Random Play by Graham Reid

19

Reality Bites

The recession has hit our humble home -- but not in a bad way, in a way that is so funny I would like to share it with you.

Some time ago I wrote a piece which was recently published in A Major New Zealand Magazine. I won't name it, it almost doesn't matter.

I invoiced at their rate of 40 cents per word (which, aspiring freelancers, is the low end of the norm). I did a word count on my copy and as I recall it was about 650 words. You do the maths.

I sent off my invoice for 650 words but the other day got an e-mail from the acccountant at the Major New Zealand Magazine asking to re-send it at the adjusted figure of . . . 647 words.

!

?

Again, you do the maths -- actually no, I'll do it for you. I had over-estimated by $1.20.

I looked at my story again and did a word count: I got 648 words, but was I going to go back at them for the extra 40cents? Nope, that would have seemed demeaning and not a little silly.

But there you go: $1.20. I suppose it is the old "for want of a nail the kingdom is lost" and I did reply to the person saying that times must be very tough. But of course conceded that if everyone invoiced for $1.20 more than they were entitled to . . .

I dunno. I suppose it was a fair call (I can't remember whether they used my suggested heading, and if so should I charge at 40 cents a word for those four words?) but it did seem just a wee bit on the meagre-minded and literal side.

Time tough, as Toots once said.

Anyway: Free music for you is at Music from Elsewhere, there's another couple of Essential Elsewhere albums posted, lots of new articles, and more and more photos of Buenos Aires stencil, graffiti and mural art are also starting to appear under Wall-Art.

Have a look and a listen. I'm thinking of starting to charge for this service: maybe $1.20 a pop?

But I guess some people -- me now, it seems -- don't have that kind of disposable income available these days.

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