Upload & Sell: Off
5 years ago I had a Canon 300D and read this site religiously. Learned everything I could about exposure and the inner-workings of the camera.
A few years later, I shot a softball game for a friend with a Sigma 120-300 and got the bug.
I contacted a small local paper and talk to them about shooting some stuff for them. Paid (per picture used) but barely anything. One thing they let me do is keep copyright and sell to the parents, so I continued that and began shooting next to guys from the bigger paper. They already knew my work so when I approached them they were open to let me freelance for them.
I also began working with the local university (Division 2 school) and shot a lot of their sports. They gave me the freedom to experiment with remotes and other odd angles.
I also began networking and sending out emails. Shot a few things for Southcreek before they when under, signed with Icon SMI and now Getty.
That's the last 4 years in a nutshell. I would say that the biggest thing I've learned is networking, if your images are on par with others, people will notice.
Watch this video:
Good insights. At the end he talks about how (assuming you have the right equipment) you have the same chance of getting "THE" shot as everyone else does.