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Article Writing - For Art, Profit, Or Both

Updated on December 20, 2009

Why Do We Write?

We write for many reasons. Some write for love, some write for money ... and some write for the love of money. Regardless of our position, we unarguably all write because we feel a need to do so.

The person writing to earn an extra $50 a week is no different than the person writing poems and sharing them online. It's the need that drives the want to do so, and it's that same need that will determine our course as we continue to write. For if we don't identify why it is we write we will never achieve our need.

Sounds a bit convoluted and wishy-washy right? After all, I could have just said that we write to get what we want out of it ... but how poetic is that?

No ... To examine our needs we must think beyond the conscious mind and look back into the subconscious, and the subconscious mind likes things that flow poetically and free. If I am to reach your inner cavity of thoughts and ideas, then it is this mind you hold hidden within that I must address. As such, it is the inner you within to which I chose to speak.

We Write For The Art

The artful side of the mind writes for recognition. Whether it be someone exclaiming how beautiful your work is, or someone debating its merits - the artful side wants the words to stand up and become noticed.

An artful writer isn't so much motivated by profit, though getting paid for one's works is always nice. He or she is out to spin the world around and to ignite a small fire that will hopefully enlighten the hearts and minds of many. After all, a vision never exists externally unless it is shared by others.

We Write For The Profit

The profit side of the mind writes for the money, understanding there is a worth to words, and seizing the opportunity to be remunerated for them. After all, we pay performers on a stage - and isn't an article a stage filled with one's thoughts?

Of course, the profit motivated side must be willing to succumb to one concept that the artful side never will - all performers must work to please the crowd. As such, the profit side of the mind was get to know the crowd, understand what it is they want, then deliver the performance in such a way to captivate the audience - and this is no easy feat.

Two Minds Working As One

Writer's can balance both sides of their mind, allowing them to provide works of breadth that achieve both goals. It is reasonable to assume that an artist can make a living painting the pictures one wants to see, just as a writer paints the words one wants to read.The profit mind polls the audience to see what they want to view next then the artful side caresses the words to canvas, painting an appealing picture for all to enjoy. This is the art of working within both minds.

Of course, it's a balancing act at best, as neither mindset ever cares to sit beside the other. Consider them as two jealous siblings and you will understand the troubles involved, with the artful side seeing the profit side as nothing more than a hack, and the profit side seeing the artful side as carefree and non-motivated. It's a difficult weight to balance - but learning to do so can bring about success.

The Greatest Writer's Of All Time

All the greats have one thing in common - they balance the profit and artful minds together, never allowing either to capture all of their attention. When writing his next great horror novel, Stephen King needs to understand the current fears in the world so he can pull upon them with his words. He examines his reading audience to see what they are looking to experience, and then switches on his artful mind to produce a work within that realm.

So, if the world is balanced upon the arms of nuclear war, Stephen King might devise a story that deals with a nuclear holocaust. Why? Because the next great story must play to the world as it exists today and not to how it once was. Even when a writer creates a story from the past he must relate it to the present, to give us all a point of reference to understand and accept what has been written.

This is what makes the greats so great ... they live in the here and now and tap on their artful side to present the current state of the world with a new and unique spin.

How Does This Apply To Article Writing?

Whether you are writing to share news on a new cancer cure or to give a review on a new cell phone, you need both minds in sync to produce an article that will be remembered and shared with others.

If you are writing about a new cure for cancer then you are already aware that many people fear this disease and are seeking a cure. Whereas, if you are writing a review on a new cell phone, you know you will need an emotional argument to convince your reader that the cell phone you are reviewing is a worthy product to purchase. This is how both minds work together.

First, you use the profit mind to discover what it is people need to know and then you use the artful side to share that knowledge.  And take note ... the profit side isn't all about keyword research and keyword stuffing - it's all about recognizing what things to write about that will generate an interest in others, which in tun will generate a profit.

A Deeper Probing Of The Profit Mind

We all realize there are hot topics out there .. and topics that aren't so hot.

Vampire romances - Hot!

Turtles that like to eat butterflies - not so hot

Write this down, as this is what the profit mind is all about. You will NEVER reach an audience if you don't write for one. Meaning ... if you write about turtles that eat butterflies you can't hope to reach but a few souls to read your work. However, if you write about vampire romances, you will get quite a few reads - at least at this current time. And that's the important thing to note ... The profit mind works in the hear and now to tell you what topics are hot today. And yes, sometimes it does take some research, but this is what the profit mind does - research what sells and what doesn't.

But is *sells* the right word? After all, does sell infer a profit? It can. but it can also infer a large readership and fame. Either way, you sell yourself or your work - or both. Without the profit mind you can sell nothing, as you know not what to sell.

And yes, keyword research can help the profit mind at work, as it can tell you where your audience is and how big it is ... but being in the right place at the right time is just as good. So to speak, if you write a great short vampire romance story on a vampire romance site, you will achieve a readership, regardless of what the keyword research shows going against you. Promoting your work is as much understanding what to write about as it is where to write it. Keyword research lets you cut the cord a bit by allowing you to put your work anywhere and allowing others to find it through the search enginnes, but you could just as easily put your article or story in the place where it will most easily be found ... and the profit mind helps you find this place.

A Deeper Probing Of The Artful Mind

The artful mind helps you develop the words that will capture your audience. Is it a dumb old clock, or is it the revolutionary wake-me-up device of the century! Words are filled with power, and picking the right words can deliver your message on-target. 

After all, it's not enough to have an audience, you must entertain them as well. And by entertain them I don't mean to be a clown or a joke-teller. You must honestly make the person believe that what you are sharing with them is a piece of writing you have creatively considered and given much thought.

In the world of writing a yawn is the device of rejection ... and yawns are contagious - as we all know. Write to impress, write to inform, write with your artful mind so all can be entertained!

One Final Reassembly

By using the artful mind and the profit mind together you can become successful at writing articles and marketing them to your audience. Yes, you must become writer and marketeer in one, but this is the way we spread our words around the infinitesimal universe. You can't engage just one mind and hope to succeed - you need to engage both.

As such, always consider where you are going to market your work and how important it will be to others - before all else. If you can't see an audience in your sights, then stifle the work in a drawer, for it only has meaning to yourself.

Next, carefully craft your words to deliver your message with the ambiance it deserves. Sculpt each sentence with the intent of drawing the crowd in and deliver the performance they should expect to receive for such a topic. If uncertain - study the other successful and greats that passed before you, as they once stumbled across the same foyer.

Above all else, understand that it takes two minds to successfully share your writings to the crowd, and my knowing how both minds work you can make them both intertwine to produce worthy tomes for ages to come.

Write from the heart ... entertain the audience that stands before you ... become an author!

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    • dragonbear profile image


      9 years ago from Essex UK

      This is a meaningful line for me - 'Write from the heart ... entertain the audience that stands before you ... become an author!

      Great encouragement, thanks Yoshi. Glad I came across your hubs.

    • RedElf profile image


      9 years ago from Canada

      You and UW hit it on the head. I, too, write from a felt-need to put words on paper (or in computer files, as the case may be ;) Interesting and well-written! Thanks!

    • festersporling1 profile image

      Daniel Christian 

      9 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      That was a real nice read. I write for money, but find myself writing for fun more and more. They are certainly connected.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Great insight, thanks for sharing with us! Excellent hub.

    • jill of alltrades profile image

      jill of alltrades 

      9 years ago from Philippines

      Great hub yoshi! I write because I love to write and share what I love and know. If I earn anything along the way, then that is a bonus.

      Thanks for this well written hub!

    • Laura du Toit profile image

      Laura du Toit 

      9 years ago from South Africa

      A brilliantly written hub that will appeal to a wide range of writers - both those that write for art, for profit and those that have mastered the art of writing for both purposes.

    • emievil profile image


      9 years ago from Philippines

      Very well said yoshi. I like your last line - write from the heart. It's what made me look for something like HubPages. Before I discovered for this site, I was writing for other people / clients and although pay was good, I remained an anonymous writer. At least, here in HP, I can write under my own name and write whatever I want. And earn money to boot :).

      Merry Christmas Yoshi!

    • Carol the Writer profile image

      Carolyn Blacknall 

      9 years ago from Houston, Texas

      It is a great feeling when you connect with a writer - when someone can make you cry or laugh out loud. I agree with everything, except that sometimes I just feel driven to write about turtles that like to eat butterflies. Oh, well.

    • Money Glitch profile image

      Money Glitch 

      9 years ago from Texas

      So eloquently written and well said. I like the illustration of the two minds that should act as one; and the comparison to two jealous siblings:brilliant. :) Thanks for sharing!

    • yoshi97 profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from a land called 'what if?'

      Thanks Maita!

      I wish many blessings to you as well, and I whispered into Santa's ear what you wanted for Christmas - he said it was a tall order, but he'll see what he can do. :)

    • prettydarkhorse profile image


      9 years ago from US

      you made me think about myself Yoshi, hmm for me I write because I want to, and I also want to earn,

      I came by to say merry Christmas to you and your family, and may the next year bring you loads and loads of blessings, maita

    • Peter Dickinson profile image

      Peter Dickinson 

      9 years ago from South East Asia

      Thanks Yoshi. I seem to write more for myself than for profit but always hoping that I will. At the same time I do profit mentally and spiritually by the act of writing. All gain, no loss. Except that bit of cash would help.

    • yoshi97 profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from a land called 'what if?'

      You're very welcome. :)

    • lorlie6 profile image

      Laurel Rogers 

      9 years ago from Grizzly Flats, Ca

      You sculpt your words beautifully, yoshi, and I thank you!

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      This is a very good hub..

    • Jerilee Wei profile image

      Jerilee Wei 

      9 years ago from United States

      I'm impressed. You've given me some food for thought on this topic.

    • hypnodude profile image


      9 years ago from Italy

      You are definitely right, most of us I guess write for the need to express what we have inside, but we all have to pay bills too. I've found great your point of view on the need to have our whole mind focused, that's my field of interest too.

      The only thing I would say is that Stephen King quitted being a great writer on the second, third if I really feel good, book on the Black Tower series. But this is only my opinion.

      Great work. :)

    • yoshi97 profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from a land called 'what if?'

      Thanks Don! I have heard many people express the same thing the past special weeks, but I felt it necessary to put it in words that (hopefully) all would understand. :)

    • dohn121 profile image


      9 years ago from Hudson Valley, New York

      You did an excellent job writing this hub, my friends. You hit a homerun with this line alone:

      An artful writer isn't so much motivated by profit, though getting paid for one's works is always nice. He or she is out to spin the world around and to ignite a small fire that will hopefully enlighten the hearts and minds of many. After all, a vision never exists externally unless it is shared by others.

      I hope that many can "profit" by reading this hub. Cheers to you and Happy Holidays!

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Excellent hub you've publshed. In addtion, submitting articles to proper directories also very important.

    • rebekahELLE profile image


      9 years ago from Tampa Bay

      yoshi, this is some inspired writing that will help many writers. our modern society is now so rushed, and to be able to use our minds in the most optimal capacity, we can allow others to see that life is really about communication in all of its forms. words and language are powerful tools. thanks for sitting down and writing this very inspiring hub. :]

    • yoshi97 profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from a land called 'what if?'

      Writing has been proven to be therapeutic for many, and when one can also profit from therapy ... well ... that's not a bad thing.

      Still, we need to write for the reasons that are right for each of us, and from both minds, as it allows our words to be heard and felt. :)

    • Uninvited Writer profile image

      Susan Keeping 

      9 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario

      Very well said. I do feel the need to write...anything... If I don't write I am not happy.

    • akirchner profile image

      Audrey Kirchner 

      9 years ago from Washington

      Great thoughts and profound insight. I find that sometimes we can just over-think the subject or what we are actually going to write and if we just try and relax, write from the heart, it goes better. At least that seems to be working (so far) for me and my first steps attempts. Audrey


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