Angst and Observations About Writing from the State of Virginia

What “Termite Droppings” and “Web Content” Have in Common.

They’re both crap though termite droppings at least have high ecological value.

Inevitably, as you get sucked further and further down the freelance writing rabbit-hole or more apt, call it a gravity/money-sucking black hole, the point being–sucked–yes, once you get to the point where writing is all you want to do, dispense of all your normal friendships immediately, go to a large appliance store and pick out a nice cardboard box, refrigerator boxes still offering the best options because like everything else in America, refrigerators have also only gotten bigger and more ridiculous (some I think you can drive). Sell your nice car and buy a cheaper, older model. Throw away your shampoo though keep the soap. You can wash you hair with Dial soap and it won’t matter if your hair is all stiff and matted because you won’t be going outside anymore. Try to bathe at least once a week, if for nothing else, the dogs; you don’t want them to get confused you are the same species.

Once you meet these prerequisites, and you can’t see the light anymore from your refrigerator box at the the bottom of your hole, you’ll start looking for freelance writing gigs while you work on (or not) your next novel(s). Inevitably you will find yourself on “writing” sites like iWriter, Textbroker, Constant Content, others. It looks pretty cool. They list topics and you write “articles” aside from that fact that they’re not and you won’t.

You have stumbled on to “web content” ‘writing’ sites, now, the sadly institutionalized model of ‘writing’ for the Internet. Thinking you can perhaps upgrade to two refrigerator boxes, you will spend all day ‘writing’ this crap, and all for $1.50; let’s be honest, this is about all it’s worth.

I knew things had sunk to a new low when I agreed to write an “article” about “termite droppings”–for $1.50. I even researched it.

It’s pretty easy to see the correlation–“web content” as in fact “web droppings”–at best, it’s writing ads, at worst, it’s vacuous, mindless dribble (the ten best ways to steep tea!), and it’s ruining real writing on the Internet.

There needs to be a distinction between writing ADS/MARKETING schlock, which is all “web content” is, and real writing or journalism.

Take heed real writers. Hold fast to your standards especially if you ever find yourself writing “the ten best ways to flush a toilet”; you’re writing web droppings, this is all. Flush it and move on.

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