You won’t get rich accepting freelance writing gigs that pay $15 for 4 hours of your time

There’s a job being advertised on A company is looking for writers willing to accept $15 to do the following:

1) We will mail you a DVD containing one episode of our TV series. An episode typically contains 2 project segments (typically around 7 minutes in length), and 1 or more tip segments (typically 2 to 4 minutes in length).
2) You will watch each segment completely before working on its content.
3) You will identify all steps of the project or tip and write a few sentences of text for each step. We will provide a writing guide, and a sample page demonstrating the type of writing we’d like to see. It’s easy stuff — most of what you’ll be doing is paraphrasing the narration from the video.
4) Using PowerDVD or another DVD playing software, you will take screenshots. You will save one video frame from each step which most accurately depicts that step in action.
5) You will compress all of the text and images into a ZIP archive, and you will email that archive to us at an address we will provide (we will provide you with free ZIP software if you need it).
6) We will mail you a check.

I don’t know about you but I personally think $15 sounds like highway robbery for what they describe.

From time to time I have to go out looking for writing gigs to try to raise some money. There are so many writers out there slaving for peanuts it’s amazing. The thing about having so many writers out there accepting peanuts for their time and talent is that it allows the people seeking the services of writers to pay them at rates for which they themselves would never work. Some try to justify it by insisting the job they are hiring the writer to do will only take 1 hour; thus the writer should consider $15 a fortune; but in reality these jobs never take an hour.

If you’re trying to become rich or even just trying to earn enough money to sustain yourself, accepting writing gigs that pay you $15 for 4 – 6 hours of work is not going to help you achieve either goal.

Note: I am guilty of paying peanuts to writers. I did it because it was all I could afford to pay and there were writers willing to accept the amount. It doesn’t excuse me, however, because I personally consider it an insult to be paid such a small amount for using my talent to benefit someone else; but I also understand the desperation that forces writers to accept such gigs. I’ve had to swallow my pride and accept a few myself.

In case you still want to work for $15 and you want the link to the craigslist ad here is the link: Freelance Home Improvement Writers Wanted – Work online ( In case the ad has expired by the time you get there you can contact to see if the job is still open )

Image: Writing by pedrosimoes7 via Flickr

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