3 Things You Shouldn’t Tolerate as a Writer
Who really—I mean 100 percent all the time—loves their job? Not you? Well, join the club. For writers, the difficulties range from the long days that run into nights to the brain sucking content and rewrite requests. Even the seemingly wonderful ghostwriting contract can leave a writer with an infliction that makes them want to run for the hills. What’s a writer to do? Start by determining what you refuse to tolerate as a writer. You’ll spend more time focused on producing creative and quality content rather than sewing voodoo dolls and spewing venom at clients. Life’s too short to waste it on anything but the best of days.
Stay Away from What You Hate
Just as you should write about things you are somewhat knowledgeable about, or willing to research, you should not write about what you hate. If you find XXX material morally corrupt, don’t feel obligated to write it no matter what the price tag. Think that writing English lit essays for spendy college kids sounds like an easy way to make a buck? Considering you are promoting cheating and leaving a student devoid of a college education, if you find this kind of writing unacceptable, then don’t accept the offer. Don’t just suck it up for a few hours just for the paycheck. In addition to selling out, writing about what makes you feel uncomfortable or degraded will leave you in a slump. This icky cloud of regret will cast its shadow over you and other assignments.
Don’t Settle for Pennies
Leave the low paying assignments to those who don’t know any better than to take them. Of course we as writers have to start somewhere. However, if you start out underneath the totem pole, when there are plenty of solid paying assignments out there, you’ll sell yourself short. Ask for what you deserve and don’t give up until you get that and more. One website not panning out for your desired pay, or do you have a client who insists on cutting you down? Drop them and look for another website or client, of which you’ll find them. Start with searching in writers’ forums and social media groups including Craigslist and Facebook. Friendly writers are constantly noting new job opps, as well as those that are simply a waste of time.
Just as you can assert your confidence even when you have none, you can also assert your right to earn what your writing is worth. Don’t think your writing is up to par? There’s always room to improvement, which can be found with:
- Free online writing courses, such as with Coursera
- Nonfiction writing books, such as “The Elements of Style”
- Reading of works in your subject area, such as web content or blogs
- The act of writing itself
No Spewing Venom in Forums
Don’t get sucked into angry disputes on forums with other writers. It’s not worth your time, and it can leave you with a negative energy that will roll over into your writing. Think of writers’ forums as the virtual water coolers that they are, and use the same decorum. Also, consider that if you are venting about a client, that client may very well be on the forum themselves. Internet-based forums can be quite the double-edged sword, offering community for writers, as well as a place to ruin one’s writing career. Keep your head up and your nose clean, and leave the trash talking to those less professional.
Miranda B is a freelance writer available on WriterAccess, a marketplace where clients and expert writers connect for assignments.