There’s this idea out there that if you blog (especially if you do it well) you’re working for free. However much time and effort you put into it, you get nothing tangible back in return. I’m gonna call bullshit on that. I’ve got over 2,000 followers and counting. People comment. People read what I write. And while I probably won’t get well paid for writing for a long time (if ever) there’s another side to working “for free” that some of the snobbier people out there don’t seem to understand. Yes, you’re technically working for free, but that also means you’re not obligated to do anything a certain way. Hell, you’re not obligated to do anything at all. You’re free to sink or swim on your own terms.
To write and publish something every day or to go months without offering anything. You are putting in all that work without any cash to show for it, but you’re also free to do whatever you damn well please. More than that… just because you aren’t selling anything now doesn’t mean you won’t later.
If someone likes what you’re writing for free odds are they’ll like some of the material you’re brazen enough to put a price tag on. Every soul you manage to touch with your words is a potential buyer in the future. You’re working for free now, but… are you really? Or are you putting pieces of your heart on display, for sale to anyone willing to pay with a piece of theirs? A piece of their life, a moment of their time, a fragment of the very limited time they have on this earth? I mean sure, we ‘work’ for free… But not really. What we’re actually doing is investing.
The freedom is in being able to do it however and whenever the hell we want to. Maybe I’ll cash in on that investment at some point and use the money to expand my reach or maybe it’ll wither and die. But it’s only costing me pieces of myself that’ll be gone anyways; the aging process only goes one way. Why not spend my time on something I love doing? This is unpaid work, but the truth is we’re working on a barter system. A piece of my soul written and presented. The price you pay is up to you. A moment of your time (a very small piece of your soul) or many moments, depending on how much you like something here. If you like what you see, chances are we’ll be doing business again.