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Old 01-23-2015, 03:07 PM
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Default Text Broker / Content Mills advice needed

So I am just starting my writing "career" and signed up with TextBroker. I submitted my first 5 articles and they put a block on my account, saying they need to evaluate the articles before I can keep writing. Is this typical? What is the purpose of this block and how long does it usually take them to remove it?

Also, are there any other content mills that are worth checking out? I am not sure I am good enough for full on freelancing and finding my own clients yet (I am just starting out!) but would like to build my skills somehow.

Also, any advice as to how to improve my skills as a writer? Any online resources with practical advice?

Thanks!!
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Old 01-23-2015, 07:27 PM
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In all honesty, build up some samples, put together a portfolio site and get away from the content mills as fast as you can. There's no money there and they will kill your joy when it comes to writing. Content mills are pretty much dead. The majority of us here write for private clients. Start looking for them now. If you can write, you can write. That simple. Don't doubt yourself. It's better to own your own business than work for a mill.
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Old 01-24-2015, 12:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WAHMBrenda View Post
In all honesty, build up some samples, put together a portfolio site and get away from the content mills as fast as you can. There's no money there and they will kill your joy when it comes to writing. Content mills are pretty much dead. The majority of us here write for private clients. Start looking for them now. If you can write, you can write. That simple. Don't doubt yourself. It's better to own your own business than work for a mill.
by putting together a portfolio site do you mean start a blog? If not, how would I do that? I just never heard of portfolio sites. Also, how do you figure out your rate and how to find private clients? I am a total newb in this thats why I turned to writing mills.

Thank yo!u!!!
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Old 01-24-2015, 07:44 AM
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You can buy a domain and put up samples of your writing or use contently.com. Having a blog is also a good idea. As for figuring out the right rate, maybe someone else can help you with that. Ten years into this biz and I still struggle LOL
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Old 01-24-2015, 08:07 AM
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Rates vary tremendously among writers. You'll find some who are content to make a penny per word, and others who charge $150 (or more) per hour. I'd say that in *most* cases, clients get what they pay for. If you can educate yourself on what constitutes good web writing (which is not the same thing as writing a novel or a research paper!), you can command higher rates.

Read up on current SEO strategies, learn how to use language that will appeal to the target readership of the site you're writing for, and make sure you know most grammar rules (and be willing to look up the ones you don't know by heart when necessary). If writing comes naturally to you, then this won't be too difficult.

As for a portfolio: If you have work published under your own name, then you can put together a page of links. I don't think links in the body of messages here are allowed, but if you go to my website (in my sig) and click on "portfolio," you'll see that I have a list of links on that page. If I didn't have work under my own name, which is very common when you're starting out and working for content mills exclusively, I would have written a few articles/pieces of web content and put those right on that page. If you can get two or three pieces up to start, that's fine; you can add more later as you have time.

Then it's just about marketing yourself! That's the hardest part, IMO. But once you get a good handful of clients, even if they're interspersed with content mills or various companies, you'll be on a roll. Good luck!
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Old 01-24-2015, 11:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by olga1311 View Post
So I am just starting my writing "career" and signed up with TextBroker. I submitted my first 5 articles and they put a block on my account, saying they need to evaluate the articles before I can keep writing. Is this typical? What is the purpose of this block and how long does it usually take them to remove it?
Hi there. Fellow Textbroker author here. The block is required for evaluation. Textbroker will "grade" your articles and then place you at a level that's most appropriate. I didn't have to wait more than a week for my block removal (if I remember correctly).

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Originally Posted by olga1311 View Post
Also, are there any other content mills that are worth checking out?
Every writer working through these mills seems to have a different experience, so it's hard to determine which one they recommend as worthy. They ALL recommend signing up and working through several at once, however. They suggest that so that when one mill is low on work or on quality work, there's another cherry tree to pick from. So I'd advise to sign up with ten of the most popular ones and then pick off the ones that don't work with your particular writing preferences (pay rates, deadlines, rules, etc.)
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Old 01-25-2015, 06:15 AM
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I'm just curious... Are there really still 10 great mills around? If so, what ones are you recommending?
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Old 01-25-2015, 02:09 PM
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I'm just curious... Are there really still 10 great mills around? If so, what ones are you recommending?
I said popular, not great:
The Long-ish and Comprehensive List of Content Mills ~ The Written Path
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Old 01-26-2015, 10:45 AM
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When I was starting out with Textbroker, someone advised me to send a friendly note to their Support letting them know I had completed the first five. It can speed up the approval process, apparently.
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Old 01-26-2015, 12:08 PM
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I am feeling very! burnt out at TB - I can't figure out if there is a lot of black hatting going on or if editors (in the OO) are playing some kind of silly mind games this past week. The revision requests from the OO pool remind me of some of the team managers attempts at total control. I am taking a big financial hit with demands for complete new articles that were not in the original instructions. For writers, the choice is to release the article or write a new article, leading to a loss of time and money. It seems as if the editors there now want rejections on a writer's page just to show who is the boss.

Also, these links to popular writing sites are so silly because most content mills and revenue share sites have gone out of business. There are only a few USA based ones left that pay decently. Of course, there are sites overseas that want 1000 words for 25 cents.

Sure everyone should seek private clients, but when they know they can get multiple articles from content mills for one low price by black hatting, the that is what they do.
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