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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Writing for Print vs Writing for Online

This is a question that I come across a lot. For the last three years, I have been almost exclusively writing for Internet instead of the print magazines that I used to do a lot. So, many people want to know that why I have made the switch and what is the difference between these two medium of writing. But frankly, I do not find any major difference between them. I went for Internet writing because it is easier and with the help of blogging platform and advertising companies like to Google or Chitika you can earn some money from your writing skill. I live in a third world country and English is not even my first language. I also do not claim myself to be a very skilled freelance writer. Here, I am just sharing with you my experience and my observations. It is up to you to reach into any kind of conclusion.

There is no doubt or debate that writing for print can bring much more money than writing for Internet. There are many publications in the United States of America who pay $1 or even more for each printed word. I cannot think of the same kind of opportunity online. Many web sites or blog networks will pay you almost next to nothing for your articles. Of course, you should not be in a hurry to reach out to the conclusion that print is better than online for writers. There is just one catch.

The publications that will pay you to $1 for each word are not that many and at the same time competition is immense to get your writing accepted. In fact, there are not many opportunities in the printing world for writers like me who possess mediocre writing skill, ordinary skill of English language and hardly any impressive profile. Yes, I can write for daily newspapers and magazines in my own city but the pay is miserable and I cannot pay all my bills by depending on the income from it. That is why, I went online and it really has some advantages for a person like me who is always eager to make a living out of writing.

The first advantage that I can find about writing online is the fact that the marketplace is indeed very large. It is all the time growing and there is perhaps a lot of space for many people. It does not matter whether you live in NewYork or Nepal. All you just need is a computer and Internet connection and most people who belong to the middle class economic group anywhere in the world have access and perhaps ownership to both of them in our age. There are many web sites that are there to help you with information about freelance writing projects. However do not fool yourself that all you need to do is just to apply. It is a very tough market because people can from any part of the world apply for the projects and does the competition is also immense. In fact, to be honest with you, I had hardly any luck with and writing for web sites. Internet has a very big advantage compared to print when it comes to self publishing: it is free.

In the print world, self publishing is not free and it is expensive. After printing the book, you have to ensure that the marketing is good and people buy the book. I have some decent amount of experience of printing magazine and I know from my experience that it is a very difficult and time consuming process. On the other hand, but health publishing in Internet is very easy and it hardly costs any money. With just an expense of $10 per month, you can have your domain and hosting. You can publish thousands of pages and thousands of pictures without any worry of additional expense. You do not have to worry whether the pictures will be in color or black and white.

What about the marketing cost? But if you do not have any in marketing budget for that still, you do not need to be afraid because if you can commit your time and energy then you will be able to spread the news about your website. But just join in the forum related to your topic then he will see that some people will have really come to your website and if they like then they will visit again. All you need is a very strong passion and commitment to the writing of your website. Many writers like me are not good at designing a web site and even for them there is a solution: blogging.

Yes, blogging is the new medium of writing that has become very popular in a very short time. Some people may say that blogging is not serious writing and Bloggers are not writers but do not listen to them because it does not matter whether you publish your writing in a magazine like Time or in your personal blog because at the end of the day, your writing is the same. For example, I am writing this article and it really does not matter if it gets published to a magazine or in this blog. At the end of the day, it is the same article containing the same sentences and words. Thanks to search engines like Google and Yahoo, you can get some regular visitors. For an example, I would like you to direct to my new blog: South Asia Blog in which I write about South Asian Business and Economy. I try to put quality content and the blog has got some decent amount of readers in just 3 months. In March 2009, more than 23,000 visitors came to read my writing.

The model of earning money has also changed with the blogging. You need to publish content regularly and there are some advertisements like Adsense or Chitika that will be displayed in your blogs. I’m not suggesting that it is a very easy process but what I am saying is that blogging has really made earning money by writing much easier for those people who are ready to work hard with passion. Blogging has given us an opportunity that was not there before.

What is your idea about it? Which form of writing do you like more?

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