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Earn Money Writing for Textbroker.com

In an earlier post I mentioned Textbroker.com as a way for newbies to make money. It seems to be a legitimate site whereby upon acceptance, you’re paid for your article. I do have to warn you, however, that the pay scale is rather low.

Here’s how it works. You go to Textbroker.com and sign up for an account. After you agree to their terms and conditions (you have to check the checkbox), they’ll send you an email through which you can activate your account.

After your account is activated, you have to give them a sample of your writing. In my case, they listed 4 topics from which I had to choose one and write an article with a minimum of 120 words. They use the article to grade your writing on a scale of 1 to 5.

I ended up in the middle with a grade of 3. The higher your grade level, the higher the pay scale. I’ve got to admit, unless there is a tremendous jump in payment from a level 3 to a level 5, it’s barely worth it in my opinion.

Here’s a sample of the difference between a grade 2 and 3. I’d love to hear from Textbroker writers who have a higher rating to see if the pay scale increases significantly.

Level 2 Pay Scale
Level 3 Pay Scale

Armed with your rating, you get to choose topics on which to write. They will only display topics for which your rating qualifies. After you select the topic, you follow the instructions and write and submit the article accordingly and wait for approval (or revision if necessary).

Upon approval, your earnings remain in your Textbroker account until they exceed $10. Once your balance exceeds $10 you may request payment. Textbroker pays by PayPal by the 10th of each month. You must put in your request for payment before the 5th of the month. If not, your balance is rolled over to the next month.

Just for grins, I signed up and wrote a 320-word article for a payout of $1.54. Like I said, it was just for grins. I’m still waiting to see if it will be approved.

I don’t think Textbroker is a service that I’ll use, but for newbies looking to get their feet wet and earn a bit of cash, give it a try.

{ 1219 comments… add one }
  • Josh August 26, 2008, 4:14 pm

    Actually it’s not bad if you commit yourself to gaining a 5 star rating. Everyone starts at level 3, and you go up according to how you are rated over a span of your last 5 articles. 5 star ratings earn 5 cents per word, so a 500 word article shells out $25. 4 of those a day, and you can earn upwards of $500/week… that’s actually incredibly good for a “newbie” wanting to earn extra cash. LOL

  • Felicia August 26, 2008, 4:21 pm

    Hey Josh,

    You’re not kidding about it being a good start for a newbie (or for anyone else looking to earn some money writing). It seems the trick is to get the 5 star rating.

    Thanks so much for the info.

  • Josh August 26, 2008, 4:54 pm

    No problem. I’m pretty impressed with the site so far, and I’m working on my 5 star rating. TextBroker also seems to provide really good support for it’s writers. So far I’ve released 10 articles, worth about $40 in my account… 5 of those have been accepted and paid for already. It will be interesting to see how well the process works at the higher rating. 🙂

  • MY August 27, 2008, 10:44 am

    It’s rather improper that the service is limited to the U.S. Why don’t they make it open for the world? They may re-consider…

  • Josh August 27, 2008, 9:39 pm

    Well I may have to amend my earlier comments about it. I’ve run into some road blocks on my test run with TextBroker. For one, the number of available jobs has gone to almost nothing. Second, after getting my first evaluation, regardless of receiving top notch comments and ratings from customers, TextBroker is holding me at 3 stars. I e-mailed them and asked how their system works, and where I could find the “Rating” button they talked about, so I could see a break down of my evaluation. In their reply, they didn’t resolve the issue of the button, but they did inform me that they only have about 5 professional writers who have earned those 5 stars.

    To my understanding a professional writer is one who makes his living writing. I’m starting to have trouble with the idea of a service which grades its writers so harshly regardless of how happy the client is with the document. 🙂

    Anyway, I’m still communicating with them, so we’ll see what happens. 😀

  • Felicia August 28, 2008, 6:32 am

    It sounds to me that Textbroker benefits from writers working hard to achieve the difficult to achieve 5 star rating. In the meanwhile writers are writing tons of content for a rather low rate.

    I’d be interested to see how your situation works out.

  • Josh August 28, 2008, 1:18 pm

    That may indeed be the case. They never did resolve my issues with finding a button on their site that had anything to do with a breakdown of my evaluations.

    I sincerely hope they aren’t just out to benefit from cheap work. That kind of thing is bad for the freelance industry. It takes advantage of beginners who don’t yet know any better.

    I have learned that they are only about 3 weeks old, which is why they don’t yet have a lot of jobs streaming in. They’re still trying to get clients out to the site.

    I’ve sent them one final e-mail and I’m working up a full scale review for a buddy of mine. So far the outlook isn’t good for TextBroker, but I’ll give them a chance to reply first.

  • Josh August 28, 2008, 8:44 pm

    Hello again,

    Well everybody, this is strictly my personal opinion, but stay far away from TextBroker. Try as I might I couldn’t find another writer who could get above their rating system, nor could I find anyone who’s had particularly good experiences with them.

    They’re a start up business, only less than a month old. So hopefully they won’t survive. 🙂

    Sorry if that seems harsh but I definitely wouldn’t waste my time with this service.

  • Felicia August 28, 2008, 9:17 pm

    Hey Josh,

    Thanks for your input. They approved my text and gave me a rating of 2. Remembering your comment I didn’t get upset. I realized that this just wasn’t something that I was going to spend my time and effort on.

    I can’t thank you enough for sharing your experience with us.

    Felicia

  • Josh August 28, 2008, 9:25 pm

    Hey no problem! 🙂

    Thank you as well, I like the way you have your blog set up. I think it’s laid out nicely and will prove to be a good source of information for people to look over.

    Thanks again for the opportunity to post and share what I learned about the site.

    Josh

  • Sue Molenda August 29, 2008, 10:39 am

    I just received notification that I was accepted with a rating of 3 on textbroker.com. I didn’t find any orders available at the moment, but I do hope textbroker will survive, because it’s a way to start earning legitimate (if small) income and publication credits as a writer, without having to invest a great deal of time creating a blog that doesn’t pay and hoping to be “discovered” and offered a paid gig someday.

    I’m busily working a dead-end job as a receptionist, where I’ve scribed several screenplays, some stage plays, and a plethora of poems and songs, most of which I’ve never bothered to market. The stage plays were requested and produced by non-profits for honoraria so low that I felt guilty cashing the checks, and donated the entire amounts back to the organizations who paid me– except in the case of the half-hour comedy show I wrote and performed on the evening of the first day I’d spent watching my best friend die from a suicide attempt. In that instance, it was weeks before I could drive to the bank to cash a check without weeping uncontrollably.

    I’m often told that I should write a novel. I’m told it would be a bestseller. But I feel an urgency to find a better-paying job, and I waste countless hours perusing Craigslist and Monster for a career I won’t hate. Nothing fits the bill. By now, I could have written an entire series of novels, or several series. Perhaps that’s what I should do.

    In the meantime, if I’m able to earn five bucks for a few hundred words, I won’t complain. But I might feel underpaid, considering I once won a year’s subscription to Artist’s magazine for a single paragraph, and a $169 soymilk maker for a 200 word essay that just happened to flow out of me in perfectly rhymed couplets of iambic pentameter.

  • Felicia August 29, 2008, 10:53 am

    Hi Sue,

    Thanks for stopping by and commenting here. It’s obvious that you have writing talent and should be paid a handsome wage for it. There’s got to be better paying markets for your talents.

    I’ve never entertained the thought of writing screenplays or novels so I never spent time looking online in that direction. However, after reading your post, I’ll spend a little time looking around to see what’s available. I can’t promise anything, but you’ve got me curious.

    In the meanwhile, places like Demand Studio, although they only pay $15 per article, pay higher than Textbroker. The articles should take about 20 to 30 minutes to complete depending on the topic (that’s including uploading them to Demand Studio).

    With your writing ability, you should be able to blow through a few Demand Studio articles a day in your spare time while looking for better paying opportunities.

    As far as Textbroker goes, use them if they’ll help you, but I really think you can find higher paying gigs elsewhere.

  • Josh August 29, 2008, 5:12 pm

    Hello again 🙂

    An update, TextBroker finally got back to me, and this time on a positive note. Due to my frustration and concerns with previous experiences Jan ( who appears to be handling the support end of TextBroker ) wrote me an e-mail explaining that she personally reviewed my latest articles and found no errors or mistakes herself. She made a note of it to the editorial staff and my rating for the last article went to a 4 star. I was informed that if my quality continues in this manner, my rating will keep rising.

    So that’s a first positive note about the service. I’ll be a guinea pig and try some more articles to see what happens.

    I have nothing better to do at the moment, as I’m on a semi-vacation anyway. lol

    I do however agree, Sue, that your writing talent is obvious. Your contribution to this blog was worded well and really flowed. If you haven’t done so already, take a good look at some of the other posts on here. I’ve visited several interesting sites and writing tools that I was unaware of thanks to Felicia and her information.

    Best of luck to you in kicking off a new career! You definitely have what it takes to make it in freelance.

    Josh

  • Alyssa September 2, 2008, 3:26 pm

    Hello Felicia,

    I have to chime in to the latest comments made by Josh and Sue regarding Textbroker.

    I have to question Textbroker’s legitimacy and professionalism. They have placed their credibility on the line with the design of their Web site. After perusing the Web site and registering with them, I was left flabberghasted.

    They claim that authors must submit work that is flawless (i.e. free of grammatical and spelling errors) to achieve a high rating. However, just a quick glance at their Web site, such as in the FAQ section and content under each tab (Authors, Clients, etc.), any decent writer would be appalled. The passive voice blared at me, commas were missing so that the sentences fell apart, and the sentence structure was such that I was mentally stumbling over their words.

    I find it laughable and ironic that they would make such a demand on writers when they can’t even write engaging, coherent content for their own Web site. I have to wonder, how desperate am I, as a startup freelance writer, to allow them to pass judgement on my writing when they blatantly display mediocre work as a way of enticing writers or clients?

    I’ve worked with technical editors and I encouraged their feedback only because these editors were exceptional and superior writers, had the technical skills of a wordsmith, had an ear for writing, understood individual styles of different writers, and made others’ ideas and copy better not worse.

    My parting comment is that I hope the editors at Suite 101 are better qualified. From what I can see at Suite 101, when compared to Textbroker, there’s a world of difference. All I can say is, caveat emptor!

  • Nick September 2, 2008, 5:27 pm

    Hey, I’ve been on Textbroker for a month. I’ve made 48$ thus far. Almost all of my articles got a 3 star rating, but two of them got a 4. To get to a 5 star rating, you have to consistently get 4 star ratings for like 10 articles, then you can advance. I don’t feel safe giving out SSC info..but I’ll have to, if I want to receive payment.

  • Felicia September 2, 2008, 6:02 pm

    Hi Alyssa,

    For some reason, I get the impression that English isn’t the native language for the folks at Textbroker.com. I’m not sure if I’m giving them an excuse or not, but I would think that if English were the native language, their content would be much more engaging.

    As far as Suite 101 goes, there are several editors and they are better qualified than Textbroker editors in my opinion. You will, however, find a few that take their job too seriously and get picky about things like “not using up all 170 characters” for the intro paragraph (I used 159 to come up with a compelling intro). Comments like that I ignore.

  • Felicia September 2, 2008, 6:05 pm

    Hi Nick,

    I’m glad you’re having success with Textbroker. I understand what you mean about giving your social security number, but unfortunately, in order to get paid, you’ll have to share those precious numbers. The good thing is that at least you get a chance to earn a few dollars and get a better feel for the company before you share your social security #.

    Some organizations require the social security number up front. I usually stay away from those.

    Keep us posted with your progress on Textbroker.

  • Josh September 3, 2008, 1:24 am

    That’s pretty interesting information all around. If my next article gets accepted it will put me at just over $70 in earnings. They’ve consistently maintained 4 star ratings on my articles since I posted my questions to their admin. We’ll see if that lets me advance to 5 once I have enough 4 star scores.

    Alyssa, thank you very much for your contribution. Thanks to everyone, actually. I’m glad I am not the only who feels that there is something a little off about the TextBroker rating system. What we do is creative writing and very few creative writers, even best selling authors, would pass an English term paper with their writing styles.

    Grammatically correct English and creative writing just don’t have much in common. This was the concern I posted to TextBroker when I began to suspect that their grading system worked in this manner.

    I’m still holding out to see about that 5 star rating, mostly because I’m just curious. I’ll be back to post on it should anything come of that. 😀

  • Alyssa September 3, 2008, 9:49 am

    Hello Felicia,

    I have an update on Textbroker. I registered with them yesterday and submitted a brief paragraph as a sample of my writing. I received a 4-star rating.

    I’ve taken a look at the OpenOrders and the variety of offers available for anything at 4 stars or above are skimpy at best, which is understandable. After reviewing some of the orders for 2 and 3 stars, I have some reservations about doing this. I don’t know where it comes from, but let’s just call it a “gut” feeling. I’d like to know more from you, Josh, Nick on how things went when you submitted your first text for an OpenOrder. The orders seem to originate from overseas.

    I also like to add to Nick’s comment that if you don’t want to provide your SSN, you can provide your Employer Identification Number (EIN), which is also known as the Federal Tax Identification Number. It’s probably a good idea to present yourself to the public as a sole proprietor when you’re freelancing. You can apply for one from this IRS Web site: http://www.irs.gov/businesses/small/article/0,,id=102767,00.html

    I think I’m going to do this before I begin asking for payouts. Has anyone done this before?

  • Josh September 3, 2008, 12:19 pm

    Hey Alyssa,

    My first submission for an OpenOrder on TextBroker went smoothly. I’m using the site to help build a portfolio. If nothing else, it’s at least good for that. Many of the clients I’ve written texts for will gladly direct you to the website that your text will be published at. I’m formerly a full time ghostwriter. While the pay is excellent, the bylines are non-existent. 😀

    Today when I logged on there were twelve 4 star articles and nothing in the 5 star category. Now at one point I was told this company is only about three to four weeks old and that they are still in the process of getting traffic to their site. So maybe it will pick up, who knows.

    I would like to direct you to another resource, if you haven’t already been there.

    http://www.online-writing-jobs.com/

    You do seem to be a very talented writer and this site is a pretty good director for finding jobs almost on a daily basis. You can look up various ads and apply. Some require extensive background and experience, while others don’t so just browse them and see what fits.

    NOTE: There is a ghostwriting section on that site. If you try your hand at it, power to you, but as I said there are no bylines with most of those jobs. You won’t expand or start a portfolio by doing it. However the pay is excellent… if you take on a ghostwriting job, be sure you charge what it’s worth.

    I’m waiting for a few more 4 star ratings from TextBroker to see if they advance you to 5. Thanks for the information on applying for sole proprietor, I might consider that too.

    Josh

  • Alyssa September 5, 2008, 11:57 am

    Hey Josh,

    Thanks for the words of encouragement. I also checked out the online-writing-jobs Web site and was impressed by the array of job offerings.

    I recently spoke with my accountant who said that filing for the EIN should be painless, and it doesn’t affect the way you file taxes except for an additional schedule. You need to keep in mind that some clients will ask for a 1099 if payment to you exceeds $500. My accountant also mentioned that if I want to switch from an individual filing of an EIN to a corporation or LLC, the $500 benchmark is raised to $600. And as I mentioned, if you filed for an EIN, you won’t need to provide a SSN on the 1099 form.

    This strays a bit from the creative side of writing, but I realized that I need to treat my writing like a business, too.

    Keep us apprised..

  • Nick September 6, 2008, 7:10 pm

    Okay, well I requested my 48$ dollars and it was processed and put safely into my paypal account. Success =). That’s only a months work. Textbroker isn’t good for a job, but for extra money, it’s certainly worth it.

  • Felicia September 7, 2008, 7:00 am

    Congrats Nick. At least we know for sure that Textbroker is legitimate.

  • Amie September 14, 2008, 8:07 pm

    I just signed up with Textbroker and had my first article reviewed…I received four stars. But the pay is rather pathetic. They gave me a rate of 1.50 ppw…at first I thought it meant $1.50 per word…then I found out they meant a cent and a half! Some of the text requests for four stars want some serious research done, with statistics, but earning $3.50 or so for a 450 word piece that requires research is really not worth the time it takes!! They also asked for what I do…I own an independent cleaning service…but some of the text requests they sent me wanted me to write about the benefits of franchising!!! I’m independent…I hate franchised cleaning services (actually I love them because I get their business when clients find out they don’t actually clean..but that is another story)…but why would I want to extol the benefits of something I would never do?? I don’t know about this..I also agree that English doesn’t seem to be these folks first language. the site is not user-friendly.

  • Damien September 18, 2008, 5:45 am

    I have been on textbroker for a while now. I have had six articles in a row rated excellent by the customer. All of these articles have been rated 4 stars by textbrokers reviewers though. I am hoping to get to the five star level soon but I am not sure what more I can do.

    Does anyone know for sure that the five star articles pay .5 per word?

  • Nick September 18, 2008, 7:54 am

    I just had a whole batch of reviews rated, 8 of them I believe. They were very happy with all of them, and I was immediately upgraded to 4 stars, which is awesome. I’ve never heard of anyone achieving 5 stars yet, but I do see 5 star assignments on there, so someone has to be doing them.

    @Amie- You were expecting $1.50 a word? That’s seems..ridiculous. If I was achieving $1.50 a word, I’d be rich after a few years.

  • Jen Brister September 18, 2008, 12:20 pm

    I should be getting a payout of around $40.00 from textbroker this month. I stick to the articles that require very little research. I’m at 4 stars and would love to move to 5.

  • Nick September 22, 2008, 8:44 pm

    I’ve noticed the more you do articles, the better you’ll get at doing some that you didn’t even know you knew anything about. There’s still two weeks left before payout and I’m already up to $50.

  • Damien September 23, 2008, 5:11 pm

    It would be nice if they had more four star and even three star articles though. It seems that most buyers have realized they can get fairly good quality and not pay the higher rates. I don’t even bother with the two star stuff and will only do the three stars if I can crank it right out off the top of my head.

  • Nick September 23, 2008, 6:32 pm

    Yeah..the majority is 2 star. I’ve done plenty of 3 star and a couple 4 star articles too though. I just recommend doing all sorts of different articles, because then you start getting noticed as well. I’ve been receiving direct orders recently, and 1.50 a word isn’t bad. I’ve been thinking of raising it a bit though, if I keep getting orders

  • Josh September 24, 2008, 4:34 pm

    I received my payment too, in the amount of $80.54 after just over 20 articles. Tons of 4 star ratings now, with absolutely no indication of getting to a 5 star rating. So I think this company is probably going to go down in flames before long. They have a good idea, just not great execution.

    And in reference to $1.50/word, some jobs will pay $1.00 – $1.50/word, believe it or not. But you better have the resume to back up your writing. 🙂

    Also, try ghostwriting. I’ve mostly done ghostwriting up to this point and it helped me with my house, two cars, all my bills and a couple of nice vacations. You won’t get credit for true ghostwriting jobs, no bylines, no seeing your name on the cover of a book… but you will enjoy some outstanding income.

  • Damien September 25, 2008, 4:23 pm

    I agree on the point that a 5 star rating seems to be unattainable. I do however think that it is a nice way to make a few bucks during down time. I would never write anything I had to do research for, but the ones I can just crank out in 10 minutes are worth the short money they offer.

    I think they have a great interface though. The ease of use factor is a 10 out of 10. If they just upped the money a tad it would be my favorite online resource. As is you can make a lot more with sites like elance. I am not ready to give up on them yet, I like the concept too much.

    Damiens last blog post..Troy Brown Retires

  • Nick September 25, 2008, 8:35 pm

    Yeah..the site is just so easy. You’re receiving money for almost no work at all..at least that’s what it seems like to me. It’s my only source of online income currently.

    @Josh- If you’ve got like, 20 4 star ratings, you may want to ask them about the 5 star rating. It says in the FAQ to do that.

  • Lisa October 14, 2008, 9:02 am

    Hi, great site!

    I came across it this morning in a search for online jobs for writers.

    I have been writing for them for about a week and I like it, but I do admit the pay is low. But it is hard to make money writing, so in one way it is great for writers. I was just wondering if you know of any other companies of this type that hire freelance writers. I would love to write for one more company of this nature.

    Thank you,

    Lisa

  • Felicia October 14, 2008, 11:27 am

    Hi Lisa,

    Browse around my blog. I’ve been adding writing sites as I come across them.

    Have you tried Demand Studios?

  • Lisa October 14, 2008, 12:00 pm

    Yes, I tried Demand Studios months ago but in their email they said they did not have anything for me at the time.

    I will have a look around the site, thanks!

  • Veronique October 17, 2008, 1:39 pm

    Textbroker is a good site for newbies who wish to polish their skills for the craft. I have recently acquired a 5 star rating, since then clients have contacted me for direct orders. I have the opportunity to write sixteen articles for $10.00 each, and this is a wonderful opportunity when other freelancing opportunities slow down a bit.

  • Felicia October 17, 2008, 2:22 pm

    Congrats Veronique,

    For a while there I thought that Textbroker never gave out a 5 star rating.

    Good for you!

  • Veronique October 18, 2008, 11:29 am

    Thank you Felicia.

    I was feeling the same way for quite some time. I was shocked when they contacted me about the 5 star rating. I believe Textbroker is a great way to gain experience and clients who wish to work with the same writer.

  • Lisa October 21, 2008, 6:07 pm

    Hi Veronique,

    That is great to hear! Congrats to you. I hope I get to that level soon. I am at level 4 now.

    If you do not mind me asking, how long did it take for you to get to that level? I moved from 3 to 4 in about two weeks.

    Lisa

  • Veronique October 22, 2008, 9:44 am

    Thank you Lisa.

    Of course I don’t mind you asking. We are all here to help each other out.

    I registered for my account Sept 8th, submitting a short article. On October 6th they rated me at 5 stars. I was shocked. On the downside, there hasn’t been many 5 star assignments.

    The client who sent me a direct order hasn’t contacted me even though the article I wrote for him was accepted. I was so looking forward to the sixteen articles he mentioned. I’m not sure if he is just busy or didn’t like my style of writing. LOL

    Good luck to you on Textbroker, I know you will do fine. : )

  • Nick October 28, 2008, 6:41 pm

    That’s great to hear they give out 5 star ratings. I recently made 90 bucks on textbroker, so I was happy about that. I’ve written 56 articles now, so I expect to advance to 5 stars eventually.

  • Alyssa October 29, 2008, 1:13 pm

    I’m with Nick, I’ve written only four articles with Textbroker so far, and stand at 4-star rating. However, this did not preclude me from receiving direct orders from the same client.

    Like Veronique said, the 4- to 5-star rating articles are slim pickings, so you have to rely on your good writing skills to attract clients who wish to work with the same writer with whom they’ve had a good experience.

    The downside to Textbroker is that you’re a ghostwriter, so your byline never appears on your work and you really don’t have a way of knowing where your work will appear. It’s like working in a silo. I think if you had a better understanding of your audience, you’d be able to write focused articles. Textbroker is great for honing your skills but you can’t build a portfolio if you can’t show (prove) that you’ve written the articles and for whom.

    That’s why in a different post, I asked whether anyone had experiences with Constant Content, where you get a byline and set the price.

    Good luck to all. And Nick and Veronique, keep us posted on your successes with Textbroker.

  • Anon October 29, 2008, 1:28 pm

    I was bumped to level 4 in less than 10 days, so it is not an impossibility. Higher ratings are definitely slim, and some require more research, but worth it for the higher pay. Level 5 is significantly higher though. Level 4 is $1.40 for every 100 words, while level 5 is $5 for every 100 words. Man, it must be great to be a 5.

  • Shannon October 30, 2008, 1:42 am

    Hi everyone,
    I have been writing for textbroker for about two months now. My original rating was 3 stars, but after my first 5 articles I was upgraded to a 4. That is where I remain, however I have only completed 15 articles so far.

    I haven’t really had too many complaints about the system. Other than the same that Alyssa just mentioned about ghost writing aspect. After I complete a text, I always send the client a message thanking them for the work and asking where the text will be located. About 75% of them will respond and advise of the website where your text is being used.

    Recently I received my first set of direct orders from one client. My question to pose to anyone who has experience is what rate have you set for your direct orders? I had never changed anything in my profile on that, so I assume the default is 1.5 cents per word? That was what mine was at.

    Being a newbie freelancer, I have no idea of what is normal to charge. I hate to set too low and miss out on extra money, but hate to set too high and never get offered work, you know? Any advice would be most appreciated!

    Great blog by the way Felicia! Lots of great info for a stay at home mom looking to make a buck or two!

  • Dan November 2, 2008, 7:42 pm

    Hello All,

    I sincerely hope that you don’t mind me writing on here but I’ve followed this stream of comment with interest and wanted to submit my own view/question…

    I am a UK business owner and I came across this site because I am looking for unique copywriting/articles for my website. I Googled “Textbroker review” to see what other people had to say about the service because I thought it looked good from a client point of view.

    Does anyone know of any good ways to find unique content (websites/messageboards etc) aside from Textbroker? From my point of view I’d be happy paying good rates for quality, well researched content for my website/commercial blog that matched my own brief. I would need full/exclusive ownership of it though.

    Any thoughts/comments would be very welcome.

    Thanks
    Dan

  • Felicia November 2, 2008, 9:28 pm

    Hi Dan,

    I cautiously approved your comment because I like to share opportunities with my readers.

    I’m taking you at your word as one who is willing to pay for quality content. While this is not an offer that I personally am willing to investigate at this point in time, I allowed the comment for my readers to take it at face value and investigate further.

    Dan, I have not publishes your email address. How should my readers contact you if they wish to find out more information?

    Felicia

  • Tricia November 3, 2008, 1:09 pm

    Hi Felicia and Everyone,

    This is a great thread, Felicia. I’ve enjoyed reading the comments from fellow Textbroker writers. I, too, began as a 3, went quickly to a 4, and am now a 5-star writer. There is indeed a tremendous pay difference when you hit 5-star, but the downside is the scarcity of assignments on the upper end. Fortunately, I was lucky enough to strike a chord with one client and, through direct orders, I’m writing six to eight articles a week for them now. There are definite opportunities for writers on Textbroker. And adhering to deadlines and word counts, while still being creative and unique, is great for polishing those writing chops. I’m not a newbie writer, and I still find this type of writing very challenging. But I love a good challenge, so I also find it exciting. Good luck to everyone!

  • Sam November 13, 2008, 4:13 pm

    I have been a banker and finance professional for the last 20 years and about 5 months ago started blogging for http://www.allbusiness.com. After blogging for several months they asked me to do a weekly podcats for them. Recently they asked me to write 5-600 word articles on a variety of finance topics that were all within my domain expertise. Each one took me about 2 hours to write and proof. They gave me bylines and a link to my business website.

    Now I want to hone my writing skills and found Textbroker. I haven’t written anything for them. I guess I have been spoiled on the money I am earning from allbusiness.com. My 3x weekly blog pays a stipend of $250 / mo.

    After reading everyone’s posts about Textbroker, I am guessing I should keep asking my current client for more work.

    My question for others is about their pay cycle. I understand from reading their agreement that they pay by the 15th of the month following work submission. Is that other’s experiences?

  • Sam November 13, 2008, 4:17 pm

    One thing I was thinking about as I read these posts. If you don’t feel comfortable giving out your social security number for the 1099s, then get a federal employer TIN for your writing income. You can get it over the phone from the IRS and protect your SS #.

  • Veronique November 14, 2008, 11:42 am

    Hi Sam,

    Textbroker paid me on the 7th of November. I wish they paid twice monthly; that would be great.

    Keep working with your current client and start with Textbroker as well. New doors are opened once you start receiving direct orders from clients who love your work. I have been keeping busy with a ghostwriting service, direct orders from Textbroker and “5” star orders that have peaked my attention.

    You start out small with Textbroker, but lovely opportunities are presented. Clients will come to you specifically with director orders because they may like your writing style and feel comfortable with you. Also, be sure to send a short note to clients after they have accepted your articles, letting them know they are dealing with a kind, considerate human being. It breaks the ice and you form a type of “relationship” with the client believe it or not.

    Good luck to you.

  • Alyssa November 14, 2008, 5:16 pm

    Hi Sam,

    I agree with Veronique. Stick with your current client, but test the waters with Textbroker.

    In my opinion, if you’re rated anything less than a 4 for Textbroker, you are wasting your time. The orders placed for 1 to 3-rated authors are ridiculously underpriced and the requirements are so poorly written and obscure that you can’t comprehend the client’s needs. As Veronique mentioned, your goal is to write your best on an open order that intrigues you. Then, if you’ve produced quality work and the client likes to maintain a business relationship, you’ll receive the direct orders. That’s when you can generate slightly more income and eventually set your rates.

    As you mentioned, I obtained my EIN a while ago so that when I was ready to request a payoff from Textbroker, I didn’t have to divulge my SS#. I think it’s best to work this way.

    Veronique, I’m curious to know if you have changed the rates for your direct orders or have kept them at the default set by Textbroker. If you have, was the client receptive to the rate change?

  • Veronique November 15, 2008, 2:00 am

    Hi Alyssa,

    I changed my rates for the direct orders from $1.50 to $2.00 and the clients that have approached me have no problem with that. The articles may vary from 425 – 500 words. I have eight more articles to complete with one client and I’m hoping he will have many more after that, he has been a real pleasure to work with.

    Textbroker is indeed a wonderful site. I’m hoping to see them expand to provide more many making opportunities for those of us who enjoy writing. I wish there were at least ten more sites just like them. : )

  • Alyssa November 16, 2008, 9:55 pm

    Hi Veronique,

    It’s good to hear that your clients haven’t balked at your rates. It’s an indication that there are Textbroker clients who are willing to pay for good work and have serious offers to fill.

    I think good writers and professional clients are trying to find each other, and as you mentioned Textbroker is acting as somewhat of a conduit. But I also think they need to be more vigilant about filtering out the garbage and tweaking the rating process. Writers have no idea of the guidelines and criteria they use for rating.

    ‘Nuff said..

  • Veronique November 17, 2008, 2:12 pm

    I totally agree with you about the rating process; it does confuse me to no end. The clients will leave a comment such as “excellent” or “great job” while Textbroker may rate my articles with 4 stars. It is rare when a client ask that I revise an article. I hope that with time, they will indeed tweak the rating process.

  • Gabriella November 20, 2008, 7:18 pm

    Thanks, Felicia, for this website and for all the great information! I had just started with Textbroker when I found it and all of the comments have been very helpful and reassuring. Thanks to all!!!

  • Felicia November 20, 2008, 7:19 pm

    Gabriella, I’m glad we were able to help you.

    That’s why I keep this blog, to share what I learn and hopefully it helps someone else (and me too).

  • Alyssa November 21, 2008, 12:05 pm

    Hi Veronique,

    I don’t want to belabor the point of Textbroker’s rating process, but I have to question the timing of it. The fact that they’re rating the articles AFTER they’ve been accepted by the client implies that they don’t think much of the client’s professional judgement.

    If Textbroker is concerned about the quality of articles, the rating/editorial process should occur before the articles are sent to the client. That does not mean that I would rely on them to edit my article; I’m my own proofreader and editor. It’s easy to become lazy and careless when someone else is doing it.

    If I understand their rational for applying the rating process, it would be in their best interest to assign higher ratings as it equates to a higher commission for them. No?

    But I’ve said enough…

  • Rhonda November 24, 2008, 1:54 pm

    I found Textbroker,and I intend to make over 50.00 each and every day from them. IF there is something to write about on the website,that I can compose intelligent advertising, or whatever they need. Usually it’s advertising or marketing. Makes it easier if I understand the subject.
    But the thing is, my rating is 3. So I can only see the number 1-3 requests. If you have the patience, it can be done.

    Rhondas last blog post..How to Pay to Play

  • Alyssa November 25, 2008, 1:26 pm

    If you can earn $50 a day by writing articles rated between 1 and 3, more power to you. Given the price points on these articles, you would have to write lots and lots of them.

    The direct orders that I’m receiving require deep research that lends credibility and integrity to the articles. In fact, I am considering a price/rate increase. As it is, the time spent researching and writing is out of balance with my word rates.

    I am posing this question to everyone out there; how do you maintain your writing speed while maintaining quality? I see quite a bit of online content that is superficial and without much substance. I have to assume that these are novice writers who are trying to generate residual income at the risk of putting out substandard work. If I’m reading a “How to” article, I’d like to be reassured that the author either researched the content or is an expert in that domain. But I don’t get a sense of this at all, judging from some of the eHow articles. Although, I have seen very good work on Suite 101. I wonder if the difference is active editors who pore over the content beforehand.

    Sorry for getting on the soap box (sheepish grin)

  • Ben Banker December 19, 2008, 12:48 pm

    I recently started writing for Textbroker to see if I could earn a few extra dollars from my home. The only experience I’ve had writing came from college research papers and that was many years ago. I was accepted at level three and have written ten articles so far. This has been a good refresher course for me because I was downgraded to level two because of some spelling errors,the original sin of composition!

    So far, all of my articles have been accepted but the biggest hurdle I have to overcome is figuring out exactly what a client expects. Creative writing has always been fun but informational content requires a lot of research time.

    If anyone has any advice for a novice it would be greatly appreciated.

  • Felicia December 21, 2008, 8:15 am

    Hi Ben,

    Sometimes questions get buried at the end of blog posts. Since I think your request is important, I decided to “Bump” it up and created a blog post.

    Sit tight, I know my readers will be able to help you. Check the blog post to see their responses.

  • Grandma December 22, 2008, 9:18 pm

    Ben, you can ask your client questions through the Textbroker message function. Yes, sometimes they are not clear and then you get a rewrite back with an explanation.

    I started with them in late Aug, have done over 500 articles, and am a 5 rated writer. For the past 3 months I have earned about $800 a month, get paid on time by the 6th of each month to Paypal. I intend to do at least that much monthly. I think they are German, but have an office in Las Vegas. They always answer my questions.

    I agree the pay is low at anything below a 5 rating, but since they require no experience, what does one expect? You can write offline in a word processing program and use spell check to avoid errors in spelling. I am very happy with Textbroker, have some regular direct clients and it fits a need for the present.

    If you have a lot of life experience, you can cut down the time to do many articles because you already know the material and do not have to do a lot of research. One of the hardest things is doing original work on a topic multiple times without repeating yourself.

    Textbroker runs every article through CopyScape for plagerism and copying before it goes to a client. If there is something copied, they will send it to you for corrections and then you get to submit it again. Clients can request rewrites. You can blacklist anyone you do not want to work with for any reason, and they can blacklist you.

    The amount of articles available varies, but they are doing well and I hope they continue to do well. You do not have to pay anything; they take a commission from clients above what you get paid.

    I try to set a daily amount I need to make the monthly amount I want, and usually have plenty to choose from. Being a 5 is very acceptable paywise, but there are not a lot of 5 articles. You have to watch for them, and jump on them and write quickly to try to get another because they go fast.

    Some of the 2 and 3 articles are just easy and fun to do. Of course grammar is important, and spelling is critical and stupid to make mistakes at! I agree some of the client explanations are a bit off, but I know many come from other countries. The UK articles need special attention for phrasing, spelling and word use.

    I hope Textbroker grows and grows! Things will get better, and who knows, maybe they will go to a 6 rating system or more in the future.

  • Alyssa December 23, 2008, 10:18 am

    Grandma,

    Did you start at a 5-star rating? If not, at what point did they assign a 5-star? The 5-star rating seems to be an elusive rating that defies logic.

    Despite excellent reviews received from clients and Textbroker, Textbroker does not divulge the steps you can take to attain the 5-star rating. I’m not sure if it’s a function of the number of articles you have written.

    Also, I see that there are plenty of articles to choose from at levels below 5, but take for instance the Travelogues or Travel topics that require content on exotic and out-of-the-way places. I imagine that only a very few can write these off the cuff. I checked in this morning and there was a request for content on marketing in Santa Barbara. Unless you’re from Santa Barbara, you will need to do some research.

    I am in awe that you have written 500 articles and earning your quota each month. It’s really commendable. Perhaps you should provide some tips here for the rest of who are trying to jumpstart a freelance career.

    Thanks for the invaluable advice.

  • Ben Banker December 23, 2008, 10:19 am

    I really appreciate your input. I am going to print it for future reference. I can see why you are rated at ‘5’.

  • Felicia December 23, 2008, 3:23 pm

    Grandma, I can’t thank you enough for your valuable input!

  • Grandma December 23, 2008, 3:19 pm

    Hello, I was started at a 3 for about 5 articles, then up to a 4. I held the 4 for about two months, and many articles. Just when I was about to email them about bumping me up to a 5, they did it on their own in mid November.

    Yes, you do need to do some research on many articles. My point was with age and experience you can realize some short cuts! I did some direct order articles on places I have never been, and with each bunch found I wanted to go visit them…the more I wrote, the better the places sounded. But my traveling days are past. For example, writing a legal piece for somewhere in California means looking up the CA laws. That is not a problem. If something looks too hard or time consuming for the payout, don’t do it.

    I have been a writer my entire life, and made a living doing it, plus photography. In radio and tv, I wrote commercials for many products and businesses that were unfamiliar. It was fun and I loved it. Now I am in a situation where this writing not only brings in some extra income, but fits the problems I have with life currently.

    I like the variety, and it is fun to do the research. Again, if something looks like more trouble than the money is worth, I skip it. But, I did get going with the 2, 3, and 4 star projects. There are not a lot of 5 star pieces needed – yet. They pay good, the others are pretty low pay. I think some are for student term papers, and for resale under another person’s name. If I cared about that, or felt ripped off, I would not write for them.

    There are some other websites I have found mentioned around the internet, like elance, guru, and a couple others, where they connect freelancers with clients.

    Good luck in your endeavors. Practice makes perfect typing also, but a good spell checker is still needed, and proofread, proofread, proofread!

  • Grandma December 24, 2008, 2:17 am

    I should mention a couple more things. I have a large amount of time available but still have to push myself to get the articles out. There are days there is nothing I am interested in writing. Usually they have about 150 to 250 article requests up at any time. I check the list frequently to find the ones I like, since I do have the time to do that throughout the day, and night (light sleeper!)

    The other thing is some clients want “spin” articles, where you put in extra words, tags, so they end up with three articles for the price of one. I do not do those because I feel that is a rip off. They can pay for three articles if they need three! Just my opinion!

  • Sarah December 31, 2008, 10:49 am

    Hi Felicia.
    This site seems to be for US only, do you know any similiar site which accepts international writers? Thanks

  • Felicia December 31, 2008, 11:04 am

    Hi Sarah,

    I’m not sure if I know of sites similar to Textbroker that are open to international writers. Sites like Suite101.com, Bukisa, Today.com, Brite Hub and Associated Content all accept international writers.

    They mainly offer residual income, but there are features with a couple of them where you can earn up front payment. I’ll keep my eyes open to see if I can find sites similar to Textbroker that accept international writers.

    If anyone knows of additional sites, please chime in and help Sarah out.

    Thanks!

  • Felicia December 31, 2008, 11:15 am

    Hey Sarah,

    I just came across a site called Worldwide Freelance Writer. They have a database of international writing jobs. I’m not sure if this is what you’re looking for, but its worth taking a look.

    They have two memberships. One charges a little over a dollar a month that has a database of 2,200 writing markets, and a free mailing list with 750 writing markets.

    I also think that Helium accepts international writers. They seem to offer up front payments for writing articles chosen from their Marketplace.

    As I find potential opportunities, I’ll let you know.

  • Sarah December 31, 2008, 4:00 pm

    Hi again.
    Well, I’m already a member of Helium and Associated Content, but Helium doesn’t pay anything unless you get a writing or rating star… and for that people need to vote and etcetera… I’ve only been a member for 2 days but this far only 2 people have voted on my articles, so I don’t really see any bright future there…
    On AC, they pay 1 dollar per 1000 page views or something, but they won’t publish my articles! So, I stopped writing there.

    I’ve applied for suite101, and I’m awaiting an answer. I really hope I’ll be accepted… Wish me luck! 🙂

    I’ll try these other sites as well, thanks for links!

  • Grandma January 12, 2009, 1:16 pm

    For you writers who want to write, Textbroker today has 571 articles that need to be written…..

  • Alyssa January 13, 2009, 11:48 am

    Yes, there was an influx of orders by Textbroker; most stemm from the Education channel. If you’re a good copywriter, this may be your gig. They require a rewrite of course descriptions for the University of Phoenix.

    I have only one question; if the descriptions are not written by one or two people, wouldn’t there be a difference of style and voice. If 100 writers submit their work, the client is going to get 100 different descriptions that lack consistency. I’m guessing this doesn’t matter. Otherwise, they would have stipulated guidelines.

  • Anne Krist January 31, 2009, 12:38 pm

    What a great site! Thanks, Felicia and everyone, for your input and helpful info.

  • Shamrockcon February 26, 2009, 11:47 am

    I am rated a level 4 on Textbroker and though the earnings are not great on some articles, they are much better when you get to this level. At level 4, I have access to many more offers and I get paid 1.4 cents per word. I have also learned how to pick the articles I know I can write quickly. For instance, last night I wrote an article that made me $4.23 dollars in 15 minutes. That’s not bad at all. Also, level 4 writers usually get requests for travel articles which are fun, and as Textbroker is growing, there are many more offers being listed than previously.

    Shamrockcons last blog post..Cash Crate Attempt…And Failure

  • Alicia March 7, 2009, 1:55 pm

    Just curious, what format do you all use when writing your Writer’s Resume? I have asked several people, and only heard back that they don’t have a formal resume, only a writing credits page on a blog.

    I am applying for more writing jobs and need to find a method for writing up a nice resume to showcase my different works, but really only have a small number of past online publishings under my belt. I am trying to get started and I am at a loss on how to get this done. Any tips, ideas or advice???

    Also, when you do mostly online content publishing, how do you list that on a resume? What I have right now just looks so ugly!!

  • Felicia March 8, 2009, 10:21 am

    On some writing gigs I use a formal resume (when requested), otherwise my communications are less formal, usually several links to my online writing.

    Back in my tech writing days I had to have a formal resume, so I basically stuck with the same format. Do a Google search for “freelance writer resume format.” You should be able to find a few that might work for you.

    If you don’t have a lot of published clips, that’s okay. There are ways to get around that.

    In the next few days, I’ll pull up one of my resumes and share my resume format.

  • Jeni March 8, 2009, 6:06 pm

    Hi Felicia, your blog is great – this is my 1st time visiting… In less than a month I’m on my way to 5 stars at Textbroker, and I went in w/low expectations to be honest. In less than a month, I’m now averaging 16 dollars per assignment and about to hit the $25 5 star rating. I’m fairly happy with how it’s going, and I really like the flexibility and freedom as well. Cheers.

    Jenis last blog post..Happy B-Day Dr. Seuss

  • jude March 17, 2009, 2:30 pm

    Thanks for your comments so far. However, I would like to get more information on how to improve my writing rate in text broker. Unfortunately, I heard everyone talk about increase in payment rate rages from 3 to 5. While I, was rated 2 stars. Yet after submitting of 20 articles, I still remain 2 stars! Please, any help or suggestion for a better site. I like writing, and have written for so many individuals with reasonable pay, only that, the writing offer is not always available. I was somewhat discourage when I received an email of 2 star rating, despite my 20 article submitted. I received several customers’ rating- excellent, good. Yet nothing from text broker

  • Lauren March 19, 2009, 9:05 pm

    Jude,

    Please don’t take offense, but my guess is that you have failed to go higher than a 2 star rating on Textbroker is because it appears that there are some issues with your grammar. The clarity with which you use grammar plays a huge role in your Textbroker rating. My recommendation is to pick up Elements of Style by Strunk and White. This is a classic book for those who need to brush up on their technical grammar and should be a “Bible” for any writer, regardless of their experience.

    Hope this helps.

  • lisa April 24, 2009, 2:17 pm

    I’ve just started with Textbroker.com. For my first ad I had to write a creative 225 word “story” using the object of the advertisement in the short plot line.

    It took about an hour to craft to my perfection before I released it. I heard back within 30 minutes that it had been accepted. I made just 2.16 but it was pretty simple.

    I think this is a wonderful way to not only make some extra cash, but hone up on your writing skills so when you apply for the higher paying gigs you will be ready!

    • Felicia April 24, 2009, 2:33 pm

      Congrats Lisa!

      I haven’t visited Textbroker in quite some time. Maybe I’ll pay them a visit.

  • Lisa B. April 25, 2009, 4:39 pm

    Wow! I am so glad I stumbled upon your site. I am currently a single mother looking to make some extra money. Writing has always been a hobby of mine, but recently I thought “why not take it to the next level?” So here I am. I’ve read through the textbroker blog and gotten so much good info. Thank you!

    • Felicia April 25, 2009, 7:00 pm

      Welcome Lisa,

      I hope you find useful information here that can help you. I stopped by your blog and am impressed at your resolve! You can definitely earn money writing on the internet, but it takes time and patience.

      Thank you for telling Maya’s story. I’m sure it will help other parents in similar situations. You are an inspiration!

  • Lisa B. May 1, 2009, 7:41 pm

    Thank you! I did apply with Textbroker and wrote the sample article they asked for. I received a very quick reply and was rated a 3. So far, so good. All the articles I’ve submitted so far have been accepted without revisions. I’d like to try to apply for Demand Studios or maybe Suite 101 soon. What about “get a freelancer.com”? Has anyone found work there?

  • lisa May 1, 2009, 8:43 pm

    Hi Lisa, This is Lisa L. For a moment I thought I wrote your comment, you know same name and almost identical situation. Yes, Textbroker will increase your rate the after they rate it there but the first article accepted takes a while to be rated by them even if the customer rated you excellent. Which is what happened with my first article, BUT I have turned into 3 more since then (after they increased by rating to a 4) and they rated them themselves IMMEDIATELY after they had been accepted by the customers, ALL 4. And they send you little “good job” messages if they liked a certain article and let you know if they made a correction you missed.

    I love these guys. I had a question and emailed them and got a reply within the hour.

    I am looking into Demand and also have joined Helium. I have written 2 articles the first actually is in first place (beginners luck!) anyway, once you publish a few on Helium you are allowed to go into a certain part of their writers MarketPlace. There you can write articles starting at $32 and up. The only downside is that other people made beat you out with their article, but the trick is to check with how many days the article has left and see if anyone else is writing it (It is indicated by a number). Please don’t judge my writing by this sloppy post, i am in a hurry but I was forwarded your comment by this site and I wanted to let you know to sign up EVERYWHERE. I am unemployed but have always had a talent for writing but never could figure out how the heck to break into it beyond the poetry sites. UNTIL unemployment and the internet, now i can’t stop.

    I want to work from home and make a living at this; i truley breathe this stuff. It’s like talking doubletime with no vocals, and I LOVE TO TALK.

    have a great day!! Lisa L

  • Lisa B. May 6, 2009, 9:52 am

    Hey thanks! I have yet another question….I have been contacted by someone via Textbroker that wants me to write 10 articles/week at 250 words per article for a monthly stipend. What kind of pay should I expect? I am just a newbie at writing for other people, but I don’t want to sell myself short….Any advice or experience from others in this situation would be helpful.

    Lisa B.

  • Felicia May 6, 2009, 10:46 am

    Lisa, that’s a tough one.

    I always have difficulty determining what rates to charge. I have even more difficulty offering advice on the subject.

    Whether you are a newbie or not, your time is valuable. I’ve got to tell you, when I first started writing online, I was ecstatic to be able to write 250 to 300 word articles for a mere $5.00 per article. I wrote them in groups of five and got paid $25.00 per batch.

    I eventually earned $6.00 per article and earned $30.00 per batch. I tell you this story because it was my first venture into the online writing arena. After finding out how easy it was to earn $30.00 for five articles, I then started searching the internet for higher rates. My next writing gig paid $10.00 for 250 word articles.

    Now when I’m approached to write articles, I take into consideration my years of experience, the subject matter, the amount of time it will take to research the topic, article length and editing time. I no longer hesitate to throw out a figure that will adequately compensate me for my time. But it took me a number of years to get to this point.

    Sometimes you have to look at the big picture and then back it down to your current situation. At this point, you don’t want to give a figure that it’s too high to miss out on the opportunity. By the same token, you don’t want to quote a rate that is too low because as I said before, your time is valuable.

    Keep in mind however, if after writing a few articles you realize that your rate is too low, you can always go back and request a higher rate of pay. More than likely, your “employer” knows that you didn’t charge enough but won’t say anything unless you do. The worst that can happen is they say no and you decide to find other writing gigs.

    I hope my advice helped. If anyone has sound advice to offer Lisa, please feel free to share it.

  • lisa May 6, 2009, 10:09 pm

    Hi Lisa B.

    I am new writer as well, as far as getting paid for my verbal diatribes go anyway. What I would do is research the internet for advice from some of the writing sites; I have actually downloaded some article advice from “The Article Czar” who sends some pretty good information on what the “newbies” need to know.

    My advice would be to maybe request a 25 cents increase per article at first? It’s still reasonable and all they can do is say no. If they say no, find out what they are willing to negotiate.

    I am like Felicia was at first, so GLAD someone is willing to pay me at all I will take bubkas for pay. 🙂

  • Doran May 9, 2009, 11:54 am

    Hi Felicia,

    Great blog…so informative. I was looking for a review on Textbroker and found this blog. Best site I have found for a well-rounded and qualified discussion. While it sounds like the pay may start out low, after reading the comments I may give it a try. Thanks for putting this all together.

  • Elbert May 9, 2009, 7:56 pm

    Hi,

    Is this where most of the textbroker writers visit? I like an opinion about something. I’ve been using textbroker to outsource articles for a while now, mostly level 3, 100-200 words. Everything was great.

    However, lately, I’ve been pretty unsatisfied with my articles. Not because of the quality of the writing or the grammar but more like not following my directions. I gave a pretty specific direction on how to write my articles. The writers seem to either choose to ignore my request or just didn’t understand what I want. There were several occasion that I had to ask for a revision.

    Here’s what I usually ask for:

    I need the writer to gather facts from the vendor pages to write a short summary on what problems the XYZ product solves and how the user will benefit. Write this in a passive, third-person, report-style fashion. Do not set the tone of trying to sell the visitor on this product, just give factual information based off of the vendor’s claims. Make sure the first sentence starts off with the product name.

    Then I usually provide the links to the vendor page per each order title to help the writer get started.

    I’m just wondering if this is too hard for a level 3 author? The articles I asked for usually require researching.

    • Felicia May 10, 2009, 7:32 am

      Welcome Elbert,

      It’s been some time since I’ve used Textbroker, but your instructions sound pretty straight forward to me.

      I get the sneaking suspicion that you’re going to receive a few responses that satisfy your requirements after submitting your comment. I’ve got a good bunch of writers that read this blog and I’m sure you’ll be able to find someone that can satisfy your writing request. Just a thought…would you be willing to provide ongoing steady work if you found the right freelance writer to satisfy your writing requirements? (I’m not putting you on the spot, it’s just a thought.)

      Thank you for posting your dissatisfaction here. I think it’s good for writers to understand both sides of the writing process.

  • lisa May 10, 2009, 8:19 am

    Hi Elbert,

    I have only been working through Textbroker.com for about a month but speaking for myself, I strive to accomplish exactly what the client instructions ask for.

    So far, there has only been one ocassion when I wasn’t exactly clear on a certain part of the instructions for the article I was writing. I sent an email to the client through Textbroker.com briefly explaining how I was handling that part of their article and asked them to please email me in return if they had something else in mind. I didn’t hear from the client and the article was completed and turned in without any request for revision.

    Your sample instructions for the researching of your articles seem pretty clear to me. You may want to check with a contact at Textbroker.com to see if they made clear the problem to the authors when they sent your articles back to them for revision.

    As far as being too complicated for a 3 rating author, I personally don’t believe it is but again, I am speaking for myself. Remember also that there are certain types of people in every sector who have no problem ignoring instructions for whatever job they are doing.

    I’m not saying that this is the case in your situation. The articles you had to return could have all been written by authors who thought they understood the instructions and thought they were writing it correctly.

    I think that there is also a way for the client to check if the author ID# of the person writing his article has written for him before, but again, you’d have to check with Textbroker.com for sure.

    If you are really concerned, you can always request that the author rating be changed to a 4 for your articles and hopefully this will take care of any future problems.

    I hope this has helped.

    Lisa L.

  • Lisa B. May 10, 2009, 2:33 pm

    I’m going to have to agree with Lisa L. on this one. If I think the directions are unclear or I’m not sure of the tone of the article, I usually write the client and ask a few questions. I did finish an article yesterday in which I thought I had followed the directions, but later I was asked to revise it. With the revision request, the client had asked me to go to a specific website and write the article in the style of that website. I made a few changes to my text and sent it back. It was accepted at that point. I think what you want isn’t that hard to understand, but if you’re not happy with a level 3 author, by all means request a level 4. We appreciate the work! 😉

  • Elbert May 11, 2009, 2:24 am

    Hi,

    Thanks for responding, everyone.

    Felicia: Sure, I’m willing to provide ongoing steady work when I find the right freelance writer. I usually request like a 20-30, 100-200 words, short summary articles. Like the example I posted above.

    Lisa L & Lisa B.: Yeah, that’s what I believe as well. If the directions are unclear they should just PM me. However, for some odd reason the authors that are writing my articles almost seem to deliberately ignore my directions.

    Because it is an Open Order, I wonder if these writers are just basically reading the order title and just the skip through the order description.

    I don’t think it’s too hard to make sure the first sentence starts off with the XYZ product name, or write it in third-person, report-style. The only thing I think that would be hard is just doing the researching.

    There were couple of rated 4 and 5 authors that accepted my rated 3 orders though. Most seem to clearly understand what I asked.(especially the rated 5!)

    Again, thanks for responding.

    I’m just frustrated with the last couple days with all these writers all of a sudden just blatantly write up a quick 100 words article that seem like nothing to do with what I asked.

    If you guys(gals) are interested, I can sent a direct order. Just give me your nickname!;)

  • Lisa B. May 11, 2009, 9:08 am

    I’m interested and don’t mind doing research. My nickname on Textbroker is Lisa B. Hopefully we can work something out!
    Thanks!

  • apexseorm May 14, 2009, 6:20 am

    After reading all these comments I’m very amused. Hi.. I’m the other half. The client. Allow me to address a few of your gripes.

    Q) why don’t they allow international writers?

    A) because us clients don’t feel like having to spend half our day sorting through articles rife with grammatical, sensical, end spelling errors, submitted by guys that don’t can hardly speak english, let alone write it. Hint: Our time is valuable too.. and we are the ones with the money.

    Q) why isn’t text broker paying me hundreds of dollars for my articles?

    A) they wouldn’t have any clients. You might think your super special article is going to be featured in a highly recognized publication and that someone is going to greatly profit off your work. 99 times out of 100 that assumption is wrong. Here is what is going to happen to your text. Its going to become a blog post or be submitted to an article directory, or similar all for the purpose of building up a HUGE collection of niche relevant content for one reason and one reason only. To rank well in google. If all us clients needed was one really well written document that we were going to turn a profit on we’d gladly pay more. That’s not the case. we order content in packs of 50 or 100. Our return on that content is minimal until we’ve acquired literally 1000s of niche specific articles and then.. only then we might gain some rank for our keywords, get some traffic to our site and maybe make a few sales.

    Q) how do I justify all this research for such a low price per word?

    A) stop trying to cover so many fields. Learn about a few niches and write for those niches. Then you wont have to constantly be googling stuff. It’ll speed up your article creation time and also ensure that you consistently produce HIGHLY informed articles instead of “best guess” content. This will get you TONS of direct orders. Refer back to my bit about niche articles for the purpose of ranking in google. I personally load up my text broker account with several hundred dollars per week and all my article requests are on the exact same niche topic. Food for thought.

  • lisa May 14, 2009, 3:12 pm

    Hi Apexseorm,

    I am a relatively new author at Textbroker.com and a new article writer period.

    Although I am not one of the authors that asked any of those questions, I do thank you for your insightful post. It was most informative.

    Sincerely,

    Lisa L.

  • Kate May 22, 2009, 3:44 pm

    Hi, I signed on to be a writer for TextBroker.com this morning and submitted my sample article (which I am actually pretty proud of!) and it said it could take up to one business day to get your rating. I signed on with another SEO site yesterday and have heard nothing back. Do these sites ever actually work and/or am I missing something? Please advise!!

  • lisa May 22, 2009, 6:40 pm

    Hi Kate,

    I can only speak for Textbroker.com, but they do exactly what they promise to do.

    I think I heard back within 3 days at the most for my first rating. I have been paid once so far, on the 10th like they promised, and had the money the next day in PayPal.

    I think you will like them!

    Lisa L

  • Kate May 22, 2009, 9:32 pm

    Lisa,

    Thank you so much! I’m actually in college right now and my mom was a little worried about the safety of online jobs. This makes me so much more comfortable.

    🙂

  • lisa May 22, 2009, 10:23 pm

    Hi Kate,

    You’re welcome!

    You can definitely trust Textbroker.com. If you really work at it, and you’re in to and have time to write 4 or 5 articles per day, you can make a couple of hundred or so per month depending on the pay listed.

    Lisa L

  • Kate May 23, 2009, 11:57 am

    I was just reading this whole thread and I saw something about Demand Studios? I was going to write for them until I realized they ask for your social. I am trying to write for ContentCurrent.com too, but they are extremely slow to get back to you and so I don’t know yet. But there’s no rating which is good. The client can send you back the content for revision. It doesn’t seem like the greatest, though, because they aren’t quick to get back to you!

    Also AssociatedContent.com seems all right, but the payment program seemed a little bizarre to me. Same thing with Constant-Content.com. but if you sign on with the latter, make sure you are registering as an author and not a client, which is the default. It isn’t very clear and I had to register twice. Good luck!

  • Kate May 23, 2009, 4:50 pm

    I just got the activation email and I’m so excited.

  • Kate May 23, 2009, 10:32 pm

    Thanks Felicia!! I actually maxed out and I’m waiting for them to let me write some more.

  • Jennifer May 24, 2009, 1:12 pm

    As a textbroker author I’d just like to throw in the other side of the coin.

    Oftentimes the article requests are VERY ambiguous, and rather than ask for clarification or direction from the source it’s easier to just pick another article.

    Or the ones that get me are as follows:
    To please write a series of 5 400 word articles on XYZ.

    Fair enough, right? However, you only get paid for the maximim word count and as far as I can tell, the requestor says they need a 400 word article so you get paid for 400 words, not 2000.

    My third favorite is when the client asks for an article on XYZ for 400 words, then asks you to SPIN the article – oh, and don’t bother submitting it without spinning it. So again, you’re writing 2 articles for the price of 1.

    Other than these few bugs, textbroker has (usually, though not so much in the last week) plenty of work.

    Jenn

  • Kate May 24, 2009, 3:09 pm

    Hi Jenn,

    You actually get a word count range, usually within 50 words. So say you have a 500-550 word assignment worth 2.95-3.85. It is perfectly okay to give in a 500 word piece (or sometimes even 495) but as you write more and more words, you make more money. It is payment per word (depending on your level, the amount/word could be more or less) until you reach 550. You can go a little over if you need to but you can not make more than 3.85

    But I agree that the instructions can be vague and that is so annoying! I usually just pick a new task at that point, too. lol

  • Kate June 1, 2009, 1:44 pm

    Hi,

    Last week I joined TB and submitted five pieces, after which I got the following block message:

    Following Errors Have Occurred

    Dear Author, you have just submitted your first 5 orders. Before you are able to continue writing, our editorial team will first evaluate your articles and provide some feedback. This may take up to 7 days. Once the articles are rated, the block is removed and you can proceed as normal. We are sorry for the inconvenience and thank you for your understanding.

    It’s been up for over a week, and since then I have been unable to write for Textbroker, which seems to be the best writing gig for me. Does this always happen and if so, is it really only ever a week?

    Thanks.

  • Kate June 1, 2009, 8:21 pm

    Felicia, I just wanted to than you so much for all your help; I just got bumped up to four stars on TB and because of all of your great info and discussions, I can now say I have a definite part-time college job! Which is easier said than done in an economy like this!!

    • Felicia June 1, 2009, 9:20 pm

      Kate, I’m so happy for you!

      Congrats!

      I think the thanks should go to all of my readers who offered tips and advice. Thanks guys/gals!

  • Kelly June 3, 2009, 11:57 am

    I am so glad I found this blog post (#2 in Google Search for Textbroker, btw! Great job!).

    I was approved this morning and instantly offended that I had received a 3. I’ve been writing for over ten years. I felt as if I had been slapped!

    Now seeing that they start all writers out as a 3, I feel much better. Phew. Not sure what I think about the service at this time, but I’m willing to give it a try.

    Speaking of Demand Studios, I just joined their program last week and submitted my first article two days ago. How long does it usually take their copyeditors to review an article?

    • Felicia June 3, 2009, 1:48 pm

      Hi Kelly,

      Glad you feel better about the Textbroker 3. As far as Demand Studios, the review time varies. It could be a couple of hours or a couple of days or as much as a week. I guess it all depends on the editor workload.

  • Shamrockcon June 4, 2009, 11:52 pm

    Hi Kelly,

    The copyeditors are pretty quick to approve (or not approve!) an article, but you won’t get your ratings till the end of the month. No matter how great your writing is, if you make one spellcheck error, then you won’t get rated at a 4. It’s a weird system…

    But I like Textbroker so good luck!

  • TJ June 5, 2009, 4:31 am

    Not everyone starts at a level 3. Several people on here have indicated that they started at a 2, while I personally was started at level 4.

    Fortunately, it is easy to move up a level with consistent, high quality work.

    Also, you can set your direct order rate higher than the rate that your level pays, so you can make more money from direct orders regardless of your level. I no longer take open orders at Textbroker and make over $600/month in direct orders alone.

  • Lisa B. June 5, 2009, 9:21 am

    T.J., that’s great. That’s exactly where I’d like to be in my earnings from textbroker. But how long was it before you got to that point? How many articles did you write for them in the open order section before you just started accepting direct orders? I’ve written around 30 articles so far and I’ve been a level 4 since around my 10th article, so I think I’m doing ok…but I’d like to do better!

  • Kelly June 5, 2009, 11:25 am

    Thanks, Shamrock.

    I had both my first Textbroker article and Demand article approved yesterday. We’ll see how I feel about both a month or so from now. 🙂

  • TJ June 5, 2009, 1:05 pm

    Lisa B. – I’ve been working with Textbroker for two full months now. I had my first direct orders within a week of starting, I believe. All together, I’ve submitted about 160 articles for Textbroker and I’d say probably well over 100 of them were direct orders.

  • ApexSEORM June 11, 2009, 5:10 am

    Hey there again. Its me your friendly textbroker.com client 🙂 just wanted to let all you writers out there know there is going to be a ton of orders coming in on the travel section over the next week. I have a huge project. descriptions for 60+ timeshare developers and 1600+ resorts. Im going to set the description range at 150-400 words each. Can’t wait to see what you guys produce!

    • Felicia June 11, 2009, 9:38 am

      Thanks for the heads up!

  • Lisa B. June 11, 2009, 11:10 am

    T.J., Thanks for letting me know about your experience with Textbroker. Within a week of asking you that question I received my first direct order! Yay!

    ApexSEORM – Excellent, thank you! I’m off to do some writing!

  • apexseorm June 11, 2009, 1:44 pm

    No problem Felicia. Man you guys are on it today! Crankin these things out faster than I can copy paste! Just put in another 10 orders. Keep up the great work and I’ll keep the money movin 🙂

  • Tena June 12, 2009, 4:38 pm

    Just wanted to say thank you. As a newbie here I have been reading. I have read here and WPLH. Textbroker accepted my application article and activated my account. Demand Studios sent the test for Title Proofer and I will be taking that.

    Gonna keep reading, studying, doing research and growing.

    Thanks again!!

  • ApexSEORM June 12, 2009, 11:39 pm

    Lisa B. you’ve been doing a kick ass job. I’d like to increase your pay by paying you directly and cutting out the middle man. Email me at apexseorm@gmail.com for further information! Thanks felicia for the connect!

  • Lisa B. June 13, 2009, 8:57 am

    What a great way to start off the day! Thanks Apex, and of course, thanks Felicia!
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    • Felicia June 13, 2009, 9:44 am

      Great! I’m glad that this worked out for the both of you!

  • E. Kelly June 13, 2009, 12:33 pm

    Hi everyone. This is an informative thread.

    I’m a magazine writer by trade (I’ve most recently been published in Mental Floss and History Magazine –check for me on your newsstand.)

    The lead time between selling a magazine article and when you actually get paid can be several months (sometimes as many as eight!), so I’m looking to supplement that income with an increase in web writing.

    Magazine work pays as well as .70 a word, and I consider .05 to be a rock bottom price for me. With that in mind, I’m hoping to get a high rating on Textbroker.

    Do you know if they allow you to submit proof of being a professional print writer in order to obtain the designation as a pro, such as payment receipts, clips, resume, etc.?

    Here’s hoping my experience somehow shows in my submitted sample!

    -Liz

  • apexseorm June 13, 2009, 1:34 pm

    Liz –

    Goodluck getting more than your “rock bottom” price when doing content writing online. I covered this before higher up in this thread. even 5cents is more than most content buyers are going to pay. Online content is NOT the same as magazine content. In a magazine the publisher gets paid for your article over and over and over. You see they sell a subscription or sell the magazine on an individual basis at news stands, grocery stories and convenience stores. Every time someone buys it, they recoup on their investment with you and of course end up turning a profit. Online content is NOT like that. The buyers (like me) really don’t see a return on the content we buy. At least not in the traditional way you are used to working with. We build content to get relevance in the eyes of google. If we have enough niche related content we might be able to rank well for our keyword or keyphrase at which point we can attract customers to sell whatever product or service we are pushing. This process takes months or sometimes even years and required 1000s of niche relevant articles. As a result it doesn’t make sense for us (they buyer) to pay more than 10-15 dollars for an article. The only time I even bother ordering 5 star content from textbroker is if its going to be a press release syndicated out to a ton of news sites. Sorry but this is the reality for most content buyers online.

    • Felicia June 13, 2009, 2:03 pm

      Apexseorm makes a good point. That’s why I believe it’s so important for online freelance writers to build a base of residual income articles to compensate for the low up front pay.

      Even places like Demand Studios is becoming increasingly difficult to write for. In addition to residual income sites, try your hand at your own blog or website too. I found that the combination of residual and up front pay initially helped to pay the bills. Over time, I eventually weaned myself off of up front pay work.

  • Kelly June 13, 2009, 3:44 pm

    Apex, I’m sorry, but your definition of content websites is downplaying the key factor in why you’re buying content: you’re either making money from ads or you’re selling a product. As it is, your explanation is claiming that you don’t make a return from your website, in which case I’d have to ask why you have a website in the first place.

    Now, you say that you pay $10/15 per article, which is pretty fair for online content, but as far as I know, textbrokers is paying beans to writers at $2/3 per article. I took my one and only assignment there, fulfilled my obligation and promptly decided that I wasn’t willing to work for less than minimum wage.

    There’s currently a project posted at elance that is paying $3/600 word articles and requiring 50 articles turned around in a week. This is ridiculous. The only way this makes sense is if the writer is making residuals on the work and in the case of both this proposal and textbrokers, the writer is not making residuals, unless I’ve missed something in the fine print.

    Liz, Apex is right that you won’t make the amount online that you make for print work. You also, usually, won’t have to do the leg work you do for print work. But don’t sell yourself short by allowing yourself to be taken advantage of by $2/3 articles. The reason why people think they can do this to writers is because writers allow themselves to be treated this way. Don’t do it.

    $10/20 is the norm for online articles. As Felicia said, residuals will make you more over the long run if you can’t find upfront work that pays decently. It’s time that writers stopped being taken advantage of and demand better treatment and pay and stop this $2-3 nonsense. If people don’t want to pay, let them write it themselves.

  • apexseorm June 13, 2009, 9:44 pm

    Kelly, it takes THOUSANDS of articles on one subject to rank for highly competitive keywords. I’m not down playing anything.

    Print is the exact opposite of web. in print it takes 1 $100 dollar article to make the publisher $1000+ dollars. on the web it takes a webmaster 1000+ articles before they start pulling in any money at all via organic search.

    I recommend spending $10 dollars and picking up a book on SEO. You will see this isn’t something I am just making up. I’ve been doing SEO for a long time.

    Now as far as people getting 2-3 dollars for each article that textbroker is collecting $10 for.. that’s simply a flat out fallacy. Text broker does not take 70-80% of the money for each article. They take 25%. That means on a 4 star article 500 words I pay $10 you get $7.50.

    Textbroker is taking a cut, but considering they are doing all the bookkeeping AND finding you the work, AND providing a mediation system between you and the client if something goes wrong I’d say it’s a pretty fair deal. If you want to be paid more for your writing do well for a few clients and have them start sending you direct orders. Set your CPW a little higher and you are set.

    • Felicia June 14, 2009, 7:53 am

      In attempt to keep the conversations here civil, I’ve edited unnecessary sarcasm and insults. The purpose of this site is to be informative and supportive. As a freelance writing mom, I understand the challenges writers face in finding legitimate writing work, balancing writing and family and making a living with the craft.

      Everyone evolves as a freelance writer in their own time. One person may find $2/$3 an article perfectly acceptable for their situation while others may not. Until you walk a mile in the other person’s shoes, you won’t truly understand what makes them tick.

      While I personally don’t accept writing gigs for $2/$3 per article, I understand why some freelance writers do. We all are at different stages in our careers. Just like having a traditional job, no one enters a field getting paid top dollar.

      The low paying articles serve a purpose for some. As I’ve mentioned here on this blog before, my first dalliance with online freelance writing earned me $5 per 300 words. This for a person who in her 9-5 job was a professional technical writer earning a pretty handsome salary.

      I knew I was being underpaid, but it was a stepping stone I felt I had to step on. Without it I wouldn’t be where I am today. Therefore, I do not judge those who are willing to accept $2 per article. I only encourage them to seek additional writing opportunities and to grow as a writer so that they can command a better rate.

  • Eve Lopez June 14, 2009, 12:27 pm

    Well said, Felicia. I’m super new to online freelancing, and when I first saw the low wages being offered by some of the clients at textbroker et al, I thought to myself: no way. But after reading your blog, I now understand the way things work. Personally, I’ve found a lot of luck with Demand Studios, but if they went belly-up tomorrow, you bet I’d be writing like mad for textbroker until I could find something decent. I’ve been in the freelance online writing field for less than a month and am truly humbled by the experience.
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  • Kelly June 14, 2009, 12:45 pm

    Everyone has a different experience. My personal experience insists on writers being paid honorably for their work. 🙂

    Either way, at first I thought you were saying you had edited my response, but I realize that mine looks unchanged, so you must have meant the response to mine, in which I say “Thank you”. I would have been okay with the insults, but still, thanks for not letting it become that kind of discussion. 🙂

    In an effort to keep things civil, I’ll bow out from any responses to hopefully keep the commenting on track.

    • Felicia June 14, 2009, 1:36 pm

      Kelly, no need for anyone to bow out. Healthy bantering is a good thing. If we all had the exact same opinion, life would be extremely boring.

  • Yolanda June 15, 2009, 11:28 am

    I’ve read through the most recent discussions and I must say this has been an interesting discussion.

    I registered over at TextBroker a month ago after reading the experience of a fellow freelance writing buddy of mine who makes a substantial income on direct orders alone. Since then I haven’t submitted on article after checking weekly for work that would be worth the pay in order to build up a ‘clientele’ for direct orders. I can’t bring myself to spend 30 minutes crafting an article for 1/3 of minimum wage when my time could be spent making more than that.

    While I may not write for $2/$3 an article, I won’t knock the person that does. However, I will say that as a freelance writer don’t allow what a client tells you is out there in terms of willingness to pay for content to cloud your judgment. I can attest to being paid quadruple the rates for writing content for half the word count and tedious demands that TextBroker writing jobs usually consist of.

    It’s best that writers start building a platform for themselves so that jobs come their way, instead of relying on places like TB, Demand Studios, Associated Content, Helium etc. Some of these are great places to write for, but if they were to be gone tomorrow or take even longer to review your writing than they already do, you’d be stuck.

  • Doran June 15, 2009, 12:36 pm

    I, too, have been following this discussion. It is interesting to note the different viewpoints. After listening to some who have signed up with textbroker, I did register. Like Yolanda, I just cannot bring myself to write an article, especially that may require research, for 2/3 dollars per article. I understand why some do, however, if they did not these companies would not get away with paying what is not even minimum wage. I need the work too, however, if we sell ourselves that cheaply, how will anyone see our work as having value. I guess it is going to come down to just how desperate I get.
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  • Suze June 16, 2009, 1:12 pm

    I like the site for some writing exercises, and for honing my knowledge on a few topics about which I’d like to familiarize myself more. Certainly, many of the requests are for keyword intensive write ups that are not what I would consider writing at all, and some of them want keywords that have absolutely nothing to do with the topic. I can’t quite figure these out, and won’t waste my time trying either.

    Just as there are good and bad writers, there are also good and bad clients. It’s pretty evident by the way some of the instructions are presented, and the poor grammar skills used to convey what they are seeking that this type of client has little respect for the written word, and wouldn’t recognize the value of someone who does. If they did, they probably wouldn’t even have the nerve to ask someone to write at such cheap rates.

    On the other hand, I think the people who administer the site have good intentions, and I haven’t heard of anyone who hasn’t been paid in the timely fashion as outlined in their payoff model. There is certainly something to be said for that, as I’ve worked for essay sites that do not pay their writers in a timely fashion, and some not at all. Textbroker also has a few interesting clients with some fairly good requests for content. There is probably some good potential for more sophisticated work with better compensation as a writer gets to know the clientele over a period of time.

  • Rachel June 17, 2009, 10:53 am

    Hi everyone! I’ve read all your thoughts and have gained some great knowledge of Textbroker now. I have been with them for a few days now and written 5 articles. I started at rating 3 and hope to move up. My question is: How long does it take for the 5 article block to be removed?. 4 of the customers rated excellent and 1 rated very good. After reading all your posts, I know this means nothing to Textbroker. I’m going to try out Demand, but I am having trouble with my resume. I am an extremely new writer. My only experience is getting published on sites like Associated,Ezine and Helium. How can I make a great resume while not having a lot of experience?

  • Suze June 17, 2009, 4:39 pm

    Hi Rachel,

    It took them three days to lift my five article block. I happened to chance upon another delay that will happen to me shortly if I don’t get a W-9 form in soon. I checked out an assignment that was going to put me over the $200 mark, and got a message that stated that I would need to submit a W-9 form to be paid because my earnings would exceed the limit if I took the assignment. I thought it was $600, but I guess they have different rules.

  • Kate June 17, 2009, 9:17 pm

    Hey, I was wondering because I know that earnings from Demand Studios (which I don’t write for) are taxable; are Textbroker (where I do write) earnings, also?

  • Tracey Steele June 18, 2009, 11:25 am

    I decided to apply at Demand Studios and Textbroker after reading this article and comments. Textbroker came first, and Demand Studios yesterday. I don’t have the client feedback yet for the Textbroker article I wrote. Textbroker accepted my writing sample at four stars, which suprised me after having read all these comments. However, 4 (and 5) star articles are much more scarce than three stars. And the 4 star requests that were there didn’t appeal to me or weren’t within my knowledge base. That was just the first day though, and since I started checking back regularly, I do see more of a variety in the 4 star requests.

    I first started writing freelance in March 2009. This is after years of blogging and writing ridiculously long and detailed emails to friends. Finally I figured “I might as well try to get paid for this instead of doing it for nothing” and started applying. Associated Content was my favorite site at first, because it’s got an easy signup process and the payoff of seeing my article in print (and getting paid for it) was very quick. I realize that their pay rate is very low compared to what a professional writer could demand. However, I knew I was not a professional writer and had a lot of learning to do before I would feel comfortable submitting elsewhere. Since then, I’ve had one article purchased at Constant Content (after two editorial rejections!), my residual income at AC is finally starting to roll a little bit, and I’m signed on at DS and Textbroker.

    All in all, I’m very happy with the experience I’ve had so far writing content. I’ve found that the sites with stricter editorial guidelines have forced me to improve my writing. Before the raft of rejections I got from Constant Content, I was regularly writing 1,200 word articles that could have been cut down to 600. Wordy is fun, so I still blab at length in emails and comments, but my content writing is much cleaner now.

    I think I’m just about ready to start delving into other sources for freelance and will be reading more on this site. Thanks a lot!
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  • Grandma June 21, 2009, 8:43 pm

    It’s been some time since I last posted, and it is very interesting to read the latest posts. It is nice to read some of the client viewpoints.

    I am still totally happy with Textbroker, and have been writing steadily for them since late last August. I have several direct order clients, and am rated 5, which can really boost up your total earnings quickly. Still, there are many things I would not even bother with, for some of the reasons writers above mentioned. Right now, there are about 1500 articles listed for grabs, but I just wait for the few that I really want to do. My monthly average is $831, writing part time, and I have completed 1400 articles with only one rejection. Attention to spelling is very important if you want to move up levels.

    You can sit and complain about the low pay and make nothing, or take a few moments and make a few bucks. If you have nothing else better to do, why not? It adds up, but sometimes you just have to make yourself go write something, and learn new things. If you enjoy this as a hobby, it is just fine. If you need more money, you should probably go get a job and do this as a second.

    If you ever have problems with Textbroker, or need information, contact them or the clients, and you will get good response. They run bonus pay weekends from time to time, and you can earn extra free by reaching the various levels. I have found their payment to writers is done reliably, and timely. I hope they stay active a long, long time!

  • Bruce June 25, 2009, 8:08 am

    Textbroker is a registered LLC in the state of Nevada, but the management is German. I concur with the consensus opinion — the web content bares evidence of a non-native speaker.

  • Tracey Steele June 25, 2009, 11:04 am

    A few things to add as I’ve continued working with Textbroker. They get their orders in batches on regular basis. While the 4 and 5 star articles are definitely fewer than 3 and under, there are usually plenty to choose from on a weekly basis. You just have to be on the ball and be there on the right day. I’ve received emails from them several times notifying me of new batches (and if you follow them on Twitter, they tweet it as well).

    It’s not an issue to me if management is non-native English speaking. I’ve seen requests in other languages, and one of the orders I recently completed was for a UK site. Their customer rating for me was “excellent” so obviously I’m biased 🙂 However, I may have an advantage in that my full-time job is a global group. More than half of the group I work with are either British or Swedish. Because of this, I tend to slip into “Britspeak” in my head as I write emails to colleagues.

    My point is there’s enough variety in the orders to enable writers to pick and choose. Having said that, I need to take my advice and have some fun popping out 2 and 3 star orders to build a head of steam. I’ve been accepting 4 stars and then setting them aside until I have time to research and write – this is preventing me from doing other orders.
    .-= Tracey Steele´s last blog ..Music: Gogol Bordello =-.

  • Courtney June 29, 2009, 9:49 pm

    Not everyone starts out with 3 stars. I got a 4 star rating after describing a pencil sharpener in my sample essay. I have also heard of others starting out with 2 stars.

  • busybeeson June 30, 2009, 8:19 am

    I am just starting textbroker. I was rated at the 4 level so the pay is adequate but not great. I figure I will write one article a day and that will probably add up to a little over $100 a month. My problem is that it seems like many of the assignments are vague. Also, it seems that most assignments are available at only the 2 and 3 levels. The 4 level assignments are few and far between.

  • Kate June 30, 2009, 5:16 pm

    Hi,

    I’m in college and just wanted to say that I am really enjoying working for Textbroker and coming into some real money with it, money that isn’t contradicted by a gas tank since my new job is at home!

    I have a question, though, because my mom thinks that you can’t use PayPal money “in the real world” and not just online? I was pretty sure you could, especially if I used PayPal dollars to buy an AmEx gift card? I’m not particularly worried about how stupid that would look, but is there a way to turn your PayPal earnings into actual US currency?

    Thanks 🙂

    • Felicia June 30, 2009, 6:38 pm

      Tell your mom that PayPal can be used in the real world.

      I usually transfer my PayPal money to my bank account. However, you can get a debit card from PayPal and use it just like any other debit card.

      The only money I earn is usually paid through my PayPal account. I use it to pay my car note, mortgage, bills, etc. It most definitely is a ‘real world’ currency.

  • Lisa B. June 30, 2009, 9:42 pm

    Kate: I have had a PaypPal debit card for months and I love it. And its easy to transfer the money to an existing bank account, as Felicia also pointed out. I have had great luck with Textbroker. Unlike some other writers, I don’t mind taking assignments that need research, because I find that I can almost always incorporate that research into something else at a later date. Textbroker has also given me the confidence to branch out to other online sites, which may or may not pay better but give newbies such as the vital experience that we need. 😉

    Lisa B.

  • Felicia July 1, 2009, 9:19 am

    I received a rather informative email from Christina Zila the Branch Office Manager at Textbroker.com. She was hesitant to post directly to the blog because she saw the Textbroker post as a place for authors to speak freely and felt it wasn’t appropriate to comment as “Textbroker.”

    I later assured her that her comments are welcome. In the meanwhile, she gave me permission to post the following to clear up some of the questions regarding whether or not Textbroker is a native English speaking company:

    “I would like to clear a few things up about the company and our staffing. Textbroker was originally founded in 2005 in Germany as textbroker.de. The idea was so successful and the demand for English articles high enough for the founders to start the English version in late 2008. The staff consists of our CEO, our HR manager, and four editors.

    Two editors with native English skills reside in Germany, allowing for nearly 24-hour author care and ratings. The other two editors are stateside, based in Las Vegas. We will soon be adding a third US-based editor to keep up with the deluge of work we have coming in.

    I joined the company in April as the US Office Manager. I’m sure you received the e-mail with my introduction. I’ve done my best to revise the website and I hope that the changes to the FAQ and Author Payment pages have been noticed. Updating the pages that you and our authors work on has been slowed by new clients and new authors coming in and needing support. I’m very open to suggestions and am happy to correct pages or e-mails where we haven’t converted from engineer-speak.

    Really, I’d like you to know that although ownership may be German, your editorial staff are native speakers, and the folks answering your e-mails from 10-6 PST and all your calls are native US citizens.”

    From Christina’s comments, it looks like Textbroker is growing and will have plenty of opportunities for writers.

  • Tracey Steele July 1, 2009, 11:40 am

    I third the confirmation of PayPal “real world” currency. I’ve been using the PayPal debit card for a few months now – basically, I signed up for it as soon as I started generating income through PayPal. It’s also accepted as a Mastercard, so anyplace that takes Mastercard will take your PayPal debit card.

    I also get 1% cash back through the Preferred Rewards agreement (you have to have a merchant account and agree to enroll in the PayPal Preferred Program and turn on the “Tell Buyers that I prefer PayPal payments” preference). It’s small, but nice.

    As a college student, you may be using the Upromise system…so you can also always register the card with Upromise for whatever points you’d earn. I’m not too familiar with Upromise but thought I’d mention it.
    .-= Tracey Steele´s last blog ..SCLM News: Blogger Posts Imported =-.

  • layla July 5, 2009, 3:15 pm

    This blog has been very helpful in understanding Textbroker. Two weeks ago, I found Textbroker through Craigslist. I studied writing in college, but I’ve never really been able to make money writing. When I saw the ad, I was skeptical. It sounded like one of those cheesy, “Work at Home,” deals that you might see on late night TV or find in your Spam box. But, since I am currently unemployed, I decided to try it anyway. I’ve spent the last two weeks throwing myself into Textbroker.

    I submitted my writing sample and was originally rated a 3. I was a little offended, as I have had formal training and done a few professional projects. I was glad to find most everyone starts 3.

    I submitted my first five articles. They were all rated 4 and I was moved up to a level 4 writer. I read on here that after 10 rated 4 articles in a row, you get moved to 5, is that right? I’m writing my tenth article now.

    They articles I have done are usually a lot of fun. I am enjoying writing for the first time since I graduated college in ’05. Some require some reseach, which brings me to my next point.

    My questions/problems:

    1. The topics are either vague or very research-intensive.
    I have a hard time finding topics that I know enough about to write. I usually end up taking level 2 topics.

    2. The articles take a while for me to write. You guys are saying you churn out several articles a day? I can do about two a day–which at level 2 makes about $6/day.

    3. Does anyone have suggestions for being quicker? I usually start with a rough draft. My rough drafts are about 700-800 words, and my articles need to be about half that. I spend the next several hours editing and writing “tighter.” I always get 4 rated articles and the clients have nice things to say. But $3 for half a day’s work, come on…

    4. I haven’t gotten any DirectOrders. I read this blog last week, and someone mentioned they send a Thank You message to all clients. I’ve been trying that. After I take the order, I send a message introducing myself and then another one to thank them afterward. I really don’t get much of a response.

    I just submitted my first PayOff request for $25.63. I’ve been out of work for five months, and that really was not worth the two weeks I spent writing. I would have better spent that time looking for a job. I guess if I had a job and did this on the side, it might be worth my time. But when you’re screening calls from bill collectors and spend all day writing a $3 article…yeah, not going to work.

    I e-mailed Textbroker about the PayOff procedure. They said that it should hit my account between the 6th and 10th. She also said they are working on creating a bi-weekly payment system. WOO-HOO!

    Anyway, I just thought I’d write about my Textbroker experience, and see if anyone had some suggestions on how to make it work better.

  • Lisa B. July 7, 2009, 7:50 am

    Layla – I have some tips that work for me, they may work for you as well.

    When it comes to the topics, try only to choose ones that either interest you or are very easy to research. If you have questions regarding the instructions, email the client asap to get some clarifications. I don’t do rough drafts for Textbroker articles, I just jot notes down and start writing the article as I get a better understanding of what direction I’m going to go. I also try to stick with the articles that are around 500 words.

    Have you tried timing your research? Only give yourself a certain amount of time to do research (15-30 minutes?). Try to put a time limit on your writing, too.

    Direct Orders are a whole other ball game, but I have noticed that once you get one, more are sure to follow.

    As for getting to a level 5, you have to request that directly from Textbroker. Just email them with your request to see what they say.

    And that’s awesome news about them going to paying us every 2 weeks!

    I hope some of what I said helped you. Good luck, and keep at it!
    .-= Lisa B.´s last blog ..Labs =-.

  • ApexSEORM July 7, 2009, 10:31 am

    I agree with Lisa about setting a time limit on research and writing. From the clients point of view we’d much rather see a quick turn around on our content orders and we take that into consideration when rating them. I’ve started using textbroker less and less over the past month because I used to get a few articles cranked out a day there. now I put in an order and its often 24-48 hours until I get it back. In that time period I can just write the thing myself when I get home from work. A lot of the stuff I submit is just rewrite work of news articles. Obviously for news pieces its rather time sensitive. having a rewrite in an hour or 2 vs an entire day later is the difference between whether I can use it at all or not. If at all possible accept only 1 order at a time and try to knock it out within an hour or 2 of acceptance.

  • Moki Bobolink July 9, 2009, 1:21 pm

    As someone who was recently laid off and decided to use it as an opportunity to do something I’ve always want to do, write, I just wanted to say how much reading all of these posts has helped me. I read through every single one and feel like I’ve gotten a much better picture of a lot of the sites out there. In fact, as soon as I was done reading I immediately went on to TextBroker and joined. I turned in my writing sample and was accepted and had my first job within 24 hours. It has given me the confidence to keep going.

    I also appreciate seeing the client’s point of view as well and will definitely keep in mind the amount of time it takes to do research on an article when accepting and turning in work.

    So a big Thanks! to everyone, I’m still new to this game and already this site has helped me a lot.

    -Moki

  • Kate July 11, 2009, 1:03 pm

    Hi,
    Can someone explain to me how, if your EIN is linked to your SSN, it is safe?

    • Felicia July 11, 2009, 2:54 pm

      Hi Kate,

      An EIN applies to your business activities only. Therefore it adds a layer of protection to you personally. I’m not an expert on Employer Identification Numbers, but here’s a brochure published by the IRS that gives quite a lot of info: Understanding your Employer Identification Number (EIN)

  • Beth July 11, 2009, 1:16 pm

    Hello!

    This is a great blog! My question is addressed to those of you already signed up with textbroker. The terms and conditions seem quite binding. Are they typical for these types of websites?

    Thank you,

    Beth

  • Kate July 11, 2009, 3:47 pm

    Felicia, thanks for the info and the brochure, it’s very helpful! But I still don’t understand, does Textbroker have indirect access to people’s SSNs through their EINs?

    • Felicia July 11, 2009, 4:03 pm

      No, they have access to your EIN. For income reporting purposes they have to provide you with a 1099 if you earn over a certain amount of money (I believe $600). They use your EIN for tax reporting.

  • Wendy July 12, 2009, 1:32 am

    Hi! I’ve really been enjoying your site! Great information. I, too, am a stay-at-home Mom…I’ve got 4 boys and I homeschool them. My youngest is turning 5, though, so it’s back to “work” for me, and, since I consider myself a writer (it’s all I’ve ever done aside from teaching language) I am starting to write again. The immediacy of on-line work appeals to me, so I have signed up at Demand Studios, Ehow, Suite 101, and, now, textbroker.com. I just thought I’d mention that there are tons of 2 star jobs and barely any jobs at the higher scale, especially if you are not a technology writer…in any case, I don’t think it hurts to sign up.

    I think, at this early stage, that I am glad for all the options. Writing for print does pay more, but you really need to get good at delayed gratification…plus the fact that trolling for jobs is very time consuming (and, yes, hard on the ego at times). Demand Studios seems like a poor per word rate, but a pretty high hourly rate : ). I think I need to work on my SEO skills, because so far, Ehow has paid very little and just does not seem worth it to me…

    In any case, just thought I’d chime in. Great stuff here.
    .-= Wendy´s last blog ..Another day, another… =-.

  • Layla July 19, 2009, 8:35 pm

    Thank You, Lisa B, and Apex. Your advice really helped, and I am making a lot more money now. Not enough to support myself, but definitely more than I was.

    One thing I thought I’d chime in, though, was how annoying some of these mass orders are. There are two spectrums I’ve found:

    First, clients just throw out these mass orders and either put so much detail in their instructions, you start to feel like they should just write it themselves. Some of them even dictate paragraph by paragraph. You’re like, man, am I writing this, or are you??!

    Some of them are so rude in their instructions. I’ve passed on orders just because the client sounds like a jerk in the instructions. You just want to tell them, “Look, I’m a good writer, I’m going to give you a professional piece. There’s no need to be such a jerk.”

    The other end of the spectrum are clients who throw out these mass orders and have no clue what they are talking about. They just throw out keywords. It’s insulting, because they want you to spend time working on it, yet they don’t spend any time bothering to think about what they want, or at least they don’t want to take the time to define it.

    I agree with Wendy about Ehow. The pay stinks, and they don’t define how they determine it.

    Sorry, I know I must sound so negative. I just had a client send me back an article for revision. He said it was all wrong, but I did it per his instructions. It was a great article too, but I’ve already put too much time in it for the money. I sent out it back out.

    I thought I’d vent a little to people that might relate. Textbroker needs a message board, where writers can talk.

  • Grandma July 20, 2009, 12:43 pm

    Layla, you are not the only one who finds these things, mass orders as you described, annoying. And, they come in under the 2 category, not even a penny per word. Just skip them and be patient. There will be others to come in that are better. Did you know you can blacklist any client whose orders you do not want to see? It is a little difficult because you have to look at an order, then click on the client ID number, add to your blacklist, and then that order sometimes still stays on your list of actives but it will not affect you taking another order. Eventually it goes away. It is a program flaw.

    On the revisions, if something seems unreasonable, you can at that point decline it and not take a hit for a refusal if you just do not send it back. It will go back out for another writer to try. Sometimes, it is nice to let the client know why you are not revising it, for example, if you bit off more than you can chew and feel another writer might be better for that client. You can be nice, or not tell them anything.

    I have been wondering lately if new clients are encouraged at all to place their orders into a higher category, where they will get better writing, and where the writer would be willing to put in the necessary time for research? It seems that there are a ton of 2 category orders the past couple months, and very little on the upper levels except some that are very technical.

  • bturtle July 21, 2009, 1:16 pm

    I’m a bit of a late comer to this discussion, but thanks to the great advice I’ve been reading on this website, I’ve started with textbroker and a few other markets as well.

    One thing that occurs to me about the abundance of 2 level stuff is that the way the textbroker business model works, it doesn’t make sense for buyers to pay for something higher than a 2.

    Every writer on the site benifits from having a higher rating, so they can take higher paying jobs. Like most everyone else, I started at a 3. The only way I’ll raise my score to a 4 is by producing level 4 content consistently. To do so, I can only produce my level 4 content for level 2 or 3 customers. So, people are paying the level 2 price and regularly getting a much higher quality of content than textbroker describes.

    With this kind of business model, it makes sense that as time goes on more customers will start noticing that there isn’t much of a difference between the level 2 content they pay for and the level 4 content they pay for, except perhaps research level. So why would they bother to pay for the higher level of work, especially if they’re just looking for keyword seeding or something similar?

    If I were running the site, I’d have writers send articles to review privately for level increases, with pay at the current level and perhaps on a fixed schedule, and asked writers to send the quality that was paid for. This way people only willing to pay for garbage get the garbage they pay for, instead of gold.

  • Mike July 21, 2009, 1:52 pm

    I joined TextBroker recently as well and was hoping to make at least $20 a day through writing articles. The difficult I’m facing is not in writing the articles but in finding the orders in the first place. It is such a time consuming process to where by the time I find an order I feel like taking a break.

    Many of the orders have vague instructions or just simply don’t make sense because the client reuses a template only suitable for certain topics and then inserts the keyword they want. “I want keyboard, mouse, monitor mentioned 3-5 times each in a 250 word article” … ummm, okay?! That leaves me 235-241 words to write about what exactly? Is it for business and shopping, or what? Do they really want us to just write about anything with those words?

    I was thinking about doing one of these that won’t require much effort and see if they accept my article or not even if I don’t follow their bizarre template to the letter. Has anyone done this?

    I’m not even sure if some the clients understand English too well when I read some of these order instructions. Sometimes I feel like messaging the client… perhaps I should craft my own “what in the world do you really want written?!” template that I can start sending out to them?

    Any tips? I really like this blog keep up the good work! Thanks everyone!

  • Mandy Harris July 21, 2009, 8:05 pm

    Mike,

    I’ve been writing for textbroker since the beginning of the year. When the instructions are vague, I pick an angle for the topic and run with it.
    I have had good reviews and no rejected articles with one exception, which was basically a translation piece for which the client asked for 150 words. When I turned in an article for 150 words, he demanded that the word count match the original of 350 words. I declined to work further on the piece.
    I tend to like the vague instructions because I can be a bit more imaginative.

    Hope that helps.

  • Layla July 25, 2009, 5:30 pm

    Mike,

    Yeah, I’ve done a lot of the vague articles, and I’ve handled it the same way as Mandy. I just pick an angle and go with it. In the beginning, I tried to message the clients to find out what they wanted. If they responded, it was just as vague as the order, and I wasted a lot of good writing time. Now, I don’t bother.

    Textbroker rules are such that if the client tries to reject your article, Texbroker will only let them do so if they can prove that the article did not satisfy the order. If client instructions are vague, then that’s their loss. They are going to have to pay for something they didn’t necessarily want. They should have been more specific.

    The other loophole that I’ve found that helps with those articles is that Textbroker rules state that the client has up to three business days to accept an article or it accepts by default.

    Many of these clients have so many orders out there, they don’t really pay attention when one comes in. What happens, is that a good many of those mass orders just get accepted by default. You can tell it accepts by default if after several days, it accepts, and the client doesn’t rate it. It means they didn’t read it.

    Another thing that helps is if you look at a lot of the orders a client has out there, you will start to see trends. For example, there’s one client who always posts these orders:

    “I require one article 220-250 words. Each…” and then you have to mouse-over order to find that he has a couple of keywords. Well, if you pay attention, you will find these orders have to do with real estate and business in the UK, with a lot of technology articles. So, you can deduce that this guy is a UK business man who runs real estate and technology websites. If you accept his articles, write from that angle. I did an article for him not too long ago. I used my deductions to create a perfectly British article. It accepted by default, and Textbroker rated it a 4. I don’t know if he liked it or even read it, but I got paid.

    Another one you may see a lot, are “Local” articles, that clutter up the education category. I have done a couple of those, and I deduced that I was writing for a phone directory website. It looks like they need a little blurb to go before all of their listings. From time to time, if there are no good orders out, I will do one of those. I just write as if I were looking through a phone directory website, what I might expect to read. They always get accepted by default, and Texbroker gives them 4.

    The key that helped me when I was frustrated about this, was that I had to realize the client has not written the article. They don’t know what they want. And, quite frankly, they don’t really care.

    The ones that have very specific instructions are the ones that give me the most headache. What I have come to deduce from those articles is that they are so specific and anal because they’ve gotten burned by bad writers. They are trying to tell you how to write. Essentaily, their instructions can be boiled down to: “Don’t write crap.” If you produce well written pieces that generally follow their instructions, they will be okay.

    Hope that helps.

  • Jessica Z July 27, 2009, 3:18 pm

    So far I have written a total of five articles for Textbroker.com, at a level 3 rating, and have earned almost $14, in a matter of an hour. If it is something you like to do, and have some (ha ha) free time, then I think it is worth it. The better quality articles you write, the better the pay. it is overall a good site for starters.

  • Wendy Kelly July 27, 2009, 7:07 pm

    Hey! What I don’t understand (please explain!) is why you would go with textbroker and get $15 for 3 articles when at Demand Studios, you get $15 for one article…what’s the deal with that? So far I’ve been writing with DS for about 2 weeks and I LOVE it : ). I have to email textbroker my photo ID to prove I’m American, and I haven’t gotten around to it yet..but now I don’t know if I will…unless the articles can be written *that* much faster…can they???

    Thanks for all the input…I love this blog/site : )

  • Bruce July 28, 2009, 8:08 am

    I was as astonished by Jessica Z’s claim as Wendy Kelly was. To earn $15 in an hour with a level three grade is amazing. Currently, Textbroker pays .7 cents a word at level three. In order to earn $15/hour Jessica Z would have to be composing original text at a rate of over 2,000 words per hour. I think Jessica Z has either miscalculated her time or something else is going on.

    Bruce

  • Mandy Harris July 28, 2009, 10:02 am

    I am writing for textbroker for what it is teaching me. I have always known that I can write well. But I have always struggled with issues such as time management, follow-through, and writing quickly. These qualities are just as important as talent for the professional writer. Since writing for textbroker, I have learned how to write quickly and how to maximize my writing time. I purposely choose articles which I have to research. I create a text file of my research notes. When I am through writing for textbroker, I write an ehow article, with a different angle, of course. I save the notes files with the intention of writing more on the topic in the future. I choose topics that work well in niche markets.

    It won’t be long before I outgrow textbroker. I don’t begrudge their low wages. The way I see it, others pay money to get a writing education or work for free as an intern. I’m a little ahead of the game making a few bucks while cashing in on a learning opportunity.

  • Wendy July 28, 2009, 12:07 pm

    Hi Mandy (and Jessica) I hope I didn’t come across as negative about Textbroker or criticizing your experiences. I am pretty much doing exactly the same thing. My only question is why choose Textbroker over Demand Studios. It seems that they are the same except Demand Studios pays $15 per 400 words or about .04 cents a word, and Textbroker pays less. Are there benefits to Textbroker that don’t exist with Demand Studios?

    I think it’s great that we have this opportunity to fit writing into our schedules. I’m also hoping to outgrow Demand Studios soon, but I love what I have right now…

    Thanks!

    Wendy
    .-= Wendy´s last blog ..Another day, another… =-.

  • Shamrockcon July 29, 2009, 12:18 am

    Wendy-Textbroker doesn’t require a resume or application and it is basically a free-for-all with few guidelines, so I suppose those are it’s benefits.

    I started with Textbroker when the site was close to brand new and in my opinion the orders were much better. They were clearly worded and much more interesting. Unfortunately it seems like internet marketers have discovered the site and are keeping the quality of orders low. Perhaps people looking for a different type of article have moved to other sites? I miss the old Textbroker!

  • Mandy Harris July 29, 2009, 9:53 am

    Hi Wendy,

    Textbroker is the first site that I found and I didn’t know about the others until much later. I plan to expand the number of sites for which I write in August. Demand Studios is definitely on that list.

    Although I started at the beginning of the year, it has only been about the last two months that I have had great success in reworking my schedule to accomodate more writing.

    You weren’t being critical of Textbroker at all. I was responding to some of the other posts as well. Take care!

  • JeriSullivan July 29, 2009, 6:40 pm

    Hey Bruce,

    I am currently a level three at Textbroker and the rate is 1.5 not .7 so Jessica’s math does compute. The .7 rate is for a level 2.

    Thanks,
    Jeri

  • JeriSullivan July 29, 2009, 10:59 pm

    Sorry, typed without completely reading the post. Level three direct orders are where I earn 1.5, my open orders earn 1.0. My comments regarding level two being .7 rate were correct though…

  • Bruce July 30, 2009, 8:34 am

    Jeri,

    I apologize for my error, your rate of one cent per word is correct. But I have to remain suspicious of Jessica’s claim even at the 1 cent rate. Jessica’s $15/hour translates to fifteen-hundred words in one hour, divided by 60 (minutes) is 25. Twenty-five WPM is an awfully slow typist, a reasonable rate for typing hunt and peck style, but insanely fast to write original work, proofread it, make stylistic improvements, conform to SEO requests and other client requests. The math remains dubious at best.

  • Doran July 30, 2009, 1:27 pm

    I am inclined to agree with Bruce. I started doing articles for textbroker but find the returns are so low I only use it as a last resort. I cannot imagine how Jeri could have made $15 in a hour from textbroker when considering the time for research, editing and the whole nine yards included in completing an article at a 3 level pay rate. I do not think it possible to turn out an article of quality at that rate and enough of them to make fifteen dollars in a hour time. If it were possible so many would not be complaining about the low rates.

    I was ten minutes late with an article assignment that was due the following day from acceptance and it goes back to the assignment pile and they do not accept the article. (I did not understand the time element). So I offered the article for first rights to Associated Content and made nearly twice as much money, though still not excellent pay.

  • Jeri Sullivan July 30, 2009, 9:56 pm

    Doran, it was actually Jessica that made $15 in an hour not me.

    Bruce, I was responding specifically to the question regarding the pay rate, not the speed at which Jessica may type or the validity of her statements. I certainly hope she is doing that well but as for me, not so much. I just started with freelance writing online at Textbroker about a week ago and my best $$ in an hour were $10.50 (three 350 word articles). They all were similar and about a subject I was familiar with but even so, I am still getting the hang of the online writing thing so I don’t have lightning fast researching, typing or editing skills yet 🙂

  • Tayla August 5, 2009, 1:02 pm

    Jessica could certainly have made that amount in an hour. I have done so myself with Text Broker on several occasions. Fortunately, I am quite knowledgeable about topics like internet marketing. There are a lot of articles that require this kind of writing, so I can write them with no research whatsoever in most cases.

    The thing that is frustrating me is the fact that I have received a 3 star rating for every single article I have submitted, even though my writing is far above average. I have written to them to ask that they review my articles again. I believe they should be rated 4 stars.

    The trick to making good money with Text Broker is to choose articles that require very little research, and don’t proofread extensively. If you’re careful about your writing as you type, you shouldn’t need to go back and proofread them later.

    I always copy mine to Word to check spelling, punctuation, grammar, etc. It only takes seconds and that’s all the proofreading I need.

  • Grandma August 5, 2009, 6:35 pm

    Tayla, I respectfully beg to differ with you on the use of automatic proofreading instead of taking time to go over your writing with a fine toothed comb. A writer can be ever so careful, proofread, and still end up with accidental typos that sneak through, like a 415 that should have been written $15. A spell checker or grammar checker will not find typos like that, or if you typed “that” and meant “than”, it will not be highlighted, and the sentence will read wrong. The ONLY way to be sure is to slowly, and carefully, review each line, every word, before you submit. ANY error will cause you to be marked down.

    Others things go into ratings, including how you phrase things, if you use the same verbs again and again, etc. If you ask the editor at TB, they should give you some direction as to why you are getting the rating 3.

    Yes, an acceptable hourly rate can be had, but it is hard with the 2 category articles. Maybe $8 or $9 an hour there, and a lot more for the 4 and 5 category articles. Remember, you can write at home, in your pajamas, if you want, with no expense other than internet service…saving money working at home, and maybe you can afford to do just that.

  • TJ August 5, 2009, 7:49 pm

    I haven’t commented on this site in a while, but I thought I’d update my own Textbroker experience.

    Recently, I was moved up to a level 5, though as previously noted, there are rarely any level 5 articles available.

    This is not too much of an issue, as I work almost exclusively with direct orders.

    Since the recent discussion is about hourly rate, I can share that today, for example, was $24/hour.

    I do work quickly, and I do rely on Word and other automatic spelling and grammar checkers to go over my work. I have had exclusively positive comments from clients as well as continually positive comments from the Textbroker editors.

    Grandma, I would then have to respectfully disagree with you – my track record with Textbroker proves that the proofreading methods I use are more than adequate. However, it must be understood that everyone has different writing styles, and I rarely find something on a second pass that I would change when it comes to Textbroker articles. For the Textbroker pay structure, the only way to work that makes sense is to work as quickly and efficiently as possible and not waste any time.
    .-= TJ´s last blog ..It’s not a sprint, it’s a marathon! =-.

  • Tayla August 5, 2009, 10:51 pm

    Grandma, with all due respect, I’m not willing to spend time proofreading a $5 article. If someone wants a perfect article, they can pay me a respectable rate. $5 to $7 is not even remotely respectable.

    I absolutely agree with TJ. The only way to make a sum worth my time with Text Broker is to write as carefully as I can during the initial writing, do a quick check in Word, and then submit. If they want magazine-quality proofreading, they can pay for it.

    And I must be doing something right. An editor reviewed my most recent articles today and bumped me up to level 4. I don’t think I would have made level 4 if my proofreading was seriously lacking.

    • Felicia August 6, 2009, 7:22 am

      Tayla, I understand your methodology for earning money with Textbroker and I’m glad it’s working for you. I’ve been explaining something similar to my teenaged son. He’s had a rough time finding a summer job so he decided to earn some money with Textbroker.

      I do differ, however, with the ‘pay rate and perfect article’ theory. I always tell my son, no matter how much you’re getting paid for the article, always put forth your best effort. If you find that the money isn’t worth your best effort, then don’t take on the assignment.

      Tayla, although you say “if someone wants a perfect article, they can pay me a respectable rate” I believe you are putting forth the right effort to produce a good product. If you weren’t, you wouldn’t be bumped up to a level 4.

      However, as a mother, of a son who may decide to read this blog post to get a better feel for the online freelance writing world, I have to reiterate, no matter what the pay scale, writers should put forth their best effort.

  • Tayla August 6, 2009, 11:19 am

    I do put forth my best effort as far as a first draft. I just don’t spend time revising it. My best effort on a first draft is definitely better than what most people would expect for a $5 article. 🙂

  • Grandma August 6, 2009, 12:46 pm

    Hi guys, I am just offering my view from having over 1485 articles accepted by TB since late last August, a level 5 since last November, and only 1 rejected. Plus about 40 years of professional paid writing and photography, my own companies, etc.

    I am just writing now for extra income while on disability, but expect to return to regular work in a couple months. TB has been very helpful to my budget, and fills some time.

    I agree with Felicia on doing your best effort. Sometimes the rewards are beyond money. In the end, you have to live with what you do, and that applies to anything you do.

  • Wendy August 6, 2009, 8:37 pm

    Felicia and Grandma:

    I have to say thank you for reminding me of the importance of always doing your best work. I am under some pressure to attain a certain income, so I was working as fast as I could and sometimes not producing my best work.

    This reminder came just in the nick of time. I really appreciate it!

    Tanya, I think I understand that you do your best work, but aren’t going to pull out all the bells and whistles for $5. I think I agree with that. As an example, on DS, you **can** add photographs to your articles, but are not required to. I used to, but a couple of times the addition of photos somehow crashed the page and I lost my article…I no longer add pictures.

    In any case, I am trying to come up with a workable plan to get the residual income flowing in…

    That’s the best way, I think…

    Take Care

    Wendy
    .-= Wendy´s last blog ..Another day, another… =-.

  • April August 8, 2009, 12:48 pm

    Hey everyone! I stumbled across this blog while searching for a little more info on Textbroker. I have been with Textbroker only a few months and only write once in a great while for it, as I never seem to have the time! I started at a level 3 and was bumped up to a level 4 after submitting the first 5 articles. I have only produced around 30 articles, with all but 2 being rated at a level 4. I was beginning to wonder why I had not been bumped up to a 5. From what I understand, I am assuming I will need to contact TB for re-evaluation. I have been very satisfied with the site. I accepted a lengthy (over 3000 words) level 3 article a couple of months ago. While level 3 pay is less than level 4, the article required little research and I received $33 for it! I have since received direct orders from this same client (at the higher rate I set in my direct order rate). My point is, some clients are willing to pay a higher rate for quality work, but we as writers may have to accept that first article at a lower rate. I will soon be reaching the point where I will need to file an F-9 with Textbroker, and was researching to see how safe this is before doing so. I think I will look into getting an EIN.
    I too get aggravated at the clients who place these mass orders with very vaque directions, or in their instructions are essentially asking for 3 or 4 articles, but only set the word count to pay for 1. I guess these guys are thinking they will cleverly trick someone into writing more than what they are getting payed for…and unfortunately, some writers are doing so. I just skip over these orders. My experience thus far with Textbroker has been very positive. I just wish I had more time to devote to it! Thanks Felicia, for this informative blog!

  • Jeri Sullivan August 10, 2009, 12:27 pm

    As always this forum is lively and interesting. I am currently a level 4 and write a couple of articles a day mainly to take a break from the endless “How To” DS articles. I am curious about how the direct orders work. I have only had 1 requested so far and would love to have more. Can anyone share tips on how you go about “recruiting” clients?

  • TJ August 10, 2009, 12:55 pm

    I didn’t do anything to recruit the people I get direct orders from. For one woman, she had several similar orders posted and I worked through a few of them, and then she contacted me to ask how many I thought I could do per week. I’ve done probably almost 200 orders for her now, since April.

    I’ve heard some people talk about sending a “Thank you” message or letting buyers know you’re available for more work, but I’ve also heard people say they don’t get too many results that way, either. Personally, I think you’ve got to just luck into it.
    .-= TJ´s last blog ..One of my more special moments. =-.

  • April August 10, 2009, 8:38 pm

    Just curious what others may be setting their DirectOrder payments at? Don’t want to set it to high or low…

  • Rory August 13, 2009, 10:01 pm

    Hi all.

    I’ve been writing for Textbroker for over six months now. I currently have more than 100 DirectOrders in my queue, and on very productive days I make around $200. I credit my success with Textbroker to being a quick study, a fast typist and a naturally talented writer (I promise I’m not trying to be conceited here). I don’t beat myself over assignments; I do what is asked of me and always put in my best effort, but I don’t second guess myself either. I’ve done nearly 2,000 orders and haven’t had a single rejection.

    I’m proof that you can be successful with Textbroker. However, I don’t think ANYONE can be. I personally know a handful of people who are great writers but can’t make much a go of things on TB because of excessive nail biting over every little detail.

    As far as Direct Order rate, I keep mine set at the default – 1.5 cents per word. I raise it for certain clients whose request require more research.

    I communicate with every single one of my clients and am conscientious about sticking to deadlines.

    I think I get most of my Direct Order requests due to my excellent statistics.

    Peace.

    • Felicia August 13, 2009, 11:57 pm

      Thanks, Rory, for your candid and informative post.

  • Ariel August 20, 2009, 2:47 pm

    Hello all,

    I just have a few questions about Textbroker, and this post seems lively enough that they may be answered.

    I actually signed up months ago and was accepted at a level 4, but I have been so busy that as of yet, I’ve been unable to spend any time on the site. However, I have a new job that leaves my afternoons free, and so I signed on for the first time this morning.

    One of the things I have noticed is that a huge majority of orders simply post two or three keywords, and then say “keywords should have 5%-10% density” and enter absolutely no other directions. In this case, is it most time efficient to take the job and then ask for clarification, research the keywords and then write an article that may or may not fit what they are looking for, or just find another job? I’m a bit confused as to what exactly they are asking.

    And now for my second question. I am an American citizen currently living and working in America. However, at the end of September, I will be moving to Europe for several months to a year, during which I will be taking several extended backpacking trips. Ideally, I would like be able to write for Textbroker to financially help support these trips, but I seem to be venturing into a bit of a grey area as far as my eligibility as a writer goes. Has anyone who is a Textbroker writer had any experience writing and using the site overseas?

    Thanks so much!

  • Abdul August 20, 2009, 7:38 pm

    Hi!

    I applied at Demand Studios as a writer and got rejected. When I asked why, they said they didn’t need anyone like me!!!

    I’ve been writing successfully for other sites, submitted an excellent writing sample and minored in writing at University.

    Any ideas/suggestions?

    Thanks!

  • April August 20, 2009, 9:36 pm

    Ariel–Concerning the article orders, many of those that state “use a —% density”; are simply marketers wanting an article for SEO purposes. In general, they aren’t overly concerned with the focus of the article, as long as the keywords or phrases are used to their specifications. For example, I once accepted an order with the keyword “nature” with the only instructions being to use the keyword a specified # of times. When I contacted the client asking what was expected, I simply received a message repeating the order. I wrote about the history of nature and received a rating of excellent from the client and Textbroker. It can never hurt though to send the client a message. This may show them that you are serious about their needs, and could land you some direct orders. Communication is key to good customer service! However, I wouldn’t wait for a response before beginning on the order…your deadline may arrive before they respond! If you need to make changes to your article after they respond, it shouldn’t be difficult.

    Abdul–I recently received the same kind of response from Demand Studios. I have a BA in English and submitted what I feel to be a well written sample. I am however, fairly new to the online writing scene, and have not developed much of a portfolio. Did you send them a link to your other writing sites? If you are successful on other sites where you are given a byline (unlike Textbroker), this should prove helpful. I simply put Demand Studios to the side for the time being and have joined Ehow.com to help me build a portfolio. I continue to work with Textbroker, but since we are ghostwriters, we have no way of proving to anyone that we have written some excellent articles. I have been discovering a number of other writing sites, and am not worrying about Demand Studios for the moment. I have also been looking into Helium.com.

    Hope this was helpful to each of you! Good Luck!

  • Abdul August 20, 2009, 10:52 pm

    Hi April, thanks so much for your response. I write for Textbroker and love it, but I gather the best way to earn a living as an internet writer is to work with more than one service. Any suggestions on where to apply next?

    I’ve been following this blog regularly and LOVE IT. Thanks, Felicia, and everyone else for your lively and honest comments.

    Textbroker has just today launched a blog site with an introductory post by a Textbroker author who’s earning $3,800 per month! And she’s promised to share her tips and strategies with the rest of us. It can only help.

  • Grandma August 23, 2009, 10:33 am

    I knew it would happen sometime! Okay, so I have written hundreds of articles on the same topic. When the topic is something that has a set sequence of action to follow, it is next to impossible to describe that set sequence of action in different words hundreds of times. So now I am getting the first revision request.

    I was a little insulted because it was inferred that I copied my own previous work, which I never ever do. When a process has one set sequence of action to follow, my description of that process will be similar, as will the description of the same set sequence of action written by others.

    For example. How to Climb Stairs. Approach the stairs, then lift one foot up to the first level. Bring the other foot up to the second level.

    Okay, now how many different ways can that set sequence of action be written?

    Well, maybe it is time to move on from Textbroker.

    • Felicia August 23, 2009, 2:02 pm

      Man, that stinks! I guess it was bound to happen sooner or later, but at least you understand why it happened.

      Don’t give up on Textbroker yet. Maybe it’s time to switch to articles in a different category to add some variety.

  • Grandma August 23, 2009, 2:51 pm

    LOL – Gosh, I started that post with a nice typo…didn’t proofread, my bad!

    Well, I think I will look again at other websites. I have sold about 2000 articles in the past year, so it is approaching the burn-out stage. I just mentioned the possibility of revisions due to similar content to my daughter yesterday! It is inevitable, I suppose, when you are cranking out so many on the same topics.

    These happened to be about payday loans, a subject with which I am very well acquainted over the past five years or longer. I use different slants, and different approaches to the subject, but the requirements to get those loans are the same, and short and sweet. How many ways can one say “you must have a bank account” and not use the same words?

    Oh well, it’s a good thing for side income. I am writing up a batch of articles for my own sale on the Internet somewhere. I want to get my name attached to them. I have written thousands of articles for TB and none have my credit, and many are resold, as I knew (spelled it right this time) they would be, under someone else’s name who claim authorship.

    I am looking for a place to sell my articles, with my credit, and I really would rather sell them repeatedly to make money, instead of selling off the rights. I know you can ask more money for a unique article including all rights, but this time maybe I want the fame. (Why am I laughing now?)

    • Felicia August 23, 2009, 3:52 pm

      I didn’t catch the typo either. Don’t worry, I fixed it.

  • doran August 23, 2009, 4:25 pm

    Just a hint for you Grandma. Associated Content does not pay a great deal more than textbroker but you have your name attached to your writing. You can choose to publish articles three ways…if they are published elsewhere you can only get performance earnings (based on views), first rights (they will review and offer a dollar amount) and full rights. The last two offers a chance to be published with their partners giving more exposure.

    An interesting story…when new to TB, I submitted an assignment fifteen minutes after due. I had taken the assignment the day before and did not realize the time was precise, thinking 1 day was when it was due. When not in the precise minute the assignment is returned to the assignment pile so there was no way to submit my article. Not wanting to waste the article I offered it to AC as first rights (non-exclusive) and got double the money I would have received from TB and am able to resell the article. Plus I am credited as the author.

    Though new to Textbroker I am trying to stick it out to see if the results get better but still write for personal clients whenever I can and also for AC. I am not sure I like TB because there are far too many article assignments that do not pay.

  • Grandma August 23, 2009, 7:07 pm

    Thanks Doran. I haven’t tried anywhere else, since I have had such great results with TB for a year now. But, I am looking. Saw a few things over on Craigslist also that I may check out for telecommute jobs.

    Here’s a story for you. A friend of ours was working on a 10,000 word article for TB. She was fairly new to TB, and got part way through when their website crashed. She lost her work, and missed the deadline. Since she missed the deadline, it was returned to the open orders, but she was barred from taking it again.

    Always write offline and paste into their page so you never lose your work. Our laptop was notorious for suddenly leaving a page, and I was losing work, so I started composing elsewhere. If you work on TB, save frequently.

    Thanks for your thoughts.

  • April August 27, 2009, 2:41 pm

    Wow! TB has been slow the past couple of weeks…but the open order pool is now down to 17!!! Very discouraging! Anybody know of any other content sites similar to Textbroker?

  • Lisa B. August 27, 2009, 4:29 pm

    April,

    You may want to try Quality Gal or Content Current. The work isn’t as steady as Textbroker, but they can be good resources. Quality Gal requires a little more research, but the pay is decent.

    Content Current has articles that need written that are anywhere from 50 word snippets up to around 1000 words, maybe more sometimes. The payscale is roughly the same as Textbroker and you can take more than one article at a time – if they are available.

    I’ve had some luck at GetAFreelancer.com. You can also find different writing services and see if they are hiring. Felicia has compiled quite a list of sites here and this is where I have found alot of different resources.

    Good luck!

    Lisa B.
    .-= Lisa B.´s last blog ..Ultrasounds and Other Fun Things =-.

  • April August 27, 2009, 4:46 pm

    Thanks Lisa B.! I actually did manage to find an article to write on TextBroker, but will have to check out your suggestions after I complete it!

  • Grandma August 27, 2009, 5:04 pm

    April, I have noticed that TB seems to get more article listings on Thursdays and Fridays. Not a lot on the weekends. Some overnight from the English and Australian clients.

    I have written for TB since late last August. It has been slow, and I am wondering if that is just a periodic thing, slow in vacation month of August, and around holidays. ???

    Felicia, perhaps there is need for a blog column on where to find more work for writers? Since this is for TB, and another line is for DS, but peoople still talk about other websites. ???

    • Felicia August 27, 2009, 5:25 pm

      Grandma, thanks for the suggestion, but time, coding effort and administrative challenges stops me from creating such a user interface.

      Check out my Never Ending Blog Post for additional writing tools and sites. I try to update it every once in a while as time permits.

  • Grandma August 28, 2009, 3:08 pm

    We knew it was slow! Here is their message information, and I have seen this just one time before in a year.

    …., please keep in mind that Textbroker still is in its Start-Up phase. …. we cannot guarantee there will always be orders available ….won’t be long until we can provide you…

  • April August 28, 2009, 8:24 pm

    Odd, since not more than a month or two ago, they were offering authors bonuses for filling a specific amount of orders in a given period of time! I did manage to snag a level 4 order tonight. Certainly hope it picks up very soon! I was beginning to hope a large source of my income could come from them, but am quickly rethinking that! I will have to check out the other sites you and Lisa B suggested Grandma! Thanks!

  • Grandma August 28, 2009, 9:21 pm

    Well, it was only a couple weeks ago there were well over 3000 orders listed!

    I have checked out a couple websites that offer articles for sale, but some want high commissions out of my pay, and others have too many rules, etc. Maybe I will just start my own. We need a writer’s store with articles for sale.
    I still think it might just be the end of August slowdown.

    They must be scrambling to find orders, or they will have to get rid of the couple editors they just hired. I have confidence they will get past this and survive. I think they are well organized and have a terrific opportunity for writers. Guess the economy is not stimulated enough…

  • Layla August 30, 2009, 5:03 pm

    The orders have been dwindling for the last week or so, but today, there are NO ORDERS AT ALL! That is so weird. There are usually like 2500+ orders out there. Either they have gotten a couple of really fast writers that have snatched up all the orders, or they need to hire some more salespeople.

  • Grandma September 2, 2009, 6:39 pm

    I was reading through the TB blogs today. There are two blogs. One is done by the editing staff and the other is for authors. Many comments are well worth reading. Some of their current problems are explained. There are many writers, 23,000, and not a lot of articles. Articles sometimes come in batches, and recently there were a couple of clients who put in batches of 1000 requests.

    The editor blog indicates that TB is not accepting new writers currently due to the difficulty of supporting current writers with work. It also seems that they may have bumped many more writers to a 5 category. As soon as a 5 article appears, it will be taken. I saw a dozen disappear within minutes today.

  • Crystal September 12, 2009, 10:20 am

    Thanks again, Felicia, for all the info on your blog! And I applaud your decision to take it to the next level in order to generate some much deserved income. Found TB in late July after stumbling across your article on Suite101. From Suite101 I discovered your blog, which is invaluable!

    I’m very pleased with TB despite the recent dry spell in open orders. (Fortunately for me, it coincided with a 2 week vacation to see the grandkids so I wouldn’t have been writing then anyway.) Haven’t made a ton of money but am exceeding my goals. Guess that means I need to raise the bar?

    Like most everyone else here, I am also looking for other online writing opportunities. Thanks a million to those of you who have shared your experiences, both good and bad.

  • Don B September 13, 2009, 2:13 pm

    I’ve been with Textbroker for over a month, and it does seem that they like to keep people at level 3. I’m a level 3, although I have rated 4 a couple times. I have completed around 20 articles, and I have been paid $100.00 or so for my efforts. I don’t want to sound like I am sticking up for them, but they are picky for a reason. They hit writers hard on punctuation. That controls the flow of an article. They want you to make articles interesting; even if the article is on cheese. As an out of work welder on hard times, it helps me out. If you like to write,and get paid for it. Textbroker is a good place to improve your skills, and it could lead to something better. Don

  • Grandma September 13, 2009, 7:58 pm

    While everyone is waiting for TB to pick up again, put your writing to some good use and save money on your food. Whenever I get a product that is especially good or bad, I always write that company with my comments. They send back coupons for the full price of that product.

    We had an Edy’s Ice Cream that was awful,and it tasted gritty or sandy. After I wrote that company they sent out a coupon for us to try it again. We did, of course, but a different flavor. It was fine.

    Tonight I just did one for Lean Cuisine Salmon with Basil Spa Cuisine classics entree. I kid you not, it is the best frozen entree I have ever had! So hoping they will send me a coupon for another.

    I do not write complaint/compliment notes all the time, just occasionally. I suppose one could write more frequently just to get coupons, but I am not a scammer. Combine coupons with sale prices, double coupon days and rebates and you can eat for free. Sort of like writing a couple articles???

    • Felicia September 14, 2009, 2:01 am

      Another example of the power of the pen. Thanks for the tip Grandma.

  • David September 15, 2009, 11:46 pm

    wow thank you guys so much for the useful tips. I started out as a four star writer and because of my comma misuses I have been demoted to a 3 star writer. Any tips?

  • Bruce September 16, 2009, 8:52 am

    David,

    Textbroker uses a moving average, that is your rating is based on an average of the last five articles you complete. If you get an average of “4” on your next pieces, you’ll be back to a “4” ranking. I would write everything in Word and run it through a spelling and grammar check. I’d also review the usage of commas from a reliable style manual. Just figure out where you’re making your mistakes and look out (I frequently need to change commas to semi-colons). Good luck!
    .-= Bruce´s last blog ..More Food Fun at the Fair =-.

  • Don B September 16, 2009, 10:15 am

    The use of a comma is needed to kinda guide the reader. It keeps the whole mess from running together. There are no real set rules,per-say. I can help in one way,check with Mr,Owl http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/607/01/. Hope this helps.

  • TJ September 16, 2009, 10:50 am

    There are definitely sets of rules regarding comma usage. While thinking about the way you speak and read can help guide comma placement, a quick google search on comma usage will bring up plenty of resources and cheat sheets for you to refer to as needed.
    .-= TJ´s last blog ..Chantix + Insomnia + Stress = ? =-.

  • David September 16, 2009, 9:33 pm

    Thanks, guys. Wow this blog is spectacular. Just one more question. Can you explain to me how Associated Content works.

  • Kim H September 17, 2009, 2:02 pm

    Serendipity is a wonderful thing. Finding this discussion has completely changed my perspective on low-rate content writing.

    I have been a full-time freelancer for the past three years. The first year I made 20K, the second 70K, and this year just 5K. One newspaper and two regional magazines that I regularly write for are out of business. The two major metropolitan newspapers in Dallas-Ft Worth have cut staff to the bone and dumped many qualified journalists in the local freelance market. My big non-profit client cut their budget and is not using contract writers this year. Print is looking grim, grim, grim.

    Because I was used to commanding $1.00 per-word, I scoffed at the web content rates as usury. Now after sitting on my thumbs for nine months, and applying unsuccessfully for the few admin positions I see advertised, I realized I should have been less defensive about a fair market rate. I could have been earning something, instead of nothing all this time. And I wouldn’t be feeling so frustrated and useless. Thanks so much for all the great info and insight!

    • Felicia September 17, 2009, 2:58 pm

      The changing climate has made a lot of people change their views about online writing.

      Welcome to NJFM, Kim and thank you for your honest comment.

  • Wendy September 17, 2009, 4:03 pm

    Hey!

    You know, things are changing, but not necessarily for the worse, long term. I think that the person earning $5000/month on Suite 101 is a good example of the cream rising to the top. It’s a different game for sure, with slightly different rules, but bottom line, if you are good and you persevere, you will again earn $70,000 or more (and possibly not have to work anymore…)

    Good luck!

    Wendy

  • Don B September 17, 2009, 4:57 pm

    At a dollar a word,70k is only comes out to an average of about 195 words a day,or 5833 a month. Allot of us lost out on the economic crunch. $1.00 a word? could you give me a link to one of these articles? I would like to see one. That is about 100% better than the 2300 writers are making at Textbroker!

  • Kim H September 17, 2009, 6:59 pm

    Thank you both for your words of encouragement. I know we are in the midst of a journalistic revolution. My old school mentality has to go out the window…but I still want to get my news (and other info) from a reliable, trustworthy journalist.

    Please help me with a big problem. I’m signing up with Suite 101. All of my published print articles are way more than 600 words (their max). I have clips for 1000 to 3000 word count for my published articles. I know I have been indulged by publishers and editors because they love my in-depth narrative style and give me much latitude on word-count. Also, my articles are largely the result of personal interviews, which requires travel and transcription to produce an article.

    Question is, should I re-write my published works to accommodate 101’s word count requirements before submitting?

    Should I dumb it down?

    I have tons of published PDF clips, but they’re not asking for that.

    Another honest question. If I’m a narrative writer, will I go crazy and wish I worked for Walmart instead?

    Help me,
    Kim

    • Felicia September 17, 2009, 7:16 pm

      Kim, you don’t have to re-write your published work for Suite 101. They just want to make sure you have the ability to write. Your clips should more than prove that you’re a good writer.

      As far as writing for Suite 101 or any online site, it’s different than writing for print publications. You’ll have to familiarize yourself with SEO, keywords and writing several smaller focused articles rather than one large comprehensive one.

      After you get the hang of it, it’s not so bad. Suite 101 helped me in my transition from being an offline to an online writer.

  • Wendy September 17, 2009, 8:14 pm

    Kim:

    Maybe this will help, though…I *did* get rejected from Suite 101 the first time, and when I reapplied I did rewrite my clips to suit the format.

    I certainly wasn’t as accomplished as you when I wrote previously, but did have some success, and was used to being paid at least $200 per article. And I would definitely consider myself of the narrative bent : )

    This **is** much different…but I think also a valuable skill.

    And, personally, I do hope to supplement Suite + DS + constant content with old style freelance work…it does still exist…
    .-= Wendy´s last blog ..Welcome! =-.

  • Grandma September 18, 2009, 10:29 am

    Don – hate to burst the bubble, but TB claims to have 23,000 writers, not 2300. And 5000 clients. So that is the problem. I know I am earning about half what I was with TB over the past three months. I am sure it is due to many, many more writers. But at least they have stopped taking new ones for the time being.

    When articles get listed, they just disappear like smoke in a wind. One day there were 10 on one subject. I can write very fast, and managed to snare 3, but within an hour all were gone. A year ago I could have probably done all of them.

    Now I know I could make more if I took some of the articles I prefer to bypass, like a lot of the UK articles. I just wonder why the UK clients choose to list on the American TB website instead of the German one?

    I did get a new Direct Order client this week, and that was nice for 9 articles. I like Direct Orders because I can work on those while doing some Open Orders at the same time.

    Kim H – That is very interesting news about the print media going down. It is not surprising that newspapers are going out of business. There are many more outlets that are free, plus cable news channels that actually cover news and not just entertainment, celebrities, and fluff like the other network news channels.

  • Kim H September 18, 2009, 8:27 pm

    Thanks for all the help. I was accepted last night on Suite 101 and I’m now working on my first article, audition, opening night.

    My article will be about Nursing Care Options for Seniors; my question is about images. I can’t find a single, decent image of a nurse and senior on the free sites suggested. I found a plethora of great images on paid sites, but I don’t want to pay for images while I’m just dipping my toes in the water. I won’t use unauthorized images. And I don’t want to go on an extended personal photo shoot.

    Any advice on finding a good, free resource for images?

    • Felicia September 18, 2009, 9:01 pm

      Congrats on your acceptance to Suite 101.

      Check out the NJFM database. I list a few free image sites. My favorite is stock.xchng.

  • Grandma October 6, 2009, 8:18 am

    Why do blogs die off when they are going so well? Maybe with TB it is because they started up their own blog. It is interesting, but seems like the same people are posting. There are some interesting comments and similar complaints writer-wide about articles up for grabs and clients in general.

    TB was great for me the past year, but since about April my work there has been curtailed by at least half. I find myself shocked that there can be so many listed that I am not interested in writing for one reason or another.

    Sometimes it is the client description that is a total turn off, like when they go on and on about spelling and grammar better be right or they won’t accept it. How dumb do they think we are, but oh yeah, TB does accept anybody who can “write” – don’t they?

    This week there are close to 2000 available. The other day I saw about 1400 and yet 1300 of them were category 2 – which runs $3.50 per 500 words. And here I am again, like others, with the complaint that for that pay they want research and lots of time and screwy details followed?

    Guess I would just rather skip it and let one of those non-professional writers bang it out over a couple hours time.

    The direct orders I get are from great clients and well worth the time and they pay better.

    So I am searching still for other places to make some quick cash. Still TB ranks up there quite highly. My lowest month has dropped by $100 to $450 and that is not chump change IMO.

    Hoping to launch my own website shortly. That is fine but getting traffic is an art I am not skilled at – yet.

    • Felicia October 6, 2009, 8:54 am

      Grandma, it looks like it’s really time to get your website launched. I don’t know the art of building traffic, but I do know that it takes time and consistent effort.

      If you stick with it the traffic will come.

  • Lynn B. October 6, 2009, 9:47 am

    Grandma,I have been with TB for two months. I have two direct clients,and that is worth the while. This past week I had a real kook for a client. He or she wanted an article on SEO (search engine optimization). This person couldn’t even spell the instructions for the article correctly. I shouldn’t have considered doing the write. Anyway, I would be interested in helping you get a website off the ground. If you get enough people driving traffic; links,blogs,and maybe PTC, It shouldn’t take long to see results. I’m no webmaster, but I do know how to build a site for little cost. The domain and hosting are cost that you can’t get away from, but there is free software available to build the site. Besides, you already have writers available with this blog.
    At any rate, keep this blog. It’s a place where TB writers can openly vent without the worry of the clients reading our thoughts. God Bless, Lynn

  • Grandma October 6, 2009, 4:39 pm

    Thank you Lynn B. I think what I will do is start with a simple website from GoDaddy. I have had some there before and their stuff is really easy to work with. I can always change later if need be.

    TB will still be a main income source but I would certainly like to develop more.

    Felicia is there a different thread that this conversation would be more appropriate on?

    • Felicia October 6, 2009, 5:29 pm

      Grandma, I don’t currently have a thread that will cover your new venture, but you and Lynn can contact each other directly.

  • Lynn B. October 6, 2009, 7:32 pm

    That would be fine with me. You got my email, you can let Grandma have it.

  • Gregory B October 7, 2009, 12:07 pm

    @Kim H

    You may want to try About.com they currently have open positions and their pay is much better than Suit101.

    They are however a more Professional website but with your experience it would probably be a great fit.

    Best of Luck

    Gregory B

    • Felicia October 7, 2009, 3:41 pm

      Thanks for your comment, Gregory.

      I just want to warn Kim that if you do apply to write for About.com, there is a rather lengthy application process.

      I went through it a few years ago and after several months of building an About.com ‘test’ site, I didn’t get the position. In the time it takes to get through the About.com application process, you could be earning money with Suite 101.

      I’m not telling you not to apply, just be aware that it’s not a quick and simple process.

  • Kim H October 7, 2009, 4:16 pm

    Thanks for the advice and suggestions. At the moment, I am print-portfolio rich and cash-poor. Two kids in college with two apartments, yada, yada.

    Felicia, I searched the blog because I saw earlier that someone posted a good ghostwriting website with good pay, but I can’t find it.

    I need to maximize cash at this moment, I don’t need by-lines or portfolio building. I need next semester’s tuition.

    • Felicia October 7, 2009, 4:40 pm

      Did you look in the NJFM database? I try to add sites that I come across or sites that my readers mention. Hopefully you’ll find it there.

  • Kim H October 7, 2009, 5:20 pm

    Yes, I searched the data base first. Plus the comments, but can’t find the specific, “ghost writing” post I found before.

    • Felicia October 7, 2009, 7:19 pm

      Hmmm, that’s frustrating. Unfortunately, I’m not of much help.

      I’ll try searching to see what I can find.

  • April October 9, 2009, 6:54 pm

    Kim H.: Are you referring to the blog post on Aug. 27, 2009, posted by Lisa B.? I had asked if anyone knew of sites similar to TB, and this was her response. Hope this is what you are looking for!

    • Felicia October 9, 2009, 7:41 pm

      April, thanks for the detective work.

  • Kim H October 10, 2009, 10:19 am

    Thanks, April. I think the specific post I saw had the word ghostwriter in it, but these are also helpful.

  • SEO Girl October 14, 2009, 6:09 pm

    Just placed my first order on TB, let’s see how it works out for me. I am getting it done for a client’s website. Let’s see…keeping fingers crossed.

  • Deborah October 17, 2009, 7:43 pm

    I’m a more experienced writer but things have been so slow for me lately that I’ve been doing a lot of branching out, even into projects that don’t seem to pay well at all.

    I’m thinking that TB may also be an excellent way to gain new clients. Has anyone had a happy client contact them directly for projects outside if TB? I’m curious about this.

  • Grandma October 17, 2009, 8:20 pm

    Check the rules you agreed to when you began work with TB; they expressly forbid clients and writers from contacting each other. Obviously they do not want their clients scammed off their website. They would then ban you from future work. TB intercepts messages and stops any that ask for personal information or emails/websites.

  • Kim H October 17, 2009, 11:10 pm

    I thought that’s what the direct order option was all about on TB.

    OK I’ve made less than 10 bucks on TB. I think the whole discussion is riiiiidicuuulucs and usury.

    I’m a writer. I used to make a decent living as a writer, but alas no more. Almost Everyone I wrote for is OUT OF PRINT.

    If everyone could write, no-one would need a writer and any Joe Blow would be a writer, right?

    So should experienced writers not apply online?

    I have more than 50 published print articles. That’s history! Who cares?

    • Felicia October 18, 2009, 7:46 am

      Kim you make a valid point. As Bob Dylan said, “The Times They Are A-Changin”

      Guess we have to change with the times or be left behind.

  • Grandma October 18, 2009, 8:25 am

    Please allow me to clarify…you can contact clients and they you all you want as long as it is through the TB message system, as you do with direct orders. They could take legal action if you contact “their” clients outside of the TB system.

    It does seem that “anyone can be a writer” and TB even says that in their opening text. It seems to be against their own interest to do that, at least to an experienced professional writer, since they want to offer a quality product.

    As for the print issues, look at more magazines going out of print like Modern Bride and some others that have been around a long time. That seems to be the future we are now in. Expect printed anything to go away. Higher postal rates, higher prices for paper, scarcity of paper and trees, delivery prices…all are factors. People do not read like they used to either, although some books do get out there.

    The Internet has changed everything about information. I think it has a lot to do with why there is so much criticism about network news programs which are now more entertainment than news. And why they are losing viewers right and left. (political pun, ha ha)

    Writing online may be the future for writers. Personally I like TB. I am approaching 2000 articles and over $10,000 in the past year just on that website. Sometimes it is easy and sometimes not. Not everyone is suited to do the digging. Like yesterday, the only thing I wrote was a piece on “constipation” and that was because I forced myself to write something!

    When what you want is not there, write what is there. Of course it is necessary to look elsewhere, or create something for yourself. The TB blog writer apparently managed to snag $4000 in one month. I find that SO hard to believe and totally do not believe that she could sustain that kind of income there even with direct orders month after month.

    I have some nice DO clients on TB and continue to work with them. It is tempting to want to contact them outside of TB and I have thought about it. But from an ethical standpoint I will not do that. Having run businesses before and with decades of experience I understand the problem and choose to respect their rules. I can find my own clients, on my own, elsewhere and continue to work with those others through the TB system. If they seemed to want something else of a written nature, I would contact TB and ask for clarification or permission.

  • Crystal October 18, 2009, 10:35 am

    I also write for TB (learned about it right here!)and am very pleased with my experience over the past 3 months. Nowhere near $10,000 pleased but … Congratulations Grandma!

    Anyway, I had a recent client contact experience. After finishing an article, I was interested in posting something on the subject to my blog and the client was interested, as well. He needed to send me several pages of info and silly me – I tried to give him my email address. Oops – I got a nearly immediate rejection from the TB messaging system.

    Long story short, through emailing TB staff and explaining the situation, a solution was found – but not through the exchange of contact info! Once TB staff understood what we were trying to do and the amount of info in question, they were very accommodating and figured out a way to let it happen without violating the rules. Thankfully they didn’t just kick me to the curb for my initial faux pas!
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Financial Honesty – First Step Toward Financial Freedom =-.

  • magspie October 22, 2009, 8:46 am

    What great information!

    I was just accepted by TB and am hoping to have my first article out fairly soon. I’ve been scouring the net looking into TB and have found mostly positive reviews.

    The majority of complaints related to site design and low wages. Site design is informal, yes. No bells and whistles, that’s for sure. Ha! But the low wage, while probably lower than the usual print piece, to me, is tolerabe considering you are faced with a ready-made client list.

    I’ve been tied to a phone for days just waiting to hear of I can use someone’s name in a print article. Sheesh!

    Other issues, having to do with TB’s rating system and its legitimacy, were not as mentioned. I am firmly planted on the fence as to that issue as I have not tried them out yet so cannot form an objective opinion.

    I have been rated with 3 stars, which I see is the beginner’s norm. This is fine as I am only wetting my feet at the moment and not “swimming breaststrokes” through the content pond as of yet.

    I’ve been writing at Triond, Ehow and Bukisa. While eHow has been a trial of technical problems, Triond and Bukisa (although at the moment Bukisa is being techno-temperamental), have accepted my articles with only one revision from Triond (I forgot to S/C in word…Woops!).

    I’ve made very little money but have only been doing the content work since the 14’th of this month.

    This site,(Felicia’s), is very helpful in that many views are expressed and I get a far greater sense of , I suppose I can call it…security, as to using the TB site.

    Thanks!

  • Crystal October 22, 2009, 12:19 pm

    Welcome to TB, magspie. I’ve been there just since late July. I’m curious whether TB is accepting new authors again or if you were on a waiting list for a while? And if so, for how long? I’m encouraging my mom to apply and it would probably be an easier sell if they are actually accepting new authors now.
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..A Few Ways to Make Money at Home =-.

  • April October 22, 2009, 2:50 pm

    Crystal–I referred a friend to Textbroker a couple of weeks ago, and she was accepted last week. Apparently, they are again accepting new authors. The number of available articles has increased into the thousands once more, though the majority of those tend to be at a level 2. I have gained a few direct order clients in the past couple of months, and am, thus far, happy with Textbroker. I keep striving to attain a 5 star rating. I only write on a part time basis, so may need a few more articles under my belt in order to achieve a 5 star status!

  • Crystal October 22, 2009, 4:05 pm

    Thanks for the info, April. I also noticed the significant increase in articles so thought they might be in the market for new writers.

    Of late, I concentrate on level 4 almost exclusively unless there isn’t anything I care to write and I find an irresistible 3. As for achieving level 5, I’m not sure I care any more. I can count on my fingers and toes the number of 5s I’ve seen since mid-July and most of those were in the early days when I was in the system a whole lot more than I am now. If they granted me a 5, of course I’d be thrilled but I’m not sure it would benefit me financially as the chance of snagging an article at that level appears slim.

    Any 5s out there who care to comment? What type of articles are they, anyway? And how many at that level have you actually written?
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..A Few Ways to Make Money at Home =-.

  • Elvenrunelord October 23, 2009, 3:38 am

    I signed up with Texbroker and was approved within a week. That was three weeks ago and then I caught cat flu ( yea you heard me right!) and like 90% of the cats in the neighborhood just laid around wishing I’d either hurry up and die or get my energy back.

    With this illness you don’t run a fever, and I personally didn’t have a cough although some of the cats did, and you have absolutely no energy whatsoever. I was physically unable to even take a shower for two days and the day I went to the grocery store I almost fainted while shopping for fifteen minutes.

    Anyway after starting back to work tonight and working for my primary company for a few hours I decided to take the plunge and write an article for Textbroker. I was initially rated a grade 3 so in 20 minutes I made $4 if the article is accepted.

    Looking at the articles I probably could make about $8 an hour if I could keep up the pace over time but I just can’t do that. I have too much stress in my life and too little energy to handle it.

    On top of that something screwy is going on with my blog. I’ve been looking at my Google Analytics and I see every person that comes to my blog through keywords stays 0.00 seconds. I check my blog a few times a day since I noticed this and sometimes its taking 45 seconds for my page to load. That is the reason they are not staying.

    I’m about fed up with GoDaddy and am now looking for a new hosting service that can handle Wordpress MU, an advanced version of Wordpress that will allow me to create multiple blogs with targeted advertising without spending an arm and a leg for domain names. ( At least that is what it seems I can do with it if I choose my initial domain name correctly. )

    Anyway its good to be back in the saddle and making money again writing on the internet. I wrote an article for myself tonight and added it to my portfolio of unpublished articles for future use when I decide what I am going to do with myself when it comes to online publishing.

    No real input on Textbroker yet other than that scaled down interface is certainly fast and responsive even if its not pretty 😀
    .-= Elvenrunelord´s last blog ..Comment on Toluna Survey Concerns by David =-.

  • magspie October 23, 2009, 7:26 am

    Sorry I was late on this Crystal, yes. TB did have me wait-listed but only for about two weeks or so. Not terribly long. I was actually surprised to have heard from them as soon as I did.

    I also recieved an invitiation to be an “examiner” with examiner.com. But, you know, I haven’t actually seen too many reviews that are in the positive as to being an “examiner.”

    I may turn this one down. If anyone has any information as to being an “Examiner”, could you please relay this to me?

    Their email directs that I respond to them w/in three days after reciept of offer so I have a bit of time to bounce the idea around a bit.

    So far, Texbroker seems far more appealing to me. Crystal, take a look over there now. I’m sure they’re still hiring.

  • doran October 23, 2009, 11:21 am

    Elvenrunelord,

    HostGator is a really good hosting service. If you take the ‘baby gator’ package, it is very reasonable and you have unlimited domains and subdomains. They have a 24/7 excellent customer. You can load word press automatically from their control panel. I use it personally. All my blogs are Word Press. I have recommended HG to several friends who have been very pleased with Host Gator.

    Also a great place to use for domain names is namecheap.com
    .-= doran´s last blog ..Embraced by Creation =-.

    • Felicia October 23, 2009, 11:42 am

      I agree with Doran. HostGator has been very reliable and their customer service is excellent.

  • Ignatius October 23, 2009, 4:05 pm

    Elvenrunelord,

    I agree with the endorsements of Hostgator. If you want to sign up with them, they run frequent discounts and coupons are often available on sites that review them. You should be able to get a deal if you look around.

    As Doran said, Hostgator has things set up so you can very quickly and easily set up and update the regular version of WordPress, but Wordpress MU is going to require you to have a lot more technical knowledge to get it working.

    I have no idea what your level of technical expertise is. It may be child’s play for you to set it up and run it. However, it really wasn’t designed for the purpose you are planning to use it for so you may have a lot more complications than you expect. Here is a Hostgator forum thread, on the topic of using WordPress MU. You might want to take a look at it before you go forward with your plan.

    http://forums.hostgator.com/wordpress-mu-allowed-supported-t29592.html

    Hope this helps.

  • magspie October 24, 2009, 7:10 pm

    Hi all! I have just published my first two articles on TB and am very excited! One was on futons and the other was on keeping towels fluffy. At one point, as I sat reading and re-reading my articles on futons and towels, my husband passed by taking note of my creased brow. He leaned over my shoulder, pecked me on the cheek and said, “Isn’t this what happened to Hemmingway?” *ROTF* I had to share this. I thought it was just so funny. I mean, really! This is why writers go insane. Towels and futons and knife sharpeners…Oh My! Ah, well…I am happy with my wee wages and hope to continue doing so. Content subjects certainly are different than the relaxed nature of general print. But what a fun experience. I now know far more than I ever needed to know about towels and futons. Just keep alcohol and sharp objects from within quick reach. After a while, Hemingway’s inclination could become understandable. Ha!

    • Felicia October 25, 2009, 7:59 am

      Magspie, your comment made me laugh. 😀

  • Jay October 25, 2009, 3:07 am

    Hi,

    I have been a silent reader of this blog for about 3-4 weeks and have to tell you that I love it! I decided to finally post something because I wanted to answer magspie’s question abt Examiner.

    I have been on Examiner for one week and have already made $140. I spend about 2 hours a day, posting 3-5 short articles and get from 2-5K views a day. I really love this site so far. They have proved far more fruitful for me than EHOW so far.

    I also have been accepted to Textbroker but they pay very little and their topics look boring. I love choosing what I want to write on Examiner (in my category of course).

    I also write for DS and am already fed up of their rude CE’s. I started off with such motivation and that has already left (It’s only been a month!!!)

    I want to thank Felicia for this blog and the wonderful service you have provided here. I bought the EHOW passive income book you recommended a couple of weeks ago and started writing at sites based on your suggestions.

    I feel like this website was a goldmine of information for me and God Bless you for all the info you provide that is legit and free!

    I hope you are making $2-5K a month by the end of the year!

    • Felicia October 25, 2009, 8:01 am

      Thanks for sharing your Examiner experience, Jay. $140 is nothing to sneeze at.

      As far as having this blog, I’m not sure who benefits more, you or me. My readers help to make it what it is. 😉

  • magspie October 25, 2009, 11:08 am

    Thanks so much for the input on the Examiner situation, Jay. I’ve been bouncing it around for a few days now. My issue still stands as I remain a bit hesitatant due to, your recommendation accepted, the prevalent warnings against them. However, they’re attractive to me in the exposure sense. So, for that reason alone, I’d sure like to give them a try, but… Yes, TB pay is ridiculously low, isn’t it?. But, as I am just beginning, I saw this as a way to also gain a bit of SEO experience. I also write for (started 10-14) Triond and am gaining residuals from them, although low at the moment. I have noticed that many who make general complaints as to content sites, actually have, or so it seems from their posts, grammer or spelling difficulty. I take these scrambled posts into account when considering the validity of any complaint. If you have any other advice or can direct me to any more positive suggestions as to the Examiner site as it relates to their writers being satisfied, please feel free to direct me as I would be heartily interested. It did lift me a bit, reading your post on the subject. I also agree with you on Felicia’s wonderful site as well as her advice and directions. Being a newbie, I check here each day for guidance and reassurance. Thank you Felicia! And thanks again Jay.

  • Jay October 25, 2009, 12:33 pm

    Hi,

    I sure do have some resources for you to check out. I’m sorry I didn’t make you aware of them last night.

    Firstly, I really think from everything that I have read and seen that Examiners in categories that are extremely popular make the money; especially arts and entertainment. I am in that area and we always seem to be in the top 5 most popular posts. Examiner isn’t the place to talk about a niche topic unless it is really popular, I don’t think.
    I was initially turned off by posts I read on the Absolutewrite blog. That is a good blog to check- they talk about google ranks being low. I haven’t found that to be the case for myself; many of my articles are on the face page at google, or top the news list. I have made $60 since yesterday afternoon and my last post is top of the list on google for my key search words.
    Having said that, I don’t see Examiner as a passive income site. I don’t think that old articles bring in much revenue and so to make any money, new content has to be added daily. Some people get away with once or twice a week though. If you are a member of Demand Studios, do a search for “Examiner” there. They have quite a few good posts about Examiner and how people are doing. The same can be said for EHOW. I have 14 articles on Ehow, since the beginning of this month and have made $15, so it is def not too shabby there.
    OK, so here is the real kicker for Examiner. I found a blog by someone who is the #3 examiner in the nation for my category, and so I went to see what she had to say. In her first month on Examiner, she made over $3500. And she took screen shots, so I am apt to believe her. I am no where near that but it is nice to see it can happen. She really really packs seo into her titles! I’m not sure if I can post the blog name, or if it will be considered spamming, but Felicia can remove it if she likes. I do not know this woman and it is not my blog. I actually don’t like the format of the blog, but the information is good. The blog is http://paulamooney.blogspot.com/2009/07/how-much-does-examinercom-pay-writers.html.
    Hopefully, this info will help you!

  • Elvenrunelord October 25, 2009, 8:20 pm

    Well I wrote a total of 4 articles for TB over 2 days and two of them have already been accepted and are now waiting for rating. I’ll try and write about 6 more over the next couple of days and see if I can qualify for the 4 star rating.

    I was looking at some of the 2 star articles and its a little insulting the difficulty and quality that some of the customers seem to want for the price they are willing to pay. I mean come on here!

    I’ll probably focus on 3 star articles for now because it takes just as much research to do and eventually if the customers start asking why their articles aren’t getting written, maybe TB will tell them to quit being cheapskates. lol

    Seriously. You can sell a blog with 100 SEO articles and a couple thousand quality backlinks for $1500 or more depending on the niche your focusing on. If I’m going to help people make that kind of money I wanna be paid something too. lol

    I’ll look into Hostgator, but I was also thinking about this company: http://www.hostingzoom.com/ I’m not sure how fast they are, but I like the cloud concept they are using with their server linking. If any other company is doing this they are not advertising it and their website is blinding fast. I did not put an affiliate link in the url above, just put it there for feedback anyone might want to give.

    As to regards to Examiner, I wonder how the political section does? At heart I do my best work writing on political subjects.
    .-= Elvenrunelord´s last blog ..Comment on I’m Sorry but This Blog Will be Idle Until I Find a New Host by Survey Seeker =-.

  • Elvenrunelord October 25, 2009, 8:41 pm

    To the person who was talking about HostGator and Wordpress Mu above:

    I’ve read the changes you have to make to the files and I’m fairly certain that I can handle those and as it not being intended for what I want to do with it, you may be right, however this is my theory:

    If you choose a primary domain name such as http://www.Ehow.com for example. Ehow is a nonsense word a company used for a domain name and their business name. There are no advertisers sending ads to that particular word. Goggle Adsense heavily weights the ads sent to your site on the domain name and with Wordpress MU and the creating of multiple blogs on multiple subjects with SEO’s blog titles and virtual domains, in theory I should be getting different ads on each sub-blog because of the extended url part that is SEO friendly (Niche friendly.) At least this is my theory anyway.

    I’ll have to actually do it to see if it works out. If a certain blog is catching on and gets really hot, then I’ll spin it off into its own separate WP account and do redirects with the virtual domain for redirecting my link juice and domain forwarding so I don’t loose ranking.

    I’ve never built anything like this before so it will be an experiment for me, just like my first WP blog was and I learned a ton creating and populating it. The problem is since my domain name is http://www.surveyseeker.net, seems like no matter what I write about, I get survey sign up ads. I did initially create the blog to focus on survey sites but once I seen that was not going to be a profitable niche I started expanding out into other subjects and the ads on those pages still are 99% survey ads.

    If my theory is incorrect, I would love to know how Ehow manages to get targeted advertising for the most part on each of its different articles?

    Anyone care to expand on this before I waste my time trying this theory out?
    .-= Elvenrunelord´s last blog ..I’m Sorry but This Blog Will be Idle Until I Find a New Host =-.

  • Elvenrunelord October 26, 2009, 4:14 am

    I am now stuck with Textbroker. I have written five articles and the system will not allow me to write anymore until they review my articles.

    I went the proactive route and sent them a message asking them to rate them so I could continue writing articles.

    Hopefully they will respond to me in a day or two so I can get busy. My other online job besides blogging is entering the slow part of the week so I would probably crank out about 10 articles a day on Monday and Tuesday if I could. lol

    Will update when I hear from them

  • Elvenrunelord October 26, 2009, 7:12 am

    Woot 2 articles reviewed and I got my 4 star rating within 4 hours of asking for it 😀

    A British client asked for a rewrite on my very first article and after re-reading it I can’t disagree.

    I was so busy trying to write the article in SEO format I forgot to write naturally. lol

    Plus British idiom is quite different from our own.
    .-= Elvenrunelord´s last blog ..Comment on I’m Sorry but This Blog Will be Idle Until I Find a New Host by Survey Seeker =-.

  • Crystal October 26, 2009, 7:21 pm

    My mother is now an accepted TB author. So thanks magspie and April for letting us all know that there was no longer a wait list. It was just the info she needed to prompt her to action. And the approval was quick – just a day. So if you know anyone else who is waiting in the wings, let them know that now is the time to act!
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Best Diet Book Ever! =-.

  • magspie October 27, 2009, 10:50 pm

    Jay and Crystal, Thanks for the information as to Examiner, Jay. I don’t know if I’d be in a niche or not here in the Atlanta area. I was accepted as a military connection examiner and would be writing details relating to being in, living the life of…etc. I am a military daughter wife and mother. So I really couldn’t make a guess as to its popularity given the area. I’m doing something somewhat irresponsible and cheeky, though. I haven’t responded in either affirmation or denial of their offer. I’m just…waiting to see if something gives me a shove in their direction. They may not even want me any longer. You’ve given me food for thought,though. Thanks!I have, however, been writing over at TB and after only five articles, was rated into the 4 category. I’ve nearly given up on Ehow. Their glitches didn’t fit in with my impatient nature or rages of insomnia fueled habits. Ugh! I’m comfortable with TB at the moment as I can dodge out three or four of those in a day or so while still chasing down family needs. I also still do Triond. It’s slow there but with some good SEO (one of mine moves constantly) and self-promoting, it can be done. Crystal, I’m glad your mother found TB. I’m sure she’ll soon be in the throws of frustration as she reads each-minute-detail-directed-by-a-client-and thinks, as I’m sure we all do at TB, “What the … ???” *LOL* I’m telling you – this is why writers go insane. Content. But what fun, though. Tell your mom congrats for me.

  • Crystal October 29, 2009, 2:35 pm

    Thanks for the kind words for my mom, magspie – I’ll pass them along. She actually wrote and submitted her first article last night and had accepted another so is on her way!

    My recent excitement in the TB world is the appearance of direct orders from 3 different clients. It’s nice to be working on more than one order at a time – really fits nicely with my adult-onset ADD!
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Make an Easy, Luxurious Tied Quilt for Someone Special =-.

  • Elvenrunelord October 31, 2009, 7:21 am

    Its me again. I’ve written 16 articles for TB in the past week and made a little over $106. Not too shabby if i say so myself.

    I’d work toward the level 5 but honestly I never see any work there and the level 4 work is few and far between since the introduction of contest this week.

    Are there any other sites similar to TB with a comparable workload so I can check them for decent paying articles in categories I can actually write and be proud of my writing besides Demand Studios? Honestly their writer application intimidates me. lol

    TB is looking good and I can see myself working part time and making $600 a month and that will work well for the next few months while I build up some funds for a major project. But I’d like to have other options in case the golden goose gets it head cut off.
    .-= Elvenrunelord´s last blog ..Comment on I’m Sorry but This Blog Will be Idle Until I Find a New Host by Survey Seeker =-.

    • Felicia October 31, 2009, 7:44 am

      It makes sense to spread your eggs around.

      I came across one the other day, ecopywriters. I haven’t written a review on them as yet because I just heard about them. I submitted my sample writing and am waiting to hear back from them.

      From what I understand, they operate much the same way as Textbroker does and may pay better, but I’m not sure. Try applying there.

  • Elvenrunelord October 31, 2009, 9:05 am

    Thanks. Due to that contest TB is setting with over 1k two rating articles and I’ll tell you honestly those two rating articles are no easier to write than the three or four rating articles and I’m just not stooping that low.

    I seen one five rating article come up in the business section this morning. it disappeared in 10 minutes! lol

    Thanks for the info I’ll look into them. My goal is to make 1k a month for a few months and then start a major residual writing binge 😀

    Just went to their site and maybe I’m just sleepy but I can’t find the signup page for writers? Do you remember the link you used to get there?
    .-= Elvenrunelord´s last blog ..Comment on I’m Sorry but This Blog Will be Idle Until I Find a New Host by Survey Seeker =-.

  • magspie October 31, 2009, 9:51 am

    Runelord/ Crystal…
    You guys are really doing well! I haven’t been asked for D/O yet and am at around 45 bucks with 12 arts so far.(Yes, I took one of those .88 cent ones… I know… I know.) I think I may need to throw myself out there a bit more, though.

    The SEO/keyword details were stumping me at first so I had to study on doing it well. I’m beginning to feel more comfortable now and just need to leave my comfort zone.

    I am only used to writing for my little town magazine (that’s all I’ve ever done) here which, as it turns out, is very different than writing SEO…etc. The majority of my arts have recieved excellent client ratings with no revisions or rejections so far, so my ego gets its boost daily.

    I wrote one for wikipedia on the Rare Earth Hypothesis and made 4.60 on that while my highest paying one (5.60) is still waiting.

    I’ll certainly have to follow your leads and jump from the shallow end and into the deeper options. Talking things out in here REALLY helps me. I know it must be the same for everyone. Thanks to everybody but especially Felicia. You’re like “guru”.

    PS: I wrote one on self-esteem for a UK gentleman who deals with teaching self-help guidance. I wrote it, TB rated it as four stars but the client gave me nothing. Just took the art and ran with it, no rating. So much for “self-esteem”, huh? *LOL*

  • Jenn October 31, 2009, 10:22 am

    I’ve written a few things for ecopywriters and my experience with them is that a) they pay on time but b) there are RARELY any articles there that I want to write and c) most of the articles they do have have more instructions than I care to read or they want you to email so and so at ecopywriters to get the full set of instructions.

    Demandstudios.com, constant-content.com, and textbroker.com are where I hang my hat most days. I get more private work through CC than I can keep up with.

    Jenn

  • Jenn October 31, 2009, 10:41 am

    try http://www.ecopywriters.com/login …from there you can sign up.

    HTH

    Jenn
    .-= Jenn´s last blog ..Love Living in a Test Market =-.

  • Elvenrunelord November 1, 2009, 6:38 am

    OK thanks I have signed up with them now and submitted my writing sample. Ugh, what horrible sample topics they have.

    I finally decided on the one that asks about something you could not live without and modified an article I wrote for a previous client and included a statement that the article was only to be used as a writing sample and came from my portfolio of already sold work.

    The article was not exactly like the one I wrote for a client but it was close enough in format I would not want them to feel they could use it with abandon.

    Hope I get accepted. I made $21 off that article which was one of three in a series.

    BTW – How did you get started with CC? Seems like its a place to put your articles and no guarantee they will sell? How did you manage to make money with them?

    BTW2- Looks like I might want to take the Demand Studio plunge and I’ll need a resume. What type of resume should I send them, what information should I include, etc? Honestly I have created a resume in twenty-five years!

    .-= Elvenrunelord´s last blog ..I’m Sorry but This Blog Will be Idle Until I Find a New Host =-.

    • Felicia November 2, 2009, 6:11 am

      Elvenrunelord, I haven’t really used Constant Content. I think there are a few readers here that use it and have been successful.

      Regarding the resume, I took one of my old resumes and beefed up the writing aspects of my prior jobs and then included my blogs/websites as part of my writing portfolio. It was a quick one pager.

  • Elvenrunelord November 3, 2009, 5:37 pm

    I got my first direct order on TB and I have to say that was the hardest article I have ever written and I think I handled the subject very well.

    Now lets see how the client likes it 😀

    • Felicia November 4, 2009, 6:47 am

      Congrats Elvenrunelord! Way to go. I’m sure your client will be thrilled with your work.

  • April November 4, 2009, 5:04 pm

    Hi! I just submitted my sample writing to ecopywriters. Anyone having experience with them know how long it generally takes for them to respond?

    • Felicia November 4, 2009, 5:34 pm

      April, I’m not sure. I’m still waiting to hear from them too.

      I did get a broadcast email from them today because they were looking for someone to translate Portuguese, but I haven’t heard anything about whether or not my sample was adequate.

      I believe I heard somewhere that it takes them a while to review all of the new submissions.

  • Grandma November 5, 2009, 6:48 pm

    Not to complain about TB but lately many orders have amazingly long and detailed instructions that take longer to read than the article would to write. When they refer writers to another website for “details” and give several other websites as references for what they want it almost is funny because nobody wants “copying” but obviously they do. The “how to” articles are crazy!

    Last week was great with many orders to whip out for the bonus prizes and this week there are a ton of 4 & 5 category articles wanted…but there are now the long and almost confusing detailed instructions. You would think with all the time it took to lay those out the client could have written the order. And then the 4 & 5 category stuff is short, like 100 to 150 words for $6 or long and cheap at a 3 or 2 category for 400-500 words for about $2. Just not worth the time.

    Usually I would rather make a buck than sit idle but these make me want to watch tv than make that buck.

    Don’t get me wrong, I am having the best month in months and have already passed last month’s income in just ten days but it is disappointing. At least there are orders coming in.

    If anyone is into games there are tons of orders.

  • Crystal November 6, 2009, 10:28 am

    I feel your pain, Grandma! I also am having a good TB month and certainly am not complaining but some of those order instructions – WOW! I actually went so far as to blacklist a client because there was no way I want to write anything in that format and was frustrated with the sheer number of orders to wade through to find something worth my while. One simple blacklist cut the level 4 orders from hundreds to a manageable few dozen.

    Usually I feel the more open orders the better but would rather not personally see the higher numbers under the circumstances. Fortunately the direct order flood gates finally opened and I’ve been busy with those. Plus, I just got a custom quilt order so who wants to write when they can get paid to sew instead?
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Creating a Quilt – Making Money at Home Doing What I Love =-.

  • Doran November 6, 2009, 3:05 pm

    I totally agree it is getting weary just reading the instructions for the articles. Perhaps it is a attempt to being clear (some English is not good)but the instructions are now getting longer and repetitious. Even with the longer description often it does not clarify the actual needs of the client. It is as if the client thinks the more words, the longer the description, the better the understanding. Of course, a more concise, short, and to the point list of instructions would be much clearer and take up far less time. I have taken a break for a few months and am just starting back. The instructions are so vague and now redundant that I get frustrated.

  • Grandma November 6, 2009, 4:27 pm

    Sometimes I just have to think “what an idiot” when I see the instructions. I know we writers are supposed to give it “their way” but…

    I refuse to do anything related to spinning also because it is a rip off to us.

    Sometimes the sheer number of what is put up by a client amazes me. Like when they put 100 at $6 each, that is a lot of money for blogs. They must be making a heck of a lot more and I am feeling like I am the one missing the boat on the money. And they have to prepay everything!

    I just hate to look at all the money sitting there and not want to tackle the projects.

  • magspie November 6, 2009, 4:40 pm

    Yes. I am in total agreement with you both. I am sitting here, frustrated and fuming at a client and his odd formation of request.

    His initial order was very uncomplicated and the subject was none to easy to tackle. It was a multi-article deal and I had just done another which had earned me a nice profit and a very generous praise from the VERY nice site owner.

    So,I take this order request which is simple but it’s confusing as to certain aspects. It mentions no SEO/keyword…nothing. Just some blogs. So, I assumed he didn’t need them seeing as he hadn’t made this initial request which is what most do when they have these requirements.

    I messaged him with a few questions as to these missing details and I get a list of keywords and SEO stuff back that I simply was not bargaining for. While my other muiti-art deals had this clear and initial requirement,this current order was screaming for uniqueness on a subject which would be nearly impossible to make unique.

    So, from what began as a simple 2 star deal which I could have dodged out rather quickly, became something-all together-not as initally presented. This risked my 4 star rating and a nasty rebuttal so…I canceled it.

    Now I feel all – irresponsible. I’ve mnever done that before. But that just took my cake. I made a very nice profit the other day (a full 100 bucks last week alone) as I emerged from my comfort zone but this just felt a bit like bait and switch to me.

    Doesn’t TB tell these peopel to be upfront with their needs and expectatiosn beforehand? I mean, honestly..what if I decided that it was just a simple blog write and ran with it?

    Sheesh! Some people don’t require KW’s or SEO so they don’t mention it. I assumed this was one of those. It was just happenstance that this guy brought it up. BTW, it’s back in there if you would like it.

    Ugh…I need cake.

  • Grandma November 6, 2009, 8:36 pm

    I think I am just burned out because of the past two weeks. I took and then put back two 5 articles for $75 which is totally unlike me. Maybe just a day or two “off” from the computer in general would do me some good. LOL

  • April November 7, 2009, 6:04 am

    Grandma: To see that you can make $75 off of 2 articles is encouraging…if I could just get to that 5 star rating! I have been with TB since March, but didn’t begin to do much until a couple of months ago. I have completed 75 articles with consistent 4 star ratings from TB (and two 3), and even contacted them about a level 5 rating. I have been receiving a large number of Direct Orders lately. Unfortunately, I have to maintain a day “job” as well, and find it difficult at times to get everythng accomplished! I would love to be able to become a full time freelancer, but am afraid to jump off the boat with only a 4 star rating. Do you, or any other 5 star writers, have any tips or suggestions for achieving a 5 star? Well…must get ready for my day job now! Have a great day!

  • Grandma November 7, 2009, 9:19 am

    Well I feel better today but will be tired later after taking a break all night at the local casino! Played and played but ultimately lost as usual.

    Let’s see, one of the 5 star articles would have paid $15 and the other $50 and I really hated to put them back but…

    There have been times, about three, when I had to back out of an order during the revision stage. Either what they wanted was over my head (I tend to bite off more than I can chew sometimes) or their response was totally offensive. I just send a nice short note that I feel they would be better served if I return the article to the writer pool so someone else can give it a shot. That usually works just fine and I feel no guilt at all. Maybe a little ticked off about the wasted effort and time, especially when the article was actually okay.

    I have had a couple revisions where the client never okayed the revision and it came through automatically after three days. Just had one where the comments from the client were rather obnoxious and I wondered if they thought they were cancelling it. I got paid, so what. Another time TB stood behind my work and the customer had to take it and I got a great rating.

    As for the 5 ratings – I don’t know what criteria TB uses. I have had mine a long time. Just keep proofreading and go over the piece before you turn it in. Maybe read it aloud to catch any repetitive words or other errors. Must be error free and read well. Creativity does not seem to play much of a part and some clients do not like their articles to include a writer’s personal stories.

    A typical 5 article pays $25 for 500 words and they are nice to get but they are few and far apart. Better than $5 for the same count. Getting an occasional $100 day is pretty fun. I try to set a goal and somedays I make it, other days I do not. But there are days when I make 2, 3, or 4 times my goal and that evens it out. Just look at each day anew.

  • Crystal November 7, 2009, 9:38 am

    Hey Grandma – So you’re a level 5 author? I’ve been wanting to “meet” one and second April’s request for tips on achieving that rating. I’m also curious about the articles. Until recently, I could count on my fingers the number of 5s I’d seen posted since late July when I started with TB. But lately there have been a quite a few. How different are they from level 4? TIA for any info you’re willing and able to provide.

    magspie – Don’t feel irresponsible! The beauty of the TB system is the allowance it makes for life or mistakes in article acceptance. I really appreciate the ability to easily cancel the process without penalty. I’ve done so a couple of times and would never over-use or abuse the privilege but I’m sure glad it’s an option when dealing with an article that turns out to be more than I bargained for or when life simply gets in the way.
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Creating a Quilt – Making Money at Home Doing What I Love =-.

  • Grandma November 7, 2009, 11:01 am

    Crystal – hello, a bit ago when someone mentioned how often 5’s appear I went back and counted how many double digit pays I have, figuring that most were probably 5s or long 4s. Out of about 1700 or so articles there were maybe 115 5’s. Not a lot but they do pay good. There really isn’t a way to go back and see which articles were at what rating other than looking at the pay. TB normally does not rate me at anything other than a 4 no matter what the article rating is. Occasionally I would see some ratings of a 5 but I just chalked that up to a new editor on board.

    There isn’t much difference between a 5 and a 2 except that they have to be fairly perfect. There were a bunch of rug descriptions up there this week – the most I have ever seen. It appears that the British clients have money because they frequently list articles in the 5 category and those are mostly travel articles with a UK slant.

    I did one this week on water pollution and another on how to choose a wide format printer, copier or scanner. They were easy.

    There are many writers and the level 5 articles go in minutes after they are listed in most cases.

    I was raised manually to a 5 last year right about the time when I was going to inquire about it. Sorry, no tips other than to proofread and look for little things like too many “ands” et cetera. And the commas!

    It looks like sometimes a new client will list something at a 5 or a 4 and then the next time they drop to a 3 and then a 2. They can get excellent wrtiing at a 2 or 3 and pay a lot less.

  • Crystal November 7, 2009, 12:50 pm

    Wow Grandma – Thanks for the wealth of info! Guess I’ll ask TB again for a raise to level 5. I’ve submitted over 100 articles, and with the exception of 2 of my initial 5, they’ve all been rated at a 4 with very few TB comments after my first couple of weeks. Thought they’d start rating my articles at a 5 when they determined I had reached that level but I guess not. Maybe it takes many more than just 100 submissions to merit a level 5 rating? If so, I’ll just keep plugging away until I reach the magic number.
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Creating a Quilt – Making Money at Home Doing What I Love =-.

  • Grandma November 7, 2009, 5:30 pm

    Yeah, there is a level 5 rating for the writer and a level 5 rating on the article itself. You want them to classify you as a level 5 writer so you can access the level 5 articles that demand more and pay more. Even if you are a level 5 writer and do a level 5 article you may only get #4 ratings on that one and any of the articles that are from any category.

    I only get TB comments if I have screwed up or if they really like something. I tend to disagree with them on much of the comma rules so mostly I just do not do commas. They can be avoided.

    Maybe they restrict the number of level 5 writer numbers because there are so few articles at that level available. It is competitive and the early bird gets the worm. Articles did not disappear as quickly before.

    When I started there were fewer writers and the website was new. Now there are probably ten times the number of writers. This is amazing to me that there are so many writers. We want TB to continue to get thousands of articles and make money so they are alive and a place for us to find work. If the articles do not get written they have to either get more writers or lose clients. There is only one choice if they want to stay in business.

  • magspie November 8, 2009, 2:30 pm

    Ok, I’m calmer now. Now, as to the five star potential, since I am not paying any real bills with this cash, just an empty nester filling voids of time, personally I’m not pushing for a five at this time. I doubt TB would aprove me anyway.

    But this is only due to the fact that I still feel a certain lack of expertise as to SEO/KW’s and the finer details of web writing. I’m actually looking for a class somewhere.

    I don’t feel confident yet to tackle anything higher than a four at this point. I don’t consider the fours to be all that bad, though. Payment-wise, they’re pretty good I think. But then again, I do realize that I’m not making a car payment with this income so I can see where a five would hold a more lucrative appeal generally.

    I had a lovely, lovely client the other day who asked for a series of art’s on a certain type of office chair. I did them up and got them out and recieved *the* nicest little note attached to my client rating, which was an “excellent”.TB also rated it and gave me a comment of, “Good job on these”. I was so pleased. Wish I could do more for them.

    My first ratings batch came back from TB the other day and all 20-something arts that were rated recieved 4 stars.

    But let me ask, one client rated my contribution at a mear “acceptable”…ouch!…so that brought to mind what the CR’s are exactly? Are they acceptable, good and excellent?

    But that art, (she reasons to placate ego) required 300 words and was meant to have about 8 different subjects profiled. Uhm…in 300 words? **Shrug** Ok!

    There’s only so much one can profile per subject within a 300 word article. Sheesh…I had to chalk that one up to a learning experience.

    Eh, I’m still hangin’ in there.I did two this morning and am waiting for two others to clear.

    Crystal, thanks for the boost up! I ate some cake but your comments worked far better and I’m sure are less fattening. I’m following everyone’s lead on here as I tag along learning and getting gutsier. You guys offer great insight.

    PS: Get used to my frustration inspired typos you may see on here from time to time (see acne boy post). I reserve the right to illegible type when I’m mad and without pastry!**Pfffttt**

  • Grandma November 8, 2009, 10:25 pm

    Out of curiosity I went to the TB section of information FAQs for Clients. Look under the point of “Basics of Textbroker” and then to the bottom one that explains how different author quality levels differ. There is the TB explanation of how they select level 5 writers.

    I did not see any points about how clients can rate their writer. If you wanted to register as a client I suppose you would find out after an article was written.

  • Crystal November 9, 2009, 12:53 pm

    Thanks for the info, Grandma. You’ve inspired me and I’ve done it – another request for a raise to level 5 was submitted this morning.
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Serendipitous Moment =-.

  • magspie November 9, 2009, 6:48 pm

    Thanks Grandma. I looked in the same spot after my mere “acceptable” rating and saw the same. I didn’t know if anyone here had any inside information. Eh, it’s alright. It’s certainly nothing that we can control beyond checking and rechecking the arts before they go out for release.

    Would anyone here know if Constant Content takes previously published articles?

  • Doran November 10, 2009, 9:15 am

    Magpie,
    I haven’t submitted any at Constant Content in quite some time but they use to take previously submitted articles. I forget the categories that you submit under but one was non-exclusive. If I recall, it clarifies it in the TOS.
    .-= Doran´s last blog ..‘Vic Serenading’ and the Roggio Family Music =-.

  • Grandma November 11, 2009, 8:38 am

    I am fairly sure that you could not resubmit any articles that were previouslly sold on TB because with TB you lose all rights. If it is an article that you published under your own name or sold under your own name and retained rights you might be able to sell it again.

    Felicia, what do you know about this topic?

    • Felicia November 11, 2009, 8:57 am

      Grandma, I believe you are right. When you sell your work on TB, you no longer own the rights.

      I can’t say much about CC because I only wrote one article there and it was a few years ago.

  • Doran November 11, 2009, 10:04 am

    You are right Grandma. I forget there are so many new writers here. Never submit an article that you have written anywhere as a ghostwriter. This means Textbroker or any site that does not give you credit for the article as author. The only articles that you can resubmit are the ones you hold the rights to as author.
    .-= Doran´s last blog ..‘Vic Serenading’ and the Roggio Family Music =-.

  • magspie November 11, 2009, 9:53 pm

    Oh goodness no! *LOL* I didn’t mean to take them from TB and use them at CC, no. I meant just in general. I know those that TB have are totally given to the owner/client. I was considering others I’ve done.

    They have no copyright over my arts here so I can toss them about as I see fit. I probably won’t do it, though. The CC thing, I mean.

    I actually haven’t had any problems with TB so far. It seems to me the key is to check and check and check your copy over and over and over again to make certain there are no typos or errors before it goes out. I also find that reading my copy aloud helps quite a bit.

    Although it annoys my husband as well as the cat, it brings to mind any odd sentence structure.

    But I think I’ve become slightly complacent and am fearing a fast fanny slap soon.

    I do get annoyed at those 2 dollar offers with the directions that rival the health care bill for crying out loud. What the…??? I don’t mind a 2 dollar job if its 100 words about mailing a letter or something equally benign, but the second I see directions eight pages long with bold demands, no-thank-yew!

    Sheesh! What are they thinking???

  • April November 11, 2009, 10:42 pm

    Wow! There have been alot of 5 articles popping up lately! How I wish I could just access them! Grandma, do you mean that once you become a level 5 writer, you are not dropped back down after 3 consistent 4 ratings? Do they only drop you back down to a 4 if you’ve really messed up or something? I have currently been receiving steady Direct Orders though, so don’t know that I would even have time to do one of them! Unfortunately, I have to keep up with my day job as well! I am still waiting to hear from ecopywriters…they do seem to be somewhat slow with the evaluation process of sample articles. I hope that is not an indication about the site itself! I have also signed up on Constant Content…they look fairly promising, but don’t know that I will have time in the near future to submit anything…maybe if I quit my day job…hmmm…)! Thanks for this blog Felicia…it has served as an excellent source of information! Hope everyone is well!

  • Elvenrunelord November 11, 2009, 11:50 pm

    I’m getting a little frustrated with TB. I was level 4 and they dropped me back to level three citing my comma usage. Well I turned on every grammar checking ability that word 2010 has and my articles are passing it with flying colors.

    I also examined a couple of my articles using the site they give and they comply with all of thsoe rules concerning commas.

    The crazy thing is virtually every rating from a customer is EXCELLENT.

    Its sad that I’m able to please customers and yet the grammar Nazi’s are holding me back! Really disheartening.

  • Grandma November 12, 2009, 7:31 am

    Thanks for the chuckles!

    April, I do not know what happens with other 5 writers. Apparently TB hand picks their 5 writers. I have a steady stream of 4s from TB and an occasional 3 when I go haywire but it does not affect my rating. A few 5s pop up but not often. I think the editors only go to a 4 most of the time. There is no tally score shown. I am happy with being a 5, just yesterday I caught three articles for $30 each which made a nice day. If you have direct orders you should be doing fine. The default price for DOs is 1.5 cents but you can up that to whatever you want. Mine is set at 5.0 cents per word but I do offer lower rates to exceptional clients that I have worked with on OOs.

    There ia a nice site to check your SEO keyword analysis percentages on: http://www.live-keyword-analysis.com/

  • magspie November 12, 2009, 12:45 pm

    Jay? You here? I am just about to go ahead with the Examiner experiment. I realized I really have nothing else to lose and my other arts around town keep getting bumped so, may as well put them to some use for cryin’ out loud.

    If this were a relationship, Examiner would be my “transitional date”. I can still depend on TB for a few bucks here and there while I wait and see what happens on Examiner.

    They contacted me again yesterday and while I was waiting for my “push,” a local article I worked on, researched and got approved was just bumped w/out my knowledge…again! So,it can go somewhere else. Hence, my push. Examiner can use it.

    But, we’ll see. I’m going to post my honest experiences in here so others may use it if they so choose. Thanks again for the information. We’ll see what happens.

  • magspie November 12, 2009, 12:52 pm

    Well, that was timely. I just heard from Examiner as to a question I had regarding publishing rights…etc. She answered that question although another question I posed as to word count or word count parameters, was not answered. Hmmmm??? I’m off to research that now. Geez Louise.

  • Jay November 12, 2009, 2:47 pm

    Hey sorry,

    I am here. I am not really happy with Examiner anymore. I know, I know…that was a very short lived happy relationship.

    I started getting harassed by another Examiner, who was leaving me mean nasty comments on a lot of articles; then I started getting rude emails (they make you put your email address up), then I noticed that my articles weren’t really getting picked up by Google; it seems that only articles I publish on Sunday get picked up and drive any traffic.

    I realized that only one type of article was even being read by people, and thus really it was an extreme niche blog sort of thing. If I wrote 10 articles everyday on 10 different things; only a was being read. And that is because it is a hot movie about to be released. It made me question myself and my intentions. Am I writing just to make money and thus eek every last drop out of this one …sorry I have to post the rest later

  • April November 12, 2009, 3:08 pm

    Thanks for the info Grandma. I currently keep my DO at 1.5 cents. I am still a newby, so don’t want to price myself out of work! I may consider raising my DO price for future clients though, and keep my current ones at a set price. Regarding comma usage on TB, I have read alot of comments about it here and on the TB blog. What exactly do the editors say about using commas? I have had very few comments from TB, none of which have mentioned anything about commas. I am just wondering if that may be part of what is holding me back from becoming a level 5, and they simply haven’t corrected me! On another note, I was accepted by ecopywriters.com today. Getting ready to go check it out now.

  • magspie November 12, 2009, 3:24 pm

    Me again! Sorry to be a board hog but I wanted to let my TB pals know that I have just refused to revise an article I wrote titled “top 10 2.0 sites for students.” If you take it, be aware that although it is NOT initially requested in the instructions, the client wants “new” sites to be listed. Not a bad project at all, just not explained well by the client.

    Their response to me was a little snide (something like, “every student already knows those sites. I wanted NEW sites.) so I figured no matter my contribution, it would be rebuked.

    So…it’s out there again. Just thought I would make this clear and known before another of my TB team members takes it, writes the thing and then has it refused.

    Just so Grandma knows, I actually used your sage advice on this. I wrote to the client, nicely, and explained that they would be better served by having another writer handle that…bla…bla…

    I apologized for the confusion (although I was not confused at all…thankyewverymuch!)…and told them I was placing it back on list.

    Bleah, now I’m all disgruntled.

  • Lisa B. November 12, 2009, 4:10 pm

    You know, I’m just not sure about the Examiner thing. I haven’t heard alot of good things about it but I really like Associated Content,although it has been a few months since I have contributed to it. Anyhoo, I also applied to ecopywriters.com (because of this site,thankyouverymuch) and was accepted today. It should be interesting and I look forward to hearing about everyone’s different experiences with it.

  • Grandma November 12, 2009, 4:28 pm

    Magspie, sorry you had an unpleasant experience but it does happen. You probably did the right thing. Doing that keeps your rating from being affected negatively also. I always try to check out the client’s refusal rating before taking something on. If it is too high I do not sign up for it. And I prefer to see no rejections at all listed. High to me is just about any percentage!

    You handled it correctly and from the viewpoint of TB they would not want writers insulting the clients. Even though we are freelancers we do rather represent TB in our interactions with clients. You bowed out gracefully even if part of your reason was a little white lie.

    The other thing to keep in mind is that TB will stick up for their writers if they feel the client is being unreasonable. Clients have no reason to be rude or mean.

  • April November 12, 2009, 4:55 pm

    Well, I wasn’t overly impressed with ecopywriters. Apparently, they have been in existence since 2000, but the site is somewhat difficult to navigate through. It looks as though it operates a bit like TB, but perhaps at a higher pay rate. Lisa B., if you don’t mind my asking, what were you rated at? I was rated at 2…a little disappointing after writing what I felt to be a very good sample. The pay rate was stated as .020 cents per word. There were a grand total of 6 available orders. None of which were appealing. It looks like maybe they only update orders on a weekly basis, so maybe the lack of orders is due to it being the end of the week. It looks as though TB will continue to be the main site I work with for the time being.

  • Kim H November 12, 2009, 5:06 pm

    Today must be the day that eCopywriters notified new people. I too was accepted, although I’m not sure they look very promising.

    I was rated a level 2 to begin. On TB I started at level 4. There are only three articles avail. Two with 23 hours remaining and one with less than one hour remaining to complete.

    The level 2 says the pay is 0.020 cents per word. I’m confused, is that less than one cent per word?

    • Felicia November 12, 2009, 6:59 pm

      I was also approved to write for them, but haven’t signed on as yet. I’ll do a separate post on eCopywriters for everyone to share their experience.

  • Lisa B. November 12, 2009, 8:32 pm

    Interesting. April, I was rated a 2 as well. I started out at TB as a 3 but was bumped up to 4 pretty quickly. Maybe ecopywriters starts everyone out at a 2? I also checked out the available jobs and didn’t see anything that I could really relate to. Guess the only thing to do is to keep an open mind and wait and see what happens. Not that I’m especially good at doing that,lol, but oh well.
    .-= Lisa B.´s last blog ..Small Triumphs =-.

  • April November 12, 2009, 9:35 pm

    Kim: I think/hope that .020 is 2 cents per word…not bad if they end up having some better choices in the future. I’m just going to keep an eye on them for a while. Sticking with textbroker for now…they seem much more geared toward their writers. I haven’t been able to find much in the way of info on ecopywriters. Maybe TB has just spoiled me!

  • magspie November 13, 2009, 8:06 am

    Thanks Grandma. You know, I was aware of the client’s refusal rate being provided but had forgotten about it. I’ll begin checking it. Thanks for the reminder.

    Lisa, yes. I too have reservations as to Examiner. Especially…now! *LOL* Gee, thanks Jay. *ROTFLMAO* But I had them before, actually.

    After they contacted me yesterday and didn’t answer my W/C question, I went ahead and sent them a bio and picture. However, I added a caveat stating that since my W/C question was not answered, that although I was sending them the information they requested for the start page, I would refuse the work if the guidelines proved too unreasonable…*shrug*. But now, I’m looking at them with an even keener eye.

    I don’t like being so wishy-washy but come on…it was a simple, standard freelance question and they dodged it – strange.

    April, I too always end up back at TB. I read other reviews about the low pay at TB (et al) but, I feel that if you’re prolific enough and take a chance every so often on a larger task article, as well as grabbing a few of the lower priced offerings in between, then it can pay off rather comfortably.

  • Crystal November 13, 2009, 11:49 am

    Grandma – on your direct order rate – do you get many at .05? Do you indicate to open order clients that you’ll adjust lower for them by personal message? I’m new to the DO world but it’s keeping me really busy right now which is great! I’m currently at the default rate but may increase a little – just don’t want to scare off future clients.
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Mola Quilt – Progress and Perfectionism =-.

  • April November 13, 2009, 3:15 pm

    Well, ecopywriters is looking a bit better now. I just accepted a level 1 article to test it out. It is on a subject I already have some previous experience with, so won’t require any researching. Looks like level 1 pays .018 cents per word. It also appears that you can accept more than one article at a time.

  • April November 13, 2009, 6:28 pm

    Ok, their FAQ states that you can’t accept more than one order at a time, so I stand corrected on that! I have finished the article and am now awaiting their evaluation and acceptance procedures…

  • Grandma November 14, 2009, 9:59 am

    Crystal – A few. I am too busy to want to get a bunch at a lower rate. If I want to do more for a client I will initiate the message conversation and express that I would like to do more for them and offer a particular rate. It depends on the client and if you really want to do more for them. Some I automatically put at 4 cents per word to make up for the commission that TB adds (1/4 percent) and that also keeps it a bit lower than the level 5 cost.

    The rate a writer charges really is a personal thing and based on many factors. I have other irons in the fire, so to speak.

    You could try setting your rate at 2.0 and see what happens and if you continue to get orders. But whatever rate you have received previously from a client will stand unless you pull up their client number and manually change their rate to a different rate. You can set your public view rate higher but the old clients will still have the old rate. This is true even if they have not done a DO. Your OO clients are locked into whatever rate you were charging when you wrote for them unless you change it. You should contact them if you are raising it higher or lower and let them know. Look at your address book to see the clients you have written for before and you can then go to each listing and see what your DO rate with them is set at if you want to know or bother.

    I really hate doing pricing! There is the price you ask when you want work and the price you ask when you NEED work!

  • Grandma November 14, 2009, 11:03 am

    Crystal – one more point. I am a long time paid professional copywriter. I started while in college at a radio station in 1971 and have been at it ever since. Now I am just biding my time until whatever comes after life.

    Setting a DO rate at 5.0 or higher is probably a terrible idea for most TB writers even if they are rated a 5 star writer. It has to do with clients also and the type of jobs needed, i.e. blogging, and that most TB writers are beginners.

    Leave it at the default until you see if you get orders. Once you get clients you work with them and at some point you should be able to ask more without losing them. Or start a little over 1.5, but do not jump to 5.0. Remember also that TB ups your price by 1/4 for their share.

  • brittany November 14, 2009, 2:31 pm

    Hello Everyone, I am very new to online freelance writing. I was recently accepted to textbroker and I am confused. I logged on and looked at some of the orders, several actually. The instructions seem so confusing. I am not sure if I am just making it harder than it seems. For example one wanted the top 25 online nursing programs, not for a specific location. Do you get more instructions once you accept the assignment? I was not sure how I find the top 25. Am I just supposed to search for it and write them as they are listed on google? Maybe this is really dumb I just have no idea. Thanks!

  • Crystal November 15, 2009, 10:39 am

    Thanks for the info and advice, Grandma. I was in no way thinking of raising my DO rate beyond .02 and was more seriously considering .018 but will probably leave it at default for now. I was just curious whether the .05 rate generated many DOs for level 5 writers.

    Brittany – Welcome to TB! I’ve only been doing this for a few months but learned quickly not to accept orders with convoluted instructions or that require too much research. As for vague instructions? Those I love! Gives me the freedom to write from the angle of my choice.

    As to your questions – the instructions you see when accepting an order are all that you get. You can request more info from the client but I’ve not had any luck doing so and now just don’t accept orders if I feel I need clarification. I would personally not even consider the specific order you mentioned due to lack of clarity and the research required. I also would have no idea where to start so you’re not alone!

    Just hang in there and don’t make this too hard for yourself. Wait for orders that feel comfortable to you and as soon as you see one, snag it right away or someone else will!

  • April November 15, 2009, 9:44 pm

    Brittany: The client probably does not want a specific 25 online nursing programs. The “top” is most likely a part of the title, and is used as an “attention grabber.” You will probably be ok just searching for online nursing programs and listing 25, with a short paragraph about each one, and claim that these are the “top 25” nursing programs online. Good luck! Sorry if I sound confusing…just finished 10 DOs and am very tired! Getting ready to write my 100th article for TB…tomorrow…time to sleep now!

  • April November 15, 2009, 9:50 pm

    Oh! I meant to say also: Brittany, you can always accept an order and then message the client for further details. You can do this by clicking on the client number. This will take you to the client’s profile where you can send a message. The disadvantage to sending a message however, is that you may waste valuable writing time waiting for a response. On the other hand, the client may be impressed by your desire to give them exactly what they are looking for. Hope all this helps! Welcome to the world of Textbroker writers by the way!

  • magspie November 15, 2009, 11:34 pm

    Brittany,

    Hi. TB exploiter here too. No. You’re not making it harder than it seems. Most of the client directions are pretty vague. Sometimes that can be a blessing, other times…not.

    You can always accept the client and then drop them a note to confirm their instructions. Or, you can drop them a note making inquiry first and then, if it’s still on the list, take it after contacting them.

    There are others which state things like needing “local” information on a certain action or company but then disallow any mention of specific action or company in or near that locale. Uuhmm…ok. *shrug*

    I decided weeks ago that I would actually just take them at the written word and follow my own interpretation if need be. But for one instance, mentioned somewhere(angrily so) above, I have had no problems doing this.

    But to each must be his own. So you must do whatever it is you feel comfortable with. If asked for a revision that you feel is unreasonable, kindly and respectfully (no matter the broth stirring inside)decline it if you see fit. It will simply go back to list and be picked up by another writer.

    I don’t suggest doing so on a weekly basis but, sometimes it needs to be done to ensure your rating stays put.

    Hope this helps! Take care and have fun.

    PS: I just dodged out 10 Viagra testimonials. I have no shame left anymore. **sigh**

  • Grandma November 16, 2009, 3:37 pm

    Hi Brittany. I think if you go back and reread all the posts here at NJFM and also the blogs that are posted at TB you can get a good handle on what is going on with all the writers and how they handle things.

    As you write you will figure things out also.

    TB is my main writing income at the moment but I am trying to branch out by putting up my own website. Now to find the right traffic for it…

    http://www.textarticlesale.com

  • Saurus November 17, 2009, 5:21 pm

    I just set up an account for myself last night, figuring I could make myself some fast money (I am a rather fast writer). They started me off with a 4 star rating and so far I have written four articles, giving me a little over twenty dollars.

    This site is pretty good times.

  • Kathleen December 9, 2009, 5:23 pm

    Do you how long it takes for an article to be approved? I have not yet signed up with TextBroker – still contemplating the work vs. payout. But if the approval process is rather quick, then I may just go ahead and submit some of my pre-written articles.
    .-= Kathleen´s last blog ..Part Time Jobs From Home =-.

    • Felicia December 9, 2009, 9:01 pm

      I can’t remember how long the approval process takes as it was quite some time ago when I applied. I think one of the folks in the NJFM community could give you a better answer than I can.

  • Kayla December 11, 2009, 9:42 pm

    Alright, I just got accepted on textbroker at a 3 rating, and I was really excited until they asked for my W-9 forms. I’m just a little concerned that this is not a legitimate site, and the Better Business Bureau does not have TB as a licensed company…. I just don’t know whether to submit a form with my SSN on it? Has anyone had problems with this company as far as sharing personal info/identity theft is concerned? I know it may sound paranoid, but I’d rather be safe on this one… thanks

  • Sue December 12, 2009, 4:20 am

    The approval process at TB was pretty quick, for me at least.
    i received confirmation within two days of applying. Hope that helps answer Kathleen’s question.

    Also have to just give a big Thank You to the NJFM community. I stumbled on this site last July, and was clueless about TB or any of the other online writing opportunities until I (luckily) landed here. 🙂

  • wayne wilson December 12, 2009, 6:42 pm

    Felicia, thank you for your site! I was just approved at level 4 with textbrokers. Your link to EIN site was very helpful.
    After reading most of the posts here I have decided to make Grandma my role model.
    Seasoned greetings to all of you!

  • SpeedHost December 13, 2009, 12:50 am

    TB may not be great for expert writers as the payment is less but it is good for people starting off and want to earn a little on the side.. i think the service is great for cliets who want quality unique article in a couple days while not having to pay a bomb.

  • April December 13, 2009, 8:35 am

    Kayla–I have been working with TB since March and have had no problems. At least at that time, you didn’t have to send W-9 forms until you reached $200. This gave me a chance to test them out before sending any info. I also was concerned about sending SSN information, so applied for an Employer Identification Number (EIN)with the IRS. This # can be used in place of your SSN, and is for business purposes only. Just go to the government website (www.gov.net???) and it will tell you how to apply. Incidentally, I found this blog because I was searching for info on TB and their legitamacy, and found out about applying for an EIN here!

  • Crystal December 13, 2009, 8:55 am

    Kayla – If you’re uncomfortable with giving your SSN, you can get an EIN online from the IRS and use that instead. As for the legitimacy of TB, I’ve had no problems and not heard of any. Also, I believe you don’t have to submit the W-9 until you approach $200 in earnings so you can test the waters a while and see what you think.
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Type 1 Diabetes Hits Close to Home =-.

  • Grandma December 13, 2009, 9:14 am

    Wayne, you made me chuckle, thanks! Kayla have no fear, TB is on the level and up and up. Once you make over $200 (I think that is the trigger amount) they require a W-9 form or you will no longer be able to be paid. They only accept US writers for tax reasons also. Their headquarters for the website is in Las Vegas NV. That is the place where you will send the W-9. I have made a five figure income with them this year with no problems other then my patience waiting for articles I want to take on!

    Also I believe you can apply for and get an EIN number from the IRS which you can use instead of your SSN.

  • Sue December 29, 2009, 1:05 am

    To apply for an EIN, go to: http://www.irs.gov

    If you apply online, you can receive a number right away. If you phone them, apparently it takes a couple of weeks before they issue and send you a number.

    hth

  • Grandma December 29, 2009, 9:30 am

    Sue that is so funny! Thanks, I needed that laugh today. What a great statement about our government efficiency!

  • Tracey January 17, 2010, 2:03 pm

    I just wanted to take the time to thank you all so much. This blog post was a hugh help to me. I have been writing since elementary school, and I love it. Creative writing was always my favorite. I don’t really know how to get started with a professional career though. My life requires a full time job, with no time to play. When I found textbroker on the net, I was so excited. After submitting my first article, I felt like I was getting somewhere. When I found out that you have to send them your ss#, I felt let down. There was no way that I was going to send anyone my ss#. Nevertheless, I kept logging on. I have written 3 articles for them, and still was unsure about sending them the w-9 form. I love to write, and it was giving me a chance to brush the dust off my skills. Anyway, upon finding this blog my fears have subsided. I know now that I can send them the form, because they are a legitimate company. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart. You have givin me the chance to make some extra cash, and to polish my long buried skills.

  • CJ January 22, 2010, 7:47 pm

    Hello all, brand new with TB & I love it so far. I only had one negative experience, and that was on my very first article. It was on “Cheap Rugs”, and the instructions the client gave was that it was fine to add a little humor to my article. I don’t feel that i went over the top, so to speak, and thought it was well written. The client didn’t give me a chance to revise it, just told me release it back to the pool. I contacted TB about that, and asked what i had done wrong. They promptly emailed me back saying that the client has to give me the chance to make it right. (BTW the client even blacklisted me!) WTH?
    Anyway, i was told when that happens, if not given the chance to revise it, to shoot it back to the client & if they again refuse it, TB will dispute it with the client. How cool is that, huh?
    I have a question for you all. I noticed people keep referring to “CR”, and i see that on my rating page, but i can’t find out what that is exactly. Anyone care to clarify for me? Thank you all, and i have learned something from all of you.
    CJ

  • Crystal January 23, 2010, 9:07 am

    Hi CJ –

    CR means the customer left a rating on the article. To see it, just click on that article from your list on the statistics page and it will show up at the top.

    Welcome to TB. As for difficult clients, sorry you found one so soon!
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Quilt for a Cure – My Small Contribution =-.

  • Grandma January 23, 2010, 11:37 am

    That means that the client has rated your article. TB means that Textbroker’s editor has rated your article.

    If client blacklists you it means that for some reason they do not want you to ever write anything for them in the future. If you blacklist a client, for any reason you want, you will not be shown any of their future article requests and they cannot send you any direct orders.

    One alternative to blacklisting clients is to set your direct order rate very high, like 20.0. They will not send you anything! When you select an order, check out their refusal percentage before you take an order. This helps to weed out difficult clients and avoid possible rejections.

    Over a year and a half I have not found rejection to be a problem. About three clients have set me on their blacklist, out of hundreds of clients I have done articles for. Don’t take it personally, look at it as lucky that you will not have to deal with them in the future. Most clients are very reasonable. And yes, TB will stand up for their authors.

  • Grandma January 23, 2010, 11:39 am

    When I said set your direct order so high, I meant for that client specifically, not as your “everyone” direct order rate. You can do this by clicking on the client’s ID number and set a rate for just that one client. Set the general rate under your general personal data.

  • April January 29, 2010, 1:51 pm

    I decided to post something on here since there had been so few posts lately! 🙂 Well…I entered the new year as a full time freelancer. Of course, Textbroker is my primary source of income at the moment. I asked about being reviewed to be bumped up to a 5. They then rated 2 of my articles at a 5, but the next 2 at 4s…so I am not sure if that is a promising sign or not. As far as ecopywriters…they are legit and do pay. However, they are VERY slow. I am just now getting paid the first of next month for articles I wrote in the middle of December! It could be a better service if they could manage to speed things up a bit! Does anybody know how long Constant Content takes to evaluate articles and images? I just submitted an article there yesterday, and some photographs a few days ago. Hope everyone is well. Congrats on your new website Grandma!

  • Jenn January 29, 2010, 5:07 pm

    Constant Content can be very quick to approve articles (a few hours) or slow (a few days) depending on the incoming load. The editor Ed gives priority to requested articles before checking through unrequested ones.

    I write primarily for CC these days, slogging away for a private client.

  • Kim H January 29, 2010, 6:12 pm

    This is a new subject and I apologize if I’m breaking etiquette. I couldn’t find a way to ask a new question.

    Felicia, you are an invaluable resource to help freelancers sort through the slush-pile of opportunity and stay away from users and abusers.

    I signed up with the new AOL content funnel Seed.com. I’ve joined, according to them, 15,000 other writers. Has anyone had success there?

    Unlike Demand Studios, Textbroker, etc. if you claim a project, it remains out there for everyone else on the planet to claim and write at the same time. So basically, it appears they are soliciting submissions from potentially thousands of writers at the same time for one article.

    If you win, it’s like winning a state lottery.

    Is it worth the time and effort to say you wrote an article for AOL?

    • Felicia January 30, 2010, 7:46 am

      Kim, I’ve never written for AOL, but if the writing process is as you describe, it doesn’t sound like something I would be interested in.

      It’s pitting you against several other writers with the hope of your article being accepted. Doesn’t sound like a good investment of your time.

      Just my opinion.

  • April January 29, 2010, 7:26 pm

    Thanks Jenn! I have an article I wanted to submit to a requested order, but when I tried to submit it I was told that I needed to have at least one other article on my profile. I am hoping they will approve soon so that I can submit it to the buyer before the deadline!

  • Beth February 2, 2010, 2:21 pm

    I have a trilogy I wrote back when I was in high school and can’t seem to get it published. If doing this is the first step to that happening, I’m going to do it. Everyone who’s read the trilogy says it should be published. Back in 6th grade I wrote a short story for a picture from ‘Illustrations of Harris Burdick’ and I was called ‘the next Harriet Beecher Stowe’. I’ve never read ‘Uncle Tom’s Cabin’ so I’ve never known how to react to that.

  • Grandma February 3, 2010, 1:01 pm

    Is anyone else just dying out these days with Textbroker? I am having my absolute worst month ever! Barely cracked $150 for the last two week period and I am used to doing $400.

    Maybe I am being too picky. Many of the requests are out of line with what they want to pay.

  • April February 3, 2010, 9:36 pm

    Grandma,I just hit $150 myself. There were some good paying orders towards the middle of last month, but the pickings have been slim of late! I am hoping things pick up soon!

  • Jared February 7, 2010, 8:30 pm

    Felicia, I want to give you props on your website. I have been writing articles for shorttask.com for a few weeks. Tonight, I started to wonder why I was being offered 3.00 to write a 300+ word article on various subjects. I began to search different sites and I found your site.

    Your posts date back 1 1/2 years. Your first post explains that this site might be good for newbies but that you did not think you would use their service. How do you feel now? Would you still recommend this site for all people, newbies included?

    • Felicia February 8, 2010, 7:58 am

      Jared, there are some folks who make quite a bit with Textbroker. Just ask Grandma. I think the key is to get direct orders.

      That being said, I prefer not to write for them. I wrote one article way back in the beginning and never collected my pay because I never met the minimum payout.

  • Cynthia Neatherlin February 8, 2010, 2:33 pm

    Hi guys!

    Grandma, I soooo aspire to do as well as you. I started with TB on 1/20/10 and I have about 130.00 so far. A couple of clients have told me they will want me for DO’s, but so far they haven’t contacted me again. I know, I will have to be patient. NOT my strong suit.

    I am learning a lot, but my speed, and less than steller grammar is what slows me up. I did have one day that I did 6 articles-earning about 25.00. It was a huge day for me, but most of the time I can only manage to get 3 or 4 cranked out.

    I started with them at 3 stars, and I guess I am destined to forever remain there lol…I am getting a lot of “Excellents”, but TB hardly ever rates me above a 3. I’m not complaining, I just wish I could figure out the comma rules. It seems what I thought I knew about them, is incorrect now. Sometimes I think I should only use periods, and nothing else! But I love TB, and they are right on top of getting back to you when you have a question or an issue.

    Anyway, I just wanted to thank you all for your earlier advice and help. I didn’t mean to write a novel. How much do I get paid for this, hmmmm? (wink)

  • Jared February 8, 2010, 3:38 pm

    Felicia,

    Thank you for the quick response. In looking back at what I wrote last night, I think I should have been a little more specific with my question. Please let me rephrase that last question.

    What direction would you give someone looking to make extra money by writing on the internet? What sites do you recommend?

    Thank you once again.

    • Felicia February 9, 2010, 8:36 am

      Jared,

      Check out a few of the posts here and the NJFM database. I’ve got a little over 300 posts with recommendations and tips. Additionally, my readers also offer great insight and tips.

  • Kylie Lowen February 8, 2010, 6:32 pm

    I have seen lots of people on many sites say that no one can get more than a 2 star classification on their application. You are one of only 2 people who I have seen that got higher, and both were 3 stars.

    In case anyone was curious, you can get higher than that. I got a 4 (and nearly died of shock!).

  • Grandma February 9, 2010, 8:45 am

    Cynthia, hang in there! You will come along with time and experience. I landed my first radio station copywriter job while in college back in (way back in) 1971 and have been writing for money ever since.

    As for the TB commas, they recommend this website – http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/607/02/

    For keyword density checking, this is good: http://www.live-keyword-analysis.com/

    Avoid using commas when you can! Use short sentences rather than run ons.

    I was complaining a few days ago because I went a whole week with nothing. Then in the past two days I made about $180 from 9 or 10 articles. You never know! I choose not to do a bunch of them for various reasons. It seems impossible that there can be 600 articles listed and nothing that appeals to me. Mostly because either the instructions or demands are way too much for what the client wants to pay, or there is an attitude problem that is obvious.

    If you can knock out about 120 articles a month, you should do well. 4 a day. Even 1 a day should get you about $100. Fine for part time work.

    Direct orders seem to be the best way to earn. Maybe that is where some of the good stuff that I used to see up there went and why it isn’t there anymore. I have a few regulars and one I really enjoy working with for well over a year now.

    I would be very curious to know the gross annual income from TB of their top writers.

    I would love to find another site as good as TB. I love TB and hope they expand and continue to grow!

  • Serenity Kimball February 12, 2010, 1:08 pm

    I’ve been trying to jumpstart my freelancing career (after an English degree and a long hiatus raising some young ‘uns) and have been researching the best way to do so. I was about to try some of the bid sites but was hesitant because of the extremely low prices and the lack of clear expectations for most of the openings. I stumbled upon this thread yesterday and it gave me confidence in textbroker.com so I decided to give it a shot. I signed up without expecting much as the site indicated I would be put on a waiting list and be notified at some point in the future. I was pleasantly surprised to receive a confirmation email just 4 hours later informing me that my initial rating was a 4 and that I could begin writing immediately. I browsed the listings and have started work on my first piece (a longish piece–1000-1500 words that should pay me around $20 bucks)that I hope to finish this evening. Thanks for all of the great information! This will be my first paid work and I’m really excited about it. I do have one question though. Can you only sign up for one job at a time? I have up to 10 days to complete this longer piece and I was hoping I could also work on some smaller pieces simultaneously. The only screen I seem to be able to get to when I sign in is the submission screen for the piece I am currently working on. Just wondering if I’m missing something or if that is just their policy to ensure that writers follow through on their assignments.

  • Grandma February 13, 2010, 9:21 am

    Alas, only one at a time. If, however, you have Direct Orders from clients, you may work on any of those at the same time. You are allowed to work on one Open Order also while you are doing Direct Orders.

    It is good that they only allow one Open Order at a time. There are thousands of writers waiting for an article. To tie up several like you would want to do would be unfair to others. I totally understand why you might want to do so. It would also be unfair to the clients who want their articles quickly.

    When you select an article, consider how fast you can work it. Most writers will work as fast as possible and then go get another order right away. Just because the client gives you 10 days is not an indication that it should take that long to write; that is just a deadline for when they want the article back.

  • Cynthia February 13, 2010, 1:40 pm

    Hiya Serenity (Gosh i love that name)

    Yes, it would be awesome to grab about 3 at a time. I’m greedy like that lol..but the Grandma is, per usual, correct.
    Wow, you are brave. I am impressed that you are jumping right in there with a 1500 word art! I’ve been with TB for about a month and the biggest one I have done is a 600 piece. Now, you started out with a 4 star, while I am still stuck on a 3, so your skill level is above mine. How I hope to be there some day soon with you and Grandma and all the other pro’s. I can’t seem to get the comma thing down lol..
    You will love TB. Their cust. support is really on top of their game. Every ? I have ever asked is immediately answered in record time. I am getting faster, and more confident and just letting the bucks build up.
    Anyway, I just wanted to say hi, and wish you luck.

    Cynthia (Austin, Tx)

  • Crystal February 20, 2010, 11:02 am

    Just wanted to share a little about TB from the other side, as I’ve recently become a client in addition to being an author. I know there’s another post around here specific to writers hiring writers so I’ll post there as well when my experiment is complete and I have more time.

    For now, I’d just like to say briefly that my results have been mixed. My plan was to get a variety of writing styles and the same author managed to grab 5 of my 6 initial orders (they were short descriptions). I paid without question because the work met the criteria I had set but I was quite disappointed with the content I received.

    The next day, I posted the same 6 orders but with more specific instructions and a link to an example of the style I wanted. I also posted them at a level 3 rather than level 4. Again, a single author managed to write 5 of the 6 but this time they were very good.

    I was surprised by all this as I assumed posting at a level 4 would result in top quality writing. Not necessarily. Despite being at level 4, there were simple spelling and grammar errors that I’m sure the TB editors pointed out to the author. For my part, I rated the articles as acceptable beings there is content I can tweak and use somewhere, just not as is or where I originally intended.

    My experience on the other side has given me an appreciation for how difficult it can be to write instructions that produce the intended result. For all TB authors, I have the following advice:

    *Please, use spelling and grammar check before you submit.

    *Also, dig out the thesaurus – using the same word 3-4 times in a 50-75 word piece is never a good idea.

    *Finally, avoid the temptation to reach the maximum word count at the expense of quality content. Your initial order for a client is your chance to impress them. Take this opportunity seriously.
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Rugged Canyon Jewelry – Check it Out! =-.

    • Felicia February 20, 2010, 3:11 pm

      Thanks, Grandma for sharing your evaluation.

      It will be very helpful to other Textbroker writers.

  • Cynthia Neatherlin February 20, 2010, 4:49 pm

    Hi Crystal,

    Thank you so much for taking the time to post from the “other side” of the coin. It is very helpful to hear it from your prospective.

    The last part of your post especially helped me as I am guilty of maximizing the word count. Not everytime, especially if not very familiar with the subjet, but if I am, I usually can get pretty carried away.

    Question for you. If the client is nice enough to rate my art for them, I always shoot them a quick note thanking them, and if they have rated it an “excellent”, I will generally let them know I am available exclusively for them. When writers do this, do you find it too forward or tacky?

    Thanks for any insights and any other advice is most welcome.

    CJ

  • April February 20, 2010, 6:09 pm

    Crystal: I have had the exact same experience. A few months ago, I signed on as a client with TB. My original thought was that I could pay someone else to do some research that I could revise and use elsewhere. I have only placed a few orders. The majority of these were placed at a level 3, while a couple were placed at a 4. Out of all of them, I had one decent result that still required alot of polishing. This piece was by a level 3 author. The absolute worst experience I have had as a client was with a level 4 author. I placed an order for 500 words that was taken in just a couple of minutes. I left my desk for about 10 minutes and returned to find that the order had been completed already! After viewing it, it was one of the most horrible pieces of dribble I think I have read! It was simply written off the top of someone’s head with absolutely no research done. It barely even related to the topic! The spelling and grammar were, for the most part, correct. Maybe that is how this author was rated at a 4. After my experiences, I am wondering how some of the authors receive the rating they do. It almost makes me ashamed to still be rated at a 4! I did recently have 2 pieces rated by TB as 5s, but they then returned to the standard 4s. I want to throw in that I love TB and am not putting them down in any way. They have been a terrific resource and I love working with them! Knowing that other clients are likely receiving the same results does present an opportunity to receive Direct Orders by presenting them with quality, well researched work!

    Grandma: I went to your site just now…Pretty amazing! Great job! But…I didn’t see the ad for the chocolate? 🙂

    On another note, I recently have been placing some bids on GetaFreelancer. I am appalled at what the majority of clients on there are offering to pay! It is an insult to hard working freelancers! I have found a few decent paying jobs there, but very few!

  • Cynthia Neatherlin February 20, 2010, 7:08 pm

    Hello again. I have a question for anyone. I often notice that after completing an art, i will glance up to notice that the deadline is right around the time that i am turning it in. Since i have no idea what time zone the client is in, how do i know that i am turning it in on time? I guess if it is in the pool, then they will still except it? This is probably a stupid question, but that’s never stopped me before lol..
    One more thing. I would love to know if there are any free grammar/spell check sites that you all would recommend. I have a couple that i use, but have noticed that they often overlook errors. Should i go ahead and bite the bullet and pay for one?
    Thanks in advance for anyone’s thoughts on this.

  • Saurus February 20, 2010, 7:36 pm

    @Cynthia – It’s on time. When the deadline is passed, the article automatically is put back into the pool. You won’t be able to submit it.

    As for grammar site – http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/607/02/

  • Crystal February 20, 2010, 7:49 pm

    I’m glad my comment was helpful to you, CJ. It’s been a really interesting experience being on the client side of the fence.

    In answer to your question – Yes, send clients a brief note. When I particularly enjoyed an assignment, I’ve even sent notes to a couple of clients that didn’t leave me a rating. In my messages, I’m always brief and simply thank them for using TB and mention that I’m available for direct orders.

    I’ve only been at this since last July and didn’t get any direct orders during the first 3 months. Since that time, however, I’ve done DOs for 5 clients and have cultivated a couple of regulars – one that needs 6-8 orders each month and the other that will be placing 4 DOs each week from now on.

    Also CJ, if you haven’t done so already, create a nickname to replace the number assigned by TB. That way DO clients can easily remember and find you.

    April: I’m sorry to hear you had such poor luck with your orders. I’ve also considered paying for research but maybe it’s not such a great idea?

    Anyway, before placing my second batch of orders, I ran the instructions by a couple of people and then tweaked them for clarity and specificity. And I think the link to a sample of the desired writing style really helped, as well.

    Congratulations on your two 5 ratings! I’m just a consistent 4 but happy with that. Good point on substandard work providing opportunities for those who produce quality content. Maybe that’s why my DO clients love me? Hmm. And all this time I thought it was my witty personality.
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Rugged Canyon Jewelry – Check it Out! =-.

  • Crystal February 20, 2010, 8:00 pm

    In answer to your other questions, CJ –

    The TB system runs on Eastern time. It doesn’t matter where the client is or where you are. I do all my composing in Word and just put the order title and deadline at the top of each article, adjusting by 3 hours since I’m on Pacific time.

    Word of caution: NEVER let the deadline go by or the article will automatically return to the open order pool.

    As for grammar and spell check, I don’t know about any free ones – sorry. I just use what comes with Word.
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Rugged Canyon Jewelry – Check it Out! =-.

  • April February 20, 2010, 9:02 pm

    Hi Cynthia! The clock starts on an order as soon as you accept it. For example, if an order has a 1 day time frame, it will be due 24 hours from the time you accept it. Regardless of the time zone the client is in, the due date is according to the time zone on your computer. Some sites start the clock as soon as the client places the order, detering some writers from accepting it for fear of not having time to complete it. With TB however, you always know that you have at least a full day to research and write the article. Concerning grammar and spell checks,most standard spellchecks will find when a word has been mispelled. However, if you have inadvertantly placed a word that is spelled correctly but is not the word you intended, it is not likely to catch it. For example, if you write “pour” but mean “poor,” a spell check probably wont detect it. With grammar, the rules of the English language are so complex that no grammar check is likely to give 100% accuracy. I have found that alot of grammar checks will give suggestion s that are actually incorrect usage. The best thing to do is familiarize yourself with rules and always proof your piece even after running it through a standard check. There may be good spelling and grammar tools out there that you can purchase…I am not familiar with any myself. Anybody have one that they recommend?

  • Ignatius February 20, 2010, 11:08 pm

    Hi Cynthia,
    Openoffice.org has a free suite of office applications that you can download. It is similar to Microsoft Office. The word processor has spell check. I haven’t used the most recent version, so I’m not sure if the grammar checker is built in or if you have to add an extension. You might want to browse around their web site to see if the software would meet your needs. Be sure that your computer meets the system requirements.

    Free online email programs like Yahoo Mail and GMail also have spell checkers (but no grammar checkers). It is pretty easy to set up an account if you don’t already have one. You could just copy and paste your text into an email and spell check it. You can delete the email after you’re finished.

    And, by the way, April is absolutely correct. grammar checkers aren’t very sharp tools.

  • Cynthia Neatherlin February 21, 2010, 12:24 pm

    Thank you all so much for the help on the time zone thing. And yes, as soon as I accept an art I immediately do it right then.
    I did something REALLY stupid for the first time yesterday. Started researching the subject and got so wound up that I completed it in about 30 minutes. I went to copy/paste it in TB and saw that I never hit the “accept” button LOL. Of course it was gone by then. Erggggg! I wonder if I’m the only one that has ever done that. Had to share that with you all. It would be fun to hear about anyone else’s experiences also, although I’m pretty sure I’ve got the blond moment prize on that one.

    Yes, I have found that to be true also, regarding the spell ck’rs. I use word also and then run it through this free spell checker, called PaperRater, but as I mentioned, it doesn’t catch everything. I was mainly looking for the grammar checker, because of my problem with commas – I just have to work harder on that, right?

    Ignatius, April,Crystal,Saurus and Grandma, you guys are the best. Thank you for all of the advice!

    CJ

  • Saurus February 21, 2010, 1:24 pm

    @Cynthia – Actually I did that the other day too, and it was for a $21 article! I spent a good amount of time writing it and was discouraged for writing but luckily I saw whoever had taken it had dropped it and I scooped it up right away.

  • Crystal February 21, 2010, 2:19 pm

    Hey CJ – Don’t be too hard on yourself. TB changed the system a short while back and now that you can peek at the orders without actually going to the page that requires you to either accept or reject, I’ve done the same thing more than once – and I’m not blonde:)
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..What’s in a Name – the Birth of Rugged Canyon Jewelry =-.

  • Mandy Harris February 22, 2010, 9:20 am

    Hey there, fellow TB writers. The posts have been great and eye-opening. I’ve been writing for TB for about a year now. I’m writing at a level four rating.

    I was curious that TB gave someone a five star rating. According to their website and the response email that i received, five-star ratings must be requested. I just requested that I be considered for a five-star rating and was told that it is a process in which various editors take a look at my most recent pieces.

    What really amazes me is the output some of you are reporting. I take longer to write an article and I am trying to figure out where I need to speed it up. Are you selecting articles with topics you already know about? What is the average research time some of you are putting in? How long does it take for you to actually write the article and what are your ratings from the client?

    What kind of hours are you working? I have a busy family, so I don’t put in as many hours as I should. Though, I suspect we all have busy lives.

    Has anyone else struggled to write more hours and write more quickly? What did you do to make this happen?

    Thanks for all of your responses!

  • Grandma February 22, 2010, 12:37 pm

    First, the important stuff…April…LOL…the chocolate ad is on the last page of the website “Ordering”…yummy truffles! Also there is a link to my other website about green energy.

    I usually compose offline in Word because that is what is on this computer that belongs to my son-in-law. It has grammar checking and spell checking. I compose offline because quite a while ago I lost something while writing on TB. Then, I paste it into my Yahoo email and double spell check it there. I always (almost…LOL) reread the piece carefully to look for word errors. Missed one time when I did not reread and did not stick it into the email program and naturally there was a typo that went through. So makes me mad when I do that!!! I email the articles to myself at Hotmail and thus have two big batches of saved articles. Someday when I move to my own place again I will sort through them and put them into category folders just as a ready resource. I have about 2000 now so it will be a huge time taking job. I cannot reuse them but there is a lot of research there.

    Earlier I complained about the previous two weeks being so darn slow. This past two weeks were just the opposite and I had a record pay period. Got bombarded with DOs and there were a lot of category 5 articles to write for a change. Hope it keeps up, I need cash to move next month.

    A friend who was writing for TB one time had a 10,000 article in progress on the TB program when the website crashed totally. She lost it all. By the time the website was fixed, the deadline had passed. She lost the article back to the pool and was denied picking it up again. Another reason to write stuff offline.

    On the client side of things, clients may reject articles or ask for rewrites until they get what they want. Contacting TB is also an option for complaints. I would hope that all TB writers take their tasks seriously and do their best work at all times. Yeah, old fart work ethic!

  • Cynthia Neatherlin February 22, 2010, 1:34 pm

    Thx Crystal, I’m not really sure what color my hair is anymore lol..nope, I make double sure that I have excepted it b4 starting.

    Saurus! $21.00! Oh goodness, I’m so glad you were able to nab it back. That would’ve led to a huge drinking binge, or at the very least, massive amounts of pastry. I would’ve been crushed. Mine was only a 300 word art, so no biggie I guess. And who knows? I just know that someone, somewhere will need info on how to put on that perfect beach wedding!

    Mandy, I am probably one of the slower writers, so I am not the one to give useful advice, but on a really productive day and I’m in the zone, I can do about 6-7 articles, but some days it’s all I can do to slog through 2. Sometimes I’m all over it, and others, not so much. I’ve tried to adhere to a certain goal for the day, but I have found that if I try to push it, my writing is stilted and stale.

  • Mandy Harris February 22, 2010, 2:38 pm

    Thanks, Cynthia. The whole process really makes me think about my time.

    I don’t mind spending a little longer to compose articles if I am gaining the skills to help me climb out of the textbroker gig altogether.

    Two articles over a four hour period is good for me, including research.

    I think, when it comes down to it, it’s all about constantly revising how you go about it until you get it where you want it.

    I think a biggie for me has been making writing a priority over the many obligations that life throws my way. People like to see you in a certain light, filling a certain role. Somehow, “homemaker” translates into all the time in the world to chat on the phone, or sit around and talk, or do a million favors.

    Even right now, a few noses are bent out of shape because I have opted for writing at home over spending time with extended family.

    God, my husband, and kids are tops. Everyone else who wants a spot on my list just can’t understand what’s so important about the writing.

    The only thing I can do is just have the courage to not please everyone.

  • Grandma February 22, 2010, 3:07 pm

    Mandy, you will get better and faster. With time and experience everything should get easier. As for working at home, you have to set the limits. There is nothing in the world that says a person has to answer a phone call. I learned how to ignore that decades ago. Just tell them you have a work at home job with regular hours that you set and they will have to wait. You are lucky your family understands. Working at home is very difficult and it helps to cut off the distractions. Close the door and lock it if you must. Remember how much you are saving by not having to drive to an office, eat out, dress up and so on.

  • Crystal February 23, 2010, 10:27 am

    Mandy – If you don’t hear from TB on your 5-star request, DO NOT ask again. They have the request on file and keep it in mind over time when rating your articles. (Don’t ask me how I know.)

    As for speed, I also want to be faster. What I’ve found is that work expands to fill the space allotted. So I now try to give myself a set timeframe for each article. This is most effective when I also schedule the writing for the hours before the article is really due – nothing like a little extra motivation!

    I try to write on topics with which I am familiar but also accept orders that pique my interest or are on subjects that I’d like to learn more about. I usually receive excellent ratings from clients.

    As for hours worked, it varies greatly. I’m in the second half (barely!) and don’t have a day job or children at home so can usually write when I please. I tend to get lost in research, however, and must guard against allowing the writing to expand to fill whatever time I have available.
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..What’s in a Name – the Birth of Rugged Canyon Jewelry =-.

  • Mandy Harris February 23, 2010, 12:17 pm

    Grandma – thanks for the encouragement. I haven’t answered phone while working for awhile. I think it just takes time for some people to get used to it. I set a kitchen timer so that I work for length of time before I get up to do some small housework thing.

    Crystal – thanks, I’ll let the five star rating thing set and rest! I think for a lot of companies it really depends on how much work they have to go around. I never really see five star articles available very much. I guess I know where I have to attack the whole time management thing and it involves saying no more often. It’s tough but necessary, not only for my growth as a writer, but for my personal growth as well. When it comes down to it, it’s a very positive step.

  • Cynthia Neatherlin February 24, 2010, 4:51 pm

    Hi you wonderful gals! Well, I just had to report to you all that I am officially over the MOON! How it happened I will never know, but I think I must really attribute it to you all.

    Just now, I saw that I am finally at a 4 star rating! It took me 2 months but, Whoohoo! Me, the one who can’t seem to get the comma thang down. Wow, I’m estatic. Problem is, now I’m even more paranoid about getting the art’s even more perfect. Question. I just have to keep up the average, right? In other words, if I get three 4 stars and two 3 stars, it’s still going to average out to a 4, correct? But, I will be bumped back down to my original 3 star rating if my next 5 arts are more three star ratings than 4 stars? Sorry, for the confusion. In other words, every art I do from now on, i must consistantly have two 4 stars to every one 3 star, right?

    Hopefully you all get what I’m asking.

    Mandy, this is the first time I have ever been able to have a work at home job, and I’m sure it wouldn’t have happened if I hadn’t had to have surgery. Right after my surgery, I broke my ankle. I slipped and fell in the middle of the night over my dog who has taken to sleeping right by the toilet. I’m not exactly able to work out of the home right now, so I’m so thankful that I found TB. I was like you at first. I couldn’t run errends because of the cast, but I found that people called all day long, my family expected me to do all the housekeeping and cooking-even more than when I was working 50 hour days.

    My point is, I had to learn to say no also. They think that we are just here twidling out thumbs, but this is a real job. I intend to make the most out of it, and I am so thankful that you all are here to listen, comment, and just generally be there. There is no telling how many author’s that have been helped, that never even comment!

    A virtual hug to all the pro authors and clients that take the time to help us newbies.

    Thank you, and goodnight..lol

    Thx all in advance.
    CJ

    • Lisa March 26, 2010, 11:24 pm

      Why does it take so long to get to a 4 star, I have ten articles that have not been rated at all?

      When someone asked you to write a 300 word article with the words baby stroller in it; and baby stroller must only be used twice in the article. I assume that I can write about what I want as long as I mention baby stroller twice in the article, am I right or wrong? If the request is not specific enough than people may assume that is what the requester is saying. If I wanted an article strictly about baby strollers I would say that. With instructions like that, I may say I went walking in the park, and pushed my baby in his stroller. I received a comment on an article from a requestor; that my article was poor even though I wrote it per their instructions. They did not give me the opportunity to revise the article, they just commented: Poor.

  • Saurus February 25, 2010, 4:16 am

    @CJ – I believe if you are consistently being rated 3 stars, you will go back down to that rating, yes.

    I am having a fantastic pay period so far and it is only four days in. I’ve been busting my butt on the writing and made $170 as of this moment, with $80 of that being made today alone.. and a past client sent me a few direct orders worth $40 each. This is better than the $250 per payout I have been averaging lately.
    .-= Saurus´s last blog ..Unfortunately, Yes She Can =-.

    • Lisa March 26, 2010, 5:59 pm

      Wow! How did you manage to make $80.00 in one day? I do not think I could write that much, maybe I am just not that creative. That’s a lot of writing, I am new to Textbroker I have only made $26.00 and that was made in three days. I wonder if I could bump it up a bit and manage to make more? Have any tips for a newbie?

  • Mandy Harris February 25, 2010, 6:31 am

    CJ – Congratulation! Yes, it is *only* the average that you have to keep up the four star rating. I subscribe to grammar girl emails. Check her out, I bet she has some comma advice in her archives.

    Slowly, but surely, I am learning to say no. And, I am teaching my daughters the importance of saying no!

  • Crystal February 25, 2010, 9:27 am

    CJ – On your TB statistics page, which is under the assignments tab, is an box titled basis of evaluation that lists your most recent ratings by date and shows the calculation. Your rating is based on an average of your most recent 5 articles, so yes, you need to consistently have more 4s than 3s. Just pay attention to spelling and grammar, and avoid writing filler just to increase the word count, and you should be fine even if the commas are giving you trouble.
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..What’s in a Name – the Birth of Rugged Canyon Jewelry =-.

  • Cynthia Neatherlin February 25, 2010, 10:55 am

    Yes, I’m watching that little box religiously lol..thank you Crystal. And someone mentioned the word count thing earlier and I realized I am really guilty of trying to sqeeze out every little word.

    Mandy, I’m frantically googling grammar girl as we speak! Have a good one all.
    CJ

  • Christy February 26, 2010, 5:38 pm

    Hi Everyone. I just started with textbroker and have a question. Do we have to list references if it does not say to in the instructions? For instance, I wrote about pool covers so I looked up some information about them before I wrote the article. Sorry if this is a stupid question. I’m very very new to writing.

  • Jim February 28, 2010, 3:30 pm

    I have recently started writing for textbroker ad stumbled across this site. All of your comments have been extremely helpful and given me encouragement to work with textbroker.

    My question is this. As I read through the public offerings, I see several clients who start off with,”if you don’t do this right, we’re going to blacklist you”. I don’t know you about you, but when someone starts off with this kind of introduction, I head the other way.

    I’ve had reasonably good success with textbroker so far and will continue to use them, but I’ll sure stay away from anyone who is threatening.

    Any thoughts from experienced writers?

    Thanks,
    Jim

  • Mandy Harris March 1, 2010, 8:06 am

    Christy: There are no stupid questions! You don’t have to list references. But be careful not to plagiarize. I open up a notepad file and take notes. At the top of the notes, I copy the URL just in case I want to return to the site.

    Jim: As you work with TB, you’ll get a feel for which orders to avoid. I’d avoid the threatening posts. You can definitely read “between the lines” to get a feel for the client. I avoid descriptions that warn against plagiarism or mention previous bad experiences with TB writers. These people just seem uptight and angry. The pay may be low, but we should insist on being treated professionally.

  • Crystal March 1, 2010, 9:32 am

    Christy – Although I never accept articles that require citing references, I always keep that info references just in case. This has been helpful only a time or two but saved me a ton of time backtracking when a client questioned me about the number of worms to put in a new worm farm. Just sounded to him like that many would never fit!

    Jim – I agree with Mandy. My best advice is steer clear of those clients. No sense inviting trouble! Keep in mind that you can blacklist clients, as well, if you don’t want to waste time looking at their orders. I’ve done this twice when the instructions were ridiculous or the client difficult. Life is just too short to waste precious time being aggravated!
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Great Resource for Entrepreneurs! =-.

  • Grandma March 1, 2010, 10:21 am

    Jim, if you click on their client number you will see some data including their rejection rate. If it is anything above 0.00% watch out.

  • Christy March 1, 2010, 4:16 pm

    Thanks for the infomation! I just fishied my 5th article and waiting on feedback. So far just 1 feedback from client saying it was acceptable. Can’t wait to really get started. I’m SOOO slow. Need to spead up the research.

  • Jim March 2, 2010, 5:51 am

    Thanks for the comments everyone on TB blacklisting. I’ll absolutely avoid those offerings that seem to be headed for trouble.

    Grandma: Thanks for pointing out the rejection rate stat. I’ll check this every time now.

  • Crystal March 2, 2010, 9:33 am

    Another thing I do that I’ve found to be really helpful is keeping a spreadsheet (by client number)of all the orders I’ve written. I include the client number, client rating, client comments and article title, and also have a column for my own comments.

    For all the new people, I suggest you start this NOW. You may think that you’ll remember the details of each interaction but once you get to a certain number of articles, it all becomes a blur!

    This has helped me several times – both to avoid clients who seem to be a less than perfect fit for me and to cultivate DOs from clients who left positive comments previously but may not realize that I am the same author of other articles that they liked.
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Great Resource for Entrepreneurs! =-.

  • Cynthia Neatherlin March 2, 2010, 10:28 am

    Crystal,

    I do the same. In my Word Doc it goes like this:
    1st column is the date
    2nd the total paid for that art
    3rd is name of art
    4th is deadline
    5th is client ID,
    6th is A/R(Accepted,Revised),
    7th is Client Rating,
    8th is running $ total to date.

    I also have a second sheet where I keep a running total of Client Rating/TB Rating

    This works for me, I just have to be diligent about keeping up with it 😉

  • Cynthia Neatherlin March 2, 2010, 10:36 am

    BTW, did anyone make any bonus $$ this last weekend? I made a whopping $3.00 whoohoo lol..wish I hadn’t been so lazy.

    Does anyone know if this is a common thing that TB does? I’m thinking it’s only when they are flooded with extra work?

  • Saurus March 2, 2010, 12:14 pm

    I came thirty cents short of the bonus from reaching $45.. oh well. Better than nothing, I suppose.
    .-= Saurus´s last blog ..Unfortunately, Yes She Can =-.

  • Crystal March 2, 2010, 5:39 pm

    CJ – I started out with a system similar to what you’re using but it became too cumbersome to keep updated. So I simplified down to just the info that I want to know that TB doesn’t better track for me. As I’m most concerned with tracking client interactions, I start with the clients in numerical order and list subsequent articles for the same client under their single number. That way I can tell at a glance if I’ve worked for them previously. Having them in numerical order also allows me to find them easily.
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Another Great Resource for Entrepreneurs! =-.

  • Cynthia Neatherlin March 3, 2010, 8:05 am

    Crystal,

    Yep, that’s a great idea! I know I am doing a lot of duplicate work on my end, but I only have about 88 art’s at this point, so right now it’s easy to keep up my spreadsheet. I’ve always been accused of having too many lists and logs, and now you’ve given me an excuse to just make another one 🙂

  • Cynthia Neatherlin March 3, 2010, 8:20 am

    Hiya dear TB’s – I need advice from anyone please. I am writing an art on “taking bass guitar lessons.” I accepted the art, then contacted the client asking if it was suppossed to be for lessons online with DVD’s or face to face? He replied that it was indeed online lessons, but I am unsure on how to proceed. I know I should just write on the benefits of learning Bass online, but should I mention DVD’s or leave that out? Some online lessons are free and some are not..I should not mention price or how they learn online, right?

    Yes, I know I’m making this more difficult than it has to be.

    Thx in advance all!

  • Cathy March 8, 2010, 10:04 pm

    Hi Felicia,
    Stumbled somehow on your website while researching ways to work at home. I could not help but notice that one of your websites is visithudsonvalley.com. I am from Beacon. Lived there from 1968 through 2000. Moved to Northwest Ohio in April of 2000.
    I grew up at the foot of Mt. Beacon in the development then called Mt. Beacon Park. I miss the mountains and the river. Sure loved the Strawberry Festival every year!

  • Liz March 11, 2010, 2:34 pm

    I have been writing for TB for a couple of months so far but I have about 24 articles submitted, approved and paid for. I’ve always gotten a “4” rating and good comments from clients, but I haven’t once gotten a direct order. Anything I may be doing wrong? Maybe my articles are good as far as grammar, but not compelling enough for a DO? Also, has anyone reached the “5” rating yet? (It’s my personal goal to be a 5…even if it is just for a day!)

  • Crystal March 12, 2010, 11:32 am

    Hey Liz – Not to worry. I wrote for TB for about 3 months before receiving a DO – and then it was from a client for whom I wrote one of my first submissions. Now they’re a regular with 8-10 DOs per month.

    If you aren’t already doing so, when you’ve particularly enjoyed writing a specific order, send the client a brief message expressing interest in DOs. Other than that, just be patient.

    As for the 5 rating, look back through the comments above, particularly those posted by Grandma.
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Refocusing My Freelance Writing Efforts =-.

  • Grandma March 16, 2010, 12:24 pm

    You just never know! I get regular orders, but all of a sudden, today I am looking at 28 direct orders averaging about $10 each. Twenty are from one client. I am allocating about an hour to each over the next two days. Just thank the ones who rate your writing as excellent, tell them something interesting and that you would be happy to write more in the future.

    If you get a displeased comment, try asking them what specifically was the problem. You can salvage future assignments by showing interest in improvement. Sometimes their comments do not match their actual feelings. An acceptable rating means they are not all that happy with it. Good is okay, but excellent is the goal.

  • Cynthia Neatherlin March 16, 2010, 3:50 pm

    Hi Everyone!

    Well it finally happened. After 103 articles and 2 1/2 months with TB, I have a legitimate offer for DO work. But please, I need your help..any advice is urgently needed.

    He has asked me what my BULK rate is. Now, I have my DO listed at 1.6, but does he mean if I give a discount for bulk? Or should I just tell him that it is 1.6 per word, like normal?

    Crystal – I was reading over the comments in this blog again yesterday, and I’m so glad I did because I had missed something you had said about changing my Author# to a real nicname. I did so last night, and now have my first DO request. How funny, huh? Either that was a strange coinkedink or you know your stuff girl lol..

    Anyway, hopefully you all can chime in quickly so I may message him back! Whoohoo! Somebody wants me!

    TIAA

  • Leigh March 16, 2010, 4:30 pm

    I got approved with a 4 rating, but haven’t accepted anything yet due to the prices. I guess all the topics available in the 4 level aren’t of interest to me yet. Seeing as how most are approved at a 3, I’m guessing it will be a while before I’m a 5 🙂

  • Grandma March 16, 2010, 4:55 pm

    1.95 cents per word is the minimum that Textbroker allows. This is a minimum 1.5 for the author and an additional amount TB adds for their commission. There is no way to go lower, he must understand, it is TB policy.

    If you are set at 1.6, then he will be looking at 2.08 per word. You could move down to 1.5 which will be the minimum for him of 1.95 cents per word.

    Try setting your DO rate higher. Then you do have some room to go down a bit. By the way, whatever you have charged a client before will be their rate unless you change it prior to them submitting an order. You can change rate for future orders. You can set individual client rates by going into their client number screen.

    You probably would be advised to try to talk him into accepting your listed rate because you are worth it.

  • Cynthia Neatherlin March 16, 2010, 6:25 pm

    Thanks Grandma, I was hoping you’d be lurking around here lol..got it now. Tremendous help that was.

    Leigh – Yeah, it’s slim pickin’s right now in the 4 column. Lots of strange ones. I’m dipping into the 3 pool right now as filler work till something good comes in there. This is my sole source of income right now so I can’t refuse anything. Good luck to ya!

  • Crystal March 16, 2010, 9:36 pm

    Hey CJ – Congrats on the DO! Not sure if it was coincidental but having a nickname rather than a number will make you easy to remember and contact. Good luck!
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Choosing the Right Structure for Your Home-based Business =-.

  • Cynthia Neatherlin March 17, 2010, 4:55 pm

    GRANDMA or anybody else please chime in. I know you probably think you’ve taken me to raise, but i have no idea what to do about the client (refer to 5th post above) that asked me to do his DO’s for him. He agreed after I went down to 1.5 for him yesterday. NOW he sent this to me today. Please read:

    Hey Cynthia,
    I’m the marketing guy for some HVAC companies here in Maryland and Virginia. I’m outsourcing their content just to let you know, but I’m the owner of my own marketing/advertising company.

    Right now, I’m using Human Spinner to get multiple variations of your article. What would you charge for this, for example 2 – 3 variations of each sentence?
    Not sure of the rules here on textbroker.

    ***
    I looked up what Human Spinner is, and it charges apparantly 11 cents per sentence and 60 cents per paragraph. So, he wants me to be the human spinner? Isn’t that basically what I was going to do anyway, writing original articals on the same subject (HVAC)? I so do not get what he wants, expects, or even what I’m supposed to do or charge! Yikes.

  • Grandma March 17, 2010, 9:56 pm

    Cynthia, you are still restricted on DOs to the minimum rate no matter how many he assigns you. If he wants multiple versions, he can write up a DO for “3 versions of the same content times 300 words” for example, which would equal 900 words at the minimum rate. What he WANTS is a deal where he ends up with 3 articles of 300 words but only ends up paying for about 360 words.

    I hate spin articles because to me that is a writer rip-off. Only a few words are changed and the way most clients request it being done is like this.

    “HVAC is a (serious)(complicated)(important) job that should only be (attempted)(done)(performed) by a (qualified)(expert)(professional) technician.”

    You see, they pay for one article but then they do all the substitutions and get three (or more) articles from the same basic content. That is how Human Spinner can charge so little.

  • Grandma March 17, 2010, 9:59 pm

    Remember also that you can always contact the editors at TB and ask them for their opinion or the rules on anything. They will respond promptly.

  • Leigh March 17, 2010, 11:37 pm

    Does he realize about the minimum?? It sounds like he’s trying to get you to spin your own article for cheaper than it would be at Human Spinner (I haven’t done the math).

  • Cynthia Neatherlin March 18, 2010, 2:36 pm

    Right, in other words I’m out of my first DO job. I guess i’ll write him back and tell him I cannot go less than 1.5, against TB rules..blah blah. Sheesh!

    Thx all

  • Grandma March 18, 2010, 8:01 pm

    Cynthia, do not worry, you will get more eventually. Just keep briefly thanking everyone who rates you “excellent” for their kind comments and offer to do more should they need more.

    Tell “him” that TB rules are firm about DO pricing and he is already at the bottom level. He could send you a DO for a spin article, but then you would have to decide if you really want him to get that benefit. True, you would not have to write three different articles, but also true is that he would end up with three for one. All he would have to do is make the substitutions. You could tell him you prefer to not write “spin” set ups.

    I am sure there are plenty of writers at TB who would jump at the chance to write a spin set up article.

  • April March 19, 2010, 1:13 pm

    Cynthia–
    I have done 1 or 2 “spin” orders on TB. While it does kind of seem like you are cheating yourself out of getting paid for 3 complete articles, there is a trick to at least getting paid for all of the words. For example, if you spin as: {item|object|thing}, this registers as only 1 word. However, if you put a space between each word and the bar {item |object |thing} the client gets his spun version, and more importantly, you get paid for all the words you are writing. It does seem a bit unfair to the author, and I don’t make a practice of doing spin articles unless they are rather simple, but the client will find somebody to do it eventually. Many articles on the internet end up that way at some point. They may start out with our initial “seed” article and then pay someone else to spin it later down the line. This is an unfortunate aspect of the internet and really does cheat us as authors in many ways. So, if you don’t feel comfortable spinning your articles for this client, just cut your losses and move on. There are sure to be plenty of other DOs down the line. I was writing on TB for about 3 months before getting any DOs. Good luck!

  • April March 19, 2010, 1:35 pm

    Cynthia–
    🙂 I forgot to mention that if you do decide to spin an article, spin as many words as possible in the manner I mentioned so that you get the maximum amount of words. If the client is going to cheat the author out of articles, you can cheat him out of words…and simply coming up with synonyms is not all that difficult (especially with a thesaurus). Of course, you have to hope that he sets his maximum word count high enough for you to do this!

  • Cynthia March 20, 2010, 9:31 am

    Grandma and April, thx so much for all the helpful advice. What would I do without you all? May I have your email addy’s, so I don’t have to bother the whole board with my questions?

    Well, he disappeared after I wrote back saying I couldn’t do it for less than 1.5 POOF! Right after that someone who I’ve never even written for asked me if I can do an ebook for him, and what my rates are. ????? I googled it, but I’ve never done one, nor do I have the software for it. Man, is there something in the TB water right now?

    Off to write more. Thank God it’s payday!

    Happy writing you all 🙂

  • Saurus March 20, 2010, 10:24 am

    @Cynthia – Writing an ebook would be as simple as writing a regular article, just with proper headings for each section.

    As for software, if you were to go to openoffice.org and use their software (it is exactly like Word, but free), you can export the document to PDF, which is just what an ebook is.
    .-= Saurus´s last blog ..Oh, Canada. You’ve done it again. =-.

  • Kim H March 20, 2010, 6:15 pm

    Cynthia, you are not bothering the whole board. Keep the questions commin. Your insightful questions and the great answers help us all.

  • Crystal March 21, 2010, 12:17 pm

    I second Kim H. That’s the beauty of this blog – we all get to share and learn. So definitely keep the questions coming!
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Hypertension Basics – Who, Why and What? =-.

  • Frustrated with textbroker March 21, 2010, 5:19 pm

    It seems to me Textbroker does everything it can to hold your rating down. I am kept at a 2-star rating, which is just “legible”, for comma usage. They find one error per 300 words, and keep paying me worse than a customer service representative from India.

    I pretend to work, they pretend to pay me. But I bust my ass writing these articles. They want you to be a subscriber to x magazine, or have read x book, or do an hour of research for a “MUST BE PERFECTLY WRITTEN” article for seven-tenths of a cent a word. Give me a break.

  • Cynthia March 22, 2010, 8:11 am

    Hi frustrated.

    I don’t know if you’ve been with TB for only a short while, or if you’re an accomplished writer or whatever, but I feel I must address your comment of “I pretend to work, they pretend to pay me.” If you are pretending to work, could that possibly be part of the problem? Do you go to the pretend store and pretend to buy groceries? Come on now.

    Believe me, I felt your frustration. There are many posts in here from me ranting about the comma thing. I do feel your frustration. Just read above.

    I started out with a 3 star rating, and I didn’t think that I would ever get past that. In pretty much every rating from TB I would get chastised by them over that stupid comma. Either I had to many, too few, or the comma should’ve been a semi-colan.

    So I started coming in here, and the help that I got from these guys and gals was invaluable on how to improve. Read posts from Grandma, Leigh, April, Crystal, Sauras, and Kim. Mandy suggested Grammar Girl site that was very helpful for me.

    I know you probably think you know comma’s, as did I, but if you read every post in here concerning it, you’ll find that TB is a different breed of cat. They want you to go by the http://www.purdueowl.com comma style. You have probably had this suggested by TB already. Don’t ignore their suggestions. They want you to succeed too, I think. It was a couple of months before they put me up to a 4 star.

    What also helped me was the suggestion that I got in here was to add “and/or” instead of putting a comma, thereby avoiding the little devils as often as possible….lol

    If you are determined to do this, you have to let go of what you ‘think’ you know about commas, and really dig deep. Go to those comma sights, and write it down. Learn it and apply it. Write to TB. Their csr’s rock, and they will get back to you, usually within the hour.

    Proofread over and over, even after you’ve run it through spellchecker or whatever you use. Just don’t give up. Good stars will come, I promise.

  • Cynthia March 22, 2010, 8:23 am

    Thx Suarus. I’ll do that! Hated to let that ebook thing go. Grandma, you are my hero. Thank you for your help.

    Ok Kim, I’ll take you at your word and will keep ’em coming. Here is one for ya. I just accepted a 12 word art on patchwork quilts. They want one article written, then 2 more spun from that. So, 3 400 word arts altogether. They didn’t use the word spin in their directions/instructions.

    1) I put the first one with the title, then 2 more on the same page, with 2 other titles?

    2) Would you all just “spin” the original art? Or, should I do 2 more completely different takes on patchwork?

    I have written the client asking those questions but as you all know, sometimes they don’t get back to you until after it’s too late.

    TIA all. Gosh it’s good to know yall are here for us newbies.

  • April March 22, 2010, 10:01 am

    Cynthia–
    Since they aren’t specifically asking you to spin the article, I would write two different versions. Spinning may not take as much time, but the end result of the article is generally not of very good quality and often ends up sounding a bit off. If a client wants their article spun, so be it, but it really is not a good practice to get into for quality article writing.

    Frustrated with Textbroker–
    Sorry, but it sounds as though you aren’t really serious about writing and are only out for a little cash. If that is the attitude you take toward it, a “little” cash is probably all you are going to make. In actuality, Textbroker is much more lenient in giving an opportunity to new writers than many sites for authors. I have been having some luck with Constant Content. You will find they are extremely strict on the quality of writing they will accept. Check out Freelancer.com (formerly Get a Freelancer), and you will discover that TB actually pays much better than what some people are willing to pay. The majority of “cilients” there will only pay $1 for a 500 word article! Not only that, but at TB, it is pretty well guaranteed that your article will be accepted and you will receive payment as long as you follow the directions set by the client. Even if the client tries to reject it, as long as you have followed their directions, TB will fight for the author and insist payment. On some sites, you can submit an article, but there is no guarantee that it will sell. All in all, Textbroker provides an excellent opportunity for beginning writers and seasoned authors alike, as long as they are taking it seriously. I started out at a 3 and thought it was a little crazy to spend an hour or two of research on an article I was only getting a couple of dollars for…but if you prove yourself by taking time to research and write well, you will soon advance and even start getting Direct Orders eventually. Remember, you can set your own price there! I’m still striving to get to a 5 star, but Grandma is proof that quality writers can get there. If you are so frustrated with TB, try submitting a couple of articles to places like CC, and I think you will find that Textbroker is extremely lenient. I passed CC standards, but it was a little shaky at first until I took time to really look into their requirements. TB is a great place and a wonderful opportunity for those who are interested in putting time and effort into making an income. Stay with it and just keep polishing the articles you submit and you will raise up to a 3, 4 and even 5 soon! One thing to remember is that TB uses AP style, while other sites, such as CC, use MLA. The best thing to do with TB is to just try to avoid using commas at all! Keep with it Frustrated, and you will find TB can provide you with a decent income!

  • Crystal March 22, 2010, 10:43 am

    Cynthia – The ones I’ve done similar to what you describe, the client wanted 3 separate articles that presented the same info but with different wording. Seems like one also wanted the paragraphs to be able to completely stand-alone and also be interchangeable between articles. As for submission, I just pasted them in with the titles and 3 or 4 spaces between articles.

    Thanks for your encouragement to frustrated and the link to the comma usage info.
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Hypertension Basics – Who, Why and What? =-.

  • Crystal March 22, 2010, 10:55 am

    Cynthia – Please check your purdueowl link. The one in your post is wrong, I believe. Should it be .edu or ??? Thanks!
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Hypertension Basics – Who, Why and What? =-.

  • Cynthia March 22, 2010, 11:16 am

    Yes, you are both correct. Grasshoppa thanks you both lol..i love u guys!

    K, finally off to finish the first art of 3. Had major putor problems this morning, but did a system restore and now all is well.

    Thx again for the advice.

  • John March 23, 2010, 2:45 pm

    What a series of useful posts. I have learned more here in a 10 minute read than I have with 10 hours browsing elswhere.

    I have been turned down by DS and have been looking for something similar. Has anyone any ideas? I am based in the UK.
    Many Thanks
    John

  • Saurus March 26, 2010, 9:50 pm

    I managed to make a little over $100 in a day, but I got lucky; large articles of subjects I knew well.
    .-= Saurus´s last blog ..American Health Care Reform Bill Passes =-.

  • Lisa March 26, 2010, 11:10 pm

    I wonder why TextBroker only pays once a month?

    • Crystal March 27, 2010, 11:13 am

      Textbroker pays twice each month. Copied from TB FAQs:

      Requests made by the 5th of the month will be processed at the latest on the 10th of the month. Requests made by the 20th will be processed at the latest by the 25th. We try to process payments as quickly as possible and usually pay on the 6th and the 21st, respectively. For this reason, we cannot accept late payment requests.
      .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Care to Make Homemade Bread? =-.

  • Grandma March 27, 2010, 10:31 am

    Hi Lisa. First, TB pays twice a month. Request payments before midnight Eastern time on the 5th and the 20th of each month. Your payment usually is in PayPay the next day, although it may take a few days longer.

    Second, on your question about getting a poor comment from a client. You can contact TB, give them the client number and title of the article and ask them why the client may not have liked it if you cannot get an answer from the client. Perhaps TB has not done the review of your article yet. If not, they will make a comment. You can still ask them.

    Third, go back and read all the “Author” information, including the FAQ section. That should answer all your questions.

    If you still have questions, go to their Blog and look up the post about “Behind the Emerald Curtain” – it explains a lot about how the editors work.

    Your batch of articles may take a few days to get rated by TB. They will all come in at once most of the time. They cannot rate your articles until after the client accepts an article. This is all in that Emerald Curtain blog post. Read also all the comments. When I reviewed it again last night there were about 45.

  • Crystal March 27, 2010, 11:47 am

    Lisa – You may want to be careful about hitting reply to a comment rather than leaving a fresh comment when you have a question. I see that Grandma has answered (thanks, Grandma!) and I have nothing to add but I would not have even known you had asked were I not a subscriber to this specific thread beings your question appears as a reply to a comment on a previous page.
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..Care to Make Homemade Bread? =-.

    • Felicia March 27, 2010, 11:54 am

      Crystal, I see what you mean. For this post especially, having nested answers doesn’t seem to work well.

      I happen to like the reply feature, but it isn’t practical for this thread. I’ll do some fiddling behind the scenes to disable it. Thanks for troubleshooting for me.

      UPDATE: I disabled the feature. We’ll see how it goes.

  • Ignatius March 27, 2010, 1:02 pm

    Hi Lisa,
    I don’t know anything about your specific order on “baby stroller,” but I think many (if not most) of the people who are buying articles from Textbroker are looking for articles about the topic they list for SEO (search engine optimization) purposes.

    Google gives out some information about what will get a good ranking from them. However, a lot of other details in SEO theories come from experimentation and speculation. One thing that is debated is the optimal number of times a keyword should be mentioned per hundred words. Too many mentions and the article can be downgraded for keyword “stuffing.” Too few mentions and the article won’t be recognized as related to the right keywords. I think your buyer was a believer that the keywords shouldn’t exceed one percent of the content. So, if your 300 word max article came in at 298, he was still safe at two mentions.

    If you write an article that directly focuses on a topic, you end up including a lot of words that Google sees as related to that subject. That will help the article to rank higher. If you write a general article and just drop in the keywords a couple of times, Google won’t see related words and the two mentions of “baby stroller” won’t be enough to help the article rank for that term.

    So, if you talked about stroller brakes, shades, patterns, telescoping handles, safety features, cushions, etc. those words would be related. If you talk about a walk in the park you might end up with sunlight, trees and other totally unrelated words.

    Hope this helps a little. And, Grandma is a Textbroker rock star, so if she says there is reading you should do in their FAQs, etc., I would recommend that you check it out :).

  • Lisa March 28, 2010, 4:46 pm

    Thanks for the info; I do have a lot to learn about TextBroker. But I do have a questions to ask though, if anyone can help me out. I told a friend about textbroker and she signed up. She said she pushed the payout button not meaning to. What she wanted to know she will get paid on the next pay period; which is 5-10. If she puts in for another payout will she receive both of them at the same time? Or will she receive one payout in one pay period and the other payout the next pay period?

  • Grandma March 29, 2010, 8:48 am

    Yes, you can have multiple payouts within a pay period. The next payment date is April 5, then April 20, then May 5, etc. They do prefer and request that you only take one or two payouts per period. I guess it is more work for them. Do not take a payout every time you write something!

    The payments will show up in PayPal shortly after the payment date of 5th and 20th of the month. Be sure your PayPal payment email address is correct or the payment will not go through and TB charges a fee, I think, for that type of error.

    You can request a payout up until midnight Eastern time on the 5th and the 20th and still get that pay in that period. If you request a payout on the 6th of the month, it will come through on the 20th pay date.

    All this information is on the TB website, just go read it all until you understand it. Also, read their blog. You can find the link at the bottom of the landing page. There are many good discussions and questions answered there. TB is your best resource for correct answers to questions, but they do expect you to read all their information first.

  • April March 29, 2010, 10:07 am

    Lisa:

    If your friend just hit the Pay Out button at the top it won’t do anything. Hitting that button takes you to a screen that shows how much you have made, previous payments, and another button that reads “request payment.” Unless she hit the request payment button, it doesn’t matter that she hit pay out.

    John:

    I wouldn’t worry much about being turned down by DS. I have been turned down by them twice, yet am doing fairly well on Constant Content, whose standards are said to be much higher than DS…go figure. As far as sites you might find being based in the UK, you might try Constant Content, make sure you read all of their guidelines and look into the forums before submitting. They have a “3 Strikes and You’re Out” rule. I think this rule is relaxed a bit once you have a few articles accepted, but I think many get banned from the site early because they haven’t taken the time to read through everything and fully proof and edit their work before submitting. Unlike TB though, it is not steady and reliable income (at least not until you have alot of articles up for sale). You might also try some of the profit sharing sites like eHow, HubPages, etc. Freelancer.com is open to all countries but clients usually ask ridiculously low payments…but once in a while you may luck into something decent. Felicia has alot of opportunities listed within her blog here. Go to the top of this page click on “opportunities.”

    Good Luck!

  • graesea April 2, 2010, 4:08 am

    Has anyone else noticed anything strange about some of the textbroker articles? In the last hour or so I’ve found two articles that were listed in different levels but paid the same! One was listed as a level 1 and as a level 4; the other a level 1 and a level 5.

    I don’t generally check the pay rates against each other – that’s what insomnia will do for you. But it really doesn’t seem right.

  • Crystal April 2, 2010, 8:06 am

    graesea – I don’t quite understand what you mean. Are you seeing identical articles at different levels? Are they for the same word count? Or perhaps they’re for different word counts that equal the same total amount for the articles? Also, there is no level 1 – only 2-5. Please elaborate.
    .-= Crystal´s last blog ..40th Anniversary of Earth Day – April 22, 2010 =-.

  • Cynthia April 2, 2010, 9:25 am

    Talk about strange..the TB editor’s comments and cat pics were precious. They were too funny in honor of April Fool’s Day, I guess.

    I got bumped down to a 3 two weeks ago, then went back up to a 4 yesterday. It’s those damn commas and semi-colons. I think I have it down one day, then I don’t the next. I’ve studied Purdue, etc. I have like 4 sites for them saved in my fav’s.

    I know I’m not a stupid person, just so frustrated with myself. I thought I had it down with the rule: If you can end the first part of the sentence with a period, and start the next with a capital letter, then use a semi-colon..turns out, that’s not always the case either. Guys, if anyone can give any kind of insight, plz email me.

    neatherlincj@yahoo[dot]com. I’m so glad you all are here.

    Have a beautiful Easter e’one.

  • Grandma April 2, 2010, 10:23 am

    Thanks for the tip about the cats, that is cute. Usually they tell us when they update their blog.

    Sometimes I think people sign up for a high paying article and then relist it at a lower rate as a client to get someone else to write it. But then in thinking realistically that would not do at all because you can only sign up for one article at a time, so what would be the advantage? Unless a person is extremely lazy.

  • Mandy April 2, 2010, 12:17 pm

    Cynthia: You’re not at all stupid! Semi-colons are used for sentences that are complete thoughts on their own, but closely related.

    For example: “You may be able to find the instructions for unlocking your current phone with an online search; otherwise, you will have to purchase a second GSM phone that is unlocked. ”

    This sentence is part of an article that I wrote for TB. It may be hard to understand without the full text. But, essentially, a semi-colon is used to emphasize the relationship between two sentences. Most often, it is most effective when the relationship is cause and effect, as in the above: if you don’t find the instructions for unlocking your phone (for international travel), then you will have to purchase a new phone.

    When used appropriately, semicolons add interest to your sentence structure. In the above example, a comma would have created a run-on sentence. A conjunction such as “and” simply would not have worked. Note, though, that a period would have been perfectly acceptable. A semi-colon adds emphasis, and, in my mind, makes the piece flow better. Your mind sees the semi-colon and recognizes that the next sentence is closely related.

    Hope that helps! Just a note, semi-colons just don’t appear often, so don’t overuse them.

    Although I know the rules for commas, I tend to add or omit them when I think they interfere with the flow of the reading. I think Grammar Girl has a post that explains that its acceptable to manipulate commas for that reason. All the same, TB burns me every time I do so! 🙂

  • Leigh April 2, 2010, 1:05 pm

    Semi-colons are not used to break up two sentences. That’s what periods are for. I myself look at a semi-colon as a way to avoid a run-on sentence (and run-on does NOT mean long!).
    .-= Leigh´s last blog ..Win a FURminator! =-.

  • Lisa April 2, 2010, 5:01 pm

    Don’t feel bad I was told to study semi-colons as well. I had an article rejected because of the same thing. And I had always been told that I was a great writer, what a blow.

  • Mandy April 3, 2010, 8:17 am

    The link below explains semi-colons very well and in a light-hearted way. And Lisa is right, don’t feel bad. We all have grammar things we don’t know well – I still avoid the words lie and lay.

    http://theoatmeal.com/comics/semicolon

  • Grandma April 5, 2010, 9:39 pm

    There are over 1,000 articles waiting on general topics under the Miscellaneous category today. They are all about $5 each and should be very simple to do. Write furiously…LOL…I am!

  • Grandma April 7, 2010, 4:13 pm

    My goodness, TB writers whittled down that 1,000 plus group of articles to just under 700 as of a half hour ago, but now all of a sudden there are less than 100 showing. Wonder what happened? My guess is whoever placed that huge bulk order got swamped with 500 completed articles and canceled the balance temporarily. I have never seen any client place such a large order. It was fun while it lasted. Oh darn, NOW I can take a nap and catch up on my DVR’d shows!

  • Lisa April 7, 2010, 11:21 pm

    I just received my first pay from Textbroker.

  • April April 8, 2010, 6:21 pm

    YAY!!! I just now (FINALLY) got an email from TB stating that I have been raised to a 5 Star author!!! Whew…I was about to give up on that idea and decide it was impossible! Now if there would just be some 5 star orders! I was hoping to tackel those 1000 under Misc. at 4, but have a group of Direct Orders that have to take priority…and of course, the pile has been whittled down quickly by other TB writers and part of them taken off by the client. My guess is the client either decided not to place so many at once or found a couple of authors to give DOs to. I am excited to finally be at a 5…can’t wait to write my first article at that rate! I just wish there would be more 5 orders placed once in awhile. Maybe when I am done with this group of DOs some will show up. For those striving for a 5 star, keep writing…it took me a year to get there. Actually, it was exactly a year, as I found TB at the end of last March.

  • Grandma April 9, 2010, 11:50 am

    Congratulations to Lisa and April.

    The 1000 orders are back under category 4 miscellaneous. They are all 320-360 words for about $5 each on a plethora of topics. The writer can pretty much just write whatever they want about the topic. Pretty easy stuff…blog entries.

  • April April 9, 2010, 12:44 pm

    Thanks Grandma! I noticed the orders pop back up this morning, and even saw a couple of 5 star orders pop up…just under categories I know next to nothing about (auto and technology) so let them go. I want to make sure my first 5 article is on something I know a little about and will enjoy writing! I still have about 8 DOs to finish before I can dive into the pile of misc orders. On another note…ironically, I was pre-approved to DS through their recent e-how transition…after being rejected 2 weeks ago (see above post dated sometime at the end of March). Not sure about DS, but I am excited to give them a try soon as well!

  • Grandma April 10, 2010, 9:14 am

    April, with the category 5 orders, be sure they are perfect. It always helps if you know a bit about the topic to start. Double and triple proofread those before submitting them. Watch out for other little things also, like using the same word too frequently. If you read the article aloud to yourself, you can catch some of these. Just take your time, they are worth it.

  • Lisa April 10, 2010, 9:50 am

    People can be so picky about articles; I know that if it’s not what you want than they should send it back for revisions. But they should be more specific to begin with then they would not have to send the article back. This would save us more time rewriting it and them time as well. I even thought about not doing revisions; if the person wants the article than that is fine and if they don’t that’s fine too. If they are going to be so picky than maybe they should consider paying more for the article.

  • April April 10, 2010, 10:42 am

    Lisa,
    I understand your frustrations. I have been pretty frustrated with some of the revision requests I have received. However, after creating a client account and placing some orders out of curiosity, I can also understand client’s frustration much better. It is obvious that some of the authors on TB aren’t really interested in writing and are simply out to make a few bucks. I agree…the client gets what they pay for. If they want high quality articles they need to pay for them. I have to admit I have been tempted to tell 1 client I wrote for as much! I had about decided it just wasn’t worth spending so much time researching and writing for such little pay and was spending time seeking out other venues…then TB raised me to a 5…which is worth my time! 🙂 Try not to get frustrated and keep doing what you know you do best! 🙂

    Grandma,
    Thanks for the advice! I had something strange happen yesterday…I received a DO from a client I have never worked with. I looked through all of my past completed orders (Direct and Open) and didn’t find anything I have ever done for this client. I had raised my DO rate slightly, and it is at this rate, so I know I have never done a DO for them. Perhaps they just went to the author pool and drew my name out of a hat? I also vaquely wondered if TB sort of “tests” their new 5s by sending them a DO themselves…I kind of doubt this, but you never know.

  • Cynthia April 10, 2010, 11:11 am

    Hiya Guys, its been awhile…

    I wanted to thank you all for all the helpful advice with comma/semi-colons. I’ve been studying my head off, and finally reclaimed my 4 star.

    I started one of those 1000 arts (on quality assurance) that you were talking about April, and got stuck on about the 700th word lol..considered throwing it back but found fresh inspiration this morning, whew.

    I went over to constant-content to check it out. I’ve been lurking in their forums for quite some time, and finally got the nerve to submit something about a week ago. Mercy, there are some top-notch writers over there. I turned in an article and it got rejected (you guessed it…stupid colons). They give you a chance to re-submit it, but if you get 3 rejections at any given time you are bounced off the island. Scared to re-submit it now lol…those guys make killer cash tho.

    Any thoughts?

  • Mandy April 10, 2010, 11:52 am

    Good job, Cynthia! You obviously can write the content to earn 4 stars. Kudos on your determination to conquer semi-colons!

    I just learned an important TB lesson: always check the rejection rate for the client you are about to write for. Stay away from percentages that are drastically higher than the others.

    April, those DOs are from clients who spot a great deal: a five star writer at a great DO price. Don’t forget to set your DO price accordingly for your new rating.

  • Grandma April 10, 2010, 11:58 am

    April, that is not unusual. When you applied to TB, you indicated some areas of expertise (hopefully you did) and the clients can pull up potential DO authors by those areas. You can add to that list or change it under your personal data tab.

    Work in some open orders while you are doing the DOs, but watch your deadlines too. There is a bonus week going on until Friday but only open orders will count toward the bonus cash.

  • April April 10, 2010, 12:02 pm

    Cynthia,
    When it comes to semicolons, I never did really understand them so I simply avoid them altogether! 🙂 Don’t be afraid to resubmit it after you have done some very close proofing and revision. As you have probably read in the forums, the “3 strikes and your out” rule at CC primarily exists to weed out authors who just refuse to take constructive criticism and revise accordingly. Yes…be careful and proof, proof, proof, and proof again! Also, when Ed reviews a piece, he stops with the first mistake he finds…so there may be more than just what is mentioned! I had some problems in the begining and think I barely missed getting my account suspended, but after the first few articles, it gets much easier. Once you have proven yourself, the rule is relaxed a bit I think…though you should never relax your writing! In total, I have had more than 3 rejections total. However, if I receive a 2nd rejection on the same article, I put the article aside for another day and work on something else. I’m not sure what happens when you get 3 rejections on the same article…that may be where the rule applies most. It is definitly worth it. The only downfall is that you are simply putting your work up for sale against 100s of other authors. There is no guarantee that it will be purchased. That is one thing I love about TB…you pretty much know that your article will be accepted and purchased! I think I have seen you in the forums over there…have you posted anything? Since this blog is about TB, I will talk to you over there if I can find you!

  • Lisa April 10, 2010, 12:03 pm

    April,

    Thanks, I just feel that if the person requesting the article would be more specific about what they want to begin with than they would not have to send it back for revisions. I accepted an article for rooster décor, and so I wrote about decorating your kitchen with roosters. They told me to rewrite the article; come on what can you say about rooster décor? Don’t get me wrong I do not mean to sound so lazy that I do not want to revise an article. The entire request only stated to write a 300 word article about rooster décor, nothing specific. I contacted TB and asked why don’t some people that request an article be more specific about what they want? They said that they try to encourage people to say exactly what they want in the article. This way I could be working on another article instead of revising an article. And then you have people that are too specific which is good at least they are letting you know up front what they want.

  • Leigh April 10, 2010, 4:15 pm

    When they ask for a rewrite, how do we know that they aren’t copying that article and then asking for a rewrite so that they can have two articles?
    .-= Leigh´s last blog ..Win a FURminator! =-.

  • Cynthia April 10, 2010, 4:59 pm

    Thx Mandy…it takes a village with me I sometimes think lol.

    April, I did talk to you I think last week in CC’s forum. I was sweating my first article because I had submitted it without a final summary, and you helped me to understand that I was taking that part of it perhaps too literally. Thank you for your advice!

    Yes, Ed w/CC cited a couple of fragmented sentences, even going as far as reworking one of the sentence structures as an example for me. How nice was that, huh? I’m just very intimidated as I have never been published with my own byline or anything. It would be great to become a part of CC, just wish I had a proofreader before I turn it back into him. In the meantime tho, I am sticking with TB. They are guaranteed money in the bank, and I’m def going to take advantage of the bonus week.

    Leigh – Good question, and one that I’ve often asked myself. I’m not sure that I would ever do a COMPLETE re-write for that very reason. Revisions are fine, but I’ve never been told to re-vamp the whole thing…and I believe most people would’ve probably done the same thing with rooster decor. The kitchen is the most practical place to have them. I bet TB tells the client that they must accept the article as they were too vague in their discription, and you followed their instruction, as you understood it.

  • Kim H April 10, 2010, 6:03 pm

    Watch that “then” and “than” thing. It does set the professional writers apart. Little nuances make a difference.

  • April April 10, 2010, 6:48 pm

    Lisa: Yes…that is pretty vague. I would have written about decorating a kitchen as well. Did the client say why they wanted it rewritten? I’m with Leigh…I always wonder if they end up getting 2 arts for the price of 1. However, if they send back 1 for a revision, TB does not give them the copyright to that 1st version, so you could technically make them take the article off their site if you found it somewhere later. You would want to go through support at TB if that ever happened though. I had a client try to reject an article of mine back when I had first started and TB made him take it because it was what he had asked for. When I realized how much TB stands up for their writers I knew it was a great place to work!

    Mandy: Thanks! I thought that might be what it was. However, my DO rate is set a bit higher than the default as I went in and changed it just hours before receiving the order. I know some of the other 5s keep theirs at the default. I went back in and raised it a bit again today though. It’s nice to have DO clients when TB is slow, but I kind of like choosing what orders I want to write also.

    Cynthia: Let me know how it goes at CC! I thought that may have been you I talked to!

    Grandma: I figured a bonus week would be coming up soon with all the orders! I just hope I can manage to fit in a few!

  • Mandy April 10, 2010, 7:40 pm

    Does anyone know what happens if I refuse to revise an order? I’d like to just hit cancel and send it back to the open order pool.

    I know I won’t get paid for it. But I don’t want to affect me negatively.

    It’s a 5-star order of 385 words. I feel it is well written to the customer’s specs.

    I feel the copy is solid. I am noticing a pattern, esp. with these 5-star orders. If the person placing the order is the owner of the business rather than a web developer, then they have a lot of emotional investment in this copy. They are not very plain about what they want.

    I just want to cancel the whole thing and not hassle it. But I don’t want any negative repercussions from TB. Does anyone know how this works?

  • Lisa April 11, 2010, 8:40 am

    Mandy,

    Nothing happens if you refuse to revise and order it just goes back in the pool for someone else to write. I have refused to revise an article, and it does not affect your rating either.

  • Lisa April 11, 2010, 8:50 am

    April,

    The person requesting the article did not indicate what they wanted to begin with. It only stated to write a 300 word article about rooster decor. When I received the revision request they were not specific about that either. I just clicked the cancel I was not going to rewrite the article if they could not be more specific about what they wanted.

  • Cynthia April 11, 2010, 11:30 am

    When I get a request for a revision (and it’s nothing like what they asked for, or it’s still little to no direction, I hit cancel and chuck it back. Out of 160 orders that has not happened very often, thank goodness. But I always write the client back and tell them that I feel that another author can better benefit them. Then I blacklist them so I don’t have to see their orders again.

    Does anyone remember about a week ago, the orders for children’s poems? 50-70 word arts? I whipped out a couple of those and she wanted me to revise them. Now, I had written them exactly per her instruction. They both took me about 5 minutes each. I threw them back. I’m glad there aren’t too many like her.

  • April April 11, 2010, 2:28 pm

    Cynthia:
    If you want me to proof your article for you before you submit it to CC again, I’d be happy to look at it…though I don’t promise that I will catch any mistakes if they are there! I completely understand if you would rather have it proofed by someone you know! You can try sending it to me at CC, though I am not sure that you will be able to as I think new authors can’t use the message system until they have at least 1 article accepted. If you can’t, I give Felicia permission to send you my e-mail address!

    I accepted a 5 article off the board today…just a short 300 or so article about ordering contacts online. Should be fairly simple…gotta go write it now!

  • Cynthia April 12, 2010, 8:10 am

    Yessss please! Thank you! That would be wonderful. Thats my problem! I don’t have a soul to show it to.

  • April April 12, 2010, 9:33 am

    I have a question for anyone who may be able to help me out. I noticed a couple of orders that I would have loved to write…except they asked for photographs. Does anyone know if photos would have to be your own or if they can be taken from somewhere like istockphotos? Also, does TB even support photos embedded into an article?

  • Mandy April 12, 2010, 10:53 am

    April – I’d go for the free photos online. The client may have a different idea. But if it is not explicit, I go with the assumption that best suits me.

    I had to send screen shots to a client before. The TB admin staff sent me this email verbatim: “You can get images to the client either by e-mailing them to us at this address or by sharing them on a file-sharing site.”

    The address was the reply address from support email. If you go that route, just send an email via the TB support page and they will respond with the address to send the pics to.

  • April April 12, 2010, 11:41 am

    Mandy: The client did specify that the pics should not have any copyrights…I assume free photos would be ok. I have never used photos in an article before. Anyway, I let those pass. I imagine there will be others posted in the future like that though. I ended up taking one at a 5 for refrigerated truck alternatives. I think I saw this one up before, so someone may have thrown it back. I may end up doing the same once I look at it a little more closely! Thanks for the info!

  • Lisa April 14, 2010, 11:37 pm

    How long does it usually take someone to start getting DO articles? Is there any techniques as to how to start receiving them? Do you just have to sit back and if you get one you get you, and if you don’t you don’t ?

  • April April 15, 2010, 7:49 am

    Lisa: You can just wait and hope a client sends you a DO. This was what I did when I started with TB. It never dawned on me to communicate with customers. I did get a couple of DOs this way after a couple of months, but sending a client a short thank you message after they have accepted and rated your piece is much more effective! If I receive a good, excellent or even no rating, I thank them for the rating (or just for accepting the article) and mention that I am available for DOs for any future work they may have. If you have your DO rate set much above your Open Order rate, this may scare clients off a bit too. On the other hand, some clients are willing to pay more for the security of knowing they will get quality work. At least until you build up a large enough clientel, it is probably best to keep the rate at the default of 1.5. If you raise it later, clients you have previously worked with will stay at the original rate. You will have to manually go in and change their rate…but you want to be sure and let them know you are doing it! There is a whole section on TB’s blog page dedicated to landing DO clients. You should explore the blogs…there is alot of good advice in there. Another thing you might want to do is change your nickname from the # you are assigned by TB to something easily recognizable and unique.

  • Lisa April 15, 2010, 8:17 am

    April,

    Thanks for the advice.

  • Saurus April 16, 2010, 5:45 pm

    Did anybody else make the $60 bonus this week? I made it by really cracking down on those miscellaneous articles.
    .-= Saurus´s last blog ..Red Dead Redemption Has Difficulty Levels =-.

  • April April 16, 2010, 6:15 pm

    Congrats Saurus! I’ll only hit the $13.50 bonus. I had a group of DOs that required attention as well, so didn’t have the time I would have liked to devote to open orders. Maybe next time…:-)

  • Grandma April 16, 2010, 8:35 pm

    Grandma succeeded wildly this month. Got the $60 and am looking at pushing over 2 grand for the month, an all time first. It can be done. Balance that against an all time low of only a few hundred a month or two ago. I stlil have my doubts about sustaining a high income doing this.

    For direct orders, try setting your rate at 5 cents per word. That will be the same as the client would pay for a category 5 article, so it is not asking too much. You can always drop down if there is a request from a client. Makes a huge difference. Oh, it is possible to get a lot more than that in some cases.

    This was a very interesting bonus period with thousands of decent orders.

  • Lisa April 16, 2010, 11:10 pm

    I made a big $1.50 in bonuses this week I have been packing getting ready to move. I have been too tired to even log on the internet, but I wanted to make more. Maybe if TB ever offers bonuses again I can get lucky.

  • Leigh April 16, 2010, 11:25 pm

    Silly question: to set our DO price at 5 cents, would we type 5.00 into the box or .05?
    .-= Leigh´s last blog ..It’s Charlie’s Birthday! =-.

  • Grandma April 17, 2010, 9:08 am

    5.00 in the box. It looks like 5 dollars but it is in cents. If you look at the box, the defaut rate is 1.50 or one and one half cents.

    I have set mine all over the place, 4.0, 3.0, 2.5, 2.0. Then I finally decided it should be at least 5.0. I have agreed to lower it for a large batch of articles or for a long time loyal DO client.

    TB adds their commisson and it ends up being 6.5 cents to the client plus a 30 cent per article fee, just like they are now paying for a category 5 article. Actually it is slightly less than they pay for a 5 article — that is 6.7 cents per word but the author only gets 5 cents per word.

  • Lisa April 17, 2010, 9:38 am

    Leigh,

    5.00 is five-dollars
    .05 is five cents

  • Lisa April 17, 2010, 9:44 am

    I tried to set my DO price per word at 0.05 and it says that the minimum price that can be set is 1.50 per word. So it would not allow me to go lower then 1.50.

  • Leigh April 17, 2010, 11:05 am

    Lisa, see what Grandma wrote? That’s what I thought and that’s how I have my DO price set. *I* know that 5.00 is 5 dollars and .05 is five cents, but since TB writes “cents” after the box, that’s very confusing.
    .-= Leigh´s last blog ..It’s Charlie’s Birthday! =-.

  • Grandma April 17, 2010, 11:39 am

    5.00 cent is 5 cents, Lisa and Leigh. Go look at your direct order price box under your personal profile.

    It is confusing because to a normal person 5.00 would be dollars but they qualify the box number telling you it is in CENTS.

    5.25 would be 5 and a quarter cents per word.
    5.50 would be five and a half cents per word. Etc.

    To get 5 dollars you would need to go to 500.00 cents per word.
    10.00 cent per word is 10 cents per word.
    5.00 cents is 5 cents per word.

    Sorry, I need more coffee!

  • Saurus April 17, 2010, 2:35 pm

    I’ve considered putting my DO rate at 5.00 because I think I write well enough that the people who want me to write for them will want to pay for it, but then I have always figured setting it so high would drive them away rather than ask for a discount.

    For that reason, I had set it to 2.10 for some time, but I am wondering if I should just up it to 5.00.

    @Grandma – That is awesome, making over $2k for the month. My average is $1.4k but I always get a little lazy come payday and the three days before it when I know it isn’t guaranteed payment anymore.
    .-= Saurus´s last blog ..Red Dead Redemption Has Difficulty Levels =-.

  • April April 18, 2010, 7:50 am

    Grandma: That is awesome! I only wish I could manage to make that much in a month! I’m still in the beginning stages of freelancing full time though, so maybe someday…! I have set my DO higher. I can see setting it at 5 when you are at a 5-star rating. I guess I figured when I was at a 4, clients wouldn’t be willing to pay 3.5 cents more than what they originally ordered! I did have it set higher when I started, but didn’t get any DOs until I lowered it back. Maybe I should have kept it high…??? Oh well…I plan to raise it a little every couple of weeks for awhile until I find a “comfortable” spot! Congrats on the tidy income this month! Gotta go have my coffe now! 🙂

  • Grandma April 18, 2010, 9:33 am

    Saurus, thank you for sharing your average earnings. I always wonder what others are doing.

    If you do raise your DO rate, it will only apply to new clients. All the old ones stay the same unless you go into their client ID number and change it. You should talk to your previous DO clients if they are regulars before raising it. If they were a one timer a long time ago, I would just individually raise the rate, at least a little bit, if you did not want to contact them. Or, contact them and let them know rates are increasing a bit. With the regulars, it depends on your relationship with them.

    Sure, some will turn away at a higher number, but on the other hand, the 5 cents a word rate is basically the same as what they would pay for the category 5 open order.

    The other thing you can do is just set it higher and see what happens. It all depends on you and your situation regarding how you price your writing.

    I think I only scored so high this month because I had more time to do this. AND a ton of direct orders and 5 star open orders.

    Last year it was April when Megan turned in $4000, according to the first Textbroker blog. Maybe it is just the time of year.

    Keep up the good work.

  • Lisa April 18, 2010, 10:43 am

    I guess I just do not have the time to make that much because my kids keep me so busy, but congratulations to those of you that can. I have been in the process of moving and that can take a lot out of a person. Once I have completely moved and settle in I am going to put in more time with TB, and see what I can do. Leigh, I was not trying to be sarcastic or anything I guess I did not know exactly what you were talking about until I looked at the box, and you are right it does say cents after the box.

  • April April 24, 2010, 9:55 am

    Hi! Has anybody heard of knowledgewriting.com? Stumbled across the site somehow. No contact info or anything on the application page. I went ahead and submitted a sample, thinking maybe there would be more info if I was accepted. I never received an email from them (or if I did, I inadvertantly deleted it…I have a tendency to delete emails I don’t immediately recognize). I logged in today and it said my application had been accepted and to complete the information process to get started writing. But still, no contact info anywhere that I could find. After searching online, all I can find is the “recruitment page” where I signed up to begin with. I went ahead and started filling in info–until it asked for SSN or EIN. I have an EIN, but am still not certain if that is really any more secure than giving out your SSN. I believe somewhere in the application process it mentioned they pay a straight $10/article. Maybe once they have all contact and payment info they provide more info on themselves. I was really curious about them, just not sure if I should give them my EIN.

    • Felicia April 24, 2010, 12:08 pm

      April, I did a quick search after reading your comment and couldn’t find too much about writingknowledge.com except for the following:

      Domain name was recently registered (2/17/2010) and modified on 3/10/2010.
      Their Alexa rank is over 20,000,000 with a 0 Google page rank.

      Because they’re so new and don’t list contact information, I don’t recommend giving them your EIN or SSN. They need to establish a bit of a track record first.

      Correction: Sorry, I typed the name incorrectly above, the info I found was on knowledgewriting.com not writingknowledge.com

  • April April 24, 2010, 12:19 pm

    Thanks Felicia. Actually, I think it is knowledgewriting…not writingknowledge…don’t know if that makes a difference? I will keep my eye on them for awhile. Could prove to be a lucrative site…or could be a scam… I don’t think I want to provide them any info though when they are not willing to extend the same courtesy! 🙂

  • Lisa April 24, 2010, 2:05 pm

    April,
    If you receive any more information about knowledgewriting.com please share it with us.

  • April April 24, 2010, 3:54 pm

    Will do Lisa! Sorry Felicia…just saw your correction on there! Thanks for checking on them…I wouldn’t really even know how to begin other than running a regular search. 🙂 As of right now, there is no way to contact them or even know who the site is run by, so unless they personally contact me or post more info on their site, I doubt I will be pursuing it!

  • Cynthia April 24, 2010, 4:31 pm

    Hi April and everyone!

    I’ve got a little problem. Has anyone ever written a DO, and they want it revised with impossible instructions? I’ve got a guy who wants the keywords every other sentence! I’ve tried to do it, but it doesn’t make sense, nor does it flow at all now. Plus it makes the word count go up so much that I’m having to take out important chunks of the article……..jeez, it sounds like crapola now. What would you guys do?

  • Doran Roggio April 24, 2010, 4:37 pm

    Lisa, Felicia:

    The whois domain search lists this information which tells who the owner is and his contact information. I would be apprehensive to give out personal information to any site that does not include contact information. Not only that what if there is a problem. A reputable site always makes contact info available.

    Registrant:
    Internet Brands Inc
    909 N. Sepulveda Blvd., 11th Floor
    El Segundo, California 90245
    United States

    Registered through: GoDaddy.com, Inc. (http://www.godaddy.com)
    Domain Name: KNOWLEDGEWRITING.COM
    Created on: 17-Feb-10
    Expires on: 17-Feb-11
    Last Updated on: 10-Mar-10

    Administrative Contact:
    Knapp, Matthew mknapp@internetbrands.com
    Internet Brands Inc
    909 N. Sepulveda Blvd., 11th Floor
    El Segundo, California 90245
    United States
    (310) 280-4000 Fax —

    • Felicia April 24, 2010, 5:26 pm

      Thanks Doran and Ignatius. So, it looks like its an offshoot of Internet Brands.

      Maybe they’ll place the contact info on the site later on down the line. However, until they do, I’d stay away (just my opinion).

  • Ignatius April 24, 2010, 5:24 pm

    The registrant for the domain name appears to be Internet Brands. Assuming the database is accurate, that is a legitimate company. I have never worked for them, but I think their business is somewhat similar to Demand Studios in that they own their own websites and pay people to turn out content for them.

  • RUTH April 26, 2010, 1:24 pm

    I have a bad feeling about KnowledgeWriting.com. I also applied and submitted an article (over 400 words) and have heard nothing back. Can’t contact them – actually I did sent a message to ibpub@internetbrands.com (saw this somewhere in my research) and I have had no response. I would not send them another bit of info, nor any more of my sincere hard work. I don’t know what they’re up to, maybe just receiving a lot of articles for free from suckers who apply. Bad feeling.

  • Doran April 26, 2010, 3:11 pm

    I agree with you Ruth. Just because they may be listed as an offshoot of a know company does not mean that this site is doing business in a reputable fashion. I think of it like this: Offline you would not enter in a business arrangement/partnership with someone whom you could not contact so why would you do it online.

    I never do anything online without contact information…rule of thumb, not unless there is even a phone number or live assistant because in business there are times you need to speak with someone live.
    .-= Doran´s last blog ..Are Semi-truck Drivers Making The Highways Unsafe =-.

  • April April 26, 2010, 3:14 pm

    I vaquely wondered that when I submitted. Since there were no rules or guidelines stating that the sample could not be a previously published piece, I sent them an article that I have up on another site. I just ran the article through a plageurism checker and didn’t find anything. I thought about contacting internetbrands within the next couple of weeks. Let me know if you hear from them Ruth!

  • April April 27, 2010, 5:19 pm

    Attention 5* authors—the misc. client is back and has placed orders at 5*. Don’t know how many he originally placed, but three are currently over 450. I didn’t write any of the others he placed–hope I can figure out what style he wants! He does have a rejection rate…

  • April April 28, 2010, 3:21 pm

    Wow! Level 5 is coming alive all of a sudden! A bunch posted under fashion now! Too bad it probably won’t stay that way!

  • Grandma May 7, 2010, 5:32 pm

    WOW what a month! I assume everyone is very busy writing away for Textbroker this month. Today, the 7th, there are over 4,900 orders waiting and well over half are for category 4 and 5. It’s a field day! Whatever they did, keep it coming on!

  • JonR May 7, 2010, 5:46 pm

    I stumbled across this blog article and thread while researching sites for freelance writers. First, I would like to thank our gracious hostess for making possible such a civil, literate, and informative discussion. I also would like to thank all the contributors who have shared their experience and insight on Textbroker and several other such sites.

    I shouldn’t wish to curdle the milk in the tea, but I feel compelled to express my dismay over the structure and pricing models on so many of these sites hawking the wares of freelance writers. I can’t help but believe that they are debasing the writing profession in unprecedented ways—and the overwhelming flood of truly horrid articles drowning the internet today, written in almost-English for attention spans shorter than a commercial, tend to prove it.

    Publications were paying 1.5 cents a word and more in the 1930s! In today’s economy, these are sweatshop rates for writers.

    I cannot conceive where these sites derive these payment rates and scales. They bear no resemblance to anything approximating industry standards for professional writing that are reflected in publications like Writer’s Market. Then again, on sites like Freelancer.com, every job open for bids that proposes a top rate of $1 for a 300-word article (no, that’s not a typo) gets just scads of people lining up for it. Of course, more than a few of those bids include statements along these lines: “I be perfect for doing this writing on you. Let’s go!”

    I’m no great supporter of the “union” approach for resolving industry issues—especially for a group of mavericks, lone-wolves, and hired guns like freelance writers tend to be—but I do wish there were some way to salvage from such wholesale degradation the dignity of a duly proud profession that has done more to advance mankind than all the sciences combined.

    Jon

    • Felicia May 8, 2010, 7:26 am

      Jon, thanks for your comment. I’d like for you to take a look at an article a wrote some time ago entitled: Freelance Writing Rate of Pay: Why Some Writers Accept Such Low Pay Rates. It pretty much sums up my thoughts on the issue.

  • Grandma May 8, 2010, 8:14 am

    As Felicia pointed out in her referenced article, it’s a you-get-what-you-pay-for world here. Good writers can command higher rates. Low paying jobs get low skilled workers, just like in any industry.

    There are many reasons why writers might settle for selling their writing so cheaply. Maybe they like the flexibility, or the challenge of making a few bucks while watching tv or washing laundry. Maybe it’s the atmosphere of being able to stay home with the kids and still earn some kind of spare money. There is little expense other than the computer investment and Internet costs. There is no need for fancy clothing, no transportation costs, no irritations from other people at the office, you have peace and quiet, food and drink are handy, and you can multi-task.

    Right now there is plenty of opportunity at Textbroker to get into the category that does pay 5 cents a word. Not going to buy you a Cadillac, but it is definitely working smarter than writing for significantly less. And, there are clients who will pay twice that or more.

    When the writer is ready to move on to bigger pay, they will. There will be plenty more new writers to fill their place. Much of the internet content is just simple stuff that no one cares that much about. It’s back to getting what you pay for on the client side. Don’t expect to get a Rolls Royce when you only want to pay for a push cart. Sometimes it matters, and other times it doesn’t.

  • April May 8, 2010, 9:20 am

    Felicia: I apologize ahead of time for this rather long entry. I just wanted to let Jon know why some of us are willing to take on low paying writing jobs, as well as perhaps inspire beginners to strive for their goals.

    Jon: I originally felt much as you do at first. This is a large part of the reason I found myself with a BA in English and working at the local McDonald’s for the last 11 years. Health situations dictate that I cannot drive, so my only work options are within walking distance in a small town. The advancement of technology has brought a multitude of good with it. However, it has also brought about a change in the way society views the value of the written word.

    People no longer pick up a book for information, they simply type the term into the search engine and find a wealth of knowledge right at their fingertips. This is perhaps why the written word is no longer valued as much as it once was. When I found TB a little over a year ago, I was a little dismayed at the pay level, but decided to pursue it for awhile as a way to make a little extra cash and to feel as though I was using my education in some way. It was addictive! Even at the 1.4 cents per word, I found myself anxiously writing away every free minute I had. Partly because I enjoyed the feeling of finally putting my education to work, and partly because I enjoyed learning about the things I was writing about.

    I finally realized that if I put enough time into it and searched out other avenues as well, I could possibly raise to that coveted 5 star rating at TB and make a reasonable income. To make this already long story short, at the first of this year I took a bold step and quit my dull 6-3 job where I was unappreciated and underpaid. Had I not previously prepared financially for this move, I would have likely found myself in a pickle though.

    The first couple of months I did not make anywhere near what I should have been. At the same time, I wasn’t really putting the effort into it either. I had decided to take a bit of a break at first. I look for things to start picking up now, as I was just last month raised to that coveted 5* rating at TB. In addition, TB has had a recent influx of 5* orders. This looks to be long term according to their latest newsletter. By writing a few of these orders a day, I will meet my needed income quota and still have time to explore other avenues.

    The point of this very long entry is basically to say that TB is a great opportunity to get your feet wet and hop aboard the writing train. The editors are great as well…something you don’t always find at every writing site. I will just have to wait and see where that train takes me. If it weren’t for TB, I would likely have never advanced past “Hi, can I help you?” Now I can work from the comfort of my own home (something many only dream of but never pursue)and finally feel as though I am putting my college education to some use. While the levels below 5 don’t pay much, the clients get what they pay for, for the most part (especially at level 2). Additionally, it is a great opportunity for budding writers to get in a bit of practice writing for the web. We may as well face the fact that the world of writing is no longer what it once was. The Internet has changed all of that dramatically and it seems our only option for success as writers is to roll with the changes.

    • Felicia May 8, 2010, 9:28 am

      Well said. Sometimes we forget to walk a mile in the other person’s shoes before we pass judgment. Thanks Grandma and April for sharing your thoughts and experiences.

  • Jenn May 8, 2010, 9:50 am

    I too have a BA in English and due to kids and failed business ventures I’ve not yet been able to do anything with it.

    Ya, I’m one of those who accepts piddly pay when I know that my writing is worth so much more. However, I can’t possibly commit to anything more than TB and their like because I’m at home with my 10 month old daughter and looking after the rest of my family as well.

    So it’s either make SOME money or make NO money. These piddly pay sites allow me the flexibility to write when babies are napping and kids are playing.

    Without this feeling of financially contributing to my family I’d go bonkers.

    So ya, stay at home moms like me are undervaluing our work but like I said, something is better than nothing when we have to work around crazy schedules.

  • Grandma May 8, 2010, 10:12 am

    And it is not all piddly pay. I am well into making over $3000 this month, all from Textbroker, part time. If the work flow continues at this pace, it is great for people who like flexibility and independence.

    It’s just that big “if” that is a concern. The TB newsletter was encouraging, and they did say they had over 30,000 articles written in April alone, so that is encouraging. More power to them.

    Think of it, there are millions of websites and all need some type of content filling them up. There is an endless need for product and a spot for everyone who wants in on the action. I believe this is just the beginning stages of where Internet writing will go someday.

  • Shannon May 8, 2010, 10:49 am

    A wise person (I think it was Grandma) once said, “Write fast and retire!” And this is the best advice. We, as online writers, must realize that we are in the information business and it is very much a BUSINESS — one that is changing so rapidly, most will never keep up.

    Take advantage of the best opportunities out there now and keep yourself as well-informed about changes as you can.

    Native English speakers and/or well-educated writers still have an advantage and are employable. But — let’s face it — people who live in Belize or India or wherever will work dirt-cheap because they can. The people who request and pay for content don’t want to pay anything. Isn’t it a matter of time before someone comes up with a content generating web app that can finally produce original, human-readable text and not just keyword jibberish? And that web app starts eliminating our jobs? What happens then?

    Think about this, as well: Every $1 you earn, if you live in the United States, is worth $9 to someone in India. Would you write a 300 word article for $9? I would. Kind of puts a different perspective on those $1 articles, doesn’t it? (By the way, the requesters of such content don’t care about quality as much as keyword density and how original it is, etc.)

    I think we all need a reality check and we should stop blubbering about the good old days of print media and $250-$500 per article, because those days are gone and they ain’t coming back. The people I know who still write for print media practically have to sue to get their checks, like six-to-twelve months later. The ad revenue just isn’t there anymore. Why do think the New York Times is going to start charging users for access to their site?

    I’m sorry to sound so Darwinian about it, but this is a tough business — we must adapt or perish.
    .-= Shannon´s last blog ..Freebie Friday: Organic Fair Trade Coffee from Melitta =-.

  • April May 8, 2010, 10:51 am

    Grandma: Wow! What an accomplishment! I aspire to be where you are at someday! My current small problem with advancement, oddly enough, is with DOs! While I raised my DO rate when I was advanced to a 5, I have one regular client who sends me a multitude of work. I previously had her at the default rate of 1.5. I did just raise her (with notice) to 2 cents per word. I didn’t feel it was fair to raise her any more than that. DO clients are a blessing to have and I am thankful for all of the work she sends me. However, with the recent influx of level 5 orders, I find myself working on hers and thinking how much I could be making on the others! Hers also take much more research than the ones currently on the board. Any advice? Hopefully, I will soon find a way to balance DOs and open orders! I know I will be grateful for the DOs if and when all of the 5 orders have disappeared!

  • Saurus May 8, 2010, 11:07 am

    The amount of medical articles recently has been crazy. I think I’ve made about $300 in two days, and this is when I normally aim to crank out $50 per day.

    As per Textbroker’s newsletter suggestion, I had already recently submitted a request for upgrading to five stars. Here’s hoping, but I feel like my sentence structure is a little awkward (and sometimes, unintentionally, a little padded out) so that may still not happen.
    .-= Saurus´s last blog ..Fruit Ninja Squeezes Through Charts =-.

  • Leigh May 8, 2010, 11:25 am

    Wow. $3,000 a month is my goal, but I don’t think I could do it from just one writing site. How much do you write a day? Do you accept just any topic!?

    I have accounts at TB, WrdGgs, Demand, Seed, work at Leapforce, just got hired at a Virtual Asst company, and have two B&M jobs and I find it really hard to make enough $. I’m nowhere near $3,000/month and my checking account is below 0 right now 🙁
    .-= Leigh´s last blog ..Take My Breath Away =-.

  • Grandma May 8, 2010, 12:10 pm

    Well, on balance, last January I only cleared $338 for the month, due to the holiday season and low number of orders I wanted to do.

    Right now, like Saurus, I select a topic and learn all about it. Then it is possible to write several articles off the same information. I guess I am not your average writer; I have been writing since I was about 10 and am now 62, so there I have a lot of experience. I had an excellent education and work fast. I type 120 wpm. Add to that a lifetime of experience, and many articles are just already in my mind.

    One reason I put together the ebook about Textbroker, besides getting some residual income, was to offer others a head start. I think TB is an excellent opportunity, and I really would like to see it stay that way for a long time.

    This is a peak month, for sure, but in view of their expectations expressed in yesterday’s newsletter, I am hoping to see it continue. And I still wonder about the possiblities of doing it full time!

    Per day, Leigh, I had a goal that was around $30, for a particular reason. That reason is no longer as important. I wanted to see what I could do if I put more time in, and look what happened. Goal setting (see Felicia’s post on that) is very helpful to get you motivated and to keep you on track.

  • Leigh May 8, 2010, 1:06 pm

    I only have 7 articles on there! All are 4’s. I’m writing 3 or more today and then will definitely express my interest in becoming a 5 🙂
    .-= Leigh´s last blog ..Take My Breath Away =-.

  • Saurus May 8, 2010, 1:08 pm

    Sometimes I’ll take on a topic that is not necessarily familiar to me and write it regardless of that fact, but I partially only feel comfortable in doing so because I am able to research subjects very quickly. I’m glad for that, too, since it widens the range of articles I can write.

    Just like Grandma, I’ve been writing since I was 10 (although I’ll be 21 in a couple of months), have had exceptional education and am capable of working fast. One time, I was scored having a WPM of 144, but I believe that was a lucky occasion since my average falls between 110 and 120.

    Unlike Grandma, I’m still not seeing $3,000 a month, but this is partially due to taking the day before (and the day of) payout, so perhaps it’s possible to get there if I tried. I only work with TB, as well, though I have an account with Demand.

    Speaking of which… is it just me, or are the standards over on Demand nonexistent? I understand they require strictly professional writing, and I have no problem accomplishing this. However, I’ve gotten back some rewrites because of editors asking me to simplify certain things drastically, such as “How do you screw in a lightbulb?” or “How do you use a screwdriver?” I’ve also had one editor tell me not to tell readers how to get an item listed in the “Things You’ll Need” box and one editor tell me to include this step. It’s driven me away, personally.
    .-= Saurus´s last blog ..Fruit Ninja Squeezes Through Charts =-.

  • April May 8, 2010, 1:38 pm

    Grandma, I am kind of…well…amazed…that you wonder about it beng a full time income. What you have made in just the past 2 months only working part timme at TB is more than half what I made at my previous job last year! (I told you I was underpaid!) I realize the past 2 months have both been record setters for you, but those figures would keep me going for 6 or 7 months! Remember though, I don’t drive for medical reasons and live in a small town, so my expenses are likely much less than the average for many. I also don’t have to worry about anyone but myself, so that takes the pressure of having a steady income off a bit. I tend to keep things rather simple too. I know, I sound like an old fogey (and I am only 35!). I only hope I can get to the point where I am making even half what you are! Hats off to you Grandma!

    On another note, it’s funny to see how things have turned around at TB. For the last year, the majority of the orders were at 2, less at 3, still less at 4, and little to none at 5. Now, there are over 2000 at 5, over 1500 at 4, about 1000 at 3, and under 800 at 2! I certainly hope this trend continues!

  • Grandma May 8, 2010, 2:00 pm

    Saurus, do not misunderstand…it is “one” month, not every month. I would love it to be “a” month, and maybe it now will be. I did work pretty hard, so that when that payday rolled around on the 5th, I just had to take not one, but two days off to recover from burnout. But I am definitely not doing anything full time. It’s more like write one, take a break, write another, do something else and so on throughout the day or whenever I can get on the computer here. I am looking forward to again having my own digs so I can do the 24/7 grind if I want to. Right now there are grandkids to watch,and feed, dishes to wash, dogs and cats to feed and let outside, and all my favorite political shows on cable to catch up with (thank goodness for DVR) and maybe catch a few winks of sleep.

    By the way, you mentioned turning 21. I remember that because when I turned 21 the big thing was being able to get into the bars and buy beer. I was at Michigan State University at the time. If you went to a couple beer stores, they would sell you a six pack for a penny on your 21st birthday, and several restaurant/bars would give you a drink like champagne to celebrate. Still, I always thought that 24 was a perfect age, and still do. I try to feel 24; age is a state of thinking sometimes.

  • Saurus May 8, 2010, 4:43 pm

    That’s true; it is “one” month. For me, it’s been $2,000 each month so far, but considering the low amount of my bills, that’s good enough for me. No need for me to get too greedy.

    My big thing has never been being old enough to buy alcohol (even if it were, I’ve been given too many opportunities to access alcohol as far back as when I was eight); my only thing right now is making enough money to pay off the rent each month, have meals that don’t always consist of Ramen noodles and to save up to build myself a computer for my free time.
    .-= Saurus´s last blog ..Fruit Ninja Squeezes Through Charts =-.

  • Grandma May 8, 2010, 10:25 pm

    Hi April, the problem with me trusting the sustainability of this gig is that I have put all my eggs in one basket, mostly. The two websites I put together are again just sitting unproductive because I never really promoted them. That is another project for another day when it is a priority. And I really have a hard time trusting anyone/thing other than myself and my God.

    Right now, my expenses are minimal. My original goal was to make at least $200 a month somehow online so I could go have some fun at the local casinos. (Talk about a bad goal!) TB was consistently racking up around $700 to $800 a month right away, part time, which more than did that job. Now that I have wasted a lot of money, it is good timing to get bigger checks that I will do better with.

    The older I get, the more I get worried about the future. So, I will continue to do TB at least part time and find maybe two other jobs to make up for the past gaps. Never had a problem finding work before, but now I have been off regular work since 2003 after double hip replacements. Now I can add “writing website content” for the past two years to my resume so I won’t look so unemployed. Did have a ton of fun with my grown up kids and grandkids! Time to grow up, again!

    My faith is totally in God. Right now I seem to be getting all kinds of signs that it is time to get on with things. That is the way He works, moving mountains when He does move. That is the one stable thing in my life that has always been there and always will be there for support. There is something I am supposed to be doing soon; I just have to figure out what it is.

  • April May 9, 2010, 4:28 pm

    Well put Grandma–AMEN!!! I too am putting all my trust in God and placing all my eggs in His basket. As I mentioned earlier, I quit my barely over minimum wage job to put more effort into my writing. Just when it was looking as though I may have to get a part time job doing something else…TB raised me to a 5! Then there were hardly any orders available at that level so I started thinking that again…and…WALA…there are now over 2000 orders and it looks promising that they will keep coming! Now, I just need to do my part and actually start…working! 🙂 It’s so easy to take a “break” on the couch and just keep sitting there all day! 🙂 Time to light a fire under myself!

  • Grandma May 10, 2010, 8:38 am

    April, the part you must do is keep your nose to the grindstone even when you do not want to!

    I did get a thought after my last post that when I do move up to Colorado, I should buy a condo. Totally out of the blue. But, there are condos where I want to go that are way more affordable than any apartment. A condo at $65,000 would have payments now at about $350 a month (with my good credit and low interest rates). Apartments in the same place are no less than $650. An answer from above!

  • Grandma May 10, 2010, 8:40 am

    Felicia..in that last post, can you put in a dollar sign where the percent showed up? I am typing in the dark. I have typed so much that my nails have removed the keyboard key cap letters and most of the important ones are all black now! I have to buy my son-in-law a new keyboard before I go!

    Oh, new record at TB, $325 in one day!

    • Felicia May 10, 2010, 8:56 am

      No problem. Wow, $325 in one day. Congrats!

  • Helen May 10, 2010, 10:11 pm

    I’ve been a regular reader of this wonderful site for a few months now. I’ve spent a few hours reading this thread today. All I can say is I am amazed! Everyone is so helpful. You guys rock!
    I’ve written one novel and I’m working on another one. I’ve written one screenplay. I’ve had one article and one poem published in a local newsletter for a worldwide non-profit organization. Mostly I write fiction. I put a couple of articles on eHow 18 months ago just to see if I could do it.
    I thought about giving TB a try last January. Then my schedule at work picked up quite a bit so I never registered. But I was let go from my job last Friday with no warning. I live in a small town, and there are no jobs here.
    After reading this thread I registered for TB today, and I’ll be writing my sample article tonight. I’m also looking for other content sites. I put a few dollars in my bank account, and I’ll be ordering Grandma’s ebook as soon as it hits my Paypal account. Congratulations for your success on TB, Grandma! That’s great!
    Keep up the great work, Felicia. I follow you on Twitter, too.

  • Helen May 11, 2010, 1:47 am

    Well, I’m jumping for joy! TB accepted me and gave me a 4-star rating! They are asking for a W-9 form and say it will be handled confidentially. Should I get an EIN first?
    Should I only do the orders with a 4 rating, or should I do the ones rated 3 and 2 also? If these questions have been answered already, I apologize. I will be going back to look through the comments again, paying more attention this time! 🙂

    • Felicia May 11, 2010, 7:26 am

      Congrats Helen! Grandma is the resident Textbroker expert, so I’ll let her or some of my other readers who are better versed with Textbroker answer your questions. With Grandma’s advice I’m sure you’ll do very well there.

  • Mandy May 11, 2010, 7:48 am

    Helen – Congrats and welcome to Textbroker! Your social security number will do just fine. The 4 star articles pay more. However, sometimes there might be a bunch of 3 star articles for which you won’t have to do any research, meaning you can write two 3 star articles in the time it would take to write one 4 star. There are a ton to choose from now, so hopefully you can find some higher paying articles on a subject you already know about.

    An important note though: your rating is the average of the last five (I think) articles. No matter the rating of the article, always write to a four star standard. You’ll need to write 10 – 15 articles that the editors rate as 4-star work to be considered for 5-star status. Even an article that was in the order pool at 3-stars would count as long as the editors rate your piece at 4-stars. Hope that helps!

  • Grandma May 11, 2010, 8:44 am

    Hi Helen, Mandy is right, the category 4 pays more, and once you get at least 10 rated at 4 by TB, you should contact them through their email on the website and ask about being recategorized up to a 5. Let them know at least what you told us about your published writing. They do not automatically set professional writers at any category; everything is related to the quality of what you do for them. Read tips on their blog, and, of course, my little ebook will fill in many of the answers you might have. It is everything I learned over two years working for them. Most important thing is to have each article as perfect as possible, especially rereading for typos. I still get caught sometimes and I triple check!

  • April May 11, 2010, 9:05 am

    Welcome aboard Helen! As Mandy stated, your SSN will work fine, but if you are uncomfortable with that, an EIN can easily be obtained from the IRS. I’m not entirely sure how much safer it is to use an EIN other than it is supposed to be for business purposes only, whereas a SSN is used for virtually every aspect of identity. I would not be as concerned about giving TB my SSN, but still choose to use an EIN with them and any other online business opportunities. You can select any level to write about and it won’t affect your rating as long as you write consistently. Good luck!

  • Helen May 11, 2010, 12:02 pm

    Felicia, Mandy, Grandma, and April-thanks so much for the warm welcome, best wishes, and advice. The acceptance email gave me the link for the EIN. I think I will use that, if only for the reason that it is online. I’m sure TB will be discreet with my information. I’m just more comfortable with an EIN.
    I spend a lot of time on the computer. I might as well be making money while I’m at it. I’m reminding myself to be optimistic and look at this as my opportunity to do what I’ve always wanted to do, which is make a full-time living from my writing. It’s not an ending, it’s a new beginning for me.
    Have a wonderful day, everyone!

  • Kevin May 11, 2010, 9:59 pm

    Hi,

    I’ve been poking around this site doing a lot of reading since I found it a couple weeks ago. I finally got started with Textbroker today and was feeling really enthused when I completed my first article. I went looking for more open orders but to my disappointment found zero, zip, nada that seemed worth doing. Almost every one of the orders I previewed had such incredibly vague descriptions or titles that told me nothing and descriptions that told me even less, that I was left scratching my head as to what they wanted. And most times the English was so atrocious it added even more to my confusion. In several it seemed they were making reference to some website that might give an idea but none of them seemed to realize how helpful a link or URL might be.

    So am I missing something here or do the rest of you find TB orders to be incredibly badly written by and large? Any help or advice would be really appreciated.

  • Leigh May 12, 2010, 11:19 am

    Myself personally, I prefer the vague instructions to the full page of instructions with 10 different steps to follow. Takes too long to read the instructions! For me, if the instructions are vague that tells me that they will probably be pleased with whatever I give them as long as I do my best. So I seek those out.

    I often see a link to go to, I’m not sure why the instructions you are seeing have no links.

    As for bad English, I see bad grammar sometimes. Again that makes me feel good as I can see why they need my help 🙂
    .-= Leigh´s last blog ..Pet Product Warning: Virbac Animal Health’s CET Aquadent =-.

  • Cynthia May 12, 2010, 12:03 pm

    Kevin – hello and welcome to TB…your post is very well written so I am sure you’ll do wonderfully. I’ve only been with TB since Jan. of this year. I came in on a 3*, but was quickly bumped up to a 4. I’ve never freelanced before so this is the perfect site to cut my writing teeth on. They are wonderful to work for.

    It seems that there are two types of descriptions from the buyers at TB. The ones that are SO detailed, long and repetitive, you wonder why they didn’t just write it themselves! Or, they are extremely vague. I.E. Need article on computers. Ok… what kind of computer? Most popular or best selling? Windows? Mac? Most of the time they are just looking for articles that have the keyword repeated a few times(2%-3%). I consider the articles with not very much instruction a license to just let my imagination soar and write what I want. If they send it back for revision without further instruction, you can always toss it back. It doesn’t count against you. I know it can be frustrating, but