Is it Better to Write for Money or for Artistic Expression?
I never considered myself to be one of those people who write for money. It’s not something I’m entirely against but this is the kind of act that has been subjugated to many a snubbed nose. In fact the concept itself is typically considered to be insulting, degrading and shameful.
According to the world at large, as writers we are supposed to be writing because we have a profound love of grammatical phrases, honing our craft and because it’s what we do.
It’s almost as if we should hang our heads in shame for selling out and accepting a few measly dollars for the brilliant masterpieces that flow from our fingers.
We should be raising the rooftops with cries of outrage at the very idea that our writing is worth less than a hundred thousand dollar advance and contract with Random House; and until we get that contract everything we write should only be for the exposure.
There is a misconception floating around that there are only two types of writers; the starving artist type and the best seller type.
While I agree that we should definitely strive to perfect our work as much as humanly possible and be grateful for all the exposure we get I do not believe that there’s no place in between for the not so well known and the not so starving writer.
Collecting a few bucks here and there for writing articles isn’t such a bad gig. It may not have me driving a brand new BMW but it does give me the right to say I’ve sold my work. As you can hopefully tell by now, I am one of those people who will write for money.
Coming from a background in writing fiction, I’ve had to fight my own feelings of guilt. There are those who might consider me to be a sell out for putting my pen to paper in order to make a few dollars and that’s ok, somebody’s got to pay the bills.
Not all of us can be Stephen Kings and Nora Roberts, some of us have to be writers who get paid.
Since I’ve discovered I can get paid for writing articles at places like Associated Content I’ve had more inspiration and written more than I have in a long time.
Spending day after day working on artistic endeavors in hopes of getting them to the right publisher has at times left me feeling dejected and weary.
Nothing kills the muse faster than depression and just feeling like my work is worth something is enough to raise my moral.
I have found out that when I don’t feel like writing, the knowledge that there will be a dollar sign coming my way is push enough to get my carcass off the pity party bus and into my thinking cap.
Exposure isn’t always the best thing in the world for us writers. Sometimes we need to buy groceries or put gas in our cars.
When the electricity is going to be shut off it doesn’t matter whether or not the article you wrote should be featured in The Times, what matters is keeping the lights on for a few more days.
There are days when the best thing we can have happen to us, is finding an email in our inbox informing us our latest article was published.
I would like to know who came up with the idea that accepting a small amount of money for our articles is despicable. I’d like to know why I should feel bad for turning my creative epics over for cash.
Doctors do not see patients for free because they don’t work at John Hopkins University, lawyers don’t defend killers for free just because they aren’t senior partner of the firm, engineers don’t give away their blueprints because they aren’t Archimedes and I won’t just give my writing over to anyone for free either.
So I’m raising the flag for the writer who writes to get paid. I herald your cause and I’m cheering you on for your devotion and hard work.
Accept the write for pay jobs with your head held high, take that bid for $8 and know that you are indeed a published writer.
Write on word warriors for your battle is not in the writing itself, arm yourself with vocabulary you worthy scribblers and publish those articles, columnists, in the name of writing to get paid. I don’t call it selling out, I call it journalism.