There are few options for writers, artists and musicians when it comes to protecting your work in the days of the computer and Internet. It seems there is not much to be done once you fire off the initial legal mouth piece paperwork. Then sit back and wish you could hire someone to really do something. All that work and in the end it can't pay the bills, created for art, not money. I was thinking about that this afternoon. I came to the conclusion that musicians have the best chance at still making money from their art. Musicians have live performances which they can sell tickets to and collect a profit. They can use the event to sell music too. Not to mention the gadgets and accessories like T-shirts which they make something on from the work of others. What can writers and artists do as a live performance? I can't think of anything really useful or reliable as a way to make money from your art in the modern world. Yes, writers can read their poetry or fiction and hope to sell a few books. Live readings don't make the money a live music performance can, no T-shirts either. I've seen artists as street painters - temporary work which people watch and may chip in a dollar or other spare change while they stand around and watch the artist at work. No rent money on that plan. So, what can writers and artists offer as a live performance with the plan of making money from their work without the problem of having their work ripped off and sold by someone else?
Note: This was originally posted on the HubPages site, June 2012. I have stopped writing at HubPages but still recommend the site for new writers or those who don't want to set up their own site or weblog. I was thinking about what I get out of writing for HubPages and decided it would actually make a good post. Other writers should know the benefits, the less obvious benefits, to writing for HubPages or other networks. Yes, you get paid. But, yes... you actually do get paid. You get to practice in front of a live audience. You get your name out there, on topics relevant to you and your interests. You get to dabble in blogging without opening a site or buying anything. You can work on your spelling, grammar and punctuation. Meet other writers and other people sharing your interests or interested in you. Promote yourself on social media by linking back to your accounts on Twitter and etc. If you have a site you can give yourself back links and interlink between relevant posts. Learn from the guides, tips and rules on the network. Watch for changes to how they do things and find out the reasons behind them. Get fresh, new ideas from what other people are posting. Use the ideas in your own way. Making Money at HubPages My time writing for HubPages is a bit skewed. I opened an account and didn't start using it until about 3 years later. So my results are different from what your own may be. Of course, no one is going to have the exact same experience anyway. However, when it comes to my time here versus my money earned, things are a bit complicated. Still, as far as being paid by HubPages. I am getting paid and I am making money here. I signed up for other writing networks and did not get any money for my work and my time. In fact, I've only been paid for work on my own blog (which is outside of any writing network) and HubPages. None of the other networks have paid me a thing in the past year. So, of course, I am putting more into HubPages and my own sites. My first payment from HubPags was just over $50 and I am halfway to a second $50 payment. Due to my own efforts - choosing topics, writing headlines, writing content and finding context, etc - I have made $25 in three months. Now, if you look at your cost of living that doesn't seem like much. But, it's pretty good for a writing network. I know others are making more money in different ways. I'm not comparing apples and oranges though. I'm quite pleased with the money from HubPages. Of course, the secret is time management. Don't over do it. Keep your time, work and the returns you get in balance. There's More to Writing for a Network than Money People always want to know about making money. But, as a writer, there is more you can get out of writing for an online network than money alone. Don't forget the importance of feedback, building up your skills, learning how things work and building a reputation/ creating an online presence for yourself. Those are all real things you can get from writing for a network like HubPages. I also like HubPages because it gives me a goal to work towards. When I write for myself I have no boss, no one looking over my shoulder or keeping me on track. I sometimes go off on my own and daydream about some new idea or write a post because it appeals to me, just me. Having a bit of a task master at HubPages is a good thing. You need to keep your focus, watch how and what you write/ post and you can see the results and set yourself goals to improving based on the numbers HubPages tracks for you. Right now I'm working on getting traffic numbers up. I want to go from 10K to 100K around the end of this year. It may be too much to reach for. But, I'm past the quarter point. Progress, even if I may fall short at the end, I can still see things might work out. I'm pushing extra buttons by promoting my posts, linking to them and continuing to write new posts. Why Not Give HubPages a Try? I'm not going to stick in a referral link here. If you do join I would appreciate the referral but I'm Canadian and I'm just not comfortable asking for something for myself. But, if you have read this and think writing for a network is a good idea, try HubPages. You don't have to pay to join, you don't even have to start writing right away. Think about it, consider how useful it could be for you and then give it a spin. Send me a note when you make your first post. I'll leave you a welcome comment.
Games of Destruction Inspire Me to Write I admit I'm a procrastinating web writer. There should be a club or group for us - but we'd all be playing games or claim to be writing. If I were all good and noble and proper, I'd play word games. Games that might put me in the writing mood, get me thinking along the lines of words and using those words to form sentences. Well, I do play some word games, you can't take the words out of the writer, but I really enjoy city building sort of games. I like the type of games where you can build things up and then destroy them on a whim. It's the evil in me. Of course, some of the games I especially like are all about destruction, right from the start you begin as the destroyer. I haven't analyzed why I like these games, it's better not to know I think. Online Word Games
- PopCap Games | Bookworm
- Sight Word Games
- The Best Word Games
- Word Puzzles to Work Your Mind
- Alternatives to Facebook Games that Really are Fun and Free to Play Online Free web games to play online instead of Facebook games.
- Free Scrabble Online
- Words For Scrabble
- Pandemic - on Kongregate
- Pandemic 2 - on Kongregate
- Pandemic: Extinction of Man - on Kongregate
- How To Lower Visibility in Pandemic 2
- How to Beat Pandemic 2 (II)
- Rebuild 2 - on Kongregate
- Rebuild - on Kongregate
- Rebuild, Free Zombie Strategy Game
- The Ultimate Rebuild Guide
After getting divorced (after having moved to another country and then back home as well) I have a truckload of belongings and one room to my name. Clutter and chaos and a massive lack of storage space meant I had to part with a lot of things. I was able to store some away in the basement of the house I live in. However, that still leaves me living in a house where I only have the bedroom to use as my own space. It's not easy finding space for a home office and a home business. Often people aren't running a business, but they have their computer and like to have a set up where it is easy to use all their electronic gadgets - like a digital camera, a printer, a scanner, possibly a fax and your recharger for the mobile phone too. That's a lot of stuff to fit onto a computer desk. But, it can be set up in a corner if you don't have a lot of clutter. Treat Yourself to a Decent Computer Desk and Chair I bought myself a computer desk. It has a shelf on top for the monitor and a shelf at foot level for the computer tower. I keep all the cables running down the backside and once in a while I give them a dusting off. The desk level is where I keep the computer mouse and the mousepad. (You should have a mousepad if you don't already - they keep your mouse cleaner underneath). I am currently sitting on the second of my computer chairs. The first wasn't as comfortable as I thought it was going to be. Make sure you sit in any chair before you buy it. I also put felt furniture pads on the bottom of the chair legs to keep them from marking the floor or making noise when I pull the chair in and out. If a chair isn't working out a week after you buy it, the store should let you exchange it for another. It is a good idea to have a footstool as well. This lets you elevate your feet and will help your posture if you are going to be sitting in one place for a while. Busting your Home Office Clutter I don't find it so uncluttered to have my home office set up in the same room I sleep in. But, I'm working with it - so can you, if that's the space you have to work with. Two things which are really important are to keep the two areas defined from each other and to stop any build up of stuff. This includes, but is not limited to, laundry, coffee cups, assorted paper, notes and notebooks, pens and the odd toothbrush. I have been working on finding a space for everything and keeping everything in it's given space. You may think that is easy, it is not. The paper clutter is the hardest to keep controlled. This is my area to work on all those little things and they soon pile up. I found a small filing cabinet and then I found a short plastic drawer tower (that's what the manufacturer calls it). I have been trying to keep the paper in the file cabinet and the pens and paper (for drawing on or writing notes) in the drawer tower. I have them, one on either side of my computer desk. I do have a scanner which is currently under a pile of paper clippings which I was sorting out this morning. There isn't quite enough room for my scanner on the computer desk right now. I'm working on that. I took an old Mac computer from my sister which I wanted to explore and that is taking up space I really didn't have to give away. My cables for the digital camera(s) are on top of my desk. I want to get a hook which I can put up on the wall and then have them hang on the hook. This is a great way to keep them from being lost in the day to day clutter. It also helps prevent them being harmed from getting banged around or stepped on if they slide off the desk and onto the floor accidentally. You can even use a twist tie to wrap the cords so you won't have them trailing down very far when you hang them up. I do have a bookshelf too, which is for my non-fiction books only. I have them sorted by topic. I keep the fiction books in a mesh bag as I read each book it goes into the bag to be exchanged at the second hand bookstore. Not keeping every book goes a long way to helping keep clutter cleared up when I don't have a lot of space. Keep the Kitchen, Bathroom and Laundry Room out of Your Home Office Last of all, I have two laundry baskets. One for clothes which are freshly cleaned and ready to be put away. Even if I slack off a bit, the clothes are still not being added to the clutter. The other laundry basket is for dirty clothes to be washed. Clothes are a big problem for clutter. Last winter I did my best to part with some of my clothes. I was surprised how hard it was to let go, even things which I have not worn in awhile for assorted reasons. Also, I keep a container in the linen closet for all my shampoo, toothpaste and related bathroom things. I don't like to keep my toothbrush in the bathroom itself. I think it would get mildewy. So it's great having all those things in a small space of their own. Another big thing which you should do for your home office is to keep all eating in the kitchen. I do have a coffee here while I'm working. However, I almost never eat food while sitting at the computer. It's much easier not to have dishes and crumbs and crud on my keyboard and around my work area. Even if your keyboard looks not too gross, try picking it up and turning it upside down. Take a look at your computer mouse too. the bottom of it as well as the top. Clean the gross-ness you have wrought. Rearrange Furniture to Suit Your Space and Your Needs If you have more space than a bedroom you can do a lot more with your home office. For me, I have the computer desk on one side of the room and the bed and clothes closet and drawers on the other side. I also have two large storage containers with books, computer CDs/ DVDs and some hair clips, etc. One of these fits inside the clothes closet and the other sits at the bottom of the bed, like an old fashioned hope chest. Don't Forget Office Supplies Office supplies stores can be a lot of fun to shop around in. Start out as a window shopper, looking but not buying much - if anything. Decide what will really be useful, what will fit in your space and is there assembly required (or extras to buy for it). For something like extra pens, pencil crayons, etc. You just need a place to put them. However, it's nice to have a cork board or a whiteboard, some place to leave yourself notes, stick up magnets or fancy thumb tacks. You should also have a calendar.
Everything you plant will die Seasons change and years go by All your plans will go awry But who's afraid to live, not I By Zack Brown