I have continued my excursions into writing. Creative writing by freelancing though personally satisfying is fraught with con artists. They love your work but they do not like to pay. Some of my best experiences have been without contracts. Freelance editors willing to read your book and improve it rank near the top. They give honest opinions about the writing. Joining up with a group of writers to do a larger project creatively has been the top ranked experience. Their dedication to the craft and personal ethics astound me. Working together we have been able to pay our bills, buy a different car, go to a restaurant, share faith, and survive an awful unfair client. I have never met any of those writers personally, but because of the shared experience it creates a bond between writers.  Because of their faithfulness to their craft and personal values it often restores my faith in humankind. They were not American. I did work with American writers but  it was difficult. I  can say it because I am American. Several American writers went on to fabulous jobs after leaving our writer group hanging on some project. Fortunately one of the other writers took up the assignment and the clients were kind that it was a day late. Others American writers fawned to steal assignments from other writers or to curry favor. The American need for endless competition brings out the worse in us especially where money is concerned.

The Way of It

I have a disability that demanded a lifestyle change. Writing came as a recommendation from doctors or more precisely do the arts. Stay away from the perfectionists. Your personality type needs that to create less stress and not aggravate your condition. I had $5000 from the disability insurance company who shafted me. I paid for a contract for years that stated they would pay 2/3 of my salary for 5 years if I became disabled.Unfortunately for me the condition doctors diagnosed me with listed as physical and nervous. The insurance company chose nervous and paid the school instead for the days I missed. Except I had only missed three days in my entire career so the district and state compensation days covered nearly all my days. I only got the $5000 and was sentenced to a life of poverty. So I paid off my house and car to survive. Took courses at the Institute of Writers for children and adult writing to prepare for a new career. Did the resume and the Great Recession demanded I think outside the box.  Digital platforms arose during that time and I signed up. They pay.  They may not pay much but they always pay. Most of the contracts have simple clauses. You get experience with many people, many types of writing, and many clients. A few places have mechanisms to deal with unreasonable clients. Mostly they just ask the writer to leave. You can have many clients that find your writing style useful for their business or needs and just one client being extremely unreasonable changes it. Despite the contracts no protections exist. That is wrong. The client can demand only as much as they are willing to pay FAIRLY for that is what the labor laws says. You have clients who are paying a half a penny a word demanding magazine or academic level work. Digital platform writing is an extremely competitive business. I watched a brilliant company go down in 2 months shafted during an acquisition. You almost never blame the company since you understand what the client is doing to them. Of course they are going to choose their survival over yours. The gift becomes it’s the Internet and somewhere globally hundreds of new companies are starting and the possibility exists for an interesting job. All they care about is the quality of your work. Like Jesus a fresh start everyday.


A project manager/editor who I worked under decided to try a writing service. He was from India and had two teenagers. College was in the not too distant future. He sets up the business and we use the Internet tools. He hires the writers. It worked for nearly 3 years. We had a small list of clients. I learned how to Elance, Guru, and search for freelance jobs. We had a few American jobs who dishearteningly made prejudicial comments which infuriated me to no end. We worked Canadian, South African, Australian, and Indian companies and they went by the quality of the work. Ethical, paid on time and all good experiences. So Trump and his group come along and in the year he is campaigning the amount of verbal diarrhea increases on the job boards as well as the amount of LIES. The UNFAIRNESS factor increases and it no longer becomes about the quality of the work but your pedigree. Are you white? Are you a native English speaker? How about good fuck from you of course stated in the professional terms and you can work for me? All signs of a deeper level of corruption coming to the surface that our nation likes to hide. In good work relationships you do not want the people you work with abused. So what do you do when you have administration that verbally assaults and abuses people as a public display of a warped sense of power? That poison spreads into the areas that are not as protected by law. I for one am not having the people who stood by me in my darkest hours abused by such verbal trash.


Contracts are all about protecting the company not the worker. In it will be provisions for the worker only because the government labor laws insist they be there.  Traditional publishing is corrupt. They do not keep their promises but string you along. If I did things their way I would have had to file bankruptcy. That is their point. It is a by product of outrageous competition. I make a children’s book with the art of brown people and all of a sudden it is not good enough. Not worth the publisher’s attention and I am not worth sending an email that family obligations happened. I ghostwrite mostly because the system is set up that way. I have the emails to prove some high level professional people hired me to present their information in publications and online. Confidentiality agreements prevent me from sharing some of my work.  The journalist who shafted my writer’s group was good enough to get in that next level. The companies I have worked for including some high level corporations which I cannot name due to the agreements outsource work to writers and go to grand lengths to be fair despite the abysmal ethics of this administration and congress. The small businesses I worked for globally were fair. Who has been the most unfair to me has been the United States of America businesses particularly in some areas of writing and in insurance. Small business owners in American bend over backwards to be fair if you are a small business owner too. Those are delightful to work for. Everyone has pulled back due the unfairness of the political environment now.


Creating your own small business is suppose to be about freedom and values. The billionaires are not self made people. They stepped on many businesses and individuals intentionally to get what they got or parents died and left it to them. They are traitors to this country. Some want to be royalty and make slaves and peasants. It is why the laws force them to do social responsibility, charity, and foundations. This economy consists of 97% small businesses which this administration and this congress are trashing.  Freedom takes vigilance as any small business owner knows. Freedom happens when you are fair and you pay a fair wage for the work done.


I still can do business without a contract and get paid if I do it alone. Most small business owners will pay you no matter what and insist on it. It is a common value among the group. You can do writing service by email. People will answer you honestly. Have discussion with you what their business needs are or are not. They even collaborate. It is much harder to team now which is how you make bigger money. The risk because of the government rhetoric and ways is too great. Your team will get hurt now unless you have a lot of protection. You do get harassed now about your heritage and your writer’s heritage. You no longer can trust the government to help you in a situation because in a writing service much goes by your value and integrity. Mostly common sense guides you. Before you could maintain your integrity and your writer group integrity. You can no longer guarantee that. Clients will ask you to do things they would not before. As a writer you do not want to put other writers in that situation. Surprisingly people were fairly honest even to the point confessing that they had done things less than ethical in the past. Now most everyone tells a set of what I call “urban professional lies”. Lying is not all bad it is something we do for protection.  It is not safe so they lie. Who the threat is are the institutions that were protecting us. Writers do not have much protection to begin with but they have even less now.

Is it Worth It

On a personal level writing is worth it especially when you can tell a truth, create something intriguing or give an honest opinion. You can still do that but it does cost you. The freedom of social media because of all the verbal assaults on it at people who expressed an opinion or pointed illegal activity or unethical ways to this government has been wounded. Other countries who admired us for that are reluctant to word play or have opinions with us because our country is no longer trustworthy. Even if you as a person are trustworthy and able to discuss on social media the government rhetoric sits right by your posts name calling, violating civil liberties relentlessly, lying outright, flip flops just to disrupt, and all because a set of constituents felt they were not being heard. Well they were not being listened to but instead of taking it out on the government and dealing with their local representative they attacked other Americans. Writers express opinions based on research. You have differing perspectives on topics.  America is having an uncivil war playing out across social media and media. We have cease fires, truces, and hot spots. Writers like anyone else have to pay bills, feed kids, and have a life. Because of the nature of the business of writing you know at some point your words will get attacked or your creation no matter how much research you have done and it will be unfair. Not a legitimate discussion or a preference but outright unfair.  It is still worth it to stand by your words. It is still worth it to make the attempt to maintain your integrity. Even if you fall everyday is a new day and a renewal of that promise to yourself and your craft. We write alone most of the time. We depend on others research to make sure our words are true, and that the content reflects the reality or the premises of our own creation. It is my own inner writer voice that I have to deal with.