I came across an interesting conundrum this week with a prospective client who posted a solicitation to develop his screenplay into a 75,000-word novel. My fee for the work covered the anticipated 150 hours of work that the project would entail. He replied that he liked the writing samples provided to him, he admired my credentials as a writer, and that my fee was way too expensive when other vendors were offering to do the project for $200 - $300.
My response: You get what you pay for--people who are willing to work for $2 per hour or less.
He acknowledged that the quality of writing at that bargain basement rate would likely be poor; however, it made better financial sense to him to hire a cheap (re: poor quality) writer and pay an editor a few hundred bucks to fix it, than it would to pay for top quality writing and still have to pay an editor.
Egad. I may have to raise my editing rates if that's the sort of thinking to which buyers subscribe. Of course, an ultra-cheap editor can also be counted on to perform poorly. (See my blog on that little experiment last month.)
What gets me is that this guy is a writer--he writes scripts. He knows the time and effort that goes into building a good story. And still he opts for the lowest price option.
On the upside, I did start on a project for another playwright who does value good writing. Bless his heart. Really, I'm not delivering a southern insult.
This week's blog will be short: it's time to wash llamas.