Friday, September 11, 2009

Asking for money

A few months back, I did a freelance job for a new client. They'd found me on the Web, read my stuff and wanted to work with me.

Their business was a bit technical, but they asked me to write about an upcoming seminar, keep it accurate but make it breezy and fun, with a little edge. Sounded like I'd be the perfect guy for the job.

They're based a few thousand miles away, though they supplied all sorts of source material. They answered as many questions as I had, and we bounced a few iterations back and forth by e-mail until they got what they wanted.

I cut them a bit of a deal on the price, as they'd dangled the promise of future jobs. But it was still worth my while and I had no complaints. They paid promptly and all were happy.

Shortly thereafter, one of the partners asked for a press release based on the article. I was happy to do it and explained that a press release needed to be "newsy" and that I'd have to basically start from scratch but I'd estimate about a two-hour job at my "normal" rate.

He was cool with that, I did it, sent it along with an invoice and waited. No feedback. Also, no payment.

Sent another invoice a month later. Still nothing. Today, I sent this e-mail to the partner, copying the requester:

Hi (person);

(Your partner) asked me to write a press release based on the article I wrote for you.

I explained that there would be an additional charge and quoted a price.

He gave me the go-ahead, I wrote it, sent it to him, sent an invoice and never received payment or any further communication from him.

If he's had an accident, is deceased or is no longer with you, I extend my sympathies.

Regardless, could you please see that I am paid for the work I was contracted to do and performed? I've attached the invoice. Thank you.

Richard Pachter

I immediately received an e-mail from the requester. He said he was not dead but the invoice had been misplaced. Payment would be forthcoming.

I responded:

So glad that you are alive!

Will toast to your continued health upon receipt of payment.


Stand by.

UPDATE: Payment received.


Anonymous said...

How much do you generally charge for article writing (per word, etc)? You don't have to give an exact figure, just a general idea.

rap said...

If you're interested in working with me, please contact me directly.

Every job is different, so I never quote a "per-word" fee. Too many variables.