Write books full-time. If you’re anything like me that sounds like a dream come true. Unfortunately, that’s easier said than done. Well, in today’s video I’m going to help you figure out when to quit your day job and write books full-time. So, stick around:
If you caught my last video, I talked a little bit about goal setting but I didn’t really elaborate much on it. So today I’m going to show you how to use your goal of becoming an author full time and figure out the answer of “when can I quit my day job and start becoming a writer full time”
In my experience, goal setting for writers seems to be a touchy subject. Most writers have lofty plans and elaborate goals for themselves and their books, but don’t really set out any tangible goals to get themselves there.
Ok, we all know how to write a book, but how many of us know how to figure out what we need to do to go from writing your first novel to how to write full time? Not many. But I’m going to show you how to figure out exactly when you can quit your job and write full-time.
Now, I’m not a financial planner or account, I don’t even play one on tv. And only you can truly decide if and when to quit your day job. This information is simply based on how I calculated what I need to do to quit my job and write full time. Here’s how I figured it out.
- Determine how much money you need to make in a year. If you’re happy with your current situation, take what you currently make before taxes, then I add about 25% because I know I’ll need to pay the taxes myself.
- Then go through your paystub and jot down all the things that are taken out of your normal check. (insurance, 401k, etc).
- Now do a little research and find out how much it will cost you if you were to cover all of that yourself.
- Add in any additional costs, you would incur if you were to quit your day job and start writing full-time.(more professional software, daycare for the kiddos, etc.)
- Now you have minimum annual goal.
Once you have this goal, now you know how much money you need to make in a year. Now, you take that amount and divide it by the average profit you make from your books. That will tell you how many books you need to sell a year, in order to meet your annual goal.
To be honest, the number you get may seem daunting, so I’ve found it easier to take that annual number of books and divide it by 12 months or better yet by 52 to see how many books I need to sell on a weekly basis to reach my “quit my day job” goal.
So, for example: If I need to make 75,000 a year and my average royalties are $2.50 per book. That means I need to sell 30k books a year. 30,000 divided by 52 weeks, means I need to sell ~577 books a week. That may sound unachievable but between my written and no content books, I have over 160 books published. That means I only have to average 3-4 sales a week, per book to reach my goal. See, a lot more attainable. Especially, if I decided to increase the price of some of my books, run ads, etc.
Understand that this number may still seem unachievable, and that’s fine. But now that you have a tangible goal, you can make a plan on how to achieve it.
Some authors may choose to increase the price of their books, so they make a larger profit per book, so they have to sell less books. Others may take this to mean they need to write and publish more books or in different formats. While others will decide to start running ads to their already existing backlist.
Also, realistically speaking, it will probably take a few years or more before you get to the point where you can quit your job and become a full-time writer and, since we all know sales fluctuate from month to month, you’ll probably want to have a “rainy day” fund, just in case. And for some people they may never reach that point, but now that you have a tangible goal set, you can better plan your writing and publishing schedule and increase your chances for being able to quit your day job and write full time.
Oh, and if you have no desire to quit your job and write, at all. That’s fine too. You can still use these new goals to help keep you on track to see continued self-publishing success, year after year.
Remember to write, right!