Many bloggers dream about getting a recurring guest blogging position. Whether paid or unpaid, many bloggers toil in relative obscurity for years before being offered a chance to write for a large site.
However, the excitement of being offered a new writing position often causes bloggers, as well as other writers, to make serious mistakes. When they receive their first contract, they either do not read the document carefully or, in a desperate bid to please their new employers, sign the contract with little regard to the rights that they surrender.
Once your hard earned blogging reputation puts your writing, photography, graphics, and/or cartoons in demand by other online and print media, contracts enter your life. As a blogger, you are used to controlling your own content, rights, and publishing.
Do it for someone else, especially for pay, and now you are under the control of someone else and what they want out of it. What they often want is total and long term control of your hard work in words.
As Jonathan recommends, pay close attention to the details of the contract. Give away nothing that puts your career and future income at risk or loss. Don’t let the excitement of the “I’m going to be published” take away your common sense. You have the right to edit contracts and change things.
Moving from blogger to professional writer happens the moment you get your first pay check for writing. Make sure you read the fine print so your hard work is protected, and you clearly know what you are signing away when you sign for the income from writing.
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