Monday, October 19, 2009

First Article Sold!

I joined Constant Content a while back, but got busy with my other writing sites and never did anything with it. For those who aren't familiar with the site, it's one in which you can upload articles to sell for usage, unique or full rights. You choose your price. You also have the option of entertaining offers.

If it sells, Constant Content takes a commission of 35% of the sale price. Provided you have made at least $5 for the month, you get paid on the following payday, which occurs the first week of every month.

Earlier this month, I finally got around to doing something with the site. I wrote an article in response to a request for content. The request was for a basic overview of tummy tucks, around 400 words. I uploaded my article and priced it at $40 for full rights.

Two weeks to the day it was uploaded, it sold. After Constant Content's commission, I netted $26. While losing 35% to commission smarted a bit, I can't complain too much. Even with paying commission, I still made 6.5 cent per word on the article.

Now that my first article went so well, I'm going to try to keep up the momentum. My goal is to upload an article or two per week, either in response to requests or as something I think might sell well.

*Photo by StockXchange user Rawkus.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Weekly Resource RoundUp

Things have been so hectic lately that I haven't had a chance to compile the roundup for a couple weeks. Hopefully this week's mega roundup will make up for it.

Obviously none of us got into freelancing to work for free. However, there are some times when working for nothing can be good for your business. In a guest post at The Wealthy Freelancer, Michelle Goodman shares thoughts on when it works in your favor as well as things to watch out for.

Word of mouth is how many of us advertise our services. Check out these 18 essential tools for word of mouth marketing. While the list is geared more towards those with established brands, there are still some great tools for those in the process of building their name.

For many of us, working from home is a dream. There are so many different work at home jobs out there that you are sure to find something. Some jobs may surprise you.

We know about passive income, but what about passive job hunting? Dana Prince offers tips on self-promotion so the clients come to you without you having to hunt them down.
If you are a work at home parent, it can be hectic. The Work at Home Woman offers some great tips to balance life, work and family.

If you are trying to get a book published, be sure to check out the SFWA Thumbs Down Agency List. The literary agents and agencies on the list have had a high number of complaints or have other issues that might make you rethink hiring them.

Chris Brogan shares some great tips on how to blog almost every day. Now I just need to put these tips into practice.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The Fine Line Between Busy and Overwhelmed

With my phlebotomy clinicals starting this week (tomorrow to be exact), I've been doing a lot of thinking on how I am going to balance everything. I already juggle being a SAHM, going to school 2 nights a week, handling the business end of my husband's business, dealing with his chronic illness and freelance writing. Now, with the addition of clinicals three days a week, I am wondering if my plate isn't getting a little crowded.

There is a fine line between busy and overwhelmed. Whether you are a stay at home parent trying to earn some extra money or a full-time employee freelancing on the side until you build your business enough to quit your day job, this line is something you will encounter at some point. How you handle it says a lot about you.

Personally, I thrive on being busy. I seem to do my best work when a deadline is bearing down on me. This weekend for the very first time, I participated in one of NAA's pushes. With the incentive of $1.75 extra per article, I wanted to knock out as many articles as possible. I ended up doing 16 articles in two days, three of which were over 500 words. Considering my husband was in the hospital (yes again), my daughter was cranky because she missed him and I was fighting a respiratory bug, I'm amazed at how much I was able to do. But it all goes back to the deadline. I knew I needed to do as much as I could during those two days of extra pay.

However, there does come a point when I get overwhelmed. When this happens, I break down and do the one thing I hate to do. I ask for help. In many cases, it doesn't take a lot to get me over the hump-a friend babysitting for a couple hours, a family member jumping in to quiz me on my notes for class or my husband telling me to take a nap rather than visit him at the hospital.

Where are you on the line between busy and overwhelmed? If you cross over to overwhelmed, how do you handle it?

*Photo by Ryan Smart.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Freelance Progress Report: September 2009

September got off to a bumpy start with first my husband, then my daughter and finally me getting sick. I ended up not working for pretty much the entire first week and have been playing catch up all month to try to get to my income goal. Unfortunately, I didn't quite make it to my goal of $400. But considering I missed a week of work, I'm not displeased at coming in just $36.93 short. I ended up with $363.07 in writing income this month.

Since Ecopywriters is supposed to be implementing a system to cut down approval time, I decided to hold onto them for now. I did get paid for one of my articles, but the last one is still pending. I spoke to the operations manager and she said it should be paid soon. They haven't had much selection so I only managed two articles this month.

There was a little snafu with my payment. For some reason, Paypal blocked the payment even though it had let one through previously. I ended up having to go in and change some settings before it could go through. Then, Paypal charged me a fee. I'm a bit perturbed about that. While I know I can write it off as a business expense, I don't understand why I got charged a fee. According to Suz, payments were made the same way. Payments from other sites were not charged fees. Paypal says the transaction was coded as a purchase

The Breakdown
2 articles-$21.40
Total to date-$56.48

I'm really loving NAA. Most of my work this month was done for two clients. I did do occasional articles for other clients to give myself a break every once in a while. After writing so many articles on the two topics, I think it would be safe to call myself an expert. I'm really excited about the newest feature on the site. It is an option for clients to tip writers. I am curious to see how this affects my income.

The Breakdown
62 articles-$336.40
Total to date-$739

I had hoped to have time to work on a little for Associated Content and Ehow this month, but it didn't quite work out. Since they both provide residual income, I would like to increase this by adding a few more articles to each every month. If you stopped by Ehow to check out my husband's article that I mentioned in the last progress report, thank you. The increase in views thrilled him and he's talking about doing more. On a good note, I think this month will be the one where I finally reach payout. I'm only $1.31 away.

Associated Content Breakdown
June PV bonus-$2.16
Total to date-$121.73

Ehow Breakdown
September PV earnings-$3.11
PV earnings to date-$8.69

I don't know if I'm just logging in at bad times or what, but Text Broker hasn't had a lot of level 4 articles for me this month. The few I have saw weren't topics I was interested in. I didn't do a single article for them this month.

I did put in a few bids on jobs this month, but lost out to people who were willing to take less money. While I don't expect professional rates, I'm not going to write a 500 word article for $1-2.

*Image by Christian Ferrari.