We’ve got a new book out, 101 Things You Need to Know to Make it as a Travel Writer, that answers 101 questions that we hear from travel writers all the time that are holding them back from achieving their Dream of Travel Writing. To celebrate the new book, we’ll be tackling a new sticky travel-writing situation each Monday here on The Six-Figure Travel Writer blog.

“Can time tracking really help my freelance travel writing business?”

Yes. Here’s how: At the end of every month, you look back on the data you’ve collected and you say, “Okay, this magazine paid me this many dollars this month. How many hours did I spend on that? Am I at $50 an hour? Am I at $12 an hour? Am I at $125 an hour?”

And you make decisions about who you’re going to continue to work with based on that number, based on that dollars-per-hour number and your ability to change it.

So it might be that right now you’re doing $22 an hour for a big client of yours, but you can’t afford to just let go of that client. What can you do to bring that $22 per hour number up? You look at your specific task data. You look back at what you tracked. You look back at what actually went into those hours that made your rate $22 an hour.

  • Did you spend a lot of time looking up things to write about your blog posts?
  • Did you spend a lot of time coordinating interviews with sources for that article?
  • Did you spend a lot of time on the phone with sources for that article?
  • Did you spend a lot of time emailing with that editor to clarify things?
  • Or did you spend a lot of time editing, re-editing, writing, re-writing?
  • Did you spend a lot of time structuring that piece?

What did you spend a lot of time on? And then you look at how to minimize that.

You look at every hour spent on that client and see if it was worth it.

Ask yourself, “Are there ways that I can make this worth it even if it’s not worth it for me right now? And if not, do I get a new client next month?”

Need More Answers to Your Burning Travel Writing Business Questions?

Want to get instant answers to more than 400 travel writing questions on everything from placing stories to dealing with editors and free travel to landing lucrative work writing for companies?

We’ve spent the last two years building up our On-Demand Coaching Concierge to answer all of your questions!

You can get access to it, along with more than 200 hours of video classes on building a travel writing business, and how-to-pitch information for more than 600 magazines that cover travel, with the Dream Buffet, our all-access resource pass.

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