Talking about money is important. If you don’t have enough, or don’t use it wisely, it can be really difficult. Spending it when you don’t have it is probably one of the worst – it not only kills your savings right now, but it means you’re paying off debt instead of making money. I have done all these things, and still find it really frustrating to manage my money well – and feel like a grownup about it!
But we should be more open about what we earn, and spend, and how. That way we normalise money instead of making it taboo, and we can have the conversations at work and home that we need, with our partners, our bosses and our friends.
Inspired by Lisa Jacobs – http://www.marketyourcreativity.com/ and Hannah at https://www.betternotstop.com/how-much-is-my-income/ from We Blog North, I’ve decided to keep a monthly report of income/outgoings/profit, which I hope will also keep me on track to meet this year’s goals.
First, a bit of background.
I love writing. Always have. I teach secondary school English (aged 11-18), and one of the major reasons is that I love storytelling – but I also love analysing literature and writing about it. I try to spend a good part of my day modelling writing, one way or another.
I dabbled with writing and self-publishing short stories, putting the first onto Amazon’s kindle platform in 2012. I sold a few, nothing major but it was a thrill to know that people I didn’t know were buying something I’d created. I’ve also written a blog in various forms, since I was fourteen – a natural progression from diaries – and it seemed natural that I’d join the large edu-blogging community, writing about my subject and the best ways to teach it.
Two years ago, I started publishing some literary analysis online. These started off as teaching notes, and quickly became full-on revision guides. I use a platform called Payhip to sell pdf copies on my website, and have started publishing those on Amazon as well, as e-books and paper copies.
Deep breath. The hard part…defining, out loud, that I want more. But this blog is about being open and challenging the business side of me more, so here goes!
My goal this year is to earn £51,000 pre-tax, which includes my teaching income and my writing. That’s a bit of an odd number because it’s my annual teaching salary, plus £12000 from my writing. Last year, I made £5206 writing – so it’s an ambitious goal to reach! I’ve broken it down month by month, as to what I’m aiming for, and I plan to do a monthly write up of income and expenses, as well as hours worked, to build a really clear picture of the work that’s needed to reach this goal, and what I can improve for the years afterwards.
My finances so far!
I’m looking at expenses for this project as being about business expenses – so web-hosting, resources like novels and plays to write about. Last year I bought a new laptop, so the equipment side is all set! I’m really fortunate that what I like doing is low-cost!
The year so far:
£35.60 under target
Working to the tax year, I’m going to look at sales generated in that month. Pearson’s an educational resources company. I co-wrote this – GCSE Language Revision workbook https://amzn.to/2kdbyjP – for them, finishing in October last year, and got paid in April, which is obviously a significant chunk of the income above. The teaching income is also post-pension, because the teacher’s pension is still a good option, and that gets deducted pre-tax.
Dropbox £ 7.99 I host resources to adapt, to add value to people reading my books
Paypal fees £ 9.26 ]To sell from my website
Payhip fees £ 6.18 ]
Web hosting £ 23.98 Register of new domain names; annual cost
Postage £ 1.40
Subscriptions £ 75.06 Membership to Lisa Jacobs’ Luminaries club on trial basis
Leaving me with a total profit pre-tax of £5,765.11