC MFA. Seriously.

Joan Kubicek

I now have a *process* to follow from 'wanting' to get a byline, to coming up with ideas easily, to pitching, to knowing how to follow up, and knowing how to write different kinds of pieces. I feel certain about what step to take next... and that feeling of certainty means a LOT when there's plenty of uncertainty out there (i.e 'will they like my pitch?'). Also, I can now see how my ridiculous ideas can actually be *worthwhile* to pitch. That's HUGE for me.

Miish Grixti

  I've done more writing in the last two months from this class than I have in the last two years.

Genna Masia

 My ability to write and pitch my screenplays improved even though that isn't at all part of the class. My writing partner and I wrote an original pilot plus a pitch deck. I feel like this class directly improved my ability to write the pitch deck in a unique voice and have fun with it. In all aspects of life I feel more prepared to put myself out there and not overthink it so much.

Aliki Raisis

“I moved from not knowing shit about writing for well-known publications to understanding the process and realizing that it's not that difficult to get my work published.”

Jasmine Minty

 If you invest in a class looking to make the money back, this is the one.  Also, in no other writing class will the instructor look at EVERYTHING you give them and give helpful and thought out feedback. Of all the classes I've taken during the last few months, which were many, Amber's made me feel I was getting the most for my money.  The one on one feedback, the timeliness, and the inclusion of HOW TO MAKE MONEY made her class one of my best investments. 

Tyler J. Oakley

 Before this class, pretty much only my laptop and a couple of friends knew that I could write because I was horribly stuck on not understanding protocol to get anything formatted for publication, let alone published, and therefore was struggling to produce work. After eight weeks, I actually have access to the space in my brain that lets me make things and send them out into the world. Two of my satire pieces were picked up by great comedy sites which totally changes what I think is possible for me, all thanks to Amber.”  

Audrey Dundee Hannah


What's Inside This Course?

A combination of video trainings, downloadable pdfs, and templates. You get to learn at your own pace, but have a structure in place for some added accountability.
Plus, you'll get personalized feedback on one pitch or article. That way, you'll know your pitch or piece is ready to send out to the world and get tools to strengthen your future work.

Want more details? Oh, I've got 'em!

Module 1: Freelance Writing 101 & All of the Lists

We'll cover...
  • What even is freelance writing?
  • A Freelance Writing Glossary of terms you need to know
  • How to find your areas of interest you’d like to write about (and yes, you have areas of interest outside of Netflix)
  • How to find publications that pay freelance writers
  • How to organize your ideas (and the places you want to write for)
  • Find out how to write a listicle (and write one)
  • Plus, you’ll get tons of real life examples, support pdfs, and your first writing assignment!

    • Fun fact: My student Robyn sold a list of 100 pre-millenium candies to Buzzfeed for $150. With no published writing samples. 

Module 2: The Pitch Is Back

We'll cover...
  • How to write a pitch 
  • How to find editors’ contact information
  • How to come up with ideas (when your only idea is “I have no ideas”)
  • Get a fill-in-the-blanks pitch template you can use over and over
  • Plus, you’ll get over 10 pages of real life pitches that sold and your first pitching assignment (yes, you start pitching right away, so your chances of getting a “yes” start right away)
  • Fun fact: Vincent pitched in the second week of a previous class and had an article published in Business Insider before the month was over. With no previous article writing samples. 

Module 3: Getting Personal (Essays)

We'll cover...
  • What is a personal essay?
  • How a personal essay pitch is different
  • What makes a personal essay different from a live storytelling tale or a comical anecdote your friends like
  • How to handle Shitty Daria (aka the negative voices in your head that say “who cares about what you write”)
  • Plus, a worst case scenario exercise, lots of essay examples for inspiration, and you’ll write a personal essay yourself!

    • Fun fact: Aimee, my first student sold her first pitch (a personal essay) for $500. With no published writing samples.

Module 4: How to How to

We'll cover...
  • How to do a “how to” article (you don’t need to be an expert to write “how to do” something).
  • How to find sources (learn what’s a reputable source, how to find expert interviews, and properly site things in a not-super-boring way)
  • How to source images (without running the risk of getting sued)
  • Plus, exercises to keep you motivated, more how to examples, and your next assignment
  • Fun fact: Jamie sold a piece about air fryers to The Kitchn for $125. With no published writing samples.

Module 5: The Dumbest Idea

We'll cover...
  • Why the dumbest idea is often the best idea
  • How all articles don’t have to be life changing, they just need to be interesting or helpful
  • Examples of many dumb pieces I’ve written (and been paid for!)
  • Plus, you’ll find out how to set a sustainable writing & pitching schedule for yourself (that doesn’t involve waking up at 5 a.m.)
  • And of course, you’ll write a “dumb” article
  • Fun fact: I got paid $200 to write about why Rocky IV is the best Rocky movie for IFC. Before I worked for IFC, I had no published writing samples.

Module 6: Rewrites!

We'll cover...
  • Who has to do rewrites? (spoiler alert: everyone)
  • How to do your own rewrite
  • How to respond to editor rewrite notes
  • Exercises to keep you motivated
  • Plus, real life success stories, support pdfs, and a chance to do a rewrite of one of your previous articles!
  • Fun fact: Jocelyne got paid $275 to write about podcasts for Thrillist. This doesn’t really have anything to do with rewrites, I just wanted to brag on my student’s behalf. And she had no previously published samples.

Module 7: The Assignment

We'll cover...
  • How you get assignments (you don’t always have to cold pitch)
  • What to do when you get an assignment
  • Things that make editors love you
  • The most important thing to do when you get an assignment
  • Plus, I’ll assign you an article! 
  • Fun fact: Remember Robyn with the candy list? That list got her two more direct assignments from Buzzfeed within a month. 

Module 8: The Future is Freelance

We'll cover...
  • What happens after you turn in an article
  • How to follow up if editors are unresponsive
  • How to ask about actually getting paid (without being a jerk and while also getting the money you earned)
  • What happens when something goes wrong (you make a mistake, the editor kills the piece, the newspaper folds — these things happen and you can easily recover from all of it without ruining your future career)
  • How to apply for posted/staff writing jobs
  • Plus, a final assignment of whatever type of article you want. 
  • Fun Fact: I've made over $10,000 (and counting) just writing for Greatist. And it all started with a cold pitch responding to a Facebook post looking for skeptical wellness ideas. 
  • And that writing led to me to my own column, a free trip to stay in a beachside mansion and see wild horses, and a year's worth of free personal training. 
  • Freelance writing isn’t a road to riches, but it can lead to surprising creative opportunities. 

To sum it all up, when you enroll in Freelance Writing for Creatives: Self-Study,
you'll get:

  • 8 modules that give you inside information and practice writing a wide variety of publishable pieces
  • Pitches sent out to the world (the world meaning editors)
  • Fill-in-the-blanks pitch template (my students have sold pitches using this)
  • More than 10 pages of real life pitching examples, including my exact pitch that got me in the New York Times
  • A Freelance Writing Glossary to cover all the terms you need to know
  • An ever growing list of over 250 Paying Publications That Take Pitches
  • Downloadable pdfs with key info to support every module 
  • Videos and guides you can reference whenever you want, long after you've finished the lessons
  • Tools to make your own writing routine and keep writing

  • (A $998 value)

That's it...Just kidding. Look at these bonuses!

Get support, motivation, and accountability and to help you start your new writing life.

Bonus 1:
Personalized Video Feedback on a Pitch or Article
(value $75)

You won't have to worry "am I doing this right?" I'll give kind, but precise notes to make your writing better. Whether you send me a personal essay you've been struggling with for years or a new pitch, my notes will help you strengthen your work and make you excited to put it out into the world.
Plus, ever get notes and think "I hate that jerk!" only to reread them later and realize the notes weren't that mean? That's why I do a video! You can tell the tone is supportive and see exactly what to change.

Bonus 2: Freelance Resume & Cover Letter Workshop (value $200)

Find out how to take all your wonderful job experience and craft it into a lovely cover letter & resume. You'll get real examples of resumes and cover letters that worked and a fill-in-the-blanks template to make resume writing as easy as possible.

Bonus 3: Lifetime Access
(value $399)

This class has a lot in it because it's meant to be a resource you can use as your writing career grows. You have lifetime access to all the material, so you'll have the answers you need as you reach new levels of success.

Another Bonus?!
A library of pre-recorded workshops with editors & authors to expand your skills
(and find out how to get a book deal)

Get instant access to live recordings of...

Sellable Personal Essays w/Emily McCombs, HuffPost Personal Editor

You have all kinds of personal essay ideas, but what are editors looking for? Emily McCombs is the personal essays editor at HuffPost, so she's the absolute best person to ask! In this recording of a live workshop, Emily talks about ways to improve your essays, how to pitch, and brings insight into what makes a successful Huffington Post piece. 

Culture Writing & Life as a Staff Writer w/Angelica Jade Bastién

Staff Writer at New York Magazine, Angelica Jade Bastién talks about her years as a film and culture writer, ways to enhance your cultural criticism, and shares what life is like as a full-time writer for a prestigious publication.

Getting Money & Book Deals with Satire Writing w/Caitlin Kunkel

Caitlin Kunkel (McSweeney's, New Yorker, co-author of New Erotica for Feminists) gives a masterclass on satire writing. Plus, she shares the exact template she used to get a 6-figure book deal and discusses the opportunities that can come from comedy writing. If you've always wanted to get published in McSweeney's, you'll want to see this.

What An Editor Wants w/Jess Novak

Taking her years of experience editing for Greatist, BDG Group, Clean Plates, and other cool places, Jess Novak spills the real tea on what editors want. She answers common writer questions, talks about the best ways to my editors happy and shares how to pitch her story ideas (which you can do immediately after watching the workshop). She's worked with multiple students and is always looking for writers.

The Art of Film/TV Writing w/Alonso Duralde

Reviews editor at The Wrap and co-host of the Linoleum Knife podcast, Alonso shares tips for pitching film reviews, how to get started in entertainment writing, and ways to add artistry to your tv/film coverage.

This pre-recorded workshop is ready for you to watch the second you sign up for class! 

How to Get Paid to Write Personal Essays & Pop Culture Coverage w/Mia Mercado

Mia Mercado (writer for New York Magazine's The Cut and author of Weird But Normal) meets with us live to share her expertise on personal essays, humor writing, and the process of getting a book deal.

If you've ever wanted to make a living writing about Real Housewives or comical essays about your life, this workshop is a must.

Enroll in Freelance Writing For Creatives: Self-Study Today

Lifetime access to all material, available instantly.

One-Time Payment


$399

  • One Payment
  • Save $1!

4 Monthly Payments


$100

  • 4 payments over 4 months
  • $400 Total


Fun fact: Students sold at least 15 articles in 8 weeks.


Now, I can’t promise that every pitch will get accepted (it won’t). But my students have a good track record of making money before the class is over. 

Some lovely Qs other students asked before joining my class

Yes! It doesn't matter if you've never worked in a "creative" job. There are plenty of creative people that work in offices every day! I use the term creative to speak to people that want to do more than just work and go home. If you're a person who wants to write, express ideas, and contribute something a little different to the world - you're a creative. No matter what your job title says right now.

That’s totally fine! When I started, I didn’t have any published samples. Almost all of my students that sold pitches had zero published samples when they pitched their story. This course is designed to take you from “I don’t even know” to “let me tell you a thing or two about writing." So you don’t need any previous experience to join.

Hell no! I have a degree in Theatre from Hunter College. I might as well have a degree in Who Cares from Nobody Gives a Fuck. Editors aren’t checking your transcripts. If you read articles online and think “yeah I could write something like that,” you have all the qualifications you need to get started. 

 No, sorry. I haven’t pitched a TV show, so I couldn’t help you out. This class is for articles for publications, magazines, and papers. Places like Buzzfeed, Business Insider, Thrillist, Greatist, Bustle, and so on. 

No! This class is completely self-study. It means you'll be working on your own pace and you won't have to worry about finding the one place in your room that has good Zoom lighting.

Maybe? This class is designed to work at with your schedule. I'll send email reminders every week, just to let you know what to look forward to in the class and give us an easy way to stay connected. But if life gets super busy, you can put the class aside and come back when you're ready. Or, you could watch all the videos at once and write up a new assignment every week. Most importantly, this class will help you find a schedule that works for you, while giving you a structured class that makes it easier to keep writing.

Approximately 2-3 hours a week. You could do more. You could do less. But 2 hours would give you time to watch the videos and do about an hour of writing. If you want to spend 10 hours a week — great! But you don’t need to abandon your children and family just to make time for this class.

Yes! You can email me anytime. I only give notes on one article or pitch, but I'm happy to answer questions whenever.

Not really. Though lots of the practices you’ll learn would work for forming a writing habit, I won’t be covering any details about writing or selling fiction in class. Also I don't know how to do novels. But I hope you write one!

I do Freelance Writing for Creatives live twice a year (the next one will start in September). In that version, you have all the videos and downloads from the self-study class, plus live calls twice a week, live expert workshops, a Slack channel for class support, and unlimited notes. It's more hands-on and costs $799. If you can't decide between the two - do both! When you sign up for the self-study class, I'll send you a discount code when my next live class comes around so you can join the group for another $399. That way, you can get started on your own (and maybe get some bylines), then join the live session if you're looking for more feedback and community. You won't pay double for the class. In fact, you'll save $1 by getting the self-study then upgrading to the live version!

 A robot may have asked this, but yes and no. Sometimes freelance writing is easy and yes you do it from home. But it takes work to get started. You’re starting an entirely new job in a new field, that doesn’t happen overnight. I made enough money to pay my bills through writing in about 6 months (I worked a lot and worked hard at it). In about a year, I made about $5000 a month. I can’t guarantee what you’ll make, but I know this class makes it much easier to get started, get in better publications, and make more than I did starting out. Perhaps with this class, you’ll never have to write Pickle Roundups for Snooki’s blog like I did. 

Yes, I have a 7 day refund period. But, you don't get a refund if you're a jerk. In this case jerk means, a person who watches all the videos, downloads my stuff, and comes back to say "Money please!!!" If you watched all the material, I won't be able to give you a refund. Now, if something comes up and you can't use the class or if you try out the first few lessons and decide it isn't for you - that's fine! Just email me at Amber@Amberpetty.com within 7 days and you'll get a refund!

One-Time Payment


$399

  • One Payment
  • Save $1!

4 Monthly Payments


$100

  • 4 Payments Over 4 Months
  • $400 Total

Still Not Sure?

First of all, I’m so thrilled you’ve read all this. You’re a delight.

Second of all, think about what you have to lose. You want to write. And the last shitty 2 years have made us all realize that life is short and you deserve to do all the things you've wanted to do. So, while you’re waiting for the world to go back to normal, you could find creative satisfaction and a newfound confidence in your skills.

That gets your name out there and leads to all kinds of strange and lovely opportunities.

You could wait and think about the writing habit you’ll pick up eventually. Say "I'll start tomorrow" and let many tomorrows pass. See other people get bylines you want and realize it's already Memorial Day, how did that happen?!

Or you could start writing. Learn how to pitch. Love your creativity again.
And start making money from something you’ve always wanted to do.

You’re a wonderful gem and I can’t wait to guide you through the next steps in your freelance writing life…

Freelance writing changed my life. Is it always a dream job? No. But I get to put myself out there, get paid to write, and have had so many incredible opportunities stem from my choice to write a spec article about bad video game movies.

It’s not easy. There are ups and downs and insecurities that come from every creative career. But freelance writing is much easier than working as a theater manager and having people treat me like garbage. Or running around NYC from job to job just barely scraping by. Or working retail, hating my life, and knowing my work meant absolutely nothing.

With writing, my work never felt worthless. Even when I wrote for Snooki’s blog, I still made something, had my name on it, and maybe it cheered up someone’s day. The hard work was worth that creative satisfaction. So in that way, freelance writing is much easier than all my former side jobs.

In the past year, I’ve worked with over 200 students and proudly watched as they were published in Huffington Post, Vulture, Buzzfeed, Thrillist, Eater, Business Insider, The Girlfriend, and more.

If you choose to work with me over the course of this class, I promise you’ll be amazed by what you can accomplish. I’d love to say I’d change your life, but I’m not made of magic. But you will be so much more confident in your writing skills and shocked by the amount of opportunities out there.

Hope to see you in Freelance Writing for Creatives. Can’t wait to see what you write.

  • - Amber

Enroll in Freelance Writing For Creatives: Self-Study Today 

One-Time Payment


$399

  • One Payment
  • Save $1!

4 Monthly Payments


$100

  • 4 Payments Over 4 Months
  • $400 Total