Ask for more, now

Amid all the current doom and gloom, it's still possible to get pay rises - even the odd decent one.

Most clients I have asked for a rate rise over the past 12 months have agreed to one, even if it's only been small. Some commissioning editors really do understand that times are tough.

And some, faced with recruitment freezes, are prepared to pay over the odds to secure the services of someone they know can deliver the goods. I know of several instances - usually subject to confidentiality agreements - where this has happened.

On the other hand, I've heard horror stories about people being asked to write for free for publications that fully intend to profit from their work.

We're going to need some money stashed away in case things get worse, so don't be afraid to request a rise - or even payment in the first place. I have never lost work through asking for more.

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