I keep finding more and more freelance writing job sites. There's one in particular that does very well among the freelancers I'm acquainted with- *nevermind, I hate this site*. It has an excellent reputation among freelancers for finding jobs and gigs that pay well and aren't morally questionable. The only problem I have with the site is that I've never gotten a thing that I've applied for through there. Some of them are great projects- ones that I am more than qualified to do, but for some reason am never chosen. I do have a theory about the reason, though.
Another interesting one is Writer's Weekly. Most of what I see there is for print publications. I don't write for print anymore, but I plan to again someday and love to see what the market is like. Their listings are a great reminder of how high the price is for print publications compared to web writing. Of course, so much of print writing is on spec, which I don't have the time or the finances to do right now.
The Writer's Resource Center freelancing pages are quite thorough. You can search by type of writing or even by which state you're in. The quality of jobs looks great, but there are so many that I can spend forever looking at them and then I rarely get around to applying for anything.
This brings me to one of my biggest issues with web writing- the first-come-first-hired mentality. When I look through Freelance Writing Jobs, Elance and some of the other sites I frequent, I've developed the habit of either emailing the job to myself to look at later or opening a tab for interesting projects and applying for them when I have time. What happens, almost every single time, is that the job is taken by the time I apply. Sometimes the job has only been posted for a matter of hours. I can't fathom hiring the first person who applies, but apparently that's the way people are doing it. I don't get it, and I don't see how it can get them the best work possible. Isn't that what they want? Sometimes not. All too often people just want content quickly and for as cheap as they can get it. That's what is populating the web right now- cheap crap. I see Elance projects that I wanted going to people with portfolios filled with the worst imaginable copy. This is copy written poorly, full of errors and with no discernible style of any kind. I may be going back to print quicker than I had planned to, now that I think about it.