Tech writing charges? [Archive] - Glock Talk


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06-28-2005, 08:32
I have the opportunity to write all of the documentation: end user, administrator, FAQs and built-in help, for a large software package. I estimate it will take me one month to learn the software, document it and write all of the documentation. I am not a graphics person, so I don't have to do the screen shots, etc, only the tech writing and layout.

WHat should I charge for this? I spoke with a couple of writers I know who suggested $50/hour, but I thought that was rather steep. I was thinking a flat fee of $4000.00 for the month and then an hourly fee after that if it goes longer and/or they make a lot of revisions. I plan on working about 50 hours/week on this project.

I am an experienced tech writer and have written manuals, FAQs, etc before, but always as part of my "job description" without extra pay. This would be freelance. Any suggestions?

10 Ring Tao
06-28-2005, 11:10
Maybe someone in the bookrack section knows more about freelance writing.

06-28-2005, 11:29
$50 dollars per hour is not out of line. If anything, it might be a tad on the low side. Since you haven't done this before (as a freelancer), your estimate on how long it will take will likely be very far off. I can also tell you that you will be hard pressed to spend 50 hours per week writing without going crazy.

I am a professional freelance writer but I don't do this type of work. Just my 2 cents worth.

06-29-2005, 07:18
I agree with Allan. $50hr would be a good figure. I write software and quite often the help docs. Also, I've worked with Microsoft Press as a technical editor, and I can say that you have to figure in time for the changes that THEY make to the docs along the way.