There’s an oft-quoted saying “Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life.” I couldn’t disagree with this anymore, because the truth is: making money from your passions and hobbies is bloody hard work.
I love writing, I have for as long as I can remember. I have written short stories, poems, novels (both unfinished and finished) and the reality is that while it’s something I love to do and something that makes me happy, it doesn’t pay my bills.
There are of course thousands of authors of all kinds out there making more than a living from their work but for every author who has a book deal, a successful blog or the next great novel waiting for publication, there are 10 authors struggling to pay bills with the meagre income from their writing or working other jobs to pay bills and writing when time permits.
My point is…
You may have noticed a format change on the blog recently, and that’s because, as of this week my blog has qualified for WordAds.
WordAds is WordPress’s monetisation program for bloggers. Basically, if your blog reaches enough people and gets enough views you qualify to run ads on your site and get revenue for views and clicks.
Am I a sell-out?
I mean, yeah a little bit? If by sell out you mean “am I attempting to make money from writing this blog?”
But here’s the thing, like I said above, making money as an online content creator is bloody hard work. There’s no guarantee of a steady pay cheque unless you’re a very well established blogger/creator, and in order to be well established you have to pour hours of work into your content. Whether that time is spent actually creating the content, or whether it is promoting it, responding to emails from readers/viewers or just trying to come up with ideas when inspiration fails to appear from the heavens.
I see it time and time again in other mediums of content creation, most notably on Youtube. There are thousands of comments on popular videos complaining that the creator is a sell out or a corporate whore, for simply accepting a sponsorship deal, or collaborating with a company.
The thing is, people can’t simultaneously enjoy online content and then be offended/mad/annoyed that the creator is using it to make money. That’s like going to a restaurant and being mad that you have to pay for the food you ate. While online content may not be tangible in the traditional sense, it is something that is consumed. The good thing about online content is that it is there forever, you can go back and enjoy it again and again until your heart’s content. All for the “price” of watching an ad, or seeing an ad in the side banner, or at “worst” listening to the content creator talk about a product for a few minutes.
Now, I am in a uniquely lucky position right now, in that I don’t have a full time job and I’m surviving quite comfortably without either a job or an ad revenue, however the purpose of monetising this blog is two fold: firstly, so that when I do make some revenue I can re-invest it in the blog to make it better for readers, and secondly so that eventually I may actually make real money off it.
When a content creator monetises their content, it’s not because they’re greedy or want to “rip you off” somehow, it’s because we have to put food on the table and pay the bills.
While I am lucky enough to be working on something I love, it is work. And I do hope that you enjoy it! Because I love making it for you, and this step towards monetisation means that I will hopefully be able to do it for many, many years to come.
All of that is to say, if you’re using an ad blocker, please consider “whitelisting” my blog, so that I may progress my career as a writer/blogger and write the things you like to read.
If you don’t want to whitelist the blog, I understand. Continue to enjoy my blog!