freelance pricing academic malpracticeBusy day, so just enough time for a quick rant. I met with a colleague for coffee yesterday. She’s a lawyer by trade, with plenty of courtroom experience and a solid background in the technical aspects of writing, but happens to be new to the freelance writing and editing business. At one point she mentioned that she’s enrolled in an editing certificate program through a well-known university. And something her professor suggested about freelance pricing, well, let’s just say it qualified as academic malpractice.

The instructor’s comment to her class was that $25 an hour is a good rate, at which you can get good freelance editing jobs, and you probably shouldn’t go much higher than that, because you’ll drive away business. [read more...]

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jake poinier keynote speaker

I was honored to be the keynote speaker at Communication Central in Rochester, N.Y., in late September, and I was struck, as I networked with the assembled writers, editors, designers, and publishing experts, by the myriad ways people successfully operate a freelance business. (If you’re interested in attending next year, there are roundups of the event here and here, with lots of good tips from various presenters in the links.) [read more...]

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The wrong way to get freelance jobs

September 3, 2014

There are countless strategies and places to find freelance jobs, but this week, I received a note that represents a classic example of the wrong way to go about it: soliciting work from other freelancers with whom you have 1) no relationship or 2) no understanding of their businesses. Exhibit A is a pitch I received from out of the […]

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Writing revisions and doing the right thing

August 13, 2014

I ran into a sticky situation with an editor a few months back over writing revisions for a freelance magazine assignment. I’d written a short travel piece featuring three different locations, and received approval for the text. The art director wasn’t able to secure a free photograph of one of them, however, and I got a call asking for […]

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WordPerfect and other blasts from the freelance past

August 4, 2014

I met up with my friend, Chuck, at a local watering hole the other night, and he sarcastically called me Mr. WordPerfect. (He’s a finance guy, so I wish I’d had the mental agility to have called him Mr. Lotus, but that’s how l’esprit de l’escalier works, doesn’t it?) As I’m notching my 15th anniversary in […]

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Freelancer Conference: (Re)Invent Your Business

July 1, 2014

“Be a Better Freelancer! (Re)Invent Your Business” is the theme for Communication Central’s ninth annual conference for freelancers, September 26–27, 2014, at the Hyatt Regency Downtown in Rochester, N.Y. (There’s also an Editorial Bootcamp on September 28.) The agenda includes two solid days of drilling down on all aspects of launching, managing and expanding a […]

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Why I’m (finally) using a standing desk

May 14, 2014

You could argue that I’m a few years late to the trend of using a standing desk for my freelance home office. The truth is that I’ve been very happy with my antique architect’s drafting table (bought dirt cheap at a yard sale) for more than ten years. I didn’t want to abandon it, I […]

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Referral sales tip: No such thing as a slam dunk

May 9, 2014

Any time you get a contact from a referral, it’s an exciting moment, but there’s no such thing as a slam dunk. While a warm lead has much better sales prospects than a cold one, freelance sales leads don’t just sell themselves, and they don’t always work out the way you imagined. We’ll get to […]

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What 21 things do designers want from a freelance writer?

April 2, 2014

Over the course of my career, I’ve learned that one of the most important working relationships for a freelance writer is with the designers who put their words into action. Today’s guest post comes from the design team of Eileen and Bob Burick of Burick Communication Design, with whom I’ve had the good fortune to partner countless times. […]

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$3.99 deal on The Science, Art and Voodoo of Freelance Pricing

March 28, 2014

NOTE: This Kindle Countdown promotion has ended and the price is $3.99. As a thank you for all of the comments and social media shares for my post earlier this week, “Are your freelance writing rates too low?”, I’m running a Kindle Countdown deal on The Science, Art and Voodoo of Freelance Pricing and Getting […]

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