Tired of giving out technical advice for free

Subject: Tired of giving out technical advice for free
From: Emily Berk <emily -at- armadillosoft -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Sun, 24 Feb 2002 13:09:27 -0800

When I became a consultant, I also took up freelance writing of articles for technical magazines. Although writing for magazines is not at all profitable, I thought that the exposure might help me get better-paid work and I enjoy calling up important folks in the industry and asking pointed questions.

But, looking back after 20 years of writing for peanuts for magazines, I realize that I have not once found paid employment as a result of an article I've written. I do, however, continue to get lots and lots of calls and emails asking for additional information that did not appear in the articles.

Just today there's such an inquiry in my Inbox. He just read the piece I wrote and is impressed by its careful research and thoroughness. He is a professional in his field, working for a well-established organization and he is asking for advice (and it's not a yes-or-no kind of question, but one that would take time and research to answer) that he will no doubt package into a nice report and in return receive a nice check (or maybe he's on salary). He does not offer me any recompense for the work he is asking me to do.

Can you suggest some polite way for me to reply by saying, "I'm so glad you liked the piece I published. Wouldn't you like to hire me as a consultant so I could feel good about answering your question while also feeding my family?"


--Emily, who is tightening her belt and battening down for this ongoing winter...

~ Emily Berk ~
On the web at www.armadillosoft.com *** Armadillo Associates, Inc. ~
~ Project management, developer relations and ~
extremely-technical technical documentation that developers find useful.~

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