And I’ve got a job again.
I’m certain that there’s a million and one mummy bloggers out there that would argue the fact that being a stay at home parent IS in fact a job, and having lived that occupation for a month and a bit I’m not willing to debate that fact.
Not just because I agree with them but more so because I know exactly how short of a fuse looking after a child full time will leave you with so I’m just going to hover a thousand feet above those egg shells and concede the point. Honestly it’s fucking hard work. I dunno how some of those single mums have the time to take booty pics and be an instafisporationaltrepreneur when I can barely find the spare time to have a decent shave. I guess women really can multi-task better than men.
But when I say I have a job again I mean I have a job that’s going to deliver money into my bank account on a weekly basis in exchange for several hours of my life a couple of days a week.
Which means I can finally cut my dignity loose from noose of desperately trying to land some solid paying, regular freelance writing work.
Not that I actually ended up selling my dignity for a ludicrously low rate at any point in my illustrious multiple week career. And I still won’t say no to the right kind of job. But now I can actually afford to be picky with it rather than honestly contemplating doing the market research for an article on solar panels. (Bet you thought I’d say something like ‘Doing the market research for a job where I had to write descriptions for sex toys.’ Jokes on you, I was part way through researching sex toys when the job got taken from under me by an English-as-a-second-language-er who would do it for half the price. Apparently I got distracted while studying up. Awfully unlike me.)
And now that it’s somewhat behind me, I have the opportunity to sit back and reflect on the uniquely unfair mistreatment of those in the freelance creative industry.
Well, not all, just writers mostly.
If you recall from a previous post, I made mention of how I was made to submit an article to apply for a position as a freelancer with a certain unnamed website.
And also how clientele of that website often stipulated that they would retain all rights to the work you produce and that you couldn’t use your work in your own portfolio because they ‘wrote’ it not you.
And also that you were forced to bid on jobs like a street corner whore.
So we’ve got here a creative artistic job (If done correctly) that requires free samples, portfolios, haggling on a yet to be produced individually tailored piece that is entirely unique to the breif and the fact that you must relinquish all copyrights to your piece at the end of the job.
Kind of industry is this?!?
And more importantly who the fuck do these clients think they are?!?
Could you imagine trying to pull that shit on any other professional? You’d get laughed out of their office!
Ok the whine about a portfolio is admittedly just me trying to fill space, if you’re a creative you need one of those, but the rest is horse shit.
Imagine if you wanted to get a tattoo, but you tell the artist that they must first do a sample piece on you for no charge just so you can see if you like their style on your skin. Then if they do a good job, you’ll let them have your business. I know you pay to get stabbed in a tattoo studio but they’d likely give you a free stabbing. Just not the kind you’re demanding.
I can hear your argument now, ‘Tattooing takes talent and skill, not everyone can do it!’ Fuck yeah they can, anybody can pick up a tattoo gun and shove ink deep into the dermal sheath enfolding your meat suit. But not everyone can do a proper job of it.
The same as writing! We all have access to writing tools, but go check out just ONE argument about social justice on bookface and tell me if everyone there could be a writer. Cause I assure you, each ham fisted keyboard molester out there thinks they’ve got it in them and most have an even narrower lexicon than an overly excited Steve Irwin next to a raging crocodile orgy.
Here’s another analogy: I made mention in an earlier post about how my brain and its attention span are like a roller coaster through a forest of dangling razor wire with a jump through a flaming hoop into a pile of dog shit at the end in fast forward. And in that post I mentioned that I made rings out of wood.
I still do, check my insta out, I’ve just finished a couple more experiments recently. (It’s not a shameless plug when it’s your own website.)
Do you know how many people can make rings out of wood?
But doing it properly is fucking hard and takes forever to figure out.
Made well, they’re pretty sexy. But I don’t think I’ve ever seen two people make the same type of ring as each other, each artist makes unique work each time.
So imagine haggling with artist A because artist B, who makes something TOTALLY FUCKING DIFFERENT, is a totally fucking different price. But you think they should both be the same because they’re just a ring made of the same material right?
You’d have to have a head full of rotting dugong meat to think that makes sense!
And what do you think the reaction would be from both the tattoo artist or the jewellery artist if, at the end of it, you told them that they couldn’t display their work to the public upon completion and that you, the purchaser, now owned all the rights to the piece and will be taking full credit for it?
You’d get punched in the genitals faster than Peter Griffin hits the floor when he blacks out!
But it’s out there. The industry is rife with people doing this shit.
I will admit, for the purposes of a ghost writer, the point about retaining rights and intellectual property makes sense. It really does.
But if you’re telling an artist that you want them to take the words they’ve crafted and sweated over for hours and claim them as your own, you better be fronting up with some major mula because you’re claiming their artistry. That’s a big fucking call.
Artistic style and flair is unique to each individual and if you jump down the ladder to the next cheapest ghost writer each time you’re gunna get found out as a fraud god damn fast.
Pay your writers what they’re worth folks.
Just because someone CAN do something doesn’t mean they’re good at it.
And the cheapest price isn’t always the best work.
Because if you keep going for the cheaper and cheaper and cheaper writer each time, you’ll suddenly have Melania Trump spitting out Michelle Obamas words because some little shit in the Philippines copy pasted a speech for $50 less than a proper writer was charging to make a unique one.
But hey, a penny saved is a penny earned right?
Maybe that can be a bullet point in the ghost writers brief that the next amazon super-author can throw in before they ‘write’ their best selling ‘how to be an entrepreneur in 12 easy steps’ book.