Monday, July 22, 2013

Making Money From Writing?

I've been thinking a lot about my future. At the moment, while I've figured out what's bothering me (lack of engagement with kids), the bigger problems still remain. I'm not making any money at the moment and this is going to be a very big problem very soon.

Someone asked me and I said I'd really like to move into writing. But then, everyone's creating their own content. So how would you make money from writing?

An idea occurred to me... Would people visit a news site? Well okay - that's not it in it's entirety. I think there's a great big hole in the market. Almost every news site has puff pieces. The articles themselves have to fit into a certain space and often don't have the background information to give you any real context. There are things not reported in mainstream that probably should (usually government passing bills that will have quite a big effect on people).

The problem is, how to format it. Currently news sites are blogs. But what about breaking stories? i.e. The Christchurch earthquakes didn't just happen. There's a lot of background. So how would you make it so that you could just add to stories as they happen? This would mean that you had access to older stuff without trying to trawel through for it.

So perhaps a wiki type format instead? The question though... could this lead to advertising revenue enough to live on? Are there copyright issues around trawling around different news sites in order to get the information? etc.

Take this example:

Earthquake Felt in Wellington

[link] An earthquake shook Wellington today - considered an aftershock but causing damage to buildings. The quake measured 6.5 on the Richter Scale. The quake happened around 5pm. The initial earthquake happened in Cook Strait - which measured 5.8, at 7:17am.

Background information:

New Zealand has suffered a few earthquakes of late. Christchurch is still rocked by aftershocks (though this is seldom reported on now).

The Richter Scale doesn't really speak to how severely a quake is felt by people as it doesn't take depth of the quake into account.

Christchurch Man Arrested on Suspicion of Murder

[link] A 59 year old man was arrested after the discovery of the body of Valmai Jean McFie, a 67 year old woman was found dead outside a council flat. The man is believed to live in a nearby unit.

Microsoft's Hardware Strategy Embarrassing

[link] Microsoft's attempt to shift from software for personal computers to hardware has so far failed to turn over the big profits expected. In a nutshell: MS came out with the Surface RT - a device designed for mobile computing - utilizing an ARM processor i.e. better power usage and better geared toward mobile computer. 

However, the devices have failed to appeal to consumers. MS have, as a result, lowered the price on the Surface RT in order to stimulate sales. This has effected shares. The announcement around their direction came only a week ago and so MS knew of the losses before the announcement meaning not much can be read into the sales as there's something else in play here.

Background Information

While MS are talking about trying to move closer to Apple's business model, their Windows product attempts to bridge the gap between mobile and desktop computing - particularly for business needs. The reins on the "Redmond Tax" (the name given to the amount paid for a license for MS software when purchasing a new computer. Particularly detestable to those who intend on removing that software such as Linux users) is very unlikely to subside and so the announcement is more about how MS intends to invest.

Traditionally, despite the Redmond tax, MS have made their money off selling their Office products so their Operating System and Office Products are unlikely to disappear but changes will likely be made to each of these products in line with their hardware direction.

So basically the news in summary. A quick read should give you water cooler information...

So not really the sort of writing I'd enjoy... but useful nonetheless. What do people think? Could this work?

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