Muse, News and Views
In Homespun’s words
The ebook will raise funds to support Homespun’s 2013 tour of their first children’s show which debuted at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. This sounds fun and cuddly and I have no doubt the show is worth seeing. However, I wonder how they would react to an invitation to perform to help a struggling author self-publish, especially if it meant that the generously donated performance could never be repeated again, no other audience would ever see it.
Because that is what they are asking for, isn’t it? Most writing competitions stipulate that entries must not have been published elsewhere. Most magazines are only interested in buying first publication rights.
I’m not against writing for nothing. I’ve done it in the past and I will do it again but I think there has to be a good reason for the writer to give so much away.
To be honest I’m still undecided what constitutes a good reason but this is what I’ve come up with so far.
1) You’re not under cutting anyone else, No one else would be paid for the story, column, article.
2) It’s for a good cause. Sometimes you give money sometimes you give your time and your creativity.
3) It supports you as a writer in some way because it puts your name in front of a big/prestigious/interesting readership. Or because being published by these people says a lot about you as a writer. They are fussy, they only take good stuff, and the world will think better of you if they know you have their seal of approval….
What do you think? When would you write for free?
I don’t think it’s a clear cut issue. Authors are like actors. We need readers just as an actor isn’t really an actor if he or she only performs in front of the mirror in the bedroom. So that means sometimes we have to look at non-paying markets.