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writing guides for freelancers


Things To Remember Signing A Freelance Writer's Contract

Anyone who has worked as a freelance writer for a few months has probably had to deal with a writing contract. Clients will often have writers sign non-disclosure agreements and other contracts before letting them start a project. Before signing any contract, writers should remember five simple things.

  • Make Everything Involving Money Set in Stone
  • Since writing is their career, freelancers should make sure that they get paid for the work. They should set clear terms for anything that involves money. If they are working with a new client, they may want to implement an upfront payment. With an upfront payment, the writer still retains some earnings if the client decides not to pay. Likewise, setting milestone payments can help the writer ensure that they get most of their paycheck.

  • Set the Scope of Work
  • How many edits are allowed? What is the word count of the project? Before starting a contract, individuals should clearly state the scope of their work. The contract should say exactly what is delivered, when it will be finished and what it will contain. Defining the scope of the project will help prevent arguments in the future. If one side of the agreement has a dispute, they can go back to the contract to see exactly what is being paid for.

  • Decide How the Contract Can Be Modified
  • Even with the best contract, changes may need to be made. The client may need a different type of article or a change in the document's voice. Since changes do happen, writers should include ways for the contract to be amended. Any changes should always be agreed upon in writing so that there is no confusion.

  • Choosing Ownership
  • In some cases, the writer may get to add a byline to their work. Other clients want the document to be ghostwritten. Before working on a project, a freelancer should make sure that they know who will own the copyright when the project is complete.

  • Clarify the Agreement
  • Before signing the contract, the freelancer should make sure that the client knows that the contact covers everything. Often, a client will return later because they thought a particular revision, formatting or images were included in the agreement. It is up to the writer to make sure that all of the work for the project is included in the agreement. Otherwise, the client will return angrily because they thought that a different service would also be provided.


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