Why I don’t write for free (And you shouldn’t either)

Ever since I started working as a freelance writer, I had one goal in my mind – I needed to earn from it.

Not because I needed the money, but because I wanted to prove to myself and to everyone else that I could in fact make a living through freelance writing.

I had already been writing on my own blog for years, and even though I loved it, I knew it couldn’t help me quit my horrible job. And that was probably what made me so driven.

 

Why I don't write for free

Working for more exposure and no money? No thanks.

 

While I was trying to find some lucrative clients, I also met some people who wanted me to work for free, just because they claimed to get a lot of traffic which they thought would get me more attention. And of course, there is the usual ‘we don’t have funds right now, but we will pay you in the future.’

You and I both know it’s never going to happen.

There are many big websites that I know which don’t pay contributors, even when they themselves are earning staggering money thanks to the ads and sponsors.

They claim to be giving ‘exposure’ to their writers instead.

But, will exposure help me pay my rent?

I might have still done it if I did writing part-time, but I don’t. Every hour that I spend working, helps me pay my expenses and I am thankful for that. It would honestly be detrimental to my finances if I gave my heart and soul into an article just for a few ‘good’ comments.

By doing that, I would only be encouraging websites to lure more writers in for no pay at all.

Are writers not people?

Clients are ready to pay website developers or graphic designers for their work, but for some reason, writers do not get the same treatment, and I don’t understand why.



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8 thoughts on “Why I don’t write for free (And you shouldn’t either)”

  1. Rohit Upadhyaya

    I guess most of us have written hidden talents which needs a platform..
    This start from the habbit of writing diary , travelling dairy n then writhing autobiography

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  2. It’s wonderfully written. I completely and sincerely respect your opinion and even follow the same principle. I believe that one should not allow someone else to earn on his/her own hard work. One’s effort should be rewarded appropriately.

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  3. Very true what you said Ritika. So many of us newbie writers get caught in the cycle of ‘writing for exposure’ that we lower our own worth. Of course, exposure is great, but like you said – it doesn’t pay the rent. On the other hand, I feel offering knowledge for free does sort of build your credibility – but it only makes sense if you’re looking to build a loyal audience.

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