Thursday, May 21, 2009

on writing for free

Go here for a thoughtful post by Tim Beyers on why writing for peanuts is worth just that.

When writing becomes "content" and desperate-for-work writers and newly-unemployed journalists write for free, or close to it, we all lose. Just say no. (I've ranted on this before here.)

From his post:
Helium sells content to publishers on the super cheap as participating writers collect crumbs. Of course a deal with Hearst is in the works. I’ll be shocked if other cash-strapped publishers don’t follow suit.

As a writer, I can attest to Helium’s allure. Write whatever you want on any topic and publish instantly? No waiting for a query response? No rejections? Sign me up.

And yet this very low bar is the literary equivalent of a siren call.

He follows with three good reasons why you shouldn't fall for it. bk

1 comment:

Tim Beyers said...


Thanks for your comment, I very much appreciate it. Helium has its place but I fear that would-be writers rely on it too much and for the wrong reasons. There's simply no substitute for working with a great editor.

Best regards,