Freelancing fees - Reply

Subject: Freelancing fees - Reply
From: Sarah Lee Bihlmayer <tecscrib -at- SIRIUS -dot- COM>
Date: Sat, 17 Feb 1996 12:12:12 -0700

In answer to Richard Farley's query, Peter Kent said:

>I figure that somewhere around 1% of freelancers are making over $100,000.
>>The survey I mentioned found four people making between $100,000 and
>>$124,999, and one person making between $125,000 and $149,999, out of 71

<good stuff snipped>

>If you are confident and have good sales ability, you'll be able to ask
>for a >higher rate than someone who doesn't know how to sell. (There are
>no "union >rates!") You'll start off low, and slowly push the rates up.

I'm confused--where does the 1% figure come from? When I do the math, the
5 out of 71 survey respondents making over $100K constitute 7%. I suspect
that my geographical region has a higher percentage in this
category...can't nail down a percentage, but at least half the freelancers
I know make over $100K. Of course, the ultra-high cost of living in this
area drives pay rates up. I suspect geographical location may also
influence freelancers' incomes.

I agree with Peter that confidence and sales ability help to boost
rates...and I've had exactly the experience he describes, of starting off
low and slowly increasing my rates.

Tony Rocco spoke of another element that helps boost earnings:

>The market offers a pay range based on experience, technical expertise,
>and >ability. When a certain technology is hot, like multimedia or the
>Internet, >say, having skills in those areas increases your earning power.
>If your >skills or interests are in an area in less demand, or where there
>is an >oversupply of tech writers, your earning power is less. What's hot
>and what's >not varies from year to year, so you've got to keep up with
>the ever-changing >technologies to keep earning top dollar.

I've definitely found this to be true. Currently, my rate boosters are
HTML/CGI/Perl and indexing...both "niche" skills. I'm also fascinated with
new technology and love to stay on the cutting edge, which definitely helps
keep my profits high.

|"God is in the details." --Frank Lloyd Wright|
| Sarah Lee Bihlmayer * Print/Online/WWW Documentation Specialist |
| Technical Writing * Technical/Developmental/Copy/Production Editing |
|Indexing * Technical Illustration * Electronic Prepress * Graphic Design |
|POB 27901-312 San Francisco CA 94127 * 415-207-4046 * tecscrib -at- sirius -dot- com|

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