The Starving Author

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The Dream…

When I was younger I dreamt that one day I would be able to spend my whole day focusing on my writing. I would have enough money to hire a housekeeper to do all my housework and enough money to pay all my bills and buy food. When I was about sixteen and considering my future seriously for the first time, I realised that it was very hard to make a living as a writer unless you happened to sell a bestseller. So I very sensibly took a leaf out of my favourite author’s book (John Marsden) and studied to become a teacher so I might have a means to support myself until I could write that bestseller.

Reality

Fast forward nearly two decades later. Not only do I not have a housekeeper, I also have three.children who need to be fed and schooled and clothed. I have a husband who is currently pursuing his dream of owning a dairy farm, which unfortunately means a lot of debt and a hard slog (but I love him and I love our lifestyle so I wouldn’t have it any other way). After teaching for several years, I currently stay at home with my kids. I love it because I love being with them as they grow and I get to focus on my writing more than I would be able to if I was working. So here I am, a poor starving author (well, not really starving, but it would be nice to have a little extra instead of always fretting if we’ll have enough to pay all our bills).

What’s A Poor Starving Author To Do?

One day a couple of months ago my husband had left the television on when a talk show called ‘The Living Room’ came on. One of the segments talked about ways to make a little extra money. I went online and checked out a website called fiverr they had talked about. It’s a site where you can offer any kind of service for just $5. There are people on there offering everything from proofreading to writing website content, from offering advice to designing logos. There are even people offering silly/crazy things like singing happy birthday and having pie thrown in their face.

I thought about what I might be able to offer, then took the plunge. I currently have two ‘gigs’ posted.

1) I will write a personalised children’s story up to 500 words for $5 (and for an extra $5 I will write it in rhyme).

2) I will offer personalised parenting advice for $5.

If you are a poor starving writer like me, it’s worth having a look. There’s so much scope for offering your skills, whether it’s proofreading, editing, writing stories, writing web content or any other skills you have to offer. It’s just a little bit extra you could put towards writing conferences, editing services, or even just your everyday bills.

The key:

a) make sure your profile and gigs come across as professional.

b) play up your related skills and experience (eg: in my writing gig I mention I am a published author and have a major in Writing).

c) make sure you do your best to provide a quality service. (Sometimes buyers give you tips if they really like your work, so it’s worth putting in the effort. It also means more 5 star reviews, which will entice more buyers into seeking your services.)

If you would like to help out this starving author, please feel free to share this link to my fiverr profile or either of my individual gigs. 🙂

I’d love to hear what other starving authors are doing to make some extra money. Please share in the comments!

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