My Decision & Lessons Learnt

I want to thank everyone for your words of wisdom, encouragement and advice. A decision has been made now that my blood has cooled.

Firstly I want to acknowledge some of the comments I received. I really appreciated them and here are some valuable lessons I have learnt.

  1. I should of asked for payment when I started writing for the first paper. This is too true, I wanted to gain experience as a writer which would hopefully get me paid work in the future. So even asking for a minimum of $30 to cover my ingredient cost would be better than nothing and working up to full payment of a syndicated article as time progresses.
  2. I should of asked earlier. This is the third and last time I will ask to be paid. After previous attempts of asking for payment all being declined, I was glad to hear that this time it was actually sent to the head of department. All other requests were flat out denied as all contributions to the papers were not paid – apparently. Even the journalists? hmmm. Lesson, the first attempt of asking for payment was after one year of writing, proving that I was good at the job and met deadline each month. At this moment I was still only published in one paper.  The second time I asked for payment was last year when I discovered that my articles were used in several other free papers on the Sunshine Coast. This the last time is because I realize that my time is valuable now that I have a three month old and no income.
  3. Its good exposure. Well yes and no. I know plenty of people pick up the paper just to read my recipe each week as I keep the topic about our local food and what is in season the focus. People take the recipe make it and occasionally I get feedback and a few folk start following me on social media. I am sure that more people are aware of my blog here on the coast now. It has not helped me gain any financial funds when offering workshops or classes.
  4. Time to start a cookbook. I originally started putting a cookbook together at the start of the year only to realise the dream of a great cookbook would cost a small fortune. It would cost $40 each to get printed and I couldn’t justify adding my own time on top of that to make it affordable. Maybe an Ebook is the way to go. I plan on writing one this week (a small one) about preserving as I am talking about that at the Qld Garden Expo.
  5. I am valuable. You know its hard sometimes to acknowledge ourselves and the work that we do. I know that I make a difference to people each week with my recipes. I am worth more than nothing and its time that I value myself and the time I put into things. Life has changed I have an adorable bundle of joy and I value that time as precious. The time I work for others should be accountable. Its time for me to get some love back.
  6. Print media is dying. Yes it is, however if they are using my content then it should be compensated. I am sure that there are many people out there willing to work for free and get the experience. Now it is time to look at the blog and see how I can make money from it.

So what is the PLAN:

Today I am going to take my time and write an email response to both the editor whom I send my recipes to each week along with the sub-editor of the APN paper. My response will be stating how much I would like to be paid and that I have a following who pick up the paper just to read the recipe. I will explain my new terms for working for them (and getting paid) and see what the response is.

With the response either going two ways. One they start paying me and value my work OR two they don’t really care that I have bills to pay as long as they are getting paid that is all that matters and they can get plenty of other free recipes to fill my spot.

Will keep you updated and thanks again to everyone who has fueled me to ask for more.


UPDATE:  2nd June 2014

After a wonderful conversation with the current Sub Editor. Looks like there may be hope for me yet. Over the coming weeks a few changes are going to be made with-in the papers and they are looking to take me on possibly as a syndicated writer. This is no promise – however an outcome will happen over the next four weeks. This could be great news and mean that my work will be paid for and reach a larger audience. Maybe its time to write that cookbook after all. All you need to do is ask.

Will keep you posted …


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Lizzie Moult

Lizzie Moult

Planning, cooking, chasing kids & running an online business; it might seem like there is a lot going on. Yet Lizzie is all about living simply and creating a flexible lifestyle that enables plenty of travel, adventure and quality time. A lifestyle writer and photographer for over 10 years for numerous publications, working online for over 14 years Lizzie also works as a mentor for women who are looking to create and live a life with passion & purpose at

13 Responses

  1. The world around us is unfriendly at times, sending you my biggest hugs and warm wishes, I love what you do and would love to buy a book..ebook or paper…I feel your frustation and recognise the time and heart that goes into your life xxxxxxx
    good luck fighting the BUSINESS PEOPLE……I recommend you direct your marketing to real earthy peops xx we love you and appreciate your worth $$

    1. Yes my darling Isla has made me realise how important things are. Time does fly and I can’t waste time on things if it is not getting me anywhere or helping out the bank. Blogging is hard work and I am still yet to make more than $35 a week to cover the cost of even having the blog in the first place. Let alone make a living from it. Kids change everything and I love it.

  2. I think you are making a wise decision Lizzie, it is hard sometimes to value ourselves and to say I want to be recognised for what I’m worth, it is something I am grappling with at the moment too. I want to make a living from my blog and that means hard cold cash, not just exposure. After all, the business world revolves around money and no one expects people to be paid for their work in kind words and compliments. Good on you, I am sure you have more enjoyable ways to spend your valuable time now you have your gorgeous girl!
    I am trying to remember that if I don’t value what I do and try and give that a monetary value, nobody else will either! Have a great day! PS That bag full of snow peas the other day looked fantastic, I must makes sure I get some in soon down here, they are my favs! Julie x

  3. Hi Annie,
    Here’s a thought… offer a very small subscription membership on your blog for “Inside Recipe Circle and Secrets” etc”.. Those that love and adore your writing and work and recipes and appreciate the effort going into communicating and sharing all your wisdom may well join and this begins both some income streaming and value exchange relationship building. I am about to dip my hairy and cute little toes into similar waters with my first website and Blog (in birthing stage/not live yet) so I can only imagine your journey this far. As you stir the pots and feed your readers, I will be stirring their hearts and minds and help to reveal their brilliance as I share over 20 years of direct experience and training in Enlightenment Living for Modern Life.(c) Yes, I could sit and smell my garden roses and happily potter in my vege patch and quietly contemplate my plump little navel, however its time to share, just as you have been doing, fabulously I may add. Mwah! to your little poppet too, and whatever you do, know you have impacted us and you are loved.

  4. I’m glad you’re making progress on this. But if you don’t get $$$, I’d absolutely walk away. NO ONE follows links from a printed page (the pain of entering the URL), so you’re likely getting almost no traffic from this. BTW, in the US you own the copyright on your work unless you’ve expressly given it to the paper you’re writing for. The fact that you have a royalty-free arrangement with them, doesn’t mean they have the right to sub-license it to other papers, which is what they’ve done. Your copyright laws are different, of course, but you might want to do a bit of research so you have some more ammo. You should be receiving $$$ from each paper that picks up the recipe (although it’s likely the syndication deal will cover all of this, should that happen). Good luck!

  5. Well done Lizzie. It sounds like you have really processed and worked through this with some good solutions. I’m a big believer in the universe and timing so this needs to happen at this point to provide further opportunities. You so need to bring out a cookbook!

  6. Proud of you Lizzie! I understand only too well of your predicament. I had a weekly article on all APN Masthead websites and never got paid for it. I made the decision to stop and focus on my own path, and I’m so glad I did. You’re an amazing person inside and out. The effort you put in to your blog and the information you provide to your readers comes from love, passion and dedication, don’t let anyone undervalue that. Stay true to yourself and you will always win xx

  7. Hi Lizzie,
    So sorry to hear about this ‘journey’ that you have been on! Unfortunately it is not a rare instance, especially on the Sunshine Coast 🙁 We are constantly hearing stories from people who have been used and not paid by other local media. We will be different and make sure that 1. all of our contributors sign up to an agreed rate and 2. that we pay them! It shouldn’t be that hard! Times are tight and we are a locally-owned and independent publication however reputation and ethics are everything to us and we will always make sure that our contributors are happy and know that they are valued. Our magazine will be nothing without the expertise and talents of our team.! Matt Golinski is our food contributor however we will certainly keep you in mind if the opportunity arises. All the best – just wanted to let you know that not all publications are the same. Go get ’em! and don’t be afraid to walk away – you never know what other doors may open 🙂

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