by Michelle Guillemard
Sometimes, when you’re starting out as a freelance health writer – or even just thinking about starting out – the idea of finding that first client can be overwhelming. It can even feel completely unachievable.
Health Writer Hub’s First Client Stories series is a new blog series exploring the stories behind how established writers found their first clients.
We kick it off with a chat with Bonny Mcclain, who some of you may already know. As you’ll see, she found her first client simply by answering an advertisement. It really can be that easy!
Bonny McClain is a freelance health policy, health economics, and clinical medicine writer. “A strong background in healthcare analytics is a big differentiator for my clients. I have been writing for close to 20 years and strictly consulting/freelancing for 5,” she says.
How did you find your first client?
“It was early in my writing career and I had answered an add for writing articles in the print publication of How Things Are Made.”
What did the work/job involve?
“Strangely enough the articles are still circulating on the internet. Talk about evergreen content. My role was to research and write about how things like Madame Tussaud Wax figures, Zamboni machines, grenades, etc. were made.”
Were you happy with the work you produced?
“I was very happy. They sent me the most challenging topics because I was able to deliver.”
What did you find most difficult about the process?
“The research was daunting because much of the manufacturing information is proprietary. But I had discovered a secret. The United States Patent and Trademark Office freely provided the patent applications on file. This was where I first discovered my ability to take technical information and communicate clearly and succinctly.”
What would you do differently if you could do it again today?
“That’s a good question. Probably the same things. I learned so much from working in industry, academia, medical education, and publishing for example. All of the work experiences good and bad inform the quality and insight I provide today.”