Thursday, March 29, 2018

Want To Make Money Writing? Check Out Vocal!

Writing is hard. Getting paid for writing is even harder. Because in this age of instantaneous entertainment, where even the most obscure novel can be at your fingertips in seconds, it seems like more companies than ever before are trying to get writers to work purely for the exposure (as evidenced by companies like the Huffington Post asking to publish Wil Wheaton's work as a way to "take advantage of their unique platform").

Trust me, grocery stores don't take that shit in trade.
That's why I try to test the places I find that purport to pay writers for their work, and those who past the acid test get shared with you find folks. Like how, a while back, I wrote Make Money Writing (By Joining after I'd put together an archive, looked at the metrics, and gotten a sense for the return on investment for work you put on there.

That's also why, this week, I'd like to let you all know about Vocal.

What Is Vocal? How Well Does It Pay?

To paraphrase the search results, Vocal is a long form social publishing platform where contributors are paid based on their personal traffic streams. Or, translated into common English, Vocal is a place that pays you for the traffic all the articles you write earn. All you have to do is sign up, write something, submit it for publication, and soak up reads.

Yeah... but how many readers do I need to get paid?
I've been contributing to Vocal since last summer, and I've amassed a small archive of my own. As such, I can tell you with some authority that it takes about 300 reads to earn $1. Not that I said reads, not views. People who just glance at your content don't count; they have to go through what you wrote, and actually take it in.

Fortunately, that's easier than it sounds. Doubly fortunate is the fact that Vocal has so many different sites under a single umbrella. So whether you want to write about sex (and put your articles on Filthy), or you want to write about games (and put your articles on Gaming), there's a site on Vocal for that. From dating and music, to politics and life hacks, there are all kinds of options out there. And as soon as you hit $35 in your archive, you can request a payment through Stripe. A few days later, bam, cash in your account.

How Much Do You Want To Make?

Most people ask how much they can make, but that's the wrong question for the setup Vocal uses. Instead, you should ask how many reads you can get for your content. Because some pieces I've written, like It's Okay To Admit There Are Problems In Your Hobby or 10 Signs You're Actually A Dom got thousands of reads when they first went up, and they've had fairly steady traffic since then. On the other hand, articles like What Are Charity Arcades? have barely broken 100 reads, and haven't generated a lot of ongoing interest since I put them up.

So, long story short, it's a popularity contest.

Fortunately, the more you write, and the more you build up your audience, the bigger your views get. Even if you only write a few articles a month, it's perfectly possible to make at least the minimum $35 every month. Two if you're slow in your marketing. As to the maximum... like I said, how many reads will you be able to get?

That's all for this week's Business of Writing update. Hopefully it helped some folks out there. If you want to see some of the different kinds of content the site accepts, check out my Vocal archive. For those who want to keep up-to-date on my latest releases, simply follow me on Facebook, Tumblr, and Twitter. Lastly, if you want to help support my work, go to The Literary Mercenary's Patreon page, or click here to Buy Me A Coffee.

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