I don’t blog or write free. I don’t agree with the concept, after writing a free column for two publications. I love reporting, writing, and do so for several publications that pay, so why should I write for someone free? When a skilled writer spends time researching and crafting words, they deserve payment. If it were any other profession, this would not happen.
Teachers, doctors, carpenters, garbage men, cooks, bakers, and every other worker receives payment for their talents and work. Writers should not be the exception. Why do websites owners expect writers to spend time writing for free? Do they not value a writer’s knowledge, insight, or talent? I can understand a novice writer, writing to gain experience or to get their name out in public. That is more like an apprenticeship.
I also think that many of the political bloggers do so to move an agenda forward and the subject matter is a fire within them, yearning to persuade others toward their point of view. However, most political blogs are not factual or balanced they are opinions not journalism.
However, as I writer I am disheartened by the number of the people who do blog for free, other than a personal blog. It has cheapened the profession and is responsible a lot of garbage in the arena of writing. Don’t get me wrong, not all writers who write sans pay write garbage, but there is an array of it on web.
Most of the larger websites have income and to expect writers to blog for no money. They expect quality work and not paying a talented writer is slapping serious writers in the face. I spend a lot of time on writing, and my time is valuable. Fame is nice but it doesn’t put groceries on the table.
Stephen King wrote a book on writing, and I’ll paraphrase him here, you know you have talent if your writing brings in enough money to pay a bill. He wrote the piece to encourage writers and I hope my blog encourages talented writers not to throw their talent to the wind.