What is my time worth?

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I’ve been struggling recently with a whole series of questions about how I spend my time. Is it better for me to do things myself, or to pay for someone else to do them? Which comes back to the question of the value of my time.

Now, at the moment, what income I am making is fairly minimal, so from that point of view my time is a free resource that I can use for whatever activity this is. But on the other hand I have big plans to build my author business and develop more, which requires alot of time at the beginning to get the first books written and ready for launch. So anything extra I do takes away from my time working on those and delays what I can release.

There are various calculators for working out an hourly rate for freelancers, but none of them seem to be relevant to me at the moment. So I’m stuck wondering every day what the best use of my time is. And while I try to spend as much time as I can writing and editing the books I’m planning to publish this year, I’m not making as much progress as I had hoped. Though I am making progress. I knew the plans I had made for this year were ambitious, and I am achieving more writing than I have in the previous two years, so I can’t complain too much really.

What do you think your time is worth?


  1. Important question. As a freelance editor and writer for textbooks, magazines, and much else, my time is worth $75-$100 an hour, depending on the client and the work. But you’re asking a far bigger question. And, for myself, I have been answering it in terms of social media. If I spend 2 hours a day answering emails (I get a LOT of emails) and commenting on FB or Twitter, that’s 14 hours a week. Fourteen hours a week is valuable writing time. It would increase my productivity by a third. BUT, my voluminous emails are mostly political petitions, and I value greatly what I can do on this front. On the other hand, I’ve cut back FB and Twitter to a minimum–about 2 hours a week–because it came down to this: Am I a writer or a tweeter? Yes, the industry does demand an online presence, but this is my life, and I am far happier writing than tweeting. The more writing I do, the better writer I am, the happier I am.

    • Social media can be such a time suck. Though to be honest I was really thinking about things like cleaning the house, maintenance work, etc as well!

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