Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Money, Money, Money - What's Your Answer?

This month's theme is Making Money From Writing. I'll offer three questions, and it's your job to answer one or more of them in the comment section. If you answer one, you're welcome to expand. If you choose more, please make your answers shorter. Also, provide one website or blog URL, but no more. If you don't have one, you're still welcome to comment.

Today's Questions And My Answers Are:

Do you have a day job, or do you make a living solely from writing?

I'm retired, and make more money from Social Security than writing, but I'm working on reversing that trend.

Name one or more ways you've made money from writing, even if it's not a lot.


I did sell books on my Blog Book Tours, most recently the one for my romantic thriller, Forever Young: Blessing or Curse. For further details, including topics, dates and links, click here.

Along with the tour, I've made sales through my personal and group blogs, Facebook and Twitter.
Is giving books away a good way to increase sales?

I didn't think so when I first learned of Amazon's KDP Select. Since then, I've heard many reports of increased book sales through participation in the program. That leads me to believe there has to be some validity to the method. As soon as my sequel, Blessing or Curse, is ready, I'll put it on Kindle Select. In the meantime, I've contributed to the Corner Cafe, a collaborative anthology, which is scheduled for release around June, with free days planned.

Your turn. What about you? What's your Answer(s)?


Posted by Morgan Mandel


  1. Q#1: No, and no.
    Q#2: I used write for the man ... until I was set out to pasture.
    Q#3: There seems to be something to that free book thing ... who woulda thunk it?

  2. • As a self-starter and team player who works equally well at home
    • With 19 years of experience "writing tight" for newspapers
    • Whose choreography background gave her an eye for design
    • I used to have a resume service

  3. Number one? I'm only a student, so...not a lot of money.

  4. 1. I'm a massage therapist, which makes it easy to write - after hours, between clients, on slow days... My first book just came out on Kindle with paperback to follow, so I'm still a long way from making a living with writing. Maybe someday. :) http://nancydemarco.wordpress.com/finding-sara/

  5. Q1: Y and No
    Q2:Have only made money selling the books I publish
    Q3:I think giving away can help get you out there. I have been publishing freebies just to give away to readers.

  6. Q1: I'm a Stay-at-Home-Mom who writes fantasy so she can stay sane while the house shakes from wild children stampeding around.

    Q2: I've released 3 fantasy and paranormal romance short stories and a novella under my name Beth Caudill. Check me out at: http://www.bethcaudill.net/

    But this year I developed split-personality disorder. I'm moonlighting as an erotic paranormal horror author under the pen name Nicole Graysen. You can find her at: http://nicolegraysen.com

    Q3: I'm still undecided about giving books away free. I used to believe it was better to give gift cards than free books. Now I'm not so sure.

    I've heard good things and bad things from people doing the free days at amazon. But I'm still undecided. I think the best way to sell more books is to write more books.

    Now if I could only follow that bit of advice. :)

  7. I write full time and earn a living from writing.

    My books sell best at Amazon.

    I don't know from personal experience about giving away books. But others say it works.

  8. My books also sell best at Amazon, but sometimes I'm surprised to find some sales through Smashwords at one of their many venues, such as on Nook.

    Morgan Mandel

  9. 1. Retired, so I'm not "making a living" at writing (or anything else)

    2. The Barnes & Noble "Nook First" program has been amazing for me.

    3. I've never seen any results from giving away books. Others say they have.

    (for more, you can see my blog post from yesterday, "Nook First, Week 1")

    Terry's Place

  10. Yes, I have a day job, which is online book promotion. I wish I could make a living with only my writing.

    I used to write time management articles for writers, which brought in a small amount each month.

  11. Q1. I'm retired, and am not making any living from writing. Actually I think I'm in negative figures!

    Q2. Back in the 60's and 70's, I made quite a lot of money through being published by Mills and Boon/Harlequin - but haven't managed to get back with them - yet!

    Q3. Giving books away would cost me as I would have to pay my publisher's price (albeit at author discount) for my books first. That's where self-published authors seem to have a big advantage over authors whose books have been accepted by independent publishers. Self-publishing (and offering free downloads) may be the way to get higher up the amazon rankings, but I still want the satisfaction of having my work accepted by a publisher. That's a personal thing, and maybe it doesn't bring in the money, but it's where I'm at right now.

  12. Paula, I can see how you enjoy being accepted by a publisher. In a way it's tempting to try again, but I'm so used to doing things my own way now, I don't think I could handle it.

    Morgan Mandel

  13. Q-1: Day job...oh yeah, and probably won't ever make as much in writing as I do now.

    Q-2: One published magazine article, paid well...nearly 50 cents/word. Still waiting for second gig to pay off. (Have won over a dozen free books though....does that count?)

    Q-3: I'd freebie some of them. A friend left one or two on chairs at airports just to watch reactions and see how long they sat there. That'd be fun..

  14. 1. I teach at a university half-time and consult when I can get the gigs, but would gladly write full time.
    2. My best writing gigs were as a magazine columnist at $1/word, but those days are long gone.
    3. I put The Dome on KDP Select free for one weekend and moved a thousand books with no discernible effect on sales, which just keep climbing steadily. Go figure.

  15. Q1: I do at home child care, although I'm taking a break over the summer to finish my second novel.
    Q2: Freelance magazine articles for small city magazine, but it's been a while.
    Q3: I think some freebies help. It's probably a fine line, but too many people have seen sales increase from free books for me to say it's a waste of time/money.


  16. The most money I've made from writing came from sales of a how to write romance novels book I self-published. It developed from a series of classes I was teaching at the time. It won an RT award and was picked up by Writer's Digest Book Club.


  17. I work as a psychotherapist with a private practice. I cut back to one day a week. I also am a corporate crisis/grief counselor. I've also cut back on that work too. I make enough money from my self-published books to make up for it, and I want time to write me.

    Some paid speaking gigs at writers conferences or organizations. Teaching some online classes. I'll be teaching one on self-publishing for the orange county chapter of RWA. http://occrwa.org

    I don't give books out for free, but will donate them. Just sent four to Brenda Novak's auction for diabetes.

  18. Question 1 - I still have a day job
    Question 2 - I'm starting to make money now that I have more titles out. So, best marketing tip: write the next book and add an excerpt of others at the end of it! :-)
    Question 3 - it MIGHT increase sales in the short run. But as indie, I aim to the long run, so I rarely give away ebooks (I did last year to get reviews, not anymore) and usually have "higher" prices (I don't believe in 99cents novels to spread one's name).


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