After four months of sharing my income on Otaku Journalist, I look forward to the end of the month. While I’ve always kept spreadsheets of my monthly earnings, it’s been helpful to journal about the reality behind the figures.
This month I’ve been thinking about the financial privilege I get from being married. It used to make me furious when people would imply I rely on John’s income so I can work a “hobby job.” I don’t, but I realize that if I had to, I could. If I had a really bad couple of months and needed to borrow from him, it might ruin my pride but it wouldn’t ruin my finances. It’s a safety net not everyone has, and I need to acknowledge that when I talk about this career path. Because when you start out in freelance, it’s hard to make a consistent income from month to month.
Now that the slow summer’s over, mine is thankfully pretty consistent. Let’s look at the numbers.
August was a banner month, and I didn’t expect to match it again, but I also didn’t expect to come so close to it. Right now I’m pretty up-to-date on freelance payments, with only $500 invoiced and unpaid at the moment.
Great month for Amazon this time around, with almost $1000 in income. It’d be easy to say that’s because of the Gunpla DB launch, but Amazon pays three months behind, so this is about whatever I did right in June. My day job payment was also pretty high this month because payroll resolved the error that caused me to only earn a fraction of my usual paycheck. Not only did they fix it days after I flagged; they also sent an apology! I was floored! In the past, I’ve worked for San Francisco start-ups where falling behind on paychecks was a regular occurrence and there certainly weren’t any apologies for it; I was just grateful to get paid even if the money came six months after the fact.
What you CAN’T tell from this number is that I’m doing a lot of unpaid work in my free time to start a new web development business, ideally with a January launch. I love doing web design and tech support for fellow geeks, whether they’re referred through my Bluehost affiliate link or word of mouth, and this could increase that. I’m trying to get this off the ground without spending any money up front.
Here’s the income stream comparison. Considering that my day job paycheck was more than usual to make up for the accounting error last month, I’d say I earned a pretty similar amount on freelance work both times. However, I just finished a huge freelance project, so now I need to look for more work to fill its place.
How did I do on my September financial goals? I put $500 into my emergency fund, $250 into my travel fund, and $250 into my retirement fund. I’d like to keep up with those same deposit amounts monthly. I got paid for my freelance work, but I didn’t find any new work. I’ve been devoting my free time to this new business venture. Annnnd I started the process of cleaning up Gunpla DB, which still needs a lot of TLC.
My October financial goals are:
- Devote 40 work hours to my new business venture. Every hour I work on it, I’m losing out on actual money I could make now in exchange for POSSIBLE future money, so I don’t want to work more than that.
- Post four new tutorials on Gunpla 101 and two new articles on Candle Fandom. Gunpla 101 is my main affiliate earner, but I’ve been slacking. Also, somehow my neglected candle affiliate blog is still chugging along, earning money and getting me free candles in the mail, so it’s time to give back.
- Put $500 into my emergency fund, $250 into my travel fund, and $250 into my retirement fund again. It’s an aggressive amount of saving, and we’ll see if I can keep it up while getting ready for holiday spending.
What about you? Share how your September went, and any financial goals you have for October, in the comments!