Long-time followers of B&B know I am a big fan of making money. I think writers should be paid and paid fairly for the work they do.
Yet, this week I took on a free gig and I’m donating some of my writing time to a local organization.
Confused? Let me explain. I may not be making cash for the time I’m spending, but I am gaining something for my investment. Here are three ways I’ll benefit:
I’m connecting with people in my community. This organization offers a networking extravaganza which may or may not net me some other gigs in the near future. I’m choosing to think of it as Six Degrees of Separation for Writers. The person I meet today may not need a writer, and the people they talk to tomorrow might not, but somewhere down the line, somebody is going to need my skills and the more people I have who can get the word out, the better.
Building my resumé:
Sure, I’m established and have a portfolio. But a writer’s resumé is ever a work in progress. New clips and accomplishments, no matter what the source always look good.
Exploring new territory:
I’m in a good position to learn about so many new topics, I can’t even begin to count them. New experiences feed the idea machine and ideas are like Tribbles. They can multiply quickly under the right conditions, and if I’m vigilant, I’ll spin them into new article ideas.
Working for free can pay off in more than cash. Keep an eye out for opportunities where both parties benefit and you can’t go wrong.
Have you ever worked for free, yet gained something in the long run? Share your experience in the comments.