Happy 2015, Everyone! My first “PIK” interviewee of the new year is Freelance Flyer‘s Samar Owais.
Samar’s a freelance writer and blogger whose name is pronounced like “Summer.” She’s based in Dubai and is absolutely gorgeous:
How I Know Samar
If you’ve downloaded my free e-book, The Freelance Writer’s ABCs, you may remember a quote from Samar in the “V is for Vending Machine Mentality” chapter. Yep. I’ve been following Samar’s work for quite a while! 🙂 And, at some point, one or both of us reached out to say “hello.”
Since Samar is based in Dubai, UAE, and I’m in Los Angeles, whatever time it is “AM” over here, it’s exactly that time “PM” where she is! So when I’m still up poking around online at 4AM, I get to chat with 4PM Samar about our lives as super cool freelance blogger ladies.
And, on a more personal note, Samar is quite the make-up expert. I’m still not as skilled as she is application-wise, but she’s definitely encouraged me to branch out a little (I now own a hot pink lipstick and sometimes attempt putting on eyeliner!). But, I think, that speaks of Samar as a whole: She’s always encouraging and motivating those around her to try new things to better themselves (and their businesses!).
So enjoy this (e-mail) interview! Find out how Samar Owais got her start, what’s next for her blogging business, and how you can follow in her ever-glamorous footsteps.
My Interview with Samar Owais
What do you do?
I’m a freelance writer and blogger. I work with small businesses and solopreneurs who want to establish their authority online, get inbound links, stop their business blog from looking like a ghost town, etc.
Most of my work involves writing blog posts, guest posts, ghost guest posts for my clients. I also edit blogs and create blog content strategies.
Sometimes, I write e-books, newsletters, and website content as well. That’s not often though because blogging is my first love.
How did you start?
I was still in college when a reporter friend (I was the weird kid who always had friends older than me) asked me if I was willing to review an event I was planning to attend. I agreed because a. free ticket and b. new experience.
15 days after I submitted my review to her, I got a check in the mail. That’s the first time I realized there was money in writing.
Later the same year, I graduated, got married, and moved to UAE – all in a couple of months.
The original plan was to pursue my Master’s or get a job. But the cost of education in UAE took care of that idea and I needed a driving license to work. Commuting and as a result getting a driving license in Dubai is an absolute pain. I was on a six month waiting list just to start my driving classes!
By the time I got my license, I’d already turned to the internet to find writing work. Being my own boss had a lot more appeal than spending two hours in traffic every day.
I decided to do this until I couldn’t. Thankfully, I had my “Holy crap, I’m running a business!” epiphany before I reached the stage where I started thinking about giving up.
What’s your favorite part of what you do?
I have two favorite parts.
One is getting done with a writing project. Whether it’s finishing a big blog post, hitting publish on one or submitting it to a client. The high I get from that is the best part of my job. I can spend two very happy days on that high.
The other is the feeling of accomplishment I get after making my clients happy with my work. I love getting emails from clients saying I did a great job or that they didn’t want me to make any changes.
Now, if you’d asked me what my least favorite part is, I’d have said getting started with a project.
What advice do you have for someone looking into doing what you do?
Give it time. Overnight successes are usually years in the making. Just because it looks like a freelance writer has burst onto the scene, doesn’t mean that’s what has actually happened.
They’ve been there a while – people are only noticing now.
So cut yourself some slack and stop worrying about becoming successful. Just work hard, work smart and work consistently.
What’s next for you?
More focus on my blog, Freelance Flyer.
I’m looking into turning my 5k word blog posts into bite-sized content. I’ll be releasing an ebook soon and I’m playing with the idea of podcasts, mini courses, member library – let’s see which one makes the cut.
Apart from that, more work, more guest posts, more writing. Basically everything I love doing most.
LINKS for More SAMAR OWAIS
Free report: http://freelanceflyer.com/welcome
Lauren Spear (née Tharp) is the owner and creator of the multiple award-winning LittleZotz Writing. She’s written hundreds of bylined posts helping freelance writers to become BETTER freelance writers. Thousands if you count all the articles she’s ghostwritten (but she’s not allowed to talk about most of those).