When I started out in freelancing on the web, the conversation was all about price – price per word, price per hour, price per article. That kind of conversation really hurts writers because it places the focus on the wrong aspect of writing (the word count or time count) rather than the right aspect: the value of your work for clients and for you.
Price vs Value – Hard Lessons
Of course, I learned this the hard way. Some of my early freelancing gigs were for a copywriting agency which paid a set fee per word. At the time, I was happy to have the work, because it meant I was actually making money from writing, but I soon realized that not all word counts were alike. There were some articles where I knew the subject so well that I needed no research to turn out something good. There were others where I had to do lots of research before writing, and still others where picky clients made the process a nightmare. All paid the same per word rate, but they all took a different toll in terms of time, effort and emotional energy.