I’ve worked as a freelance writer and I’ve hired freelancers. I remember when I worked as an editor, I was interviewing a writer that said “I get a dollar a word” both my co-editor and I muted the phone because we couldn’t help but laugh—a dollar a word? That’s insane! Normally, when freelancing you’ll get a flat rate sometimes it’s as little as $10.00 an article or as high as $400. Now, if you’re getting $400 you are at the top of your game for a freelancer, you have demonstrated that you can get top interviews—I’m talking Tom Hanks not some new actor off the plane starring in local theater. You’ve also probably had positions as a staff writer somewhere like the New York Times or have written a book … basically you’re independently famous and can cash in on your name.
Last Sunday on the latest episode of ‘Girls’, the character of Hannah* got offered $200.00 for her first published article ever. I rolled my eyes at this because it’s complete bullshit. It reminded me of the time on ‘Sex and the City’ where Carrie Bradshaw proudly proclaimed “I’ve been offered four dollars a word at Vogue.” I laughed at that too. Carrie Bradshaw, who writes a small sex column for a no-name paper, would not get four freaking dollars a word at Vogue. Nonsense! I laughed and laughed at these fictional characters with their amazing apartments and designer clothes in New York working as freelancers…hahahah! Fake people on T.V are so silly. Then I got a hard dose of reality.
Sarah Palin is out at Fox. They dumped her. The first smart thing Fox has done in decades. Naturally, Smart Politics decided to calculate how much it cost Fox to have Palin. They looked at her three-year contract in which she made one million dollars a year and broke it down with how many words she spoke for the network. We heard 189,221 words from Sarah Palin. She appeared about once a week. That mean she was paid about $15.81 per word spoken. Sarah Palin was paid almost $16.00 per word. I’m sorry…but that airhead with absolutely no credibility as a journalist, politician, or even human being at this point is not worth five cents a word let alone $16.00!
Want to feel even sicker? Palin said, “You betcha” twice, “Amen” 111 times, “God” 57 times, “Moses” three times, and “Jesus” just once—that’s almost three grand right there. Go back to busting your ass at your nine to five where you pay up to 15% in taxes per pay check and try not to scream over the fact that if you just could’ve been the one chosen to ruin a Presidential campaign –you too could’ve been paid one million dollars a year to be a moron.
*Hannah’s character is entitled and self centered and that’s the point. Lena Dunham wrote this character and is someone who has had her career handed to her on her parents good name so I understand why she wouldn’t know that you actually have to work for things in order to make a lot of money instead of just saying “gimme”.