Website promoters need words to fill all those new pages. By Mark Little
The 21th Century has seen a dramatic increase in interest from publishers for freelance material. In particular, there is a big demand for freelance words from the promoters of new websites. I find this to be true especially for travel coverage from Spain, which happens to be my field, but I reckon it applies to many other subjects and other geographic areas as well.
Could this be the end of the "freelance as underpaid hack", and the dawn of the "freelance as desirable commodity"? And how long is it going to last? Many of us are all too well acquainted with the feast-or-famine fickleness of the freelance trade.
Many new specialized "theme" websites are being set up this year, and established ones are revamping their pages to deal with the increased competition. It is no longer enough for sites to offer their products or services for sale. To guarantee repeat visits they need interesting content, and lots of it, and for that they need to hire professional journalists (though we are no longer called journalists, but "content providers").
Theyve noticed this at Guidebookwriters.com (http://www.guidebookwriters.com), a website featuring more than a hundred travel writers based around the world. It was originally set up in 1999 to offer their listed writers services for private consultations by individual travelers, but its promoters have found that its the site is attracting much more attention from editors and publishers.
According to Guidebookwriters.coms Julie Fanselow: "There's a lot of work out there, especially in web publishing. Editors are finding out about us, and I truly believe the floodgates have started to open. Every single week, we're getting inquiries from editors, from heavy hitters in publishing and travel services, both online and offline."
"Travel and lifestyle websites continue to proliferate," she adds. "Great content is one of the only ways sites can set themselves apart."
For those wanting a piece of the action, bear in mind that editors and publishers are looking for people who are specialists in a given field and have a proven track record, and that an Internet presence is the best - in some cases, the only - way theyre going to find you.
The Guidebookwriters website is www.guidebookwriters.com
Mark Little was the editor of the Freelance Spain website.
See also: "How to be a freelance", by Nick Inman.
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