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  • Writer's pictureRiley Murphy


Updated: Sep 12, 2023

Part One


I quickly read that line and thought.

If you ever got tired of writing your books there’s a different avenue to go. Maybe you should give it a try anyway. Five hundred a word for Blogging? Awesome.

Suddenly a rush of excitement practically scorches me into action as I snatch up a pen — search for a notepad, and endeavor to close the home office door so no man or furry beast can disrupt me from making my millions.

*Pauses here for a moment to whip out the disclaimer*

I write novels, three hundred thousand words or more. Yikes, at five hundred a word? — of course I’d scale back the count slightly for the shorter format — But that said. Can you feel the excitement?

There I am mentally calculating my word count success. I don’t need to do the math. At this price, I have a big picture to stare at. Certainly big enough to inspire my muse.

*Cracks knuckles. Rolls shoulders. Then shakes arms out*

I’m getting ready to write a 2000 word post and make the dough I need for a nice Mediterranean spa weekend package, when I realize I don’t have my glasses on. I can’t write without my glasses.

I could tell you it’s on account of me being nearly blind, but I’d rather say, I gain comfort after penning the pearls of wisdom so fast on the pad I can’t decipher them later on when I go to type the words from page to computer during my editing process. It’s the best personal challenge I have in the course of a writing day. It’s also the best laugh. Seriously, my most creative material usually arrives during the guessing game I have to play with the ink that foils traditional comprehension. I dare say hieroglyphic scrabble would be easier to read.

*Sigh. Good times*

This isn’t about my writing process though, this is about my crushing disappointment when I put on my glasses and realize the offer for a blog writer is five cents a word. Five. Cents.

Do you guys want my 0.02 on that? By that accounting I’d have to write—wait, I write fast, don’t I? So even a two-page post multiplied by…? And then divided by—could…?

Yeah, math was never my strong suit, so there I am scrolling through the offers on this particular site. (For anonymity sake, I will be changing the exact offer for one that represents the same thing sort of, but not at all because this is my Website and I can make those important decisions so that me and the ink that flows in my hieroglyphic scrabble game won’t go to jail or be slapped with an “I hate you for mentioning industry numbers’ comments in the queue below). 😊

Picture me hunched over my keyboard. I’m really not hunkered because I’m too short, but there I am hopefully squinting at the jobs, feeling like George Costanza on Seinfeld when he’s telling Jerry he wants to be a famous baseball player or an Architect when he picks a career.

Why am I commiserating with that character you may ask?

Here’s the inner monologue.

‘Oh, boy. This Company listing is looking for a talented writer to write ‘subject specific’ to their Company copy that will draw more clients.’

Hm. The subject is very specific and they are looking for an unrealistic draw count from said talented writer. I mean there is only so much blog traffic for that subject.

Right. They need to offer more pay for the talent. Next!

Company paying top dollar to creative writer who can write fast.

There I am sitting up straighter, thinking I can do that. I’m creative and fast.

But then, I read on…

Must be interested in the politics of the day as they pertain to the southern migration of the left winged gnat.

Drat! That’s no good. Those darn gnats. I barely know anything about them let alone their limb affliction or politics.

Moving on.

Company needs a writer who can work independently.


I sagely nod here.

I am a hermit when I write.

This writer will have a good grasp of the English language.


I have been known to wrestle words to the page and when they fight back? I make them up. Crapatola and any smart sounding word with a suffix of ‘esque’ attached to it is SO my creation. Heck, when I’m stuck in a huge literary tangle I’ve been known to resort to having my characters mouth the word. Sometimes illegibly.

But, I digress. Back to the list that appears to have been created for those that haven’t paid any dues.

*Insert me mouthing the words, ‘Five cents’ here. Sheesh.

The lucky candidate will be able to bring new and engaging content to our clients and other company division personnel.

No nod. Not even a check. Instead, I do a double take before I look at you and point at them.

Seriously? Did they just suggest that I should start on the bottom of the ladder wrung in their company contracting position and wake up, dust off, and invigorate all those that are making more money there than me by writing these articles for them at *gasp* five cents a word? *Drags hands down the sides of my face* They’ll be calling me an intern in no time.

The nerve, but anyone who knows me would tell you that stuff like this intrigues me. It’s a kind of professional, passive aggressive chisel to one’s core talent that got me paying attention. I’m waving the gauntlet here to those that know they are marginalizing a valuable asset. I respect this. I’ve been in business too long not to. This is why I read on.

Our candidate will have a working knowledge in engineering science. This a must.

WTH? Those—Well, never mind what I call the black rimmed, short sleeve wearing, pocket protector, NASA-type individuals in the elite world of nothing I am remotely familiar with. I’ll just say this. If you were holding out in your job description to garner interest in a ‘highly qualified’ prospect that equated to less the 1% of the total population in the United States, you should have said, “We are not only looking for the needle in the proverbial hay stack. We want it to match the color of the hay.”

*Side-eyes you as I speak candidly here*

Intriguing right? There’s me thinking I could SO pull this off. I’m not intimidated by the job posting or the meaning behind it. They probably paid an expert blogger from the psyche pool to craft the putdown. Sneaky buggers.

I was just about to press the apply button when I read the words. Must pass an AI content test.

There’s me. *Blink. Blink*

I didn’t hesitate. I Goggled the phrase to find out what that meant. That’s when I sat back.

They have AI programs to write content? This isn’t good. How will an author’s prose improve if they don’t flex their independent and unique writer’s voice?

They are killing their learning curve.

In fact, I learned some nefarious bloggers are using this AI application to create their work to sell to clients. Hm. Is it their work? It’s a good question, right?

I’ll have to think about that, but now I know why some of those AI writers aren’t as outraged over the pay scale as I am. Heck, I’m even more outraged that some of today’s brightest writing talent are being lead astray down easier street toward using a program to generate unauthentic-to-them prose. There is nothing special or unique in that.

Meh, I don’t want to go all Samuel Clements on you (there was a reason he wrote as Mark Twain, you know…) about the AI content stuff, so I’ll just say this. Writing is my business. It’s what I do to earn a living. When someone buys my book, reads this blog, or hires me to write copy for them it’s up to me to deliver my words to them – not some AI’s concept tweaked by me after I have it in hand.

In part deux I shall cover a big conspiracy theory I have about this. Haha! Actually in typical Riley Murphy fashion I have several story ideas that I could jump off with here, but I will try to contain my creative monster and share some industry possible happenings, that won't be disclosed to the public because they will probably be squashed before the fallout happens.

As usual.

My personal opinion is my own. I think the AI threat to the creative process is grossly overrated and equally as grossly underrated. It is a true catch twenty-two situation that must be looked at from the creative artist's perspective and then from the financial gatekeepers perspective. The problem, the way I see it, is that we have too many of each at the moment and not all of them do what they say they do.

Translation? A person who writes with the best version of an AI writing prompt program is not a writer. I would call them a reporter, at best. A person who has been given funding to dole out money to people they know who can be a reporter, is not a gatekeeper. I would call them a lucky individual with a nepotism fetish.

A writer who is an author of self expression would never use an AI generated prompt for a story, or an article. What I know as a universal AI helpmate to any messenger of the public (Google) - would, and is used for details that might be pertinent, but are unknown as fact to the author of self expression. The author doesn't say that the information they searched on Google to make the facts known to them for their story purpose, are theirs. It is simply a point of reference that has a consistent and universal belief in the author's self expressed reality who the public they are messaging to, are interested in reading.

I am LMAO! I will share this about my Freelance foray while we do our remodel. Out of hundreds of postings, I found two. Just two that I thought, sure, why not? I was hired to write a post for one of them and I have to say, it was fun. But the biggest thing to come out of the process was this AI topic as it pertains to the writer. Not only of articles, Youtube videos, Books, but also movies scripts.

Remember when I said there were too many of each at the moment and not all of them do what they say they do? It would seem budget constraints and immediate consumption are killing them off and with each death we are seeing the inside of the ugly. One consistent? They all seem to have a common thread that leads back to the AI experience. That's what interests me.

But, hey, you guys know me. Imma going to find some silver linings out of all this. I mean, I actually contracted for someone else besides me in this lifetime. That's the author of self expression showing progress, right?

Tune in next time when I shall include fun memes and easy to read diagrams to get over on those pocket protector wearing individuals who think they can ink their own scripts without the help of a self expressed author being involved. It's the only way a gal like me can compete. Have I mentioned how I nod off when I hear the words, quantum, integers or manifest destined individuals, spoken in a sentence? No? It's true. Now, if you show me a complicated image with some pretty colors in it, I will probably find the worm hole you've overlooked for billions of centuries and close it for you. It's a quirk of mine.

In layman's terms. I think you're smart, but I have found a way around your elite Nasa-esque world (hi-five to memes!) Maybe it's time you guys admit the self expressed author is smart and find an equitable way around our world, because your memes aren't killing it at the box office or book stores.

As always, thanks for stopping by!

Riley, who much prefers pictures to explain tough subjects and all Ikea furniture assembly instructions. To the engineers of those assembly instructions, I just want to say, you come off looking God-like when I ignore your instructions and put your designs together by sight of the diagrams. Seriously. Every nut and washer I figure out, I think, "Man, they are so smart! Would you look at that? It fits."

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