One of the toughest jobs of a new writer is trying to identify places that will look at queries or submissions. The online writer's market information is a good place to start. Many of the sites were started by freelancers sharing their own resources and tips with others.
Good advice on how to query and what to do before you submit any of your work as a professional can be found on these sites.
Paying markets are preferred, but sometimes working for clips is acceptable. If you are just starting out as a writer, be aware that professional writers don't appreciate having to compete with new writers who are willing to give away their work to see their name in print.
Check the warnings and forums to find out if certain publishers promise payment and then don't send a check. Writing is a trade as well as an art and master craftspeople should be paid for what they produce!
These resources will help you find your way into the world of writers who make money in the trade...
Writer's Market - The Bible for freelancers, this site provides an online companion to the annual Writer's Market book that lists paying and non-paying markets by genre, topic and type of publication. Good advice and agent search comes with the package...
WritersWeekly - Updated paying markets from one of the most read e-zines for freelancers. Take a look at the warnings section for markets to avoid and some thought provoking discussions...
Union - Benefits of membership include loans, scholarships,
contract advice, grievance resolution, press pass, access to current
paying markets & much more.
- Avalanche of Jobs for Writers - Years of quality listings
make this a good place to look for jobs in journalism and other
writing fields. Freelance listings are not as good as some of
the other places listed here, but still worth checking...
Writers.com - A free registration gets you access to forums
and updates on press trips. The collection of markets are not
free, but the current info is...