Don’t be a Writing Whore

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shakespeare-got-to-get-paidI know many of you have heard of Ghost Writing, but have you ever heard of Prostitute Writing? It’s a term I learned in college, that I like to share with other writers because those who try to make a living from writing are at risk of doing this. The term was coined by one of my writing mentors, Karla Stouse. Most of her money she makes as a college professor, but a sizeable portion of her income comes from writing, which allows her to travel and maintain her ideal lifestyle.

You may be trying to imagine what prostitute writing is. I shudder and blush to think of the possibilities some of you have come up with. It simply means writing for monetary gain with no emotional attachment. Writing, like sex, can be done just for the financial reward. Not that there is anything wrong with making some money from your writing. But usually there is an emotional reward that is met with the monetary gain.

Karla mainly writes computer manuals, but some of her earlier published works were children’s books. She refused to bring them to class to show her students because she was ashamed of them. I think I found them on Amazon, but I can’t find descriptions or reader reviews to learn if her loathing for her books is founded. This is the perfect example of prostitute writing.

I’ve done my share of prostitute writing. As a writer for Textbroker, I’ve had many assignments I didn’t enjoy, but I wrote them anyway. When I write my novel, there is an emotional payoff, even without immediate financial gain.

Do you enjoy everything you write? Is there love in every word, or do you just write for the money?