Is there a nursing process that you have seen in hospital that really makes things function like a well-oiled machine? If you have a computer and an urge to write then you can definitely make some extra money merging these two. It is extremely easy. You can write about anything you know. You can even write about a hobby or about some new technique you have for keeping your home organized. There is even a market for short stories and poems.

After writing your article and having it proofread by someone, send copies of your writing to several magazines. For a quick poem or short article you can get from $5 to $500. For a full-length article, perhaps with photographs, you make anywhere from $20 to $3000. You have to pick the proper magazines. Obviously, Ladies’ Home Journal isn’t going to buy an article about malfunctioning forklifts, and Mechanic’s Monthly doesn’t want a cartoon about jewelry. The only requirements are to make sure your facts are accurate, and make sure your material is in your own words and ideas.

This can be done in two ways. Look at different magazine websites such as Nursing2004, Ladies Home Journal, True Stories, Good Housekeeping, etc… and find out what their needs are and find out what types of articles they accept. You can find this information usually in “writing guidelines” section on their website.
Don’t send out just one article and wait for a fat check. It doesn’t happen that way. Instead, write, write, and write. Send twenty articles per week to twenty different publications. Keep sending them every week. Some of them will be purchased. After a while, you will become practiced at writing what publishers want to buy and you will build a credential. The author who can claim 300 published articles can command a higher price.
This writer has no problem writing after I get an idea, but sometimes the ideas are rare. I recommend carrying around a small notebook at all times and write your ideas as they come to you.

Don’t worry about your writing style. If your information is interesting, timely or of value, the editors can fix misspellings and errors of punctuation, you can be a horrible storyteller, as long as your viewpoint is unique or your information is fresh. Non-fiction seems far easier to sell than fiction. Poetry is slow in the marketplace, but product reviews and technical presentations sell well to specialty magazines.

If possible, send each article you have written to only one publication at a time. If rejected, then send that one to another, etc. This way, you avoid conflicts that could develop if two publishers try to buy it at approximately the same time.

Get a copy of the book, “Writers Market,” or do your research from the copy at the Library. It is the definitive source of information about the publishers who will buy your articles. Not only does this book list over 4,000 buyers addresses and editor’s names, but it also gives a description of exactly what type of material they want to buy.

On the top of the first page should appear your name, address, phone number, social security number and the name of the article. The article name and your name should also be at the top of each subsequent page. Always send return packaging and postage with each submission.

Always do a follow up on your article. Right after you have sent the article in, do a follow up email or call to make sure that they received the article. Usually within four to six weeks you will receive some kind of letter on whether or not they are going to accept your article.

As you travel, take notes, write your adventures down, make some extra money and get some notoriety for being a nurse who wants to share the wealth of her knowledge!

Written by Epstein LaRue, RN, BS, author of “Highway Hypodermics: Your Road Map To Travel Nursing”, “Love At First Type”, and “Crazy Thoughts of Passion.”