Back to oDesk.com » Love the way you work.

Welcome to the oDesk Community! Connect here with fellow clients, contractors, and oDesk staff. Please review our Usage Policy.

whats happening with the quality of writing jobs

I wonder nowadays there seems to be no quality writing jobs that pay well. Is there a recession? All jobs are the low paying ones.

Vote Result

++++++----
Score: 6.9, Votes: 10
Needle in the haystack

There are some out there, you just have to look for them and be able to offer solid expertise in the niche requested. Most well paying clients post private listings and search for talented contractors to offer direct private interviews.

Dont loose hope. And yes, the whole world is in a recession in case you haven't noticed the news reports over the last several years Tongue

thanks

I appreciate your realistic comments rather then some people who just critisize

totally...

*criticize
*then = Next in time, space, or order; immediately afterward/ What you were looking for and didn't find (haven't found? quick, guess which one is it!) was "than" = Used after a comparative adjective or adverb to introduce the second element or clause of an unequal comparison:

Yes, you are totally ready for and deserving of high-paid assignments...

Obnoxious Grammar Nazi Fail

*immediately afterward/
I think you meant, "immediately afterward."

*What you were looking for and didn't find (haven't found? quick, guess which one is it!)
I think you meant, "What you were looking for or didn't find (Quick! Guess which one it is!)..." However, the poor construction of your sentence makes it difficult to know exactly what you were trying to communicate.

*unequal comparison:
I think you meant, "unequal comparison."

*Yes, you are totally ready for and deserving of high-paid assignments...
I think you meant, "Yes, you are totally ready for — and deserving of — high-paid assignments..."

So yes, you are totally ready for and deserving of (See what I did there?) mocking another's writing skills.

Actually, I am

I am not a writer. I do not bid on writing jobs. Yet my English skills seem to be superior to hers. Therefore, yes, I am both ready and deserving. I do not apply or complain that I don't get jobs where my skills are obviously lacking. Can you say the same thing? Let's see, shall we!

/ it is what's called a comment market in editing jobs (that is where programming for it from), it allows inserting a commentary inline with the text. It is normally used either by the author to mark a point of return for himself or herself or as a note to the editor OR proofreader. You mention copy editing in your profile...hm

"AND" is quite correctly used. It's just like "I went to the market AND found a good deal on milk" not "...OR found a good deal on milk". How do we call these types of clauses? Come now, you should know, it's your native language.

Quote:
makes it difficult to know exactly what you were trying to communicate

What does that tell us about your comprehension levels? Especially when considering the part with the "and" above.

Quote:
I think you meant, "unequal comparison."

Touche! I copied it wrong. But let's just throw a comma in there because you are such a great proofreader and native English speaker.

Quote:
— and deserving of —

Actually, this one is quite interesting. I could not find the rule that restricts or specifies the distinct usage of "-" inside a phrase. Can you please point it out to me? Or do we just play it be the ear (notice the use of OR, don't confuse that with AND).

Quote:
(Quick! Guess which one it is!)

Here is another puzzling one. Can you point out the rule that states you cannot use an adverb before a verb inside an exclamatory sentence?

Interestingly, you failed to notice that the correct form is not Quick (the adjective), but Quickly (the adverb). Are you sure English is your native language, Mr. Proofreader Editor, Sir?

True, "it is" is the correct form in UK English. As far as I know it is accepted in US English. When I type in Word using the UK rules, it's gets marked. When I do it using the US rules, it does not. Again, if somebody can point out the rule, I'd be very grateful.

So, where does that leave us? Can somebody please tally up?

Why are you so defensive?

Maria F. wrote:
I am not a writer. I do not bid on writing jobs. Yet my English skills seem to be superior to hers. Therefore, yes, I am both ready and deserving.

When your writing skills are also lacking, then unfortunately you're neither ready nor deserving to mock another's. In fact, no amount of skill allows one person to mock another.

Maria F. wrote:
I do not apply or complain that I don't get jobs where my skills are obviously lacking. Can you say the same thing? Let's see, shall we!

Uhmmm... Are you suggesting I "apply for — or complain that I don't get — jobs where my skills are obviously lacking"? Why so antagonistic?

Maria F. wrote:
/ it is what's called a comment market in editing jobs (that is where programming for it from), it allows inserting a commentary inline with the text. It is normally used either by the author to mark a point of return for himself or herself or as a note to the editor OR proofreader. You mention copy editing in your profile...hm

This isn't an editing job — it's a public forum. You also used the comment mark in a comment for someone with weak writing skills, not a poor grasp of professional proofreading symbols. And finally, your sentence was unpunctuated.

I'm also unsure what's meant by "(that is where programming for it from)". Maybe "that's where it's from"? Or, better still, "'/' — This is a proofreading symbol. It's called a 'comment mark'. It allows commentary to be inserted inline with the text."

I actually don't have the time to point out all your mistakes. (e.g. When you ask someone to "guess, which one is it!", you need to provide more than one option, hence my suggestion of "or" instead of "and"; we say "Quick!" rather than "Quickly!" when being informal — it's quicker; etc.)

And because you missed the point in my last comment, here it is made explicit — don't be obnoxious.

Not only because it's, well, obnoxious, but also because I suspect you wouldn't like it if someone treated you with the same disrespect. A suspicion you've confirmed with your reply.

I actually lol-ed

Quote:
When your writing skills are also lacking, then unfortunately you're neither ready nor deserving to mock another's.

...and yet you choose to ignore the OP's behavior below. Yes, she was totally respectful and nice!

Quote:
This isn't an editing job — it's a public forum.

Is there a rule written someplace that says on a public forum, where you write stuff, it is not allowed to use editorial symbols? Please, point it out to me!

Quote:
I "apply for — or complain that I don't get —

Have you found that rule yet? Or are you just going to invent stuff to make you feel like you actually know your native language.

Quote:
'/' — This is a proofreading symbol.

Please spend some time learning when to use capital letters. While you are at it, also learn where commas should or should not go.

It's comment marker. As far as I know, a typo doesn't mean lack of knowledge in a language. But not knowing what that is does, in fact, mean lack of knowledge in the jobs you claim to do.

Quote:
"guess, which one is it!", you need to provide more than one option

The option is there, expressed somewhat informally...or maybe....

Quote:
when being informal

So first your critique some things that are OK in informal use but not in formal English, but others are not? Make up your mind, will you?

Quote:
don't be obnoxious.

Not only because it's, well, obnoxious...

Wait, do you mean to say being obnoxious is obnoxious? WOW, what a new and intriguing concept! Do tell me more!

I am being sarcastic in answer to lack of common sense. I wonder why it bugged you so much...

My point again...

Yes, I'm a native speaker.

But I'm not criticising you for not being a native speaker.

I'm criticising you for being obnoxious.

And defensive.

And antagonistic.

If you genuinely want me to take the time to answer all of your questions and help you improve your English, stop with the straw men and rudeness, and start being polite.

Your point came later

Interestingly enough, your point of me being obnoxious came in the second post. You started initially going after me for my language skills in an attempt to...what? Where you trying to make me feel guilty for busting the chops of somebody who's been every single one of the things your mentioned and more? It will be a fun day on the sky slopes of Hell before that happens. Now you come with this "what I was trying to say is...". Seriously, that is one of the lamest comebacks ever.

Defensive! M8, I don't have a defensive bone in my body. I have several offensive ones and I employ them to distraction! Yes, that adjective is used quite correctly to achieve a specific figure of speech.

Antagonistic - yes, I am and proud of it. Without antagonism we would still, most likely, be swinging from branch to branch. You achieve exactly zip point zilch by agreeing with everybody all the time.

I see my sarcasm confused you. I don't want you to give me the answers, I want you to sustain your statements , which is what one does in a debate. Me putting it in the form of a question WAS me being polite.

Read the 'Subject' of my first post

The 'Subject' of my first post refers to you as an "Obnoxious Grammar Nazi".

It also refers to your attempt at, as you put it, "busting the chops" of Amrita as a "Fail" due to your own poor English skills.

e.g. "Where you trying to make me feel guilty for busting the chops of somebody who's been every single one of the things your mentioned and more?" should be "Were you..." and "...every single one of the things you mentioned and more?"

e.g. In the context I used it, "antagonistic" means "hostile" and "wanting to argue".

Ironically, being antagonistic and resolute when wrong stops people from evolving.

So to be clear, I don't want a "debate".

I simply want you to improve your attitude and your English.

The most obnoxious thing about the whole thread is

Joseph S. wrote:
The 'Subject' of my first post refers to you as an "Obnoxious Grammar Nazi".

The most obnoxious part of the whole thread is the use of the word "Na*i"

AGAIN!

hm...

Quote:
I simply want you to improve your attitude and your English

Dude, I really tried, really really tried to find some f* to give about what you want. Sadly, no matter how much I searched, I could not locate any. Bummer!

Quote:
Ironically, being antagonistic and resolute when wrong stops people from evolving.

Will you prove that please! My statement was based on game theory (an application of it called EGT). Yours?

Oh, and congrats, you finally found 2 genuine mistakes. Curiously enough, you also made at least 3 in the same phrase. But this is not about you, is it? It's about me, the evil Grammar Witch! You are here as Zorro, the Grammar Robin Hood, defender of the poor...ly speakers of English.

And because you could not see my point over your own hubris, here it is: I don't care about her English level. I care however about her trying to make a living out of it and her absurdly high expectations of being paid to write in a language she does not master. I care about her becoming aggressive (at least as aggressive as I was) when somebody tried to point out the reason she is not getting high paid jobs.

I give this argument a rating

I give this argument a rating of only 2/10 so far.

Please spice it up.

Agreed. This argument is

Agreed. This argument is limp, flaccid; and waving in the breeze. Also, it's not very interesting. Where's the ancestry slurs? Where are the descriptions of the opposing side's physical deformities? Sexual orientation? Religion?

Standards are obviously slipping.

I just want the last 10 minutes of my life back

I can't believe I just read this all!

Joseph, look up Godwin's law....

I appreciate that the term "Grammar Nazi" is used quite innocently by many, but it is deeply offensive to others.

Call it grammar "freak" or whatever, if you must, but any parallel drawn between criticising someone's grammar and slaughtering a few million people is at best inappropriate....

Plenty of decent writing jobs

Well-paying writing jobs are definitely out there,
but you have to put yourself in a position where you
can be invited into private listings; i.e., high
feedback score, plenty of hours worked, competitive
rate.

The upside to recession is that if you deliver quality
output and you price your skills competitively (where
I'm from, $5 an hour is first-line supervisor salary),
clients who look for value for money are likely to find you,
and retain your services well past the project's delivery date.

Let me say this about that

Amrita Sakthivel wrote:
I wonder nowadays there seems to be no quality writing jobs that pay well. Is there a recession? All jobs are the low paying ones.

Actually, I scanned some of your portfolio samples and if this is indicative of the work you are submitting then you should anticipate getting only low-paying writing assignments. Your material is largely spun from other sites (I found 42% of one of your articles copied verbatim according to Copyscape). On top of that, your English is not strong enough to warrant paying you a high rate for work.

Quality pay depends on quality content.

not good

that isn't sounding well at all , its sad as honest people like myself will pay for work but need authenticity

Ava, there are PLENTY of great writers with authentic work

Ava B. wrote:
that isn't sounding well at all , its sad as honest people like myself will pay for work but need authenticity

Be serious: Having read the OP's post, and her overview, would you REALLY hire her to WRITE? You are in England, right? You should recognize correct English when it jumps up and bites you. The OP's English is roughly in line with the majority of her test results.....

You can find fantastic writers here who will deliver authentic, original, kick-a*s work again and again.

Yes, finding them may be a little bit of a drag but once you have them: Treat them well, pay them fairly, and you're going to be just fine!

excuse me

Who are you to judge who is the best writer?

I am not here to judge anyone

I am not here to judge anyone or to be rude. But better carpenters often get paid more than poor ones. Chefs who command high salaries invent their own dishes, those that are creative and that use only the best ingredients.

If you cannot command the English language, you shouldn't attempt to be a writer any more than someone who does not know what a poached egg is should attempt to be a chef and then complain about low pay.

Again, I don't mean to hurt anyone's feelings, but however well you write in some other language, you will not get high-paying work with sub-standard writing.

Just because you are

Just because you are from England, it doesn't mean your English is excellent. There are many people who don't have good English writing skills.

Now. Take a DEEP breath.

Amrita Sakthivel wrote:
Just because you are from England, it doesn't mean your English is excellent. There are many people who don't have good English writing skills.

I am actually German. However, *MY* English skills are not in question. I do not have work that won't pass copyscape in my portfolio (like you) and I don't litter my work or my overview with grammar mistakes.

If you want to make a living WRITING then you need to have above average skills in the language you intend to take money for writing in. If your skills aren't up to par then you won't win higher paying contracts. Clients pay for quality. They can get bad and mediocre writing for next to nothing because there are thousands of contractors at that level.

You are ABSOLUTELY right that there are many people who do not have excellent English skills. Nothing wrong with that...... provided that those people don't expect to be paid well for for writing English.

If you want to have a pop at me: Go RIGHT ahead!

Before you do, though, maybe you want to compare your test results with mine, and your experience with mine, your work with mine, and then take a deep breath.

If you still want to argue feel free to come back and try.

To be perfectly honest your portfolio, your profile, your "failed copyscape" work and your test results speak for themselves. Loud and clear.

dont be so smug about it

Well you spent a lot of your time , writing this content. Well I would have appreciated constructive criticism said in a nice manner, not rude like you are.As for the test results, well it doesn't mean you are great.
Humble is not in your dictionary.!

Nope, I just type fast.

amrita s. wrote:
Well you spent a lot of your time , writing this content.!

No, I just type fast.

People who steal the work of other writers and sell it to clients as their own are bad for *all* contractors. You have numerous unhappy previous clients, your profile is littered with hidden comments, and every time you upset a client you hurt all the decent contractors out here.

You were whining about the available rates for contracts. It was merely pointed out that the decent rates are there for those who can deliver quality work that is not stolen elsewhere.

When the quality isn't right, and the client goes away unhappy, then the price paid for the substandard work was by definition "too much" - no matter how low it was.

who are you

how do you know what comments clients left, just like bad contractors there are bad clients. You cant make everyone happy.My overall feedback is good , in case you haven't noticed! As for stealing other people's work, as you put it, that's serious allegation to make. Take a look at yourself before yo put down others. So don't waste my time!

oh, the irony

So you post a whine on a forum (very productive) and then (see the correct usage?) complain that people who respond are wasting your time? ...really?

Well Doreen , your profile is

Well Doreen , your profile is not even for public view...... I am not saying I am the best writer ever but I don't expect to work for low rates, dirt cheap I mean. You seem highly critical of me, why don't you put your profile for public viewing so I can give a critique....

Actually it is

Amrita Sakthivel wrote:
Well Doreen , your profile is not even for public view...... I am not saying I am the best writer ever but I don't expect to work for low rates, dirt cheap I mean. You seem highly critical of me, why don't you put your profile for public viewing so I can give a critique....

It is public for oDesk users. And if you feel qualified to critique it, go for it.

I have 2x's the number hours you do in spite of working on a lot fixed rate jobs, I have a specific expertise and my rate is significantly higher. Enough said.

Actually, Doreen....

Actually I think your profile is still private from when you set it to private during the Randoms Fiasco?
I can't see it either, but I remember it well.

Maybe set it to oDesk users only so the OP sees 1) what a real writer's profile looks like and 2) why she is whining about low rates and you are not.

Glitch I guess

No, I put it to oDesk users only:

Quote:
My Public Profile Edit

View my profile as others see it | Share on
Profile Access oDesk Users only
Display Name Full Name
Title Expert Finance and Legal Writer
oDesk Ready Yes

Must be a time lag Wink

i never asked for

I never asked for your feedback on my profile!

Don't you understand

amrita s. wrote:
I never asked for your feedback on my profile!

I guess you missed something: Your profile reflects the quality you are capable of providing to clients. As a client, if I were going to interview you I would have gone through your profile and found your skills lacking.

You in effect wanted to know why assignments were low paying? You need only look as far as your profile to answer that question. Sorry if the truth bothers you but facts are facts.

fact is you are not my client

The big IF....All I expected was a comment on my post not a profile critique.....IN CASE you have not noticed SEE my rate per hour ! Truth from your perspective DOESN'T bother me but a critique , when it was not asked for, does!

Overview

On your profile you claim to be a proofreader, I suggest you proofread your overview.

Recession?

Well, yes there are very few jobs out there that offer you a decent price. Everyday, I scan for something reasonable and I end up on the 6th or 7th page without any success. In the end, I'm left twiddling my thumbs.

Really, a sorry state of affairs. Sad

Use the job filters - it's a

Use the job filters - it's a much less depressing experience.

There are many places to look

There are many places to look for work outside of oDesk. No need to twiddle your thumbs if you can't find anything here.

MAMA!!!

Everything is coming to an END!!!

Last year we had hurricane Sandy, earthquakes and other natural catastrophes, now we have a Solar storm in waiting but people are still picking each others' pupils, nostrils and ear drums.

WHY???????????

dude...

because it's fun!

Oh wow. Just look at those

Oh wow. Just look at those comments showing how each of them is better than the other person.

Yes, guys. That's the attitude clients are looking for when hiring people.

It's a futile argument

It's a futile argument anyway...everyone knows I'm the loveliest one here; by any criterion.

lol

This made me laugh (Okay, maybe just chuckle. Nevertheless, it made my night).

At times one remains faithful to a cause only because its opponents do not cease to be insipid. --
Friedrich Nietzsche

One of those threads

This is my only comment on this thread: It's one of those kinds of threads where if you criticize someone else for something they said in the thread, you are likely doing the same as they are and don't even realize it.

It's the stereotype

It's that many clients are limiting their choices to 'native writers' only. You may be good at writing; maybe even better than the average native writer. But does that matter; you get generalized and put as incompetent just because your native language is not English.

A word to such clients: Each individual is different, so please assess their actual skills before stereotyping. Imagine a brilliant writer being rejected just because he/she is missing the label 'native writer'.

There's more to writing than just grammar and vocabulary

You may have flawless English but you may require knowledge of the subject matter or firsthand experience of the culture of the audience to be able to meet the clients' needs. I know there are people who make their living solely as "writers" but I think the only way you could do that (unless you are specialized in the type of writing you do) is if you are working for a client who isn't very demanding or picky as I can't imagine hiring someone based on their "writing" skills alone. Knowing how to write properly as I see it is a basic requirement for any job, not a skill that stands on its own. To write on a particular subject ideally you should have some relevant expertise in my opinion.

I'm surprised that someone so

I'm surprised that someone so immersed in the industry would say that. I don't have enough fingers and toes to count the professionals I know personally who are making a living based on their writing skills alone. Most of them dabble in a range of areas, leaving those royalty-earning stints as their pet projects on the side.

If you know a subject well

If you know a subject well, AND have writing skills, you can write something infinitely more authoritative, accurate, unique and insightful than if you don't have expertise or experience in that area. And considering how much cheaply produced content there is on the web these days of questionable quality, and the fact that even uneducated semi-literate idiots can self-publish a book via Amazon these days and any moron can get an article published on Huffington Post, if you want writing that is worth reading and sets itself apart from all the other stuff out there, it's worth investing in someone with expertise in the area you want written about. That's actually how I landed my first job on oDesk 6 years ago. Someone was looking for someone to write content for a tourism web site about the county I grew up in.

You are absolutely correct there are people making a living on writing skills alone, as that is reflected in the glut of content on the internet today. Content is in high demand, so much so that a lot of it will never be seen by many people at all, but that also means the marketplace offers writers of differing levels of expertise and consequently quality.

"If you know a subject well,

"If you know a subject well, AND have writing skills, you can write something infinitely more authoritative, accurate, unique and insightful than if you don't have expertise or experience in that area."

Which is why publishers pay to send writers overseas to research travel articles and expect their writers to conduct interviews, speak to experts in the field and so forth before they put pen to paper. Writers become experts about the topics they're dealing with.

"Someone was looking for someone to write content for a tourism web site about the county I grew up in."

If you count this as expertise, then we all have at least one area of expert knowledge to write about. Add to that hobbies, lifestyle choices, beliefs and passions. Everyone is an expert under this criterion.

"Content is in high demand, so much so that a lot of it will never be seen by many people at all, but that also means the marketplace offers writers of differing levels of expertise and consequently quality."

I was not referring to internet content or self published nonsense. I have friends who make their living writing features for magazines, columns for newspapers and novels and nonfiction books for publishers. I have friends who have made tremendous successes of themselves based on their book-writing skills alone. I have friends who studied only literature or creative writing to doctorate level and are now making salaries with their work. One has a science doctorate but makes his living writing funny newspaper columns. Another, a mother and avid reader, writes two newspaper columns a week--one about parenting and one about reading. She has had one book published thus far. A skilled writer can turn any banal day to day event into a readable piece of entertainment. My first published magazine column was about boutique staff. My first cover piece was about a psychiatric condition I knew nothing about. I spent a month interviewing people suffering from it and talking to an Australian neuropsychiatrist specialising in the condition and carrying out extra research before I wrote the piece.

And let's not forget the past: Harper Lee, Jack Karouak, Mark Twain et al had no skills or education beyond their writing talents to support their work.

Page: