A Confession and One Reason For Writers to Smile

True bloggers are incredibly dedicated people who consistently deliver real-life insight to us online. They can’t possibly be paid enough for that, but some good companies do pay them and that is great.

I am a writer with a sort of blog-thing: inconsistent, mostly about where to find my writing, and whatever else happens to be on my mind. I don’t get paid for this so it isn’t my focus, but I do try to maintain it as a place where you can check out my words.

Not sure it deserves to be called a blog … BUT at least it isn’t phony. Yeah, I said it, PHONY.

I was contacted the other day by a freelance client. A company I had not queried, but had they had found my CV and some articles online and liked my voice. They wanted me to blog for them. When we started discussing terms, they wanted to contract a lot of articles up front. They wanted a certain number of keywords in each, things I had no problem with doing that were related to the subject.

But then they wanted links to their other websites in the blog posts. Unrelated websites. They wanted me to slip in their other brand’s phrasing to articles unrelated to that brand. And the blog would not be carrying a clear statement that it was related to those sites. What they truly wanted was advertising copy disguised as original content. Actually, they wanted it disguised as a personal blog.

Thanks, but I am not that writer. And I’m tired of turning down green money for not being PHONY so perhaps I’ll reference this post on my CV.

This freelancer can write sales copy that closes, website copy that turns visitors into customers, and original articles that readers remember. I won’t be phony for a buck.

In the long run, I think customers appreciate that. So I guess if you’re looking for return business, you might want someone like me.
How many “blogs”/websites have you read in the past week and forgotten in five minutes? The headlines grabbed your attention but the content was lame, soulless, often nothing more than links to other sites’ content connected by sentences.

Have you noticed that this is even common on “news” sites? Try reading around some of the free culture or news sites like Huffington Post or Slate for a while and see how long it takes before you end up on another site. Not by clicking on an ad, mind you, but by reading what appears to be an article.

What does it mean? If you are a writer like me, celebrate. Smile a little bit every time you end up switching websites.

Because nobody sends you away from their own site if they have enough relevant, engaging, content to support a profit. Everyone needs good content. They just might not know it yet. As long as sites keep trying to sell more advertising to support advertising-laden content, or content from other sites, their readers are leaving. They are curators as much as publishers.

Sure, we have room for some good curating sites, and even really good sites like Slate and the New York Times will sometimes send their huge audiences to another site, but EVERYONE is curating now. Fewer and fewer sites create unique content.

What everyone needs is unique content to curate. And good writers to write it. Don’t sell your skills short.

It takes time but you can find clients. The key is in putting out a few really well-matched queries, not a lot of random ones. At least that’s what’s working for me. I am not getting rich here but in less than a year have developed three regular clients and been published in several other publications. I have a fourth possible regular gig in development … maybe. Not bad for a part-timer who took a few months off for brain surgery.

Plus, I’m making a confession. I am not a blogger, but a writer who blogs now and then to tell my readers what I’m up to. So at the top, it will soon no longer say blog at all. I would never want to be phony, not even by accident.


2 thoughts on “A Confession and One Reason For Writers to Smile”

  1. Great post! So sorry you got into all that only to find out it was for nothing. I once had someone email me about how my site would go great with some advertisements for casinos…keep doing what you do!

  2. Casinos? Ashley there’s something I’m missing there 🙂 And you keep going too. You are a good writer. I want to put you on my signed book shelf.

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