Here at All Freelance Writing, we all abide to a strict no-getting-screwed policy. I like this policy. We also have an enjoy-your-freelance-writing-business policy, and I like this policy, too. I bring these policies up because I’m talking about doing freelance work when little to no money is involved.
I’ll agree with the following rules Jenn has beat into our brains (lovingly) throughout this blog:
- a member of your target market should be able to pay your rates
- free work that will help your career should advance your exposure, expertise, and platform (if you must do it) and it shouldn’t be considered part of your billable hours but part of your marketing time
Now, what about those love projects? Jenn doesn’t pay a crappy sum to her bloggers, but I know that most everyone who writes for Jenn on All Freelance Writing charges others more, often much more for their time. It could easily be eliminated from the scam category with the above two rules. I love writing for Jenn, and I have no doubt in my mind that I’d be doing it no matter what the cost, so I’m not complaining. I’m just illustrating the fact that sometimes, we freelance for the love of the freelance writing work.
I recently took up a gig that I know I will spend a lot of time on that does not pay. I took the gig without hesitation because I knew it was something I was excited about working on. No pay. Lots of time. Lots of motivation beyond money.
Sometimes, you’ve got to fill up the fuel tank next to the money tank. I’m not saying depressions in your business should send you off to write on whatever whimsical fancies you possess. I am saying that you should pay attention to what keeps you going, and focus on it.
I’m making a lot of changes to my freelance business, now, in light of so many things changing for me. If it wasn’t for this latest gig, I wouldn’t have been able to pinpoint some things I need to change. Epiphanies and growth are way better than revenue, to me at least.
Do you freelance for motivation beyond money?