The four reasons for a freelancer to decide to write a story

I recently posted on the reasons why I love freelancing. Once you know you want the gig, it also helps to know what you’re willing to do.

There are four big reasons to agree to write a story, and every writer should know them – if only so he can decide if that writing gig, even if it’s on the side, is worth it.

They’re worth recognizing, see them below.

  1. It’s a story you want to tell — it’s interesting, compelling, or you have personal interest in it.
  2. It’s an easy story to tell — you can get paid for a fairly straight-forward piece that can free you do other things. Think redundancy!
  3. The pay is great — that trade publication or press-release-writing gig or crazed newspaper or magazine is actually paying good money.
  4. The publication is cool — it’s a story that will get you your first clip in a big newspaper, noted magazine or somewhere else you think will lead to other opportunities.

The dream, of course, is all four, or at least a combination, present themselves for a story. I haven’t found that sweet spot, yet, but I have seen combination. I find it valuable to think of these four motivations before I pitch or accept a story idea. Increasingly, I am deciding I want at least two of these items to be present, unless there is a very strong single reason.