INSULTING! “I need a writer to write my story but I don’t have money. Will they do it for a share of the royalties?”

INSULTING! “I need a writer to write my story but I don’t have money. Will they do it for a share of the royalties?”

Q –


I have a story that must be written. The world needs to see it! I’m certain movie companies will be interested in it. I am not a writer so I need someone to help me with it. I can’t pay them. I don’t mind sharing royalties with them but I can’t do the writing myself. Can you refer me to someone who can help me?


A –

This is actually a common question I receive and, to be completely honest, it’s insulting.

I’m not aware of any writer who would take on this project without expecting payment in advance. Lots of people try to find writers to write their stories for them, even offering credit and, occasionally, all royalties. But, writers will require payment up front for such a project. A lot of research would be involved (hundreds of hours) for someone who was not involved in the circumstances of the story. Also, for non-fiction, there are legal liabilities that writers must consider and the money they earn must make it worth the risk involved.

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2 Responses to "INSULTING! “I need a writer to write my story but I don’t have money. Will they do it for a share of the royalties?”"

  1. jedidiah manowitz  January 3, 2020 at 6:49 pm

    The public is incredibly stupid and optimistic. Although some are pure scams, these types of requests generally fit into Hanlon’s razor explanation.

  2. william adams, PE ,PhD  January 3, 2020 at 6:46 pm

    yet isnt that the model amazon ACX is pushing on VO artists to take a percentage of some self published writers audio book version of their not a best seller ebook instead of being paid the several hundred dollars a finished hour it costs to produce most audio books.