FREELANCE WRITING UPDATES
LiveJournal: Why am I here? LJ must be one of the worst hosts for a freelancing writing and odd-jobbing weblog! I might discontinue and abandon this one, because the only reason I can think of why it's here is: This is a lifetime paid account, something I did before I knew better.
Here it is forbidden / impossible to run ads for carefully chosen affiliates to match reviews. All I can manage besides the in-house Adsense set-up is linking to Amazon from the sidebar. Content and sales go together on the best freelance writing websites I find (and list on this sidebar).
Squidoo again: A serious drawback at Squidoo, for me, is having to update / republish lenses once a month or more for them rank in the paying tiers. I surmise Squidoo works best for content producers who create only there and open new lenses often.
But Squidoo HQ tweaks and re-tweaks the platform and rules, forcing loads of extra work on its best Squids regularly.
Demand Media Studios: I'm still at the beginning stages of troubleshooting the editorial process and developing proficiency with the eHow format (a fill-in-the-blanks template). If I ever get comfortable there I could earn oodles.
Occasional reading on eHow convinces me DMS intends to publish useful, quality content there and on all its sites, beyond content farming for ad-revenue harvesting. Google appears to be recognizing the slightly better quality articles DMS stamps out (it seems more like a factory than a farm to me) because the algorithm updated named Panda failed to bite the site.
DMS has already started hiring their freelancers who stick it out a while (and produce hundreds of ordinary assignments successfully) to write much better paying features.
The Content Authority: TCA is a favorite I'm counting on. It pays less than DMS -- with far less hassle and much better support. Writing rapidly about key words anonymously is the program here. (TextBroker may be similarly great, but I haven't gotten around to writing there yet.)
Examiner: There will soon be a tiered pay-scale, according to the site's news, with performance pay scaled to it, with the minimum payout dropped to only $1 (and no more local incentive dollars).
After last and this years updates, the front page still is dismal to look at, IMO -- sparse-looking, like it failed to load properly. Every visit I find myself asking same question, "Where's the news?" This site has only scratched the surface of its potential and possibilities and I keep hanging in there, gradually picking up my pace..
Digital Journal: I resumed writing for DJ after a feature for claiming assignments and getting extra pay for completing them launched early in May. It wasn't the extra pay that drew me back, but the ability to claim stories with definite deadlines.
DJ is a great news site - usually stuffed with engaging reads and a special section for original, exclusive reporting.
Performance pay only counts for the latest 2 months of articles, with the "money-pot" getting divided among digital journalists by rank. So the pay-scheme is unique, weird and mysterious. A running earnings guesstimate shows at the top of the page when I login, rising or falling every two hours, as numbers of articles and their performances shift.
HubPages: I still cannot get excited about this site, though it looks better to me than Squidoo lately.
AROUND THE BLOCK
This location, in an office building on a busy city corner, has presented more security and safety challenges. The property management making an effort, but a few of the business-owners renting here seem to be lapsing into carelessness more often.
I am considering many options for a move when this lease ends on October 31.
The church garden a block west is unkempt because this year the gardener is working at a factory full-time, because he was promoted. Imagining the perennials and weeds competing for fun, I watch the situation run rampant without intervening.
The Tortoise Cat sniffs the flowers and gnashes the grasses and does not grok the concept "weeds" -- or care.
When it comes shifting territories in October, I expect she will disapprove -- vehemently.