Are you negotiating with new Clients?
When you pickup a new freelance writing client one of the first things you will discuss, in addition to project details, is payment. Not only will you talk about how much you charge, but also about how you want to get paid. All of these details are negotiable, and you should be doing what you can to get the best deal possible. That being said, you need to know where to draw the line. In other words, there is a fine line between negotiating and becoming a pain in the neck.
Once a client explains the project to you, you should be able to get back to them soon enough with a quote. Obviously, you want to base this on your standard rate. But feel free to stray away from this if the job calls for it. Remember, no two projects are the same.
The negotiation process usually comes into play when the client does not want to pay your standard rate. While there is nothing wrong with opening the lines of communication, you need to realize that there comes a point when the job is no longer worth it. Take for instance a freelance writer who charges $1k for a 750 word sales letter. This is a solid price, but maybe the client only wants to pay $500. Are you willing to work at this lower rate? Would meeting in the middle at $750 be fair to both parties?
It can take a while to become proficient in the art of negotiation. In fact, this is something that I am still learning. All you can do is try to get the best deal for yourself while being as fair as possible to your new client.
If a client is not interested in working with you at your standard rate you need to do some negotiating. The same holds true if they low ball you from the get-go. Some negotiations will lead to both parties being happy. Others will shut down the job before it ever gets off the ground. As a freelance writer you should be ready to negotiate here and there. This is part of your job.