Sunday, 7 April 2013

How One Direction made me $250

...in which I sell out.

Are you on LinkedIn?  You should be.  If I hadn't been on there I wouldn't have made $250 writing about One Direction.  There are numerous writers groups you can join on there (Content Writers and the Freelance Writers Connection spring to mind) but be warned: there is a lot of crap to sift through.  A lot of the content writers stuff, for example, is people wanting hundreds of words for $10.  Put another way, it's a total rip off and further proof that a flooded labour market (lots of people want to write) makes labour cheap for the bosses.  The exception to this is if you live in a country where ten bucks goes further than for most of us in the Western world - you'll see a lot of posts for content from India for example.
One Direction after reading my feature on them.

Another hazard is bullshit scams and I was half expecting that when I replied to a post from someone called Jennifer (whose profile picture looked suspiciously like a stock shot) wanting freelance writers to get in touch for work.  My advantage was that I had written for Huffington Post.  Once they have accepted a pitch you get a login to submit further articles and I guess if you've written for them once, you're more likely to get published again.  Huff Post don't pay for your submissions, so they probably just enjoy getting the free content.  Writing about 1D was the challenge though - I couldn't (and still can't) name you one of their songs.  But people who make a living out of writing usually have to produce articles to order, possibly on subjects they know little about.  I was interested in the challenge - could I do it and still make it interesting?  You can read the article and decide for yourself here (and please share the story with the buttons top left of that page if you like it).

Jennifer wasn't a scam.  She even paid up front to convince me that she was genuine, though has since asked me to 'reconsider' my fee should we work together again.  I feel like Huffington Post should be paying for content (they're making money from the ads after all) and I believe that they do, if you're a celebrity writer.  So it struck me that this was a way everyone wins.  HuffPost gets content, Jennifer gets some traffic for her site and the writer gets paid.   Could be the future, no?

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