There are several writer sites on the Internet I visit regularly to check out freelance writing opportunities. I’m not sure why. Perhaps it’s force of habit. Maybe the undying hope that I’ll land my dream assignment writing from a beach in Hawaii. Most likely however, it’s simply their entertainment value. Because I’ve responded to thousands of ads over the years, but only landed a handful of actual jobs with decent pay. So with the amount of time I’ve spent responding to, following up on and actually closing those few assignments, I figure I’ve just about broken even. Maybe I should be grateful. The number of responses those ads receive is tremendous and the competition fierce. So to land any work is quite an accomplishment. On the other hand, just reading the ads can be a favorite pastime. Here are some of my favorites. 20 online articles 500 words I need 20 articles written at 500 words each and will pay $1.50 per article. Lots of ongoing work for the right person. Gee, if I can rip through one article in an hour that’s a whole $1.50. What an enticing offer. I consider this for a micro second then move on. But wait. My teenager might find this a way to earn some extra money. I ask him and he laughs. His minimum wage fast food job is much more lucrative plus he gets free meals. So I guess the right person for this article writing job is either under 16 or speaks English as a 3rd language. Quality writer for limited budget I’m looking for quality writing but have a limited budget so will take the best writer at the most reasonable rate. In other words, “you give me your best and I’ll give you my least.” I actually consider this ad rather insulting. It’s openly admitting you’re cheap and don’t value another person’s time. There’s no respect. No consideration for professional worth. It’s all about the money. Do I really want to work with someone like that? Think I’ll pass. Ghostwriting I have all these great story ideas; I just need someone to flesh them out. We’ll split 50-50. I’m sure they don’t mean to, but why does this person make it sound like they’ve done the hard part and the writer has the easy part? If writing is so easy then why don’t they flesh it out themselves and take ALL the profit? Besides, writers have ideas too. We’re not just mindless word churners waiting for the great idea generator to put us in gear. My favorite ghostwriting ad was by an educator with an idea for a children’s manuscript. This person went on in the ad to outline the whole plot that included both murder and dismemberment. I was appalled. What was this person thinking and how in the world did they get past the school board? And even if that gory book made it to publication on a fluke, would any parent let their kid read it? Obviously, someone needs to take this educator to school…or therapy. I’m sure there will be plenty more entertaining ads to share with you in the future…unless I’m too busy working from that beach in Hawaii. Aloha.


Chip Tudor is a freelance copywriter, published author, playwright and pastor. He publishes drama at, books on, and articles on his blog.

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