Recently I’ve been thinking how I can make a few extra shillings from writing, other than penning a best seller and living in the lap of mediocrity. I figured I could write for online publications, magazines or review websites. I know my way around the English language fairly well, enough to crunch out short stories and enjoy working on my novel.
All hail the prophet Google and its wisdom. The all-knowing search engine brought up page after page of get rich quick schemes for budding writers but too many involved parting with cash in order to learn how to make the lovely money come rolling in. Hmm. That doesn’t seem quite right somehow. However I found one site that sucked me in with a slogan: “Don’t wander lonely as a cloud…earn money writing from home!”
Now you’re talking! Words of Worth is a UK based company that employs writers to pen articles which they sell to their clients. Who these clients are isn’t made clear but I suspect they can range from magazines and other printed media to online companies who don’t have the time or staff to do it themselves.
The subject of the articles is also a bit of a mystery as the writer doesn’t find out until they are given their first contract. Fair enough. I can live with a bit of mystery. The contracts are also a bit vague but WoW (Words of Worth) stipulate the number of articles can range from 10 (with an initial contract) to 80 per month, and an experienced writer can produce an average of 3 to 4 short articles per hour.
Now I’m interested!
The articles can range from 250 – 300 words on average but can stretch to a massive 500 – 700 words! But there is a catch, of sorts. The writer must be willing to give up all IPR (intellectual property rights) publishing rights, patent rights and all sorts of other rights. In essence the writer sells articles to WoW without being recognised for their work.
Could you live with that?
I would never consider giving away that kind of control where my fiction is concerned or my blog content for that matter, but these are tiny articles that seem to have satisfied other writers, if WoW’s Testimonials page is to be taken seriously.
I thought I’d throw an email in their direction and see what shakes loose. But wait. I couldn’t find any email address, contact number or geographical address either. Very odd. Then I found these in the FAQ section:
Why is there no telephone number or contact details on your website?
We used to have a telephone number, email and postal address on our website when we first started, however we found that we were snowed under with telephone calls and this took up so much time that it impacted on our work.
Is this site simply a way to get some free content from people?
It’s a strange world out there and there are some dodgy schemes going on, so we can understand why people may want to ask this question.
For those who do write for us regularly, it’s clear this isn’t the case but for those whose applications are unfortunately rejected, all we can say is that if all we wanted was some free content, then there are easier ways to get it and in most cases, it would be faster to write it ourselves. Much of what we receive by way of applications is not of a sufficient quality to be used, whether free or otherwise, so this wouldn’t be time- or cost-efficient.
Er, and that’s the answer?
Just because you had a few pesky phone calls from people who ultimately want to make you money, you dumped your phone line in the bin? I find that a bit hard to believe. How can a business even hope to be taken seriously if they don’t have at least a PO Box or phone number connected to an answering service?
I wanted to believe this was a legit company because the idea of writing articles from home for money is very appealing. So I searched around for that red flag of bad news, stay away, this company is the devil in disguise sort of thing. But I didn’t find it. There were a few people in forums who have worked for WoW who have had no problems and speak highly of the company.
I know, I know. Naivety has no place on the internet. Those bits and pieces could have been written by ruthless money grabbers working for WoW to entice folk like you and I into their web of word prostitution. I’ve mulled it over and arrived at the conclusion that I’m going to use their form to make contact and see what they have to say, apparently you have to write a test article so they can evaluate your skill. There can be a waiting list of up to 4 months to become an article writer for WoW so I guess there’s plenty of time to give this serious thought.
My questions for you, dear blog reader, are thus:
Would you write for online companies like WoW? Have you had any experiences with this kind of thing? Is it worth the time for the payback? Oh, and would you give up all your rights to writing stuff like random tiny articles?
I’m most interested to know what you think – applaud my endeavours, slap me around the face for being sucked in or shrug your shoulders and talk about cute bunnies instead.