A few weeks ago, I was voting for the Irish and Celtic Music Podcast in the podcast awards and stumbled upon an interesting title in another category: The Smart Passive Income Podcast. I’m always open to opportunities, so I gave it a listen and it is no overstatement to say that it changed the way I approach my life, almost from day one. Preemptive skepticism gave way to, “OK, he has some good ideas,” and from there it wasn’t long until I started looking at life and the opportunities around me differently.
The best part is that the core required skill is writing. Well, hey, that sounds like something I can do.
The Pressure of Fiction
I want to be successful enough as a fiction writer to support my family on that income, but honestly I don’t see that as a realistic near-term goal. Every time I read or listen to writing advice, I come away thinking “Aw crap, I have to that, too?” The message I get from all the fiction writing advice I’ve seen is that you’d better damn well be perfect — no, not just perfect, brilliant — the first time you come out of the gate. Your stuff has to be amazing before you can even take it to the people who are supposed to make it better, or they won’t give you the time of day.
Well, that’s some pretty heavy pressure, isn’t it?
I still want to do it, because I love fiction, especially speculative fiction. It makes me happy, and I want to do that for other people too. I’m going to keep writing little by little each day and moving closer to that goal.
But, realistically, as a career path, it’s going to be a long time before fiction lets me quit my day job.
Enter Internet-Based Non-Fiction Writing
Everything that’s scary about fiction? Yeah, not there. Pat Flynn at Smart Passive Income puts a lot of ideas out there- things he’s made work (and other things that he hasn’t). And, he does it in a positive way. I listen to podcasts on my commute and in the first couple of days that I switched from listening primarily to writing advice podcasts to the Smart Passive Income podcast, my wife noticed a significant improvement in my mood when I got home from work. Heck, even if (like me at first) you think that making money on the internet is a bunch of scams, listening to this podcast will make you happier.
Anyway, of all the ideas he’s gone through in the episodes that I’ve listened to, one in particular stuck out to me: Creating a knowledge resource website.
The idea is that I dig into a topic that I’m interested in, research it, and then present it in a way better than anyone else has done before.
Digging deep into new topics through research and analysis to learn them inside out? Love it.
Coming up with new and novel ways to explain things? Love it.
Plus, with the internets, I can constantly tweak and update. I don’t have to have everything perfectly pulled together just to wait on a single editor to tell me if my book lives or dies. Plus since websites are supposed to build steam slowly, I won’t feel like a total failure if I’m not making money right away.
I’m not 100% certain this is going to work but, at the end of the day, it has to be slightly more beneficial than playing internet chess. So, why not!
Any of you out there tried this kind of thing before? Thoughts?