Something Amiss

By Holly Lisle

I sent out the following newsletter to folks who get the Holly Lisle Writing Updates, but I don’t think it actually went to anyone, though the software reports that it did. So I’m thinking something in my mailing list program is broken.

If you received the following issue, please let me know.

So How About Quitting Your Day Job?

I hope you had a wonderful Christmas. I did. My older son called from Kuwait and we all got to talk to him before he went back into harm’s way (his job is a nightmare, and I spend a lot of time worrying), and my daughter and her fiance made the long drive to visit for a few hours. My younger son got enough Spy Gear to set up his own listening post, and he’s been merrily writing codes, setting up laser trip wires, and bugging the house. And me.

I’m setting up my work calendar for the next year, putting together my novel and nonfiction projects, and doing general planning.

Which brings me to quitting your day job.

Some of you have read my article How To Quit Your Day Job to Write Full Time. (If you haven’t, it’s here:

The problem is, things have changed since I wrote that article. In some ways, they’ve gotten worse for writers. In some ways, they’ve gotten better.

The bad news: The three book death spiral is firmly in place, breaking in to pro publishing is no easier than it ever was, and even when you’ve published more than thirty books, keeping any of them in print is a miracle, and royalties are a joke. Advances are pretty good if you’ve been doing it for a while, but publishers are still a massive pain when it comes to paying what they owe in a timely fashion.

And that old advice about living on your royalties? Unless you become a bestseller and then STAY one, that will never happen. My royalty income this year (for the WHOLE year), was under a thousand dollars.

The good news: The Internet. Writers (and I’m one of them) are discovering ways to fill in for late-paying publishers, cancelled books, series killed by computer ordering, and the royalties that never come. If I were starting out as a writer today, I’d use the internet to create “royalties” before I quit the day job, and before I wrote my books.

I’m thinking about putting together a short gift e-book to show writers how to do this.

Whether you’re interested or not, please take a second to answer the quick three-question anonymous survey I’ve put together to help me figure out whether I should schedule the time to do this project:

No goodies appended to this one. Just my thanks for taking a minute of your time, and a possible new resource for the site if enough people want it.

This will be it from me until after the New Year, so I send my hopes that your next year will be better than your last, and that it is filled with good challenges, great learning, and the joy of living each moment well.

Never give up on your dreams,

Holly Lisle

Create A Culture Clinic

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