Have you ever wondered why you, as a client needing to hire a content writer, received completed assignments that neglected to incorporate the detailed instructions you provided? Does such an article make you think the writer might have been under the influence of several screaming toddlers or a very dry martini while writing it?
If so, take a deep breath and relax. I am a professional content writer and I am here to tell you why.
First of all, the mind of a content writer resembles a comet. Comets are those hyperactive balls of ice and rock that simply don’t have the time to act like predictably orbiting planets—too much to see and do in the solar system…gotta go…just zipping by! In other words, it is usually the seasoned content writer/solar system wanderer who neglects to read instructions because they have already written thousands of articles and assume with much confidence they know what the client wants.
Now I bet I know what you are thinking—content writers who avoid reading instructions by relying on their experience with other clients’ needs must have egos matching the size of their comet-minds. Right?
Fortunately, the reason behind presuming we know what a client wants has nothing to do with feeling grandiose about accumulating years of hard-earned content writing experience. Instead, it may be due to one or more of these reasons:
- The writer has profound knowledge concerning the topic and also specializes in writing about the topic of the requested article. Writing about this subject is so second-nature to the writer that instructions seem as superfluous as a DVD rewinder—and as useless.
- The writer begins reading the instructions, realizes he or she has already read these same instructions hundreds of times before and stops reading the instructions in order to begin writing the article. Whoever said freelance writers weren’t the most industrious creatures on the planet?
- The writer scans the instructions, memorizes the keyword(s) to use in the article and deletes the instructions because they are three pages long—with no paragraph breaks and minimal punctuation. In fact, it would take an experienced Egyptologist fluent in reading 19th dynasty hieroglyphics to understand the instructions.
- The writer has read the instructions and feels like he or she has just been chastised by their old elementary school principle for something they did not even do. Clients need to understand that professional content writers have endured years of questionable rejections, spent hours memorizing AP style guidelines that go against everything Miss Duckworth taught in middle school English class, and suffered through hundreds of all-nighters fueled by too many cups of coffee strong enough to substitute as wood stain. Naturally, they will bristle at being reminded of basic writing techniques.
Chances are that when clients hire a content writer and ultimately receive content that meets or exceeds their expectations, they have provided instructions that do not reiterate fundamental writing rules, include directions that are essential rather than indulgent, and omit negative words that may otherwise cause a (professional) writer to throw a toddler-sized tantrum—or reach for another martini.
We love clients unconditionally and genuinely want to able to provide them with the best content possible, despite our celestially oriented minds. Without clients, we would not be able to do what we love to do best for a living—creating engaging, keyword-rich content for the purpose of helping clients succeed with in all their business ventures.
Kimberly M is a freelance writer available on WriterAccess, a marketplace where clients and expert writers connect for assignments.