Usually, if you want your writing or editing client to pay you, you’ve got to send them an invoice.
It’s a good idea to send one even if they pay you regularly without one because an invoice helps both parties keep their records straight.
You can also send an invoice along with magazine articles. In fact, sending an invoice is a professional thing to do.
Fortunately, creating invoices is super simple. I make my own in Word™ because it’s so simple. But Quicken and other software will do it for you if you like.
Here are my steps:
1. In a new document, centered toward the top of the page, in a largish bold type, write the word: Invoice
2. Enter a couple of spaces, and on the left using the same bold type, write the word: To:
3. Tab over a couple of times and in your normal type, put the full contact information of the person you’re billing.
4. Drop down a space or two and in your bold face, write the word: From:
5. Tabbing over, and in your normal type add your complete contact information.
6. Drop down another space or two and in your bold face, type: Date:
7. In your normal face, put the day you’re sending the invoice.
8. Drop down several spaces and using your decimal tap, enter the work you’ve done, the hours, your hourly rate and the total. (See example at the link below)
9. Add additional details as needed.
10. In bold write the word: Total:
11. Still in bold, total up what’s owed you.
12. Add any special instructions, make a digital signature and email to the client.
5 Invoicing Tips:
- Save your first invoice as a template to save redoing everything.
- Set up a tickler file so you can re-bill, make a phone call, etc. if you have a slow paying client.
- Keep detail short, but specific.
- Keep good records for yourself!
- An occasional client will actually want a paper invoice mailed to them – just print the invoice you’ve created and put it in an envelope and mail it.
- Include a marketing message like – What’s our next project? or How can I help you next?
Here is a sample Invoice for writing & editing work. If you’d rather use software to do invoices automatically, FreshBooks is a good choice.
Write well and often,
Image from http://www.sxc.hu