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Cost of writing?

Discussion in 'Writer's Lounge' started by tirial, 14 Jun 2018.

  1. tirial

    tirial IT fixer extraordinaire

    I keep hearing people say writers should provide their writing for free because it doesn't cost anything to write. That's not my experience and I'm not just talking about costs of living. There are direct costs for writing e.g. materials, software, research, notes, and also opportunity costs of what else you could have used the time for. So what does it cost you to write?

    I'd say for me it's around £5 a day, made up of notepads (two or three a week), pens and refills (I go through 4-10 a week), software (the joy of speech recognition: the Windows integral one is useless), museum entrance fees for research, and a cafe stop for a few hours twice a week to do intensive writing at £5 each because London is far too expensive. So if someone wants my work free, they expect me to pay about £35 a week.

    Is anyone else willing to sare some ballpark figures?
     
  2. penumbra

    penumbra New Member

    What kind of lunatics are saying that writing should be provided for free?!

    Let's see what I can come up with.

    Notebooks - Probably one a week
    Pens/Refills - Probably one pack a week
    Jpass on JSTOR - For research purposes
    Internet - I don't know if I should include this or not but it's something I definitely need for writing.
    Software

    I would say it comes out to right around your ballpark figure. Honestly though, I think time is what's most important. You can't put a price on that.
     
  3. Kindler

    Kindler Active Member

    Hmm, lets also just add in the minimum hourly rate at approx. £7.50/hour.

    So if you spend two hours writing five days a week, that is another £75 in earnings you could be getting elsewhere.
     
  4. jessica

    jessica Active Member

    Do agents still need printed manuscripts? That adds printing, paper, ink, and postage::coffee::?
     
  5. Gemini

    Gemini New Member

    That's a good way to quantify the cost of time.


    I'm assuming here, but I think that probably varies. I would think that digital manuscripts would be more convenient for all parties involved, but I could be wrong about that. Although, if they want digital manuscripts they might require specific software, so there would still be additional costs involved.
     
  6. porridge

    porridge Member

    Cheap'uns who don't want to pay for it ;).
     
  7. Zelda

    Zelda New Member

    I think anyone who says that writing should be provided for free should be forced to sit down and try to write something. Maybe then they'll appreciate that it's work.
     

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