Wednesday, November 25, 2020

The Last 10,000 Words are the Hardest

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay 
I have five days to go to finish a novel. I can see the end in sight. My five characters have worked through some experiences and they will soon come to some conclusions. Maybe five main characters is too many for a 50,000 word novel. I'm a bit confused about how these last few chapters will go.

It's about a group of girls living in Dublin, circa 1989. Geraldine has decided she doesn't want to become a nun after all. She cites family reasons as the excuse for not taking her vows at the current juncture. But she will never go back. Yvonne and her boyfriend Paul are both coming to terms with the fact that even though they like and respect each other a whole lot, the relationship isn't going to work out. They might as well end it, and move on.  But what Yvonne doesn't know is that Paul fancies Geraldine. A lot. What will she say when she finds out? Because she will. Ruth has escaped from her oppressive family home and lives with a kind aunt. But she and her boyfriend Leo are about the turn a corner in their relationship and their lives will be forever altered. Angie has decided to marry the boy her parents have chosen (she's from an Irish-based Indian family). But she has her own terms and conditions for the marriage to take place. Marian is waiting patiently for her boyfriend Yash in India to overcome his difficulties so they can get married but it looks like he won't be able to return to Ireland. She'll have to go to India. 

Yeah, I've taken lots of inspiration from my own life and the lives of my friends. But it's only inspiration. These characters are different people. I can see them in my head. They look totally different from any friends of mine. 

I only have 10,000 words left to finish the story. Will it be enough?

I really want to finish it by the 30th. 

Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Writing Updates - NaNoWriMo 2020 - 'What I Want to Know'

Courtesy of
It's ten years since I did my first NaNoWriMo. That's National Novel Writing Month. Only it's not. It's a challenge based in San Francisco in the USA. But as lots of people accept the challenge of writing a novel in a month from various countries, it's really International Novel Writing Month. But who cares?   The result was an 80,000-word novel called 'Festival of Lights'. I just gave ebooks to my friends. Some of them liked it very much. I wrote a few more after that. I finished another novel a few years later called 'The Wife of Abraham'. That was an 80,000-word novel too. I haven't shown that to anyone. Yet. It's a love story set in Biblical times. Every Christian and Jew knows that Abraham and Sarah were one of the ideal couples in the Bible. Nearly as ideal as Joseph and Mary. They had a long marriage and stood by each other through good times and bad. But it's often overlooked that Abraham had another woman. Her name was Hagar. She has often been dismissed as a mere servant, someone who was used as a stand-in or a surrogate for Sarah, who was barren. Hagar was much more than that. She was the first woman in the Bible after Eve to have conversations with God. She even had her own name for God. She called Him 'the One who Sees me'. The more I read about her, the more interested I became to tell her story. I really should edit that and try to get it published. Maybe. Would anyone out there be interested in a Biblical romance? Perhaps.

I just added the word count for my latest effort 'What I Want to Know'. I found a nice word count meter on a site called Language is a Virus. It's a story about five northside Dublin girls working out their destiny. It's set in 1989. I was living in Dublin in 1989. I've used lots of happenings and stories from my life in those days to make my novel interesting. But anyone reading the book (if I show it to them) can take it that while I may have drawn inspiration from my friends and our stories together, these characters are works of fiction. They may be a blend of some of my friends but each one is unique and bears no resemblance to anyone I know living or dead et cetera, et cetera, et cetera, as King Mongkut used to say. He was the King of Siam played by Yul Brynner in 'The King and I', the Hollywood musical co-starring Deborah Kerr. The scriptwriter used to have the king waffling on and saying 'et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.' That's writers for you. The real King Mongkut probably never said anything of the sort. Mrs Anna Owens the 'English' governess wasn't English either. History has revealed that she was Anglo-Indian and a bit of a chancer. But the story was interesting and somewhat romantic.

Would you like to see my book? The one I'm writing at the moment called 'What I Want to Know?' Do you like the cover? I designed that with a little help from Canva.

Thanks to Canva for Design Help

I wrote a novel last month on a site called Gothnowrimo. That's a forum that encourages writers to write a Gothic novel in the month of October. I wrote a historical novel set in a hill station in India. I called it 'Ravenswood Mahal'. I had a lot of fun writing that. I showed it to my friend Anne who lives in Australia and she told me she enjoyed it. Once this month is over, I'll have to revise and edit a fair bit.

Monday, August 19, 2019

Blog Writing is Real Work

Blogging as a Hobby
When it first began, blogging was seen as a hobby. Weblogs or online diaries started out as a bit of fun. I remember ten years back, keeping a blog. People would come and comment on my blog and I’d go over and comment on theirs. From my home in India, I made friends all over the world. But then over time, something became noticeable. Some blogs were making money. Others were not. Why was this?

The World Moves Online
As the world moved online, many companies started up websites. After some time, blogs were an intrinsic part of the website. A blog was an updatable, interactive part of the site. Many companies discovered that sharing valuable content affected their conversion rates.

Blog Reading Broadens the Mind
A blog can still be a hobby. It’s fascinating to read the blogs of different people. It could be the musings of a farmer’s wife in Australia. Or the blog of a minimalist homemaker in California. A blog can take you out of your everyday life and into another world. It can broaden your mind in the way that travels used to be able to do.

Valuable Content for Readers
There’s a world of difference between a ‘hobby’ type of blog and a business blog. A ‘hobby’ blog might be the best read in the world. The writer is writing for their own satisfaction as opposed to any business purpose. They may share family news. Their son got married, their daughter passed the examination. Whatever. They may discuss a book they’ve read recently and how it affected them. They may share recipes. Some people may find such content valuable. Others may not. It’s a matter of taste.

Business Content
When a business shares content, you won’t find too many personal details. No recipes or recently read books. Unless these things belong to the industry in which the business operates. Businesses like to publish posts on the latest trends in their respective industries. Even if the content isn’t breaking news, it could be another way of looking at a favourite topic. You may find listicles giving you tips like ‘Ten Ways To Improve Your Efficiency in the Office’. Content which we’ve read hundreds of times before. But presented in a way that is new and refreshing.

Preparing a Business Blog Post
Supposing you’re working for an IT company and you’re preparing a blog post for their website. You can’t write the first thing that comes into your head. First of all, you have to find a relevant topic which will capture the interest of the people in the IT world. Most people are aware that Java is the most popular computer language. But how many people are aware that the popularity of Python is growing? If you want to write on this topic, you have to do the research. You must have the facts and figures to back up the news of this growing popularity. Or suppose you’re in the finance world? Everyone knows that Bitcoin is the most popular cryptocurrency so far. But Bitcoin will not be able to go on forever. It’s programmed to come to an end in the future. So what will be the next big cryptocurrency? This is something people would like to know more about. If this is your topic, it’s not an easy one to take up. So you have to do the homework. Research those topics on reputable websites. Have the facts and figures at your fingertips to back up your ideas.

Much More Than Writing
For this type of blog post, there’s a lot of time spent researching. Only when you've completed the research and drawn up a template for the article, you can begin to write. You need to provide quality content, the type to which people can refer with confidence. Then, when you write, you must check to ensure the grammar and spelling are all correct. You also have to pick out some relevant keywords and ensure that they appear in the post. This is so that people Googling this type of information will find your post and read it. But you have to be careful to ensure that you don’t overdo the keywords either. Otherwise, your post could be viewed by Google as spam. Nobody wants that. Google will penalise the post so that it never appears in the SERPS (search engine result pages).

Producing Valuable Content
So as you can see, producing valuable content is a skill. Many companies hire blog writers to produce top-quality content for their blogs. Writers who write for the top companies can do well. Not all companies would have the budget to pay top writers though. But it appears that there are plenty of writers available for every level of work.

Approached for Work
A few months back, a businessman approached me online. I also mentioned this in my previous post. He informed me of the wonderful news that he had selected me to write his company blog. He had seen my answers on Quora and had been very impressed. He informed me that his blog had a wide readership. He added that the publicity I would get would bring me great exposure. Then I asked about payment. He replied that as his company was a startup ‘no payment now but sure in future’. He wanted two articles per month of 1000 words each. After some consideration, he decided he would pay the sum of Indian Rupees ₹100 per post. That’s about $1.50. I declined that generous offer. I explained to him that I couldn't spend the amount of time it takes to write two 1000 word articles per month. Especially for such a small amount of money. Writers have to eat and pay their bills. Blogging and article writing are not leisure time activities. At least not for those who are trying to earn their living by writing.

Content Writing Companies
I sent him some links to Indian content writing companies. Like the European-based one for which I write. He could get his 1000 word blog post for ₹750 if he shops around. I’ve no idea what he did, though. I wasn't interested enough to follow it up. By now, he might have realised the value of good content. He should also realise how much he should be ready to pay for it.

Thanks to Geraltmohamed_hassan, DarkWorkX and kaboompics at Pixabay for the wonderful images. My eternal gratitude to you.

Monday, August 5, 2019

Freelance Writer Woes

Where To Find Freelance Writing Work?

Like many freelance writers, I am signed up to several content writing marketplaces. But today, to my utmost surprise, there is simply no work. This is something new for me. A few months ago, I was making a regular amount of money every month. Now I'm lucky if I can make even half of that. amount in twice the amount of time.  I wonder what happened? I'm signed up with three platforms. Two of them never showed me a single job, but that didn't matter because the third one gave me as much I could handle. But now, the well of work appears to have completely dried up.

Content Writing Marketplaces

Many freelance writing experts warn newer writers against signing up for the 'content mills'.I've heard all the arguments. 'It's a race to the bottom. You'll never make money', they say. But I've also come across people online who claim to be making thousands of dollars a month writing for these sites. Now, who is telling the truth?  Freelance writing teachers claim to sell you courses that will help you make heaps of money. But is this anti-content-mill-rhetoric a sales ploy?

How to Make Money on a Content Writing Site

There's one sure way to make money on a content writing site. Get the customer to send you direct orders. They'll pay you a top rate and you'll be paid your worth. I've lost count of the number of times I've been asked would I accept direct orders. The trouble is, the orders sometimes don't come in the end. When clients realise that the rate for direct orders is far higher than the normal rate, many of them suddenly develop amnesia. They pretend they never asked you to write for them. It's such a shame.

Writing is Real Work

Writing is real work. It is time consuming. It is resource consuming. You may have to switch on your computer and your lights in order to do that work. You have to spend time and energy composing sentences and inserting keywords seamlessly. You must fit your piece into the right word count. So yes, it's definitely real work. It may be sedentary, but man it can tire you out. So we've pretty much established that writing is real work. But I once got an enquiry to this very website from a businessman who wanted regular 1000 word articles from me for his website. He couldn't pay anything as he was only starting out, he said. But he would pay in the future. I'm not the first freelance writer to get an offer like that and I won't be the last. But it's amazing how that still continues to happen. Because some business people, who should know better, don't place any value on content.

Cold Emailing? Isn't That Spam?

According to some of the freelance writing coaches out there, cold emailing is the surest way to gather clients. High paying clients who pay big money. Really? But isn't going into someone's inbox without an invitation considered to be bad manners nowadays? I suppose, like everything else in life, it just depends. See, these coaches tell you that all you have to do is gather some email addresses, compose a craftily worded email with a killer headline and bingo! High paying clients will now come crawling out of the metaphorical woodwork. Wouldn't that be great? With my luck, the cold email would end up in the spam box where it will be deader than a doornail. in 30 days' time. Meanwhile, the freelance writing coach is laughing all the way to the Caribbean. I have received emails from at least two freelance writing coaches, claiming to be relaxing by the sea in the Caribbean while their business takes care of itself. Well, good for them!

Thanks to Canva Design and Pixabay Images

Friday, September 21, 2018

A Rotten Apple

Was I Fooled?

Did you ever feel that someone or something had deceived you? That you'd gone out in all sincerity to make something happen, only to find someone had misled you? Yep, that's what happened to me. It seems I'm a rare type of person. Someone who's unhappy with a certain company named after a tempting fruit. This company has a great reputation for outstanding products and world class service. A company which has left me with a very bad aftertaste.

What Happened?

I'd never bought myself an Apple product before. Those products are rather pricey and I'm watching every rupee . But I recently bought an Apple iPhone SE for my 17 year old daughter, who had done well in her Class 10 Examinations. She'd been longing for an iPhone, so when I found one within reach of my budget, I went for it. So one day last April (2018), the iPhone SE arrived. My daughter was happy, so I was too. But unfortunately, the happy ending didn't last for long. Sometime in mid-August the phone died. It refused to charge and wouldn't switch on. So, being the actual owner of the phone, I brought it into the Lucknow service outlet for Apple. I thought our troubles would soon be over. 

What Happened Next?

A few days after leaving the phone at the centre, I received a phone call. It was the centre, advising me to take my iPhone set away. Had they repaired it, I asked? No, came the reply. Apple experts in Bangalore had discovered a tiny scratch on the lens of the rear camera. This had rendered my iPhone warranty null. The service centre representative asked if I wished to replace the iPhone with a new model. At a cost of Rs.21,500. Which was more than the price I'd paid for the original phone. There was no other offer of help. I declined the replacement opportunity. It didn't seem fair to me. Besides, I didn't have the funds available. 'Madam, please come and take away your set,' were the curt instructions. There was nothing that the so-called service centre could do. It was a case of 'take your phone away and get lost'.

What Could I Do?

I contacted Flipkart, the online shop where I'd bought the phone. Flipkart expressed the usual regret and hoped I'd continue to use their service. Once the ten day Flipkart replacement period is over, the matter is out of this company's hands. So I had to approach Apple personally. What followed was one of the greatest time-wasting exercises I've ever experienced.

Customer Service Line

Apple customer service executives are highly-trained professionals. They speak kindly. They hear you out. They listen without interrupting. They give you their personal (office) phone number. They assure you that your case is foremost on their minds. They also assure you that they will stop at nothing to get your case solved. You hang up the phone feeling that you'll get some redressal at the earliest. When you check your phone after the chat, you may find that you spent around 40 minutes on the phone.  You feel satisfied that someone has heard you. That soon you'll be holding your iPhone in your hands again. Only it isn't true. Because Jyotika/Nafisa/Ilyas/Saurav will never call you back. Not in your wildest dreams. Try dialling the personal phone number they provide you with. You'll hear a recorded message, telling you to leave your name and number. You're assured of a call back within 24 hours. But all you'll get is an email saying they are trying to reach you and can't get through. So you again call the customer service number and the cycle begins anew. Being the trusting soul that I am, it took me four attempts understand the truth. That Jyotika/Nafisa/Illyas/Saurav were non-existent. Yes, I'd met them on the phone. But each time, the experience was like going through the same movie with the same script. Again and again and again. It reminded me of a movie I once saw about a guy who fell in love with a hooker. All was well until he attempted to relate to her outside the fantasy world they'd created. He discovered that nothing about her was genuine. Her name, her persona, her hair, her background, the things she'd said, had all been fiction. The person he'd fallen for had no substance, no reality. Well, I hadn't fallen in love with any of these people, but you get the picture. And I felt like they'd deceived me.

What I've Learned

Ah, life lessons. Aren't they great? Where would we be without them? Here's what I've learned from this (forgettable) experience in easy bullet points.

  • Buy an Apple product if you wish, but at your own risk. Yes, you may have heard amazing stuff about Apple products and services. But Apple messes up like any other company. And forget about getting your money back if the product fails. Unless you paid insurance with the high price for the product, you're getting nothing. So deal with it

  • It might be a good idea to get a second job if you buy an Apple product. Apple products are expensive. If your product fails, as mine did, you're going to have to replace it yourself. But since the  iPhone is such a status symbol, it's worth the pain. Right?

  • Customer service executives who promise to look after your 'case' are keeping you happy till they can let you down and run. They'd remind you of sex workers who take money and don't deliver the goods. I've never dealt with the world's oldest profession. But I'm sure it's more honorable than this company's customer care program. Unless solid action with win/win results supports this program, it's an eyewash. All the sweet talk in the world makes no difference.

Independent Verifier
I had the phone checked by an independent engineer. The result? This phone is, if not very nearly dead, very actually dead, in the words of Blackadder (or someone else on his show). I bought this phone in April. Less than five months later, it's a gone case. It should have lasted for at least two years. It cost me a lot of time and effort to make the money to buy that phone. We took the best possible care of it and let it slip just once. I'm not an Indian 'memsahib' for whom 20 thousand rupees is 'just nothing'. I'm a hard working housewife for whom every penny counts. I take on freelance writing projects alongside household tasks. With two kids in college and two more still in full-time school, we don't throw money around. Yes, my husband has a job, thank God. We're not poor. But companies tend to make personas of their ideal customers nowadays. They seem to personify the average Indian consumer as being in a double income/two kids family. With plenty of disposable income. One which can pay 'any amount' to up their status by flaunting an iPhone. What foolishness. The iPhone SE was the first phone from Apple to come within the reach of the lower middle class. You can buy good 64GB double SIM phone for around Rs.15,000. One which will last you for several years. You won't get the iPhone SE in less than Rs.18,000.  And it's tiny. It looks like a dinky little toy. I'm sure  a lot of people who could ill afford to do so, bought one of those. I only hope too many of these phones  didn't die a few months later, wasting 18 thousand rupees as it went. 18 thousand rupees of struggling people's hard- earned money. People have a right to get value for their money.

Bitter Aftertaste
If that phone was worth the money I paid for it, it would still be working well. I bought a dud product. A scratch on the lens of the rear camera has nothing to do with the state of the motherboard.  I deserve a brand new product at no extra cost to myself. But in faceless corporate fashion, Apple pretends I don't exist. Their wasteful customer service experience was a paper tissue to wipe my tears. Their website features content about the company encouraging recycling and zero wastage. Who does it think it's fooling?  I wish someone would tell it that having a good repair service for its customers is the way to go. To promote recycling, they must encourage consumers to repair and re-use their devices.

Apple's Karma

In Ireland's county Monaghan, there's a saying, 'little apples will grow again.' That means 'there will be another day'. I suffered a loss with this product, but I'm sure I'll come back stronger. But Apple, might like to watch out. Here in India where I live, there's a strong sense of karma. Whatever you do comes back on you. Think of the kind of karma Apple's collecting in India, leaving unfortunate customers in the lurch and not honoring warranties? That's not the type of karma any sensible person or business would like to earn. But I'm happy to say, that's not my problem. It's Apple's.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Why Freelancers Need Contracts

Freelancing Is The New Permanent Job

As the world evolves and changes daily with the many new innovations coming about, one thing is perfectly clear. For many of us, the ‘job for life’ is gone. I earned my bread as a secretary or ‘personal assistant’ in days gone by. With the advent of online work, secretarial jobs are outsourced nowadays to ‘virtual assistants’. Instead of being the ‘girl Friday’ who makes it all happen, your secretary is likely to be a businesswoman who is engaged to perform several tasks for you under contract. So the business person doesn’t have to take on a full-time employee and pay them a living wage or salary. They simply outsource tasks and pay accordingly. The Virtual Assistant (VA) is free to do the same work for other business people. She simply has to organise her time in order to accommodate tasks for various clients.

Learn How To Be A Good Self-Employee

So freelancing is the way to go, for writers, editors, secretaries and so many other types of work. It’s a good thing. You’re not tied to one source of income. You can set your rates. You can decide on your own holidays. But unless you’re organised and resourceful, you can get into a bit of trouble along the way. I know. I’ve learned the hard way.

The Biggest Lesson

The number one lesson I’ve learned? Never, ever work without a contract. Even if the person for whom you’re working is your best friend. Although working with your friends may sound ideal, business and pleasure do not mix. When it comes to the time of handing over money, that’s when you see how ‘friendly’ your friend really is.

My Personal Experience

I took up the task of editing some books for a writer who wanted to be Jane Austen. It was never going to happen, but I was doing my best to make it happen. She’d never set foot in England, and her Regency characters sounded like they watched American TV. This was not a writer who was writing for a quality audience. If you’re reading a Regency historical novel, you want an authentic trip back in time. Right? This writer’s readers obviously wanted the Regency rake to lay them down on the card table (having imbibed several bottles of claret) and have his wicked way with them. Preferably as soon as was decently (or rather indecently) possible. Every bump, grind and move described in torrid detail. Ugh. Yes, it was a bit revolting at times, I admit it. I should also mention that a mutual friend had brokered this deal. Because of the friendship, I’d kept my mouth shut, but the rate was, to be honest, the lowest possible. Half a cent per word. That really sucked. There was no way I could sacrifice higher paying copywriting assignments to prioritise editing these books, so I edited the books in my spare time.

Things Went Wrong

Things went bad when, having to honour my commitment to edit the fourth novel for this ditzy author, she decided she wanted it back super fast. A job that would take me about a month, doing it full-time, was to be returned in two weeks. I tried, I really did. But sadly, doing the job to my usual standards, I couldn’t honour that particular commitment as much as I’d wanted to do so. But I turned in the job as soon as I possibly could. And the ignorant woman threw it back in my face in the nastiest possible way, with the rudest message I’ve ever received by email. I’d worked like a slave over her manuscript and she treated me with contempt. I was obviously never going to get my payment for this job, having completed it to the last dot and comma.


I was naturally devastated. All that work for nothing! I couldn’t stop crying for about 24 hours. Then I reached out to the friend who had brokered the deal, hoping to work something out. The ‘friend’ (now ex, naturally) made a lot of sympathetic noises about it and said she’d speak to ‘Georgette Whoever’ and get back to me.

Friend Turns Rogue

If I thought I was going to get some form of redress, I was very much mistaken. ‘Georgette Whoever’ had a catalogue of faults and failings of mine which she told my ex friend, using them as justification for her vindictive, mean and unreasonable behaviour. First of all, she hadn’t wanted full editing, she said. She’d only wanted proofreading. I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw that message. I had edited three books for this author and now she decides she only wanted proofreading after all? She'd paid me for the first three books, dang it! I have never yet, in all my time freelancing, offered a proofreading service. I had taken her four manuscripts for editing and authentification as Regency novels. She hadn’t even bothered to get a proofreader to check the work after I’d returned it. Any author worth their salt knows that when the first round of edits is completed, a proofreader is required. The fact that she needed a proofreader was shown up as evidence of my so-called incompetence. After being the editor, I was now demoted to proofreader. I hadn’t even known. And this was after editing on the fourth book had completed. The so-called friend who had brokered the deal even had the nerve to demand that I offer a ‘heartfelt apology’ to Georgette Whoever for all the 'trouble' I'd put her through. It took me a couple of days to figure out the whole sorry mess. Who wouldn’t be confused? Like, I was the injured party who’d worked my tail off, to be thrown aside without payment and I owed the person who did this an apology? Please! Talk about twisting the truth around to make it fit your vision of things! It slowly dawned on me that I needed to dump this so-called friend. Not right away, but after some time.

Excuses, Excuses

‘Georgette Whoever’, pseudo-Regency writer, also had complaints about how late I’d returned her previous manuscripts. She was using this as an excuse not to pay me for my hard work on the last book I’d edited for her. Okay, she'd used another editor, but I'd still done the work. Like I said, she paid very low rates (half a cent per word) and I obviously had no reason refuse to take in other work while I was working on hers. When I heard this volume of excuses, I realised, sadly, that I’d totally lost this one. One of my friends checked out the published book for which my work had been rejected and another editor hired and found Georgette Whoever singing hymns of praise in the acknowledgments to her new editor/proofreader. But there’s one thing of which I’m certain. She’s paying Ms. Professional Proofreader much more for her proofreading than she paid me for my editing. Good luck to her. She won’t be able to pull the same stunt with that editor that she pulled with me. She’ll get back what she gave out one day.  The laws of karma are sure. I wish her the joy of her comeuppance. I won’t be there to see it, but it’s coming her way is all I know.

Legal Advice

I got a bit of legal advice and found out something which horrified me. As I had signed no contract, Georgette Whoever was under no obligation to pay me.  I’d taken this job on the advice of a friend, someone who was supposed to be mentoring me. What sort of mentor doesn’t teach a freelancer about contracts? I don’t think that question requires an answer.  I only know that I will never again work for anyone without a contract in place.

What Is A Freelance Contract & What Should It Contain?

A contract is an agreement between two parties, in this case the freelance worker and the client, in which the freelancer undertakes to do a certain type of work for a client within a specified time. The contract should state the work to be done and the time in which the work shall be done, as well as the rate which will be paid. There should be clear dates set out for the work to be returned. The client and the freelancer should be very clear about how long the work will take. In this case, it's imperative that the freelancer is paid a fair rate.

7 Reasons Why Freelancers Should Not Work Without Contracts

1.      As Carol Tice says in her blog Make A Living Writing, ‘when you don’t have a contract, you often get scewed’. She is 100% correct.
2.      As it says in the Hongkiat blog, 'a contract helps streamline your work around a schedule as well as all those clarified details of what was agreed between you (the provider) and the client from the beginning'.
3.      Everyone knows where they stand, so there are no doubts. If there are doubts, they can be cleared up before the contract is signed.
4.      The freelancer and the client should both have agreed to a fair payment for the work involved. No freelancer should ever agree to a job brokered by a third party when the freelancer didn’t even agree to a rate.
5.      If either party develops amnesia about any aspect of the agreement, it’s all there in black and white to jog their memory.
6.      It protects the freelancer from being abused.
7.      It also protects the client from being abused. It’s for the good of all parties. There are exploitative clients, but to be fair, there can be exploitative freelancers too.


There's a saying in the Irish language which, when translated, means 'Bought sense is the best sense'. In business, you have to recover quickly from the knocks and then move on, wishing everyone in your life as well as possible. I have no regrets about what has happened. I'm glad I learned what I did. To my erstwhile client and friend, I would simply say 'as a woman sows, so shall she reap'.

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