My son Johann saw me writing in my office early this morning, as I do at least 5 days per week. Today Johann stopped and asked me, ‘Dad, do you make money from your writing?’ I paused for a moment. Then, instead of answering his question, I said, ‘Come back and ask me your question again when I am done writing. And bring me the broomstick of the Wicked Witch of The West. NOW GET OUT…’ (Ok, so half of that is true.)
The answer is not cut and dry.
The simplest answer is no, I don’t get paid to write this blog. I am not making it rain up in this URL. I don’t have advertisers, sponsors, or paid subscribers. In that respect, my blog writing is not a job. It is a volunteer activity. An elective.
However, I have found that what separates us from each other are our electives. The things that we undertake that we don’t have to do. The things that not everyone does. Those are often the things that make you different, interesting, and valuable to others. But not so different and interesting that the circus wants to add you to their Tent of Freaks.
What I am trying to do when I write my blog is provide value to others. I am trying to share insights, experiences, ideas, techniques, inspiration, motivation, positivity, or humor. By sharing these things I am creating a value-adding resource.
I believe in a very simple math equation. The value of your income is equal to the value of your contribution.
Income = Contribution
So if I add more value to the world, eventually, somehow, the world will add more value to me.
But there is more to my writing than that.
- It keeps me top of mind.
- It demonstrates relevant capabilities.
- It means more people know me.
- It helps expand and strengthen my network.
- It keeps me engaged with my clients, customers, friends, and family.
- It allows me to share my expertise.
- It makes me a thought leader.
- It makes great people think about joining my team.
- It helps my team think they are on a pretty good team with a leader who thinks about and cares about their wellbeing and happiness.
- My writing, if funny enough, may someday cause someone to blow milk out of their nose. This is the superpower I have always wanted. As in, ‘You saved us, Snarf Man! We never would have escaped if you hadn’t made that bad man laugh and blow his beverage out of his nose!’ My catchphrase would be, ‘Can I buy you a drink…?’
The Greatest Reward
Perhaps most importantly, as I write, I am learning. I am sharpening my thoughts, perspectives, and techniques. All of which makes me better and more capable in other areas of my work and personal life. This enables me to do better work for others. Which ultimately helps me make money. Sorry for the long answer, Johann.
The more you write and share your thoughts the more you will profit from it. The value may not come in direct cash payments. In fact, it probably won’t. It will come through the inevitable compensation you will receive for the value you created and shared with the world. It will come through your connections with others. Through your own learning and development. Through the awareness and positivity you generate. So keep writing. Or start writing. Be patient. But persistent. And good things will come your way.
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3 thoughts on “Do you make money from your writing?”
Thank you Adam
This is a really valuable post. It is motivating me to get back to my writing.
PS Did you hear that Jena was offered a position of Associate VP at Kiehls? She starts Nov. 1.
Thank you for your help and your constant inspiration.
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Thank Beth! I did hear! That’s exciting news. My wife and I love that brand. I want to hear more about your writing too!
I am new to writing but I would like to write something and earn income passively. I heard about self-publishing on amazon, apparently people earn from that. I am South African and earning from writing seems like a pipe dream.
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