A Guide to RPG Freelance Rates: Part 1 (Writing and Editing) - Page 2
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  1. #11
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    Magsman (Lvl 14)



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    Quote Originally Posted by 77IM View Post
    At the other end, if you manage to get 20/word, that looks like about $50/hour (or $100,000/year if you work 50 five-day weeks). That's pretty good, especially if you're doing something you love and being your own boss and working from home and so forth.

    The average cost of living for a family of four is about $48,000/year. Let's say you're in a 25% tax bracket so before taxes this family would need to make $64,000/year. (Taxes are complicated but 25% should be "close enough" for this sort of estimate.) So if you are a writer and the sole provider of a family, you would want to make around 12.8/word. OTOH if another member of the family is taking half the burden, you only need to make 6.4/word, which is the "professional" rate, and smack dab in the middle of M. T. Black's 3-to-10/word guideline. That's not too bad, especially if you love your job etc.
    That's assuming that you have enough paying work to fill 50 five-day working weeks every year. Part of the reason why freelancers earn (or at least *should* earn) a higher per-hour wage than salaried employees is to compensate for all the times when you're not earning any money. That includes days when you don't have any paying projects, but also the time you spend on admin and networking, holidays and days when you're unable to work for whatever reason (family, health, power cuts, or your pillow makes a more compelling case than your computer screen).
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  2. #12
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    Myrmidon (Lvl 10)



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    As the editor for EN5ider I should mention that we pay 3 cents a word plus rights reversion after a year (and I loooove me that rights reversion <3). Message me or email me (mike.myler.adventures|at|gmail.com) to get onto the call list!

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Myler View Post
    As the editor for EN5ider I should mention that we pay 3 cents a word plus rights reversion after a year (and I loooove me that rights reversion <3).
    Yes, rights is a big thing to take into account. Virtually all of the work I've seen is "work for hire". However, if you can get the rights back and there is a market for what you've written, you can take "two bites of the cherry" and self-publish, and you need to take that into account.
    @mike, how does your rights reversion work when someone has worked on an EN World property? I'm think specifically about your ZEITGEIST campaign setting?

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by M.T. Black View Post
    Yes, rights is a big thing to take into account. Virtually all of the work I've seen is "work for hire". However, if you can get the rights back and there is a market for what you've written, you can take "two bites of the cherry" and self-publish, and you need to take that into account.
    @mike, how does your rights reversion work when someone has worked on an EN World property? I'm think specifically about your ZEITGEIST campaign setting?
    I can only speak from my experience (N.O.W., Tip of the Tongue, To Stake A Vampire) but my pre-EN5ider work was all work for hire--they (and I suspect the whole of ZEITGEIST, which is something gradually getting converted over to 5E over on the Patreon) are EN Publishing's intellectual property.

    To be clear ZEITGEIST is not one of my campaign settings, and I didn't actually write any of the original content (I think that's mostly Ryan Nock and Thursty Hillman)
    Last edited by Mike Myler; Friday, 5th April, 2019 at 11:51 PM.

  5. #15
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    Hi Mike,

    Sorry if I wasn't clear. I know you that ZEITGEIST is EN World IP. What I'm asking is this - say I was to write a ZEITGEIST adventure for EN5ider, what would happen to the right to that adventure after a year, given it includes EN World IP?

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by M.T. Black View Post
    Hi Mike,

    Sorry if I wasn't clear. I know you that ZEITGEIST is EN World IP. What I'm asking is this - say I was to write a ZEITGEIST adventure for EN5ider, what would happen to the right to that adventure after a year, given it includes EN World IP?
    Oh golly I'm not sure. You'd have to check with Morrus but I think that all stays in-house, so to speak. At this point ZEITGEIST is in three different editions though so it's probably not going anywhere (any part of it, new additions or old bits). Maybe though! It's not my place to say.

  7. #17
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    All good, I was just curious. I guessed that was an exception. But stuff like archetypes etc., you revert all rights after a year?

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by M.T. Black View Post
    Hi Mike,

    Sorry if I wasn't clear. I know you that ZEITGEIST is EN World IP. What I'm asking is this - say I was to write a ZEITGEIST adventure for EN5ider, what would happen to the right to that adventure after a year, given it includes EN World IP?
    A ZEITGEIST adventure is like writing a Forgotten Realms adventure for WotC, or a Star Wars novel -- obviously, we're not going to give you the setting IP (but then we're not commissioning new ZEITGEIST material from freelancers - there's just the core AP which we produced in-house). But a non-ZEITGEIST adventure for something like EN5ider, you retain the rights. It's not even a reversion really - you keep them from the start, but in exchange for being paid, you license us to have a year to make our money back. Then you can do what you want with it.
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  9. #19
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    Also EN5ider juuuuuuuuuust recently started doing new adventure content again in addition to the monthly ZEITGEIST piece, albeit smaller in scope

  10. #20
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    Makes perfect sense - thanks @Morrus!

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