Freelance writers have a tendency to work alone. The typical content services they offer are jobs that can easily be accomplished under their own steam. However, bigger projects sometimes come along that require teamwork. These projects range from clients that need a lot of work in a short timeframe to large personal projects that a freelancer would like to do to further his or her career. Either way, there are ways to make working with another freelancer not only successful, but also rewarding in unexpected ways.
The first step to any good freelance writer collaboration is finding the right person or people with which to collaborate. Decide which qualities are necessary, such as basic html knowledge, search engine optimization (SEO) knowledge, networking skills, engaging writing style, and whatever else the project may require. Spend some time discussing the project with potential candidates and look for someone with the right skills that is also enthusiastic about the project. Lackluster writers will drain the fun out of any project fast.
Because freelance writers tend to be in control of their own careers, it is important to get a good outline of the job ahead of time. Otherwise, all of the team members may begin working on various aspects of the project without any group direction. Discuss the project and all of the project goals, break that up into tasks and then assign each task equally, trying to give them to the freelancers most qualified to do the work. Get all of this in writing and make sure each freelancer agrees to their portion of the work. Lastly, set a timeframe for each task. This will help keep everything organized and the timing of the project on track.
Something that each freelancer on the project will want to know is how much they are being paid. This can be complicated, as freelancers can earn in a few ways. If a client with a large project has offered a lump sum, the freelancers can divide the amount among themselves fairly. It must be agreed upon ahead of time and be in writing before work begins. If the project is something more along the lines of a “let us do the work on this idea and see if it pans out” process it is best to have a contract that outlines percentages of potential earnings and makes it clear that no one is responsible for payment if no revenue is generated. If the potential earnings are big, it might be a good idea to hire a lawyer to draw up the papers.
The key to a good freelance writing collaboration is organization so there is no confusion as to who is responsible for what. From there, if someone is not holding up his or her end, it is easy to see who it is and adjust so that the work goes to someone who is deserving of it. This also helps ensure that any client that is involved gets their content needs met by the deadline, which is the most important goal of any freelance collaboration.
Michelle S is a freelance writer available on WriterAccess, a marketplace where clients and expert writers connect for assignments.