Recently, I was asked, “how do you create a steady $1,500.00 a month publishing books?” I laughed at first! Steady income and publishing haven’t always gone hand in hand. Book sales have been extremely unpredictable. I’ve had months where I earned $12,000.00, and months where I earned $1,200.00.
Book sales fluctuate like the weather. I find “steady income” by illustrating books and public speaking.
Illustration is one of my biggest income generators. I illustrate from January through March and June through September. I spend countless hours creating artwork. The dollar per hour isn’t the best, and finding good clients comes with challenges.
Many of you are thinking, “I can’t draw!” So public speaking is my best suggestion as a “steady income” for authors. Here is a formula I use.
- Charge a minimum of $500 per visit. Three speaking events per month yields $1,500.00. Schedule a total of 36 throughout the year. Seems daunting, right?
- Sell books at the events. Some schools don’t collect book sales, however some do! On average 10% of students purchase a book. 1,000 students generally equals 100 books sold. Being conservative 5% would yield 50 book sales. If you make $5 a book, that’s $250 extra. Now only 2 speaking events are needed a month, or 24 per year.
School visits can be repeated monthly. Elementary schools generally bring authors in from February through late April and October through November. It’s a small window of time to schedule 24-36 events. Just remember this is about one month of “work.”
Illustrating and public speaking are two ways I create a “steady income” publishing books. By creating more products and being social, book sales will become more consistent.
— Mark Wayne Adams, Award-winning Illustrator of Jilli, That’s Silly! A Story About Being a Girl