Would you work for free?
I have been asked to write for free many times.
Why do people think writers and other creative professionals should work for free?
As a writer I have been asked to write brochures, sales letters, blogs and other things on a spec assignment basis. What that means is someone wants me to write for them and then if they like it or their customers like it or they make a sale from it they will pay me.
I have also been asked to write for "Exposure". What that means is the publication will publish my article and mention my name. Unfortunately the power company and other companies want money instead of exposure.
One comment I have heard is that writing is like commissioned sales but it's not... in sales the customer doesn't get the product they pay for it. Why should someone get work they asked me for without paying for it?
I also get asked for samples of my work written for a specific product or client. I used to do the research and provide the sample and then never hear back from the person who asked for it. Now I refer them to my blog and my website so they can see different samples of what I have written.
It takes time to research, write and edit print material. The amount of time varies by project and the amount of research needed.
I have lost writing projects because I won't work for free but the cost of the lost opportunity is zero because no time was invested in it.
If you know of a company looking for an experienced writer for their blog, newsletter or other print material please let me know and feel free to give them my name and information.