Freelance writing gigs can be so undervalued

Freelance writing? Who needs it?

If you have lots of techie equipment it’s easier  to justify higher rates I guess. You can be impressive with photographic equipment. You can be awe-inspiring with a list of high profile clients and a CBE.  You can bamboozle with html. Yet how do people view and value freelance writing provision and writers in general?

Yes freelance writers inhabit a technological world

Essentially, I guess, we could, if we wanted, earn our living using just pen and paper. It’s not very impressive is it? Until you read something that is badly phrased, awkward, anachronistic or well, just tedious I bet you never give freelance writing a thought!. When you notice the style, tone, vocabulary, spelling or punctuation that’s when a writer is not fulfilling their role of being ‘invisible’.

Invisibility is only half the problem

In the main web content, email campaigns and business newsletters are not about the writers’ prowess. It’s about creating ambience, need, desire or an attractive solution.  Generally speaking freelance writing comprising of producing blogs  and marketing materials has to grab readers’ attention immediately. This can be achieved using a number of techniques. Yet above everything else, I believe a writer needs creativity, aplomb, a variety of ways to say the same thing and an ability to engage and inform. Do you agree?

A 60 page e-book for £40 are you kidding me?

So why is it that some freelancing writing sites are allowing jobs to be posted such as: ’60 page e-book, must be completed in 5 days and be highly original – £40.’ Yes, we are functioning in a global market and rates around the world are not universal but please!  Charging UK minimum wage and a low time allocation of  just 10 hours would put you way in excess of £40. We have fees to pay, tax, national insurance and still have to live.

Do people rate writers so low in the pecking order?

[Tweet “Can just anyone produce copy and create freelance writing? “]Bearing in mind some of the rewrites I have been asked to complete the answer may well be no! Yes, we are all looking for a bargain. We all have budgets of course.  But when you consider just how hard copy works then  it might be worth thinking again. Each time someone lands on your website or opens an email campaign, or reads a newsletter, tweet, blog post, what is it really worth to your business? Even a provocative email header can be the difference between being opened or trashed.

You can scrimp and save, pay little attention to your tweets, web content or marketing materials but why bother writing anything at all? Just a thought.

[Tweet “Many writers have invested heavily in their skills and take pride in the copy they create.”] Maybe it’s time to consider just how much skill, time, effort and creativity is poured into humble freelance writing assignments. Bear that in mind next time you post a job for a writer that’s all I’m saying!

What do you think

Vivienne Neale is a freelance writer, not that you would have guessed from this blog!

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