Hello, all, I’m Hillari Delgado. I’ve written for employers for years including copy writing, business proposals, white papers, manuals, industry related articles, etc. I’ve been freelancing feature articles for regional magazines for the last two years, now querying the bigger/national markets. I’ve also written three historical romantic suspense novels, one of which is still kicking around a major publishing house (or languishing under their bridge of lost souls…)
In the meantime, I’ve fallen into a couple of private clients, as in, ‘Hey, really liked that article. Think you could write xxx for me?’) and I’m clueless as to the business end of things–how to charge, contracts, accounts receivable, RATES. Currently I’m winging it, and we all know how well that works out in the long run. I’d really like to expand this side of my career: I’ve got great ideas and skills to offer clients, but I also need to offer great service and professionalism.
I’d love some wise counsel that could point me in the right direction and keep me from making some of the major mistakes.
Welcome to the community Hillari. Happy to have you!
I saw you have another thread with a few specific questions, so I’ll address those there. In the meantime, here’s an article on rates that might be of interest (due to be updated and expanded a bit soon, but the basics are still there for now):
I also have a freelance hourly rate calculator you can use. I always recommend starting with a target hourly rate. Those can then be adapted to any rate structure you’d like to use by estimating the amount of time a project will take (per word, per page, per project, etc.).
There are two modes to the calculator. In the version you’ll see when you first load the page, you choose a yearly earnings goal to target and it calculates things from there. I recommend using the advanced version (there’s a link to switch modes near the top of the calculator). That one is set up to help you figure out what you really need to earn to meet your more specific financial goals — from covering basic living expenses to reaching your target retirement savings. This gives you a bottom line amount that you need to charge. But you can always tack on a premium if you work in a high paying niche or industry, have more experience or better credentials than most of your competition, etc. It’s a place to start.