Running a Business

Being a successful freelancer means you are running your own business. Learn how to ensure you are covered for liability exposure and how to find low-cost health insurance, to negotiate fair contract terms, how to price for value, and how to understand your liability exposure. Write a business plan, set and reach your financial goals and make sure your work provides financial security for you and your family. Use social media to expand your reach, and fellowships to advance your career.

Jump to: Contracts | Insurance | Finance & Business Plans | Branding & Marketing


Negotiating contracts and protecting your rights.

Attorney Charles Glasser answers freelancers’ questions and shares his vast expertise.

Create a custom contract

Use this template from Freelancers Union to create a custom contract. Must be a member.

The good, the bad and the ugly contract clauses

Columbia University Law School dissects the different clauses in typical freelance journalism contracts and ranks them.

Copyright, work for hire, and other rights issues

Blog post from Writers and Editors.

Copyright forms

Forms for filing copyrights. From the U.S. Library of Congress.


What freelancers need to know about media liability insurance

Freelance journalists need to weigh the nature of their reporting, risk of being sued, relationship with publishers and cost of insurance.

NerdWallet: Affordable Health Insurance for Freelance Writers

Guide to finding health insurance for freelancers.

Finance & Business Plans

Good time to keep careful track of freelance payments

For some of AHCJ’s freelancers, payment issues were already a hassle before 2020 and the emergence of the novel coronavirus. Now they may be even more difficult. In several writer groups online, fellow freelancers have cheered for a surge in work but also bemoaned payment hiccups.

Four ways to deal with late payments

Independent journalist Wudan Yan points out some proactive steps freelancers can take to protect themselves from late or missing payments.

These resources can help meet your freelance business goals

However you approach your review and planning process — annually, quarterly, monthly or weekly — it’s helpful to understand how others approach their work. Check out these references, depending on your preferences.

Branding & Marketing

Tips for creating — and protecting — your professional website

Freelance writers always have to market themselves, and one way to put yourself before potential clients is to have a work website. But figuring out how to create a website can be overwhelming. Should you try to design it yourself or use a professional? And what design features will attract editors and convince them to hire you? 

Explore More for Freelancers

Health journalism saves lives.

Everyone should have access to quality health care information so they can make informed decisions. Join AHCJ today for exclusive access to training and education to inform your community.