Writing For Free Hurts All Writers!
I figured you’d get a grimace out of this one. I queried a publication that was listed as a “paying market” in another publication. This was the editor’s response:
“Since we have an over abundance of writers who are willing to place articles with us we have not had to pay anyone yet. We just offer them credit and often post a photo and their email address so anyone who is interested in their services can access them easily.”
I wrote the editor a brief email recapping my experience in disaster recovery and also mentioned that according to the information I gathered the publication was listed as a paying market. Of course when I received the above reply, I passed. I have enough free opportunities with doing the dishes and serving meals.
I wish you could post this somewhere so that writers who write for free understand how they hurt our industry. Writers who write for free not only make it hard for other writers to get paying work, but they also devalue the service our work provides.
Thanks for your ear.
Dear Angela Hoy:
I thought the inquiry from the writer who discovered their latest book’s title was identical to another was amusing. It reminded me of a telephone interview I did a couple years ago for my magazine show (WNSV, V1047 FM, Nashville, IL) with former Defense Secretary Casper Weinberger whose autobiography was called “In The Arena.” The title was identical to that of at least two other books, one of which I was quite familiar with as it was one of Richard Nixon’s last books, an autographed copy of which I owned. Weinberger wrote about his discovery in his book and obviously went ahead anyway.
I add in closing that I’ve enjoyed your publication the last several years.
Sincerely, Nick Howes
Spamming Old Acquaintances
Regarding your response to Still Confused About What Is and Isn’t Spam…
I can make it even simpler. I would say that if the recipient of the e-mail isn’t a close enough friend/relative that they don’t know about your book unless they get your mass-mailing, then it’s spam (if unsolicited). So there’s no point in adding anyone to the list without a specific request.