60+ free eBooks that’ll help you master creative freelancing

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Are you a creative freelancer looking for some high-quality, free reading material?

Then you’ve come to the right place!

I’ve combed the internet to collect the best free eBooks for designers, voiceover artists, writers, and web designers.

Also, you’ll find eBooks on general topics (such as getting started and improving your time management, finances, and client relationships).

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I hope you enjoy reading through them, and feel free to utilize anything that you find useful!

Designers

“The most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or touched; they are felt with the heart.”
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince

A designer’s job is often based on aesthetic sensibility, which means that it’s also highly influenced by taste.

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Since beauty is in the eye of the beholder, everyone has his or her own definition of what looks good.

But don’t worry, these guides won’t tell you exactly what looks nice and what doesn’t.

Furthermore, they teach you how to get the most out of your artistic abilities:

The Freelance Design Business Guide – HowDesign
How to Design a Logo – HowDesign
Great Typography Inspiration – HowDesign
The Design Funnel: A Manifesto for Meaningful Design – ChangeThis
Design’s Iron Fist – Studio Fellow
Pixel Perfect Precision Handbook – Ustwo
Type Classification eBook – JustCreative
Everything There Is to Know about Logo Design – BlueSodaPromo
A Guide to Freelance Illustration – Maryland Institute College of Art

Voiceover artists

“All I have is a voice.”
W.H. Auden

In my opinion, voiceover artists have fascinating jobs.

You have to be able to speak completely error-free, and you have to be able to adjust your voice to a certain scenario.

These eBooks are related to the field of freelance voiceovers, so they’ll hopefully be good reads:

The Voice Over eBook – The Showreel
Getting Started in Voice Overs – Voices.com
Audiobook Success Kit – Voices.com
Podcasting Success Kit – Voices.com
Radio Ads Success Kit – Voices.com
Voice Over eBook – VoiceCoaches
Directing Voice Actors Online – Voicebunny
The Voiceover Entrance Exam – Audioconnel
The Voiceover Talent eBook – VoiceoverTalent

Writers

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.”
Maya Angelou

There’s hardly anything greater than the power of words.

They can have a huge impact on how we think, feel, and perceive things.

These eBooks teach you how to use your writing talent to impress your readership. Also, there are several tips about how to manage your career or find the best jobs in the field of creative writing.

Great Literary Devices to Improve Your Creative Writing – Freelance Writing
The Freelance Writer’s Battle – Freedom With Writing
Jumpstart a Journalism Career – Freelance Writing
Online Writing Jobs for Freelance Writers – Freelance Writing
How to Be a Freelance Writer – WritersWeeklyThe Ultimate Storytelling Guide
The Advertising Bible by Filestage
Go ahead, make me laugh! Comedy Writing – Freelance Writing
Getting Started in Fiction Writing – Freelance Writing
Headlines That Sell
Creativity Secrets – Freelance Writing

Web Design

“What separates design from art is that design is meant to be… functional.”
Cameron Moll

A web designer’s job involves beautifying websites and transforming them into a great experience for the user.

Besides having a good eye for which style suits a certain website and knowledge about programming, web designers should also be able to put themselves into the user’s position and know how an easily understandable website is supposed to look.

Here’s a list of practical eBooks and online guides to assist you during your creative work.

Programming Advice
Online Guide:The Elements of Typographic Style Applied to the Web
Web Style Online Guide – Patrick Lynch and Sarah Horton
Create Modern Websites Using HTML5 and CSS3 – IBM.com
Adaptive Web Design – Aaron Gustafson
The Magic of CSS – Adam Schwartz

Client-Related Web Design
The Client – Web Designer Relationship – JKWebdesigns
Taking Your Talent to the Web – Zeldman
Strategic Website Design: 10 Ideas to Grow Your Business – Webguru India
Online Guide: Access by Design – Universal Usability
UX Design for Startups – UXPin
11 Things to Do with Every New WordPress Install – iThemes

Tips for Freelancers
Web Designers Success Guide – Airgid
So You Want to Be a Freelancer? – iThemes
The Field Guide to Self-Employed Web Design – UXPin

Things every freelancer should know

There are lots of eBooks out there that are targeted to particular freelancer groups.

But there are at least as many all-encompassing guides tailored to freelancers.

These guides explain what to consider while becoming a freelancer, how to manage your time and finances, and much more!

Getting Started
No Excuses – Millo
The Complete Guide to Freelancing – FlexJobs
The Ultimate Guide to Going Freelance – Skillcrush
Online Guide: How To Build Your Freelance Website – Freelance Folder
The Freelancer’s Roadmap – Creative Live
The Only Option – Alex Mathers
How To Be Creative – Changethis.com
Freedom, Money, Time and the Key to Creative Success – Lateral Action

Time management

Getting things done at the right time and avoiding procrastination are thorns in the sides of almost everyone. But these eBooks specifically focus on time management from a freelancer’s point of view.

Seek & Destroy – Peter Shallard
Time Management for Creative People – Wishful Thinking
Time Management for Freelancers – Freelance Writing

Finances and rights

Even when you’re doing creative work, freelancers have to be concerned about finances.

They’re an unavoidable part of a freelancer’s work routine. Fortunately, we’ve found some guides to help you through this necessary evil:

Say Goodbye to Roller Coaster Income – Millo
Contracts for Creatives – Millo
Using the Social Web to Find Work – Chris Brogan
A Field Guide to Freelancer Finances – Free Agent

Attracting clients

Of course, your clients are very valuable to you. They make your life as a creative freelancer possible.

If you want to know how to attract more customers (especially the right ones), these three guides are perfect for you:

10 Steps to Powerful Online Self-Promotion for Creatives – Alex Mathers
9 Things Freelancers Must Do to Land Quality Clients – Red Lemon Club
How to Land Your First Paying Client – The Write Life

Bonus: Tools

Besides eBooks, there are many tools that can significantly ease a freelancer’s life.

But nowadays, there’s such a huge diversity of different tools, you easily lose sight of the big picture. I’ve selected a few tools for you, which might come in handy:

ZenWriter is a neat tool for writers. It’s downloadable software, which provides an idyllic background for writing.

You can also choose between different kinds of soothing background sounds, or opt out of them.

Filestage is an online collaboration tool, which helps you share, review, and annotate PDFs, images, and videos with your clients or fellow freelancers.

Mint is a completely free tool, which helps you track your billing and maintain an overview of your finances.

If you’re specifically looking for time-tracking tools, don’t miss this article: 36 Easy-to-use time-tracking tools for freelancers.

Conclusion

All these eBooks offer great value. But if you just read them and don’t take action, they’re a waste of time.

The best way to learn something is always by practicing and taking action, especially in the creative sector.

I hope that our list offers you some informative, entertaining material to work with. Have fun reading!

Tell us in the comments what eBooks you’re reading.

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About Soukaina El Gharbaoui

Soukaina El Gharbaoui is a writer for The Advertising Bible, a blog by Filestage which is a feedback tool for videos, documents and designs. It’s the easiest way to share, review, and approve PDFs, videos and images with clients and coworkers. She loves to express herself creatively, and she’s fascinated by the world of marketing.

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Comments

  1. I really don’t know to begin, but thanks a lot.

    • Hi Terem,

      You’re quite welcome! 🙂 Good luck with your freelance career. Let us know if there are any other resources you need.

      All the best,
      Soukaina