In Paris. Simenon soon discovered the pulps. Making careful inquiries, he found that he could have a comfortable existence, including car and chauffeur, if he wrote 80 pages a day.
From a short Simenon biography, located via Paperback Writer.
And the answer to the question for me is, “That much, but not those things.” I want to have time to enjoy life, I want to write the books I want to write, I want time with Matt and my kids. I want to not have to worry about money. I wouldn’t define a limo and chauffeur as comfortable; to me those things, like having a housekeeper or some other stranger in my home, would feel intrusive.
My desires are paid bills and sufficient free time. It would not take much to get me that. A little more than I have — or really, what I have, but at more reliable intervals. All my needs and wants can be completely met in the low five figures. I’m thinking that a couple of pseudonymous work-for-hire books a year could get me over that hump. If they could, it would be worth it for me.