A few resources that can help you set your freelance writing rates

office details Not all freelancer writers make their living by writing for publications (whether in print or online). Many of us work with small and medium-sized businesses, corporate clients, and the like.

That includes me. And if there’s one problem that I share with a number of other freelancers, it’s determining how much to charge for my services. Even after … well, a lot of years as a freelancer, I still wing it when it comes to setting my rates.

At least, I used to. While I’m still no pro at setting my rates, I’ve gotten a lot better at it thanks to these resources. While not all of them are specifically for writers, these resources can help you through the fog of how to set your rates.

I hope you find them as useful as I have.

A few links for the end of the week

Bookmarking tools for writers

bookmark Like most people, I’m sure that in the course of your travels across the web you collect links to interesting articles, blog posts, and the like. You collect contact information for publications. You collect inspiring ideas and sources of information for research.

And I bet that you save the web addresses (also called URLs) of those resources so you can go back to them later.

Managing and maintaining that information can be a chore. It can easily get out of hand. I know a number of writers who just dump URLs into a text or word processor file. It’s a simple solution, but one that can make finding specific links a nightmare.

Instead, why not turn to a dedicated bookmarking tool? One that’s designed to help you manage your bookmarks, and also make it easy for you to find and use them.


Making a bit of extra cash with reprints

magazines on the rack Unless you’re regularly pulling in thousands of dollars per article or gig, or consistently snagging six- or seven-figure book contracts, chances are you can always do with a little more cash in your pocket. Especially if you’re starting out as a writer.

I know I did in my younger, hungrier days. Let me tell you a story.

In the late 1980s and early 1990s, I made a very precarious living as a freelance writer and editor. I was constantly strapped for cash, and wasn’t making all that much from what I was publishing.

Then, in 1992, I wrote an opinion piece for a major Canadian newspaper. The 800 words of that article caused a bit of a stir — the reaction from readers was either outright condemnation or praise for being brave enough to call a situation as I saw it. I didn’t realize how much of a stir that piece had caused until I got phone calls from the editors of a couple of small, niche publications who asked to reprint that article.

While those reprints only pulled in an extra couple of hundred dollars (on top of the fee for the original article), those were a couple of hundred dollars that I wouldn’t have otherwise seen. That money made a difference to a struggling writer.

It was then that I learned that reprints can be a lucrative source of additional income.

Since then, I’ve had a number of articles reprinted. And while I haven’t gotten rich from the reprints, they’ve made me some extra cash and expanded my markets. They can for you, too.


A few links for the end of the week