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Sunday, October 21, 2012

What do Markets Pay Today? The Latest Rates

One of the challenging aspects of freelancing is the lack of information about what markets pay. While many freelance markets post their rates online, others do not. And I can tell you that posted rates are almost always the least a market will pay. Publications often pay their regular contributors higher rates, and will offer more money for articles that require writers to perform extensive research or have a specialized background, for example. 

That's one reason I talk about money and encourage other writers to do the same. It also helps prevent you from falling into the trap of writing for pennies, or for "exposure," because you don't know any better. 

Market rates vary, I've gathered some recent rate info to keep in mind: 

Print markets 
Major national magazines: $1-3/word (it's rare to get $3/word but it happens!) 
Smaller/niche national magazines $0.25-$1/word

Trade magazines: $0.20-.50/word
Regional magazines: $0.10-50/word
Custom magazines: $0.50-$1/word+

Online markets 
Blogs: $50-500 for posts of 500-800 words 
Articles $0.25-$1/word

Books (including ghostwriting) Book proposals $3,500-8,000+ (this is lower than a couple of years ago) 
Full-length books $10,000-35,000+ (+royalties, in some cases)

Other work 
Consulting $100/hour+
Editing $25-50/hour, on average, depending on the type of editing and the project
Proofreading $15-25/hour+


Remember that what you're paid (even if it's a lot!) is only one factor when you decide whether to write for a particular market. Consider how long a piece will take to research and write so you have an idea of what you make not only per-word, but per-hour. Aiming for a high per-hour rate (or gradually increasing yours over time) is what will help you develop and sustain a successful freelance career. 

**New to this blog or to freelancing in general? If your'e just getting started, I've got several ebooks that will help you launch your freelance writing career: 
Or check out my latest full-length book, Writer for Hire: 101 Secrets to Freelance Success, for a comprehensive look at what it takes to build a career as a writer of short nonfiction.