With the advance in technology and the availability of the internet, writing opportunities leap at you left and right via e-mail and different social networks, like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google, to name just a few. There’s a service for just about everything you might need, from designing the cover to editing and reviewing your novel, and to even helping you with the writing.
Once you get on the internet you are bombarded with advertisements of stay-at-home moms making 10k each month from online writing jobs working from home. Or self published authors making more money from their e-books than they would make from publishing their work with a traditional publishing house. You are constantly faced with online success stories that at some point you start wishing that you too were one. The choices out there are numerous.
When you are a blogger and you come across a website that tells you that you can blog and make money from it, of course your instinct will tell you to go for it. But past experience has taught me not to rely on my instincts much. Years ago I made the mistake of signing a contract with an international publishing house in New York. I got so carried away by their promises that I didn’t research them thoroughly. I didn’t check the forums nor the comments and remarks people posted about their experiences with the same publishers. I committed myself to the publishers based on their promises. My instincts told me that it was the best thing to do at the time. And after much heartache I can only say that I didn’t know to do better at the time. As Maya Angelou said:
“You did what you knew how to do, and when you knew better, you did better.”
The point is when someone is telling you that he loves your book and can guarantee it’ll be a big hit if you’re willing to make the right investment, your instinct isn’t enough. And it is not always easy to tell which of these sources are reliable or to distinguish between the real deal and the scam. The same goes for editing and writing jobs and instruction.
Who can you trust these days? Even though most of these sites and sources may seem legitimate, you have to do your research before undertaking any commitments. You have to look at the people behind these websites, and read other peoples’ reviews and remarks. Check the forums and discussions. Find the tools to dig deeper before you make important decisions about your work.
I think I myself have come a long way. I think I have learned a lot from the new generation, the generation of technology, especially from my kids. But I still can’t help but wonder who to trust these days!