Friday, March 13, 2009

Six Places to Earn Money for Your Words

The need for content, both in print and on the web, is massive even in this tanking economy. If anything, the bad business climate has companies scrambling for new marketing outlets, most on line.

And that means work for you. Here are six places that are actually looking for writers and are willing to pay them – in real dollars!. So, if you can string words in to sentences, you can earn money for your efforts. Check out these outlets for content.

1. odesk. Odesk is an outsource hook-up site, connecting service buyers and providers. The site has a number of categories – site design, coding and writing.

Just looked and there are over 200 gigs listed on odesk this morning, divided into general categories to make your search for a gig that much easier. Tech writer? 74 job listings on odesk this morning.

What are you waiting for?

2. Elance. Perhaps the most widely-known outsource hook-up site, Elance has taken strides of late to improve its image in this web space. Many of the writing jobs are for words by the pound. I saw one job – 1000 articles – top bid $500! That’s 50 cents an article.

However, if you’re good you can cherry pick the buyers looking for quality over quantity. Bid low until you gain some feedback from happy buyers. Then up your price gradually.

3. Helium. You don’t think of Helium as a paying site. It’s a content syndication site, right? Well, that’s the biz’s bread and butter but the site also posts paying gigs. You’re competing against a lot of other writers but the site is flogging the fact that one woman made $5K in six months writing for Helium.

Sounds perfect for the work-at-home parent. No commitment.

4. Guru. Another outsourcing site that’s coming up fast. The quality of its postings has improved meaning better paying gigs for you. Again, these on-line sites have postings that change daily so keep going back to see what’s new.

They’re all ideal for part-timers and newbs looking to gain experience and creds.

5. Your local newspaper. The local Picayune is desperate for content. A friend of mine, a Registered Nurse, writes a weekly health column for the local rag. $50 bucks a week. Now, given the amount of time said friend works on her columns – interviews, research, first and second draft, she makes less than minimum wage.

But she’s got a clip book – one that adds to her credibility as a writer – a reliable writer who can hit a deadline every week for years – even if she only gets $50 a week. It’s the creds that count here.

And those clippings can be compiled into a book on health and wellness since the RN friend owns the copyright. Sweet.

So, open your accounts or contact the local editor and offer to do a column on your particular expertise – gardening to low-cost living and consumer tips. Build your clip book and charge $10 a column. Watch that editor jump!

You start working at “burger-flipping” wages but as you gain experience, confidence and credibility, you and your words become better and more valuable.

Start here.

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