It’s here – Writers Worth Day, the one day a year we writers collaborate on increasing our expectations and our business savvy! This year came up on me unexpectedly, I’ll admit. But it’s never too late to celebrate the fact that you have a marketable set of skills and deserve to stand up for them.
Today let’s reinforce our belief in our jobs as our businesses. Let’s establish good business practices that include setting rates, setting work boundaries, and setting a standard of professionalism that echoes through to our client projects and communications. Feel free to share your experiences of when you last felt unappreciated by a client, when you felt valued by a client, and when you finally stood up for yourself as a legitimate business person deserving of respect and fair wages.
Today, spread the word. Make an effort to tell your blog community about expecting more. Help a writer on a forum or on Twitter make a better choice. Inspire another writer to build a better business practice. Tell your own stories in order to teach others through example – bad or good.
The goal of Writers Worth Day is to help one more writer improve their earnings and business potential. We are not in competition with each other – we are in negotiations with clients. Be the mentor or the friendly email that gives another writer the gumption to change a habit, ask for more, amend the marketing targets. And please, let me know right here in the comments section how you spread the word or helped another. Let’s advocate the value of experienced writing talent.
Also, thanks to everyone for sending me your tips for the contest! It was a tight race, but I’m proud to announce the winner of the Peter Bowerman book of choice is…..
Lucinda really took the spirit of Writers Worth Day to heart. Her entry is below. Thank you for all your entries. I appreciate it!
“The two best tips I have for writers are combined from my atrocious experience freelancing for a local newspaper, an experience that taught me the hard way that just because an editor asks for something doesn’t mean they will pay for it.
“When negotiating a freelancing contract, two important things need to be considered. Make sure that the job pays for your research time as well as your writing time. Sure, a gig that pays me $50 for an hour’s writing sounds good, but if I spend three hours researching it, that’s not a good wage at all. Bump it up to four hours of research and you’re lucky to make $10 an hour — not acceptable. Along those same lines, be sure to negotiate a kill fee into any assignment that you are given. In the negotiations of the kill fee, especially for time-sensitive materials, include a clause about how soon the kill fee kicks in and rights revert to you.
“My mistake was agreeing to write a series of articles for the local newspapers, an in-depth analysis with interviews to back it up, of the local school funding crisis. My contract offered good terms and paid on publication. I spent a day and produced a several piece package as described by the editor’s request. She published one of the pieces and then told me they would hold on to the others for later use. They were never used and instead of $250 for my day’s work, I got $75, the equivalent of Illinois’ minimum wage for the hours I worked.”
Lucinda gets it. And her advice is golden.
How are you celebrating your worth today?