I just put my latest article up on Associated Content (AC) when it hit me: I should really share the AC experience with our WOW Blog readers (if you're interested ;o) ).
Some of you may have read the tips I offered on how to start up your own at-home freelance business in my Start Me Up article in WOW’s current issue (at least I hope so!). Another great idea to get some practice writing articles—and build up that clip portfolio—is to sign up for an online publishing company, like AC.
I had never heard of AC until a writer friend of mine offered to help me set up my own account. The idea of AC is to write short, informative pieces people will find when using online search engines. But it’s also a great way to put your fiction, nonfiction, poetry or novel excerpts out there for the world (and editors) to see.
There are a few things to keep in mind before you set up your account:First, AC pays is a small upfront payment for each submission (except in the Prose section). Then, based on the amount of hits your article accumulates, you also receive a “Performance Bonus.” This can really add up if you have several articles up. Unfortunately, they can’t pay writers living outside the United States for their content. For me, it’s no sweat because I use my AC site to post things I either don’t post on my personal website (eg: if the piece doesn't fit in with my theme) or for work I want faster exposure for (until my site gains the hits my AC account does, I work between the two).
Next, writers can be rather competitive on AC because all articles/stories are rated (people can rate your work on a scale of one to five). If your article scores a high rating, there’s a chance you’ll be on AC’s front page! There are, however, a few writers who are so competitive, they’ll “vote down” other writers’ work so their own will gain more exposure. I take it all with a grain of salt. My concern is providing excellent quality work, the ratings aren’t as important to me. Heck, I have a short story up on there people have emailed me about and it isn’t rated high so…it’s all in how you look at it and what you put more importance on. =o)
Finally, if you qualify for payment you have to make sure your articles are highly “hitable.” After all, you won’t make much cash if your article isn’t read. This, as my writer friend told me, means paying close attention to your article’s title and abstract (that’s the description box you fill in for each article). Basically you have to think of someone searching in Google or some other search engine and imagine what they’d type in to have your article pop up. It’s similar to the search labels we have at the bottom of each of our blog entries. Here’s an example.
I wrote an article about how to prepare your child for Preschool. I gave it the title: “10 Ways To Ease Your Child Into Preschool.” In my abstract, I described it as, “…tips to help prepare your child for their first day of school ever.” When someone types "tips for preschool preparation," or something similar, my hope is my article will pop up as one of the options. I’m still practicing this skill but it’s getting easier.
It’s not everyone’s cup of tea, but it’s a great way to gain exposure on all your writing skills. OH! And did I mention it counts as a publishing nod? ;o)
Below is some basic information about Associated Content. Why not check them out today?
Happy writing, everyone.
Associated Content invites everyone to contribute original video, text, audio and images on any topic to gain exposure and earn cash.
- What type of content should you submit? Submit your unique and compelling video, text, audio and images on the topics of your choice.
- Where is it published? Your content is included in the AC library, displayed on your profile page, and may even be distributed to partner sites.
- How do you gain exposure? AC attracts millions of information seekers each month, and now they can discover your content, too!
- And what's this about earning cash? AC offers upfront payments for some content submissions as well as a monthly performance payment for all of your original content.