{photo source} As a newbie writer, you’re kind of going in all green and vulnerable. You desperately want to write. But you need the clips and the experience to take you far. This sometimes results in a bad equation. In my case, it meant lots of learning lessons in the school of hard knocks. Lessons that taught me not only how to be a better business person, but also gave me insider tips businesses could learn when working with freelance writers.

So here’s a post for both of you-hopefully a happy marriage between writer and client that will lead to a successful business partnership.

1. Writers need time. Patience is key. I once worked somewhere that treated writers like computers. As in, how many things can you write in an hour? While every writer has deadlines and some thrive on them, there has to be some respect for a writer’s time. Yes, we can deliver great copy in quickly, but we also want to deliver quality copy as well. And can you imagine how hard it is to keep coming up with creative copy when we’re on a quota?

2. Clear communication is vital. Sometimes writer-client relationship means a coming together of two different people with two very different backgrounds. Writers should take this as an opportunity to educate and inform clients about what they can do and ask what’s expected of them. Companies and organizations should work at being clear about what they want from the start. Both client and writer need to communicate often throughout the writing process. As I learned in elementary school, “to assume is to make an ass out of you and me.”

3. Be open and honest. If things aren’t going right on either end, it’s best to speak up sooner than later. Being honest about how you feel about the project whether you are the writer or the client, can help instill trust in the relationship. If, for example, you can’t finish a project at the time you said you would, let your client know as soon as possible. If you’re an entrepreneur and are unsatisfied with a writer’s work, speak up and ask if you could work together so that it’s closer to your vision. Similarly, it’s important to try and be open to the feedback you receive. Having a good honest relationship with those you work with invites greater opportunity for success.

To have a successful client-writer relationship, being honest and clear about how the relationship is working out for you and being respectful of a writer’s time, can do wonders for your business as a freelance writer or an entrepreneur. The key is learning to treat one another the way you treat all your relationships. With respect, honest and compassion. Do this and you’ll be on the road to a happy partnership!

3 Replies to “The School of Hard Knocks: For writers and those who want to work with writers.”

  1. Hi Dina! Thanks so much! You’re so kind to say. It’s my hope that writers read this and don’t have to go through all the tough lessons I had to.

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