Reedsy and Upworks

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Editing for authors: because every writer needs a good editor.

Debbie V

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So this company, Reedsy, contacted me when I started researching Upworks. Anyone know anything about it?

I know Upworks has a rep for being low paying, but I'm in need of gigs at the moment and will set myself a minimum hourly wage if I can get far enough through all of the pages of legal matter they have. But Reedsy contacting me had me wondering if something else was going on. Any experiences here?

Thanks.
 

Margrave86

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I used Reedsy to find both a cover artist and an editor. Ended up paying quite a bit for each. Apparently, Reedsy has very high standards for who they work with, and I found a lot of favorable mainstream coverage and no signs of any obvious scams or seediness.

They also spam my email with updates, so overzealous emails just seem to be their way.
 
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willfs

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Are Upworks and Reedsy content mills? If so, why do so many say not to go into content mills? It seems like it might be a good way to hone your writing skills while getting at least a little bit of pay. But I don't any experience there, though I often wonder about such opportunities.
 

Margrave86

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Reedsy is a place where self-published authors can commission freelance editors, cover designers, ghostwriters, etc. to work on their manuscript. While I'm sure somebody could use it as a content mill, the site itself is just a facilitator for commissioning work.
 

sandree

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I think you are asking for yourself as a vendor?? I have used Upworks several times as a customer. I would say the prices are generally low to moderate. The quality of the work is similar though I’m working with a seamstress right now and she is wonderful!

Reedsy is definitely on the more expensive end of the spectrum and only offers services for the writing world. I communicated with some editors listed there but their prices were too high for me. That might be a better choice in terms of the price you can charge.

Both are legitimate.
 

willfs

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Thanks for the feedback.

I was asking as a writer. But after doing so more digging it seems neither place would be right for me. They look to end up paying me little compared to the amount of work I would have to put in. I'm trying to head in the fiction writers direction, and, from what I understand, these places are mostly nonfic/content (?). It would probably mean a lot of research for little pay. Might be worth it for some but not for me at this time.
 

Rufio

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Are Upworks and Reedsy content mills? If so, why do so many say not to go into content mills? It seems like it might be a good way to hone your writing skills while getting at least a little bit of pay. But I don't any experience there, though I often wonder about such opportunities.

I've never heard of Reedsy. But I would say that Upwork counts as a content mill.

People warn writers away from content mills because the fees are usually feeble. You can get some well-paying clients there, but it often ends up being close to minimum wage.

You might, for example, be asked to write a 1,000-word article on pet care for $10. And if you want jobs like those to translate into a reliable income, it becomes more of a typing job than a writing job.

It can be a great way for a new-starter to get some experience and get some pay while they learn and improve. But the problem is that you're usually not creating a network or an online reputation that can lead to bigger and better things. Lots of freelancer copywriters on Upwork, for example, find it hard to break away from the constant grind of churning out low-quality articles and blog posts. They need to hack out five or more articles a day to make a decent income – and when you have to rush through every article to meet a word count, the quality of your work won't really improve.

So in the short term, it can be a great little side hustle that beats picking up a part-time job at the deli.

But if you're serious about providing a freelance writing service, you're better off doing things on your own: finding businesses with reasonable budgets and a desire for high-quality content, and charging them five times as much per hour as you might earn on a content mill.
 

willfs

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I've never heard of Reedsy. But I would say that Upwork counts as a content mill.

People warn writers away from content mills because the fees are usually feeble. You can get some well-paying clients there, but it often ends up being close to minimum wage.

You might, for example, be asked to write a 1,000-word article on pet care for $10. And if you want jobs like those to translate into a reliable income, it becomes more of a typing job than a writing job.

It can be a great way for a new-starter to get some experience and get some pay while they learn and improve. But the problem is that you're usually not creating a network or an online reputation that can lead to bigger and better things. Lots of freelancer copywriters on Upwork, for example, find it hard to break away from the constant grind of churning out low-quality articles and blog posts. They need to hack out five or more articles a day to make a decent income – and when you have to rush through every article to meet a word count, the quality of your work won't really improve.

So in the short term, it can be a great little side hustle that beats picking up a part-time job at the deli.

But if you're serious about providing a freelance writing service, you're better off doing things on your own: finding businesses with reasonable budgets and a desire for high-quality content, and charging them five times as much per hour as you might earn on a content mill.

Thanks
 

DMakinson

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I've recently signed up for a few of these freelance sites in an attempt to boost my editing/content writing business. Including Reedsy and Upwork. Also Guru, Freelancer, PPH. None of the sites has produced me any paying work as yet, but it is still early days so I won't rush to judge.

What I can say is that a lot of these sites are riddled with fake jobs planted by scammers. I assume they're wanting to get access to your private information or your work? Actually I don't know why the fakers do it, but I am starting to learn how to spot them. I've written to two of the sites about this, but (as expected *sigh*) they will do nothing about it. It's left to the mug freelancers to try to sort through the muck, which is a time-consuming and fruitless chore.

And the commissions the sites charge are outrageous. (Not that I've had to pay any yet...). One site charges 20% for simply providing access to what is basically a Craigslist for freelancers. It is iniquitous.

So thus far I am not terribly impressed. Hopefully time will change my view.
 
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Jefflrich

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I'm contemplating using an editor from Reedsy right now. Farmed my project out to 3 editors listed on the site with 2 rather quick responses. 1 passed as she didn't feel she was in the right headspace to tackle the subject matter (but did so after inquiring more about the project and then offering a bit of advise that was very helpful). 1 is very interested and proposed, what I think is a very good price for a developmental editing project: just under $1000 for a 100k MS. For my first novel, I used a freelance editor who charged $3000 for a 72K MS!

I believe Reedsy charges a 10% feel to the author for each project, which isn't horrible, I guess since the site if free. So, all-in-all, it would be about $1100 for a developmental editing.

I'm leaning towards engaging her services but it's always so risky, right? We shall see!
 

Stytch

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A useful fact regarding Upworks (formerly Elance, I gather?) that I've just learned as I set up a profile on their site. (A profile I'm probably going to go delete soon.) If you want to "bid" for jobs, you submit "proposals." These proposals cost "connects" and while you start with 20 connects, if each proposal costs 6 connects, you will quickly run out. But, hey, you can BUY more connects for just 15 cents and are sold in bundles, the smallest is 10, so $1.50. I don't know about y'all, but I find this insulting considering they're ALSO going to take a cut of any work you get through the site. There are a few cases where there is no "cost" to submit a proposal, but all those involve other people reaching out to you, so if you're being active and looking for work, it's gonna cost you. Here's a link explaining this system: https://support.upwork.com/hc/en-us/articles/211062898-Using-Connects


I'm remembering why I hate freelancing. I feel like you spend more time and energy looking for decent projects than you actually spend working on projects. (Don't mind me, I'm just feeling bitter right now. I know lots of folks make it work.)
 

anokat

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Hi Stytch,

One of the problems with freelancing websites are usually that there isn't a lot of quality control, which is a factor that lowers the general quality of copywriting and proofreading. Therefore it has become quite hard to compete when only looking at price. One of the solutions would be to join a site that has a higher standard for individuals, which allows them to charge a higher price. Wordy is such as website and explains their general requirements for their editors on their website. Even though they have paused their editor registrations right now, it is still possibe to join in the future

Here is a link for those who want to see: https://www.wordy.com/wordy-for-editors

Generally you either have to showcase previous work or have a low price to compete on general freelancing website. I would recommend looking for a more premium freelancing site that alligns with your brand and work.

Cheers!

- - - Updated - - -

Hi Stytch,

One of the problems with freelancing websites are usually that there isn't a lot of quality control, which is a factor that lowers the general quality of copywriting and proofreading. Therefore it has become quite hard to compete when only looking at price. One of the solutions would be to join a site that has a higher standard for individuals, which allows them to charge a higher price. Wordy is such as website and explains their general requirements for their editors on their website. Even though they have paused their editor registrations right now, it is still possibe to join in the future

Here is a link for those who want to see: https://www.wordy.com/wordy-for-editors

Generally you either have to showcase previous work or have a low price to compete on general freelancing website. I would recommend looking for a more premium freelancing site that alligns with your brand and work.

Cheers!
 

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