Writing Tips by Gary Speer

Tips for writers, musing about writing and life

Sites to avoid if you want to make money writing for the Internet

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I see by some of the comments we’re getting that many of you reading this blog have had experience writing for the Internet and/or blogging for money. Those of you who have done so understand the points I’m making here: The “big money” is rare, and those willing to work for nearly nothing tend to ruin the market for the rest of us.

In keeping with that theme, I want to warn you about a few sites that specialize in “undercutting” decent rates for Internet writing. My purpose is not to put down anyone or any site useful for freelancers. My purpose is to caution those of you who may be starting out as professional writers — don’t expect to make much if you put most of your freelance hopes in these two websites.

I’m basing my comments on personal experience, as well as comments or “testimonials” I’ve gotten from other writers. I am in no way implying there is anything inherently wrong, deceptive, or unethical about these two websites. Let me restate what I said above: It has been my experience and the experience of trustworthy people I know that neither of these sites offers great opportunities for income:

1. Guru.com. I can’t say for sure, but I believe guru.com has been around the longest of the two sites I’m discussing here. I haven’t gone there in a couple of years because they were never useful to me. Though I checked them repeatedly, and my wife the proofreader also tried them, I never once got an offer or found an offer that even responded to me. The word I’ve gotten from friends who have gone there is that they have never gotten anything from them either. The comments I’ve heard, and which reflect my experience, are that guru.com is oriented much more toward businesses seeking freelancers than toward freelancers seeking work. I do know that their “free” services for freelancers have dwindled greatly from when they first started.

2. Elance.com. Elance is oriented more toward web coders, programmers, and graphics people than toward writers. It does target writers, however, and I’ve known writers who’ve gone there. The biggest knock I’m aware of for finding writing gigs through Elance is that the businesses and individuals who use them are even more eager to get dirt cheap workers than guru.com.

So what would I recommend? Frankly, I have yet to find a good source of freelance work through the Internet. A couple of months ago, I recommended writing articles to promote an affiliate marketing site and/or doing blog posts for money. I would love to hear any tips you, Good Readers, might wish to share with us. Or, for that matter, any particular sites you want to warn us to avoid. Enlighten us all.
[tags]Internet writing, writing as a business, poor freelance writing opportunities, writing for money, writing tips at garyspeer.com[/tags]

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