Saturday, 1 July 2017

Income Report: June

I almost find myself dreading my monthly check-in here. Over the months and years I read a ton of income reports that are all singing, all dancing, espousing "financial freedom" and a laptop lifestyle. They make it seem so easy. Their efforts so linear in success. Well, it's safe to say I haven't seen that version of the story as yet.

But the important thing is for every one step back I'm seeing one-and-a-half steps forward. It's not the narrative that the online entrepreneurial masters would like to sell, but it's the real world.

It's a tough slog. Tough in terms of focus, tough in terms of execution, and of course tough in terms of getting results.

We're in the midst of the quieter July months and I should be taking this time to re-evaluate what I'm currently doing and how I can be more effective, more impactful in coming months. The trouble is the TV and the fridge are such attractive distractions when you working from home...

So, how did my month look?

Although this report is meant to be all about online related income, I did have a big win offline that will keep me busy in August. It's resume writing for students at a local university. It's a decent sized contract as well. So there's been some progress on my consulting side.

But back to my online element. On top of my normal online resume writing, I've sold a few more ebooks, which is great - it's all about momentum. It's not going to help me retire any time soon. Still, I've started on the follow up and I'm hoping to sort out 10+ ebooks over time.

Elsewhere, I've also had another dividend payment from my investments. I keep forgetting this element of passive income, and it's something I'm going to build upon as I invest a bit more in dividend-yielding stocks.

Resume Writing: $1,730 -Better than a lot of months and it's helped me get the university gig, so I'm still happy
Dividends: $40
eBook sales: $6 - Get Craft a Winning Resume to improve your job hunting opportunities.
Prolific Academic: $7

Total: $1,783

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Income Report: May

It's been a pretty busy month for me. I seem to have fallen upon a few offline gigs that I never would have  fathomed a month ago. Freelance resume writing (on my writing terms), for example.

The eBook revolution hasn't quite happened but the goal is still to write them. I've sold some of my resume writing book so long may that continue.

In fact my goal is to overwhelm my niche of resume writing with 10 in total. Ok, "overwhelm" is a bit of a stretch but the idea is to have different books providing different angles and different cross selling opportunities for me in the same space. It will take a while because fundamentally it would mean writing 100,000 - 150,0000 words in total, but it's the direction I want and need to go for. If I can finish the year with two more, I think that should be my minimum hope.

In the meantime, my broad resume writing has continued on apace and remains a cornerstone of my online-related income. In fact, I should really simply call it 'freelance' rather than 'online' because that's what it ultimately is. But my goal is to do a lot more online. That's the focus.

I had a bit of a problem with a PayPal payment - I couldn't access some money so I phoned the help desk. Who knew that they give you money for the inconvenience? They added $30 without me even asking! It won't be a regular payment, and probably won't happen again, but I'm going to record it here as a reminder that if there are any customer services issues that deserve compensation there's no harm in asking...

Also, I noticed that I had received a dividend payment for some investments I have. $100 I hadn't realised I had coming. It's a reminder that I need to get to grips with knowing what and where all my random assets are. And given that this is the passive world that I am looking for, long may it continue.

Anyway, for May:

Resume Writing: $1,353 - Not as good as I thought it would be. I think I'm being "busy" and not "effective". So I need to reappraise (again) how much time I take on getting the resumes done.
Dividends: $100
PayPal: $30
eBook sales: $4 - Get Craft a Winning Resume to improve your job hunting opportunities.
Prolific Academic: $2

Total: $1,489

Not as good as recent months but in an odd way encouraging in its own way. It's the most diverse my income streams have been...

Thursday, 4 May 2017

Income Report: April

"If you always do what you've always done, you'll always get what you've always got."

I love the saying but it's also very pertinent to this whole Income Report process. Every time I get to the time of the month to write a new one, I realise that I'm broadly writing the same old, same old. 

There may well be progress but it's slow. And there's often a fair bit of familiarity about it all. And for many months it really was pretty much the same. 

Thankfully, I've finally got my first ebook up and running. It's not pulling up trees at the moment but at least I've started.

I need to be patient and not get sucked into assuming that all those others making big bucks online (or at least so they tell us) have taken a long while to do so.

I've given myself a target. I've got a 90-day challenge going on, where my goal is to have tangible online and offline income streams properly set up. I don't expect to be kicking back with a pina colada and getting ready to retire, but I hope to be able to show to myself that I'm genuinely on the right path.

So my goal is to have something worthwhile to write when I get to August. I'm working on a couple of eBooks, looking at how to monetize through a few websites and want to expand a few different areas.

In the meantime for April:

Resume Writing: $1,760
eBook sales: $4
Prolific Academic: $6

Total: $1,770

Saturday, 8 April 2017

Income Report: March

I've finally managed to make a few inroads into the world of passive income. Ok, we're talking extreme baby steps. But there have been steps nonetheless!

I've finally completed my ebook and have sold a few on Amazon! I probably haven't been that sophisticated in how I put it together and have promoted it. But it's all part of the learning experience.

The important thing is my book is basically all about what I do on a daily basis: resume writing. It's not a book based on conceptual thinking or things that people have Googled. The tips, tricks and techniques are ones the company I work for applies.

So it works.

As for elsewhere, I've continued to do a lot of resume writing work - everyone from graduates all the way up to Executive Directors. So that's very steady. I've also been working slowly on other ebooks related to career hunting and finance.

So I've got a bit of momentum. Little by little though.

I"m still working on reviving my Fiverr account and waiting to get my Amazon Merch account authorized.

Monthly income in a nutshell:-

Resume Writing: $1,800 (vs. $1,525 the previous month and $1,094 the month before that)
Prolific Academic: $2
Ebook: $4

Total: $ 1,806

I'm excited that I have my first passive income product out there. Now time to build more opportunities.

And if you're looking to improve your resume, check out my ebook, Craft a Winning Resume 2017

It give proper, workable tips on how to master the art and science of writing a powerful, impactful resume. 

Friday, 3 March 2017

Income Report: February

So my quest for financial freedom continues....

We're only into the second month of the year and I'm starting to see signs of progress.

The money is most definitely not flowing and yet, and there's still too much of a default back to my tried and trusted income streams. But I have put down the seeds for future income. This is slow and steady and hopefully I'll see the first elements of income in March.

I've been reviewing some of my previous areas of interest - Zazzle and Fiverr - and I'm going to reinvigorate them over the next month.

It's not worth beating myself up. Slow and steady, and I'll have these blog entries to continue to show how I've progressed (or not).

As for February, it was a relatively straightforward month for income - up on December and January's figures but effectively down to one income stream.

Monthly income:-

Resume Writing: $1,525 (vs. $1,094 the previous month)
Other: $0

Total: $ 1,525

Slow and steady...

March will certainly have a different story to tell!

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

Income Report: January

New year, new dawn...blah, blah, blah

It's been a good start to the year. Not in terms of money made, as that's still a slow and steady thing, but in terms of investment for the future.

As much as I'm hoping to show an obvious improvement in income month on month, as important is to make sure I invest in skills and products that will pay off in the future.

Had I shown the discipline a year ago, who knows what may have happened.

Anyway, this month has seen me invest in two spaces:

  • Financial modelling
  • An ebook on resume writing
Yes, they are very different areas but I figured that I could use the modelling across a range of opportunities: business consulting, investment analysis, project management and so on.

The ebook is more naturally aligned with my passive income goal. Hopefully, by the end of February, I'll have it listed on Amazon and I'll be counting the pennies roll in...

As for January, it was a relatively unspectacular month for income and a slight dip on December's number.

Monthly income:-

Resume Writing: $1,094
Prolific Academic: $3

Total: $ 1,097

Slow and steady...

Hopefully, next month I'll be able to provide more input on my projects and more progress overall.

Saturday, 24 December 2016

Income Report: December

Ok, it's time to get real.

Or at the very least it's time to stop pretending.

One of the reasons why I started blogging about income was in order to make myself more accountable. And that's great. Pretty much month on month I've increased my income based on the parameters that I have in place.

But the problem is that the parameters just aren't aligned with my bigger story. I keep telling myself that I want a decent passive income stream but month to month it's simply not showing up. It's not to say that the active income that I have been earning is wrong. Quite the opposite.

It too is part of the bigger story. But I keep telling myself that 50% of my income is going to be passive. That's my big dirty goal. I'm removing rental income from the equation for the moment but if I truly, really want financial freedom then I need to really get going on the world of passive income.

So this time next year when I read through my report on income I'm going to be very disappointed if I'm not able to have a made a real passive income impact here.

As for December, I didn't do a whole heap of new stuff. It was a shortened month and I didn't add any additional income streams. So I'll keep it simple:

Monthly income:-

Resume Writing: $1,269
Prolific Academic: $6.50

Total: $ 1,275.50

Not spectacular but workable. What I really intend on building upon is more income streams. Lots of income streams. Maybe five. Maybe ten. But not two. Not three.

I also don't want to grade myself at the moment. I'm simply spinning the same wheels just now. Once I create something bigger than my consistent income stream I'll really be able to push on.

2016 was the starting point. And I'm grateful that I made inroads over the year that I never would have expected. But 2017 is going to see my online business really gather pace. It has to.

So, to a successful experiment so far and so to the next stage where I will seriously move onto the next level. It's none of the big time promises that a lot of other bloggers indicate. It's the real thing.

Time to own my shit.

Merry Christmas.

Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Income Report: November

I'm glad I'm doing this process as it gives me transparency.

Unfortunately, what this process hasn't been able to do is to shake up the mix of my incomes. I need other tools and levers for that.

My grand goal of lining up Christmas promotions and the like on Zazzle has fallen flat - at least, so far.

But I can definitely see 2017 offering up a few new opportunities online and offline. I'm planting the seeds now...

So time to review things:

Resume Writing: This remains my most consistent provider. Actually, it's virtually my only provider at the moment, but let's not split hairs.... Each month seems to be an improvement on the previous one. That probably won't happen with a quiet December, but November has been my best month, even with my hit to the UK pound.

Translated into dollars I made $2,190, that's 14% better than October's figure. I've worked quite a lot on the resume writing and the coaching, and I've made sure that I've kept better records as well. I may have lost out on certain monies coming to me in the past because of my slackness.

It's working out okay at the moment.

Article Writing: $0. I've been weighing up the return on my time here and for the moment at least it doesn't pay me to spend too much time in this space. I've used some of my articles in the past to leverage different opportunities, but I've traded a bit too much time for money here in the past.

Prolific Academic: $13. Pennies but, hey, it's easy.

Mmmm....My focus on diversification is falling short....

So there you have it: $2,203 for November. No bad and I've finally broken through the $2,000 barrier.

I'll give myself a score of B+ this time. That's partly down to hitting new heights, but it's also a reflection of what I've been doing in the background.

I've been re-working some sites, which will properly go live in the new year. I spent quite a while looking at Google Adsense, listening to passive income webinars and researching different income ideas.

I've also almost completed my first proper Kindle book, again with the intention of launching it fairly soon. That's really the first step into the passive world. Everything I do now is too active for my long-term business model goal.

And there's the small matter of a possible offline job that would completely shake a lot of this up. Job or not, I'm still going to work towards the financial freedom principle and passive income.

I'm quite excited by what the next few months might bring.