Writers are needed in almost any industry, business, occupation, or field you can imagine. Many writers work solo as freelancers. However, there are moments when writers need to collaborate on a specific project. You might have encountered fiction novels written by your favorite author collaborating with another writer. Such arrangements are known as collaborative writing. In these instances, the two writers need to trust each other implicitly. More than that, they also need tools such as a writing partnership agreement. Read below to understand what you have to do before writing collaboratively with another author.
Choosing Your Partner Wisely
In the freelance world, you have the freedom to choose the type of client you want. The same is true with the type of partner you would like to work with on any specific project. It is imperative that you base your choice on specific qualities and factors. One of the most important qualities is the partner’s ability to write. With time, you could develop rapport and friendship with the person with whom you work closely. Moreover, evaluate the partnership to determine if the other writer could help you to take your writing skills to the next level. Good news is you could learn to know what to look for in a collaborative writer.
Spell Out the Appropriate Freelance Writer Guidelines
Next, the writing partnership agreement has to spell out the guidelines you shall follow to solve any pending problem or issue. Just as it is the case with any partnership, this kind of arrangement is replete with issues that need effective solutions. First, you might be unable to develop any kind of rapport, which could be a shame in any freelance project. Without a rapport, it becomes hard to pick each other’s brains. Additionally, your partner would be quite insensible, thus making it harder for you two to work together for any duration. Guidelines clearly drawn from a writing partnership agreement are crucial for solving the following common challenges that afflict any freelance partnership:
- Different styles of management/freelancing
- Personal habits
- Ability to work well together
- Financial difficulties and equity
- Establishing boundaries
- Setting appropriate expectations
- How much money each writer brings to the table
- Poor levels of commitment to the project
- Disparities in roles and skills
Clarify Each Writer’s Responsibilities
A well-drafted writing partnership agreement also highlights and clarifies each writer’s roles and responsibilities. That is not to say that there is no room for displaying individual skills and talents. By all means necessary, strive to create the kind of atmosphere that encourages each freelance writer in that team to display the talents and skills that make them unique. However, let each individual writer know his role in the team. The writing partnership agreement provides a platform for talking about that and handling problems that are likely to arise from such arrangements. While at it, do not forget to stipulate the consequences and repercussions for ignoring your roles.
In working as a team, you might be tempted to ignore each other’s rights. However, that would be a destructive path to follow. Instead, you should reinforce the fact that each of you has specific rights as a freelance writer. For example, you are both entitled to enjoy copyright laws. Nevertheless, it is imperative to remember that copyright laws do not apply to ideas. Your idea is not protected, but your expression of that idea is. Therefore, you all need to find ways of working in a manner that does not infringe on each other’s expression of artistic ideas. You might need to acknowledge each other’s role in the expression of the ideas you develop too.