In general, there’s very little I will refuse to write. There are certainly types of projects that I prefer to take on. I also know that there are certain kinds of writing that I’m just not particularly good at, so I tend to avoid them. But there aren’t a lot of projects that I simply refuse to take as an entire category. There are only a few things that I won’t even consider.
Of the writing projects that I’ve been offered over the years, the only one that really hands down made me angry was an offer to write essays for an essay mill that would sell work to students who would then turn it in as their own. It’s not only an unethical practice in my book — it’s downright stupid. At the college level, a student is paying for an education, so why would he want to do anything that would diminish the value of the money he’s spending. There’s also an element of ‘I worked my butt off in school, so you should, too!’ in my refusal.
Don’t get me wrong: I’m happy to help students improve their writing: I worked as a tutor in college and still take on the occasional student as long as I know the person. But I’m not about to do any student’s work for them, no matter the price.
Pure SEO Writing
I’m talking about the stuff where you have to hit specific word densities and even include misspelled words on occasion. It’s bad writing, hands down, and I never want to get used to writing that way. I’m pretty sure it will ruin me for just about everything else.
I like writing content for the web in general, and I have no problem working with keywords. But, ultimately, I write for human readers rather than bots. I have no beef with anyone that would rather have machines read their work, though.
There’s nothing wrong in my book with writing content for adult sites. I realize that some writers are against such projects on a moral basis, but if it isn’t a problem for you, there’s decent money to be made. You may want to use a pseudonym in case Grandma is surfing the web, but beyond that, use your own judgment.
Personally, though, I just flat out can’t do it. I can’t take that kind of project seriously and often wind up giggling like a grade schooler just on the basis of project descriptions.
What About You?
Is there any type of writing project that you just won’t do? Something bothers you on an ethical level or something you just can’t wrap your head around?