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Leaps of Faith

Sometimes you have to take a leap of faith. I’m finding that my quest for residual income and taking leaps of faith go hand in hand.  I often have to release the bird in the hand in favor of the two in the bush.

There’s never a guarantee that the two birds in the bush are more lucrative or even in better health than the one in the hand, but in order to find out I have to take the leap of faith.

Leaping Too SoonLeap of Faith

Leaping too soon is like quitting a job before you’re financially ready.  You may have a strong desire to quit the job but the timing isn’t quite right.

In April of 2008, I first attempted to take the 100% residual income leap of faith.  I soon realized it was too early to leap.  Over the years I’ve made several other attempts to go 100% residual, but again, the timing wasn’t quite right. As a matter of fact, even though I spend more time on residuals than up front, I’m not quite ready for the 100% residual leap quite yet. I’m getting closer, but not there yet.

Preparing for the Leap

Back in 2008 I had been writing for Demand Studios and was happy earning $15 an article.  However, month after month, I would have to continue writing articles in order to keep earning. Sometimes I just didn’t feel like writing those How to’s, but I needed the money so I wrote them.

Then in late September, 2008 I discovered eHow. I saw the earning potential and wanted to be a part of it.  When I first started with eHow, I made a vow to write 100 articles within the first 30 days (which I did) in order to have a more prosperous future

In my journal (October 17, 2008 entry) I wrote:

“Every article I write today is going to pay me handsomely in the future.  The more I write today the richer my tomorrow is.  In essence, I’m planting seeds.”

Well, I ended up writing 312 eHow articles before it was all said and done.  Now, when I think of it, if I had written the 312 eHow articles for Demand Studios, I would have earned $4,580.  That’s a nice piece of change.  However, because I placed the articles on eHow and earn residual income, so far I’ve earned $13,789.53 (an even nicer piece of change). The real beauty is that I continue to earn on those 312 articles.

Where am I Going with This?

I often say online writing isn’t an all or nothing endeavor.  You can mix and match the best that each situation has to offer.  If you’re just starting Writingout and must earn enough money to pay the bills by writing upfront articles, then do so.  Don’t stop writing up front articles.  What I will strongly suggest, however, is that you carve out some time to plant a few seeds for yourself.  If you write 10 up front articles a day, try writing 9 and write 1 residual article for yourself.

Over time your article base will grow and on those days when you’re singed around the edges, you can take the day off because your residuals will fill the gap.

{ 27 comments… add one }
  • kidgas November 20, 2010, 6:49 am

    As always, you offer great advice that will be useful and applicable to many people. I wish you the best as you draw ever closer to taking that final leap without the upfront parachute.

    I love the writing goal thermometer on the side of your blog. It is cool.

    PS–I have seen lots of the Geico commercials with the appraisal for a bird in the hand. I couldn’t help thinking about it reading your post and had to laugh.

    • Felicia November 20, 2010, 7:25 am

      That’s funny. I didn’t think of the Geico commercial. I used the bird in hand analogy because every season we get a large flock (gaggle?) of wild turkeys roaming around the yard. Invariably, one will see its reflection in the sliding glass doors (or maybe think it sees an adversary) and start pecking at the glass. You would think with it being Thanksgiving season and all the turkeys would quietly roam through the yard drawing as little attention as possible.

      Anyway, I don’t know if you’ve ever had a full grown turkey peck at your glass door, but it’s not something that you want to encourage. In response, my fearless dog runs downstairs in an attempt to catch, lick, or play with the turkey, while I open the oven door in hopes of a cheap alternative to the store-bought turkey. 😉

      P.S. – I’m off to the store to purchase a turkey.

  • Minister Marlene November 20, 2010, 8:02 am

    Hi Felicia,

    You are such a wise woman. You are officialy a part of my support system. Your advice is on point for me this morning. I read your Gal.6 article and it also applies to the goal of making a living as a writer. With patience, planning and hard work I know my seeds, or dreams of being a paid writer will grow. Bearing fruits.

    The bird in the hand analogy speaks volumes. I will succeed at this. You’ve done it and I can do it too. Faith certainly is the substance of things hoped for. I’m leaping!

    I wish you and your family a blessed and happy thanksgiving.

  • Minister Marlene November 20, 2010, 8:23 am

    I also took a look at Suite 101. I’m preparing to apply and I’m thankful for your suggestion. The net has it’s share of con artists. It’s a blessing to get a good referral. I was writing for Textbroker at level 3 and was not happy.

  • Reena November 20, 2010, 8:34 am

    Thank you for always motivating, Felicia. I did the mistake of not putting enough articles on eHow early in the year. In fact, never took that site seriously until it started paying off… Having said that, I recently applied for Suite 101 and was accepted. Now, I need to sit and write something for them. 🙂

  • Crystal November 20, 2010, 3:28 pm

    Mix and match – I like that, Felicia. There’s no one formula that works for everyone but that’s ok because each of us can chose what works best. Thanks for sharing your valuable insight once again:)

  • Lisa Russell November 20, 2010, 6:40 pm

    I enjoyed and appreciated your actual blog post, but without fail, Felicia- the comments you leave are just as provocative. Imagine that – the turkeys making a stink JUST when we’re about to eat their relatives. Are they volunteering or protesting? (my catcha code was “eh8r” funny)

  • Master Dayton November 20, 2010, 7:02 pm

    Great post, and I agree 100% of your advice. My most recent blog post gives the same advice, which is to always carve out at least a little bit of time for the passive income. I’ve never been able to spend even 50% of my time building passive income, but the steady work bit by bit, a few hours here and a few minutes there, and the last three years have really built up nicely for me. Hopefully in another year I’ll be on the verge of full time, knock on wood 🙂

  • Lissie November 21, 2010, 2:43 am

    I think its the leap of faith most people stumble at – and I don’t blame – them its easy enough to decide all this passive income online crap is a con – I know I did. Now I write this from a nice little hotel on the Malaysian tropical island of Langkawi – knowing that I’ve made enough in Adsense today to pay for 3 meals – if this is an illusion bring it on!

    • Felicia November 21, 2010, 6:42 am

      Lis, that’s awesome! When I earn enough income so my hubby won’t have to punch the 9-5 time clock, we’d love to travel without having to worry about when and where the money is coming from. You are an inspiration!

  • Grandma November 22, 2010, 9:49 am

    As I approach yet ANOTHER turning point in my now getting to be long life, this subject is very appropriate and a needed inspiration to make some changes. As a full fledged Libra, change is always in my life, and balance is hard to achieve. Taking a little time off to rest and recover from the past two years-plus of online writing. Thanksgiving is a good time to reflect and plan for the upcoming changes and new directions. Thanks to everyone who participates here; you have no clue how helpful all your comments are, and especially a big thank you to Felicia, who puts time and energy into being our leader. We are never beyond learning new things, even us old dogs. LOL, but seriously, thanks!

  • Alina Bradford November 22, 2010, 2:48 pm

    Your post inspired me to look at my eHow earnings vs. what I would have earned if I had written them for DS. So far I have earned $3015 and would have earned only $2205 if I had done the articles for DS at $15 a pop. Residual sites really do pay off. I’m so glad I took the leap of faith. 😉

    • Felicia November 23, 2010, 6:50 am

      Alina, the proof is in the numbers. The best part of it is that $3,015 is just a snapshot. You’ll continue to earn on those articles for a long time.

  • Prerna November 22, 2010, 8:38 pm

    Thank you so much for sharing this Felicia.. Couldn’t have come at a better time.. Am sitting down today to chalk out my strategy for the next year and your words are going to encourage me to focus more on residuals (sites and my own) rather than just on the instant joy of upfront..

  • Crystal November 23, 2010, 11:23 am

    Like some of the rest of you here, I’m looking toward the new year and developing my goals. Now that I know I can make money in the up-front pay world, I think it’s really time for me to get more serious about the residual side. My real passion is quilting/sewing and I’ve had some patterns in various states of progress for a while so it’s time to get back on track! Thanks so much to everyone here – this is such an inspirational and supportive community:)

  • Grandma December 1, 2010, 1:56 pm

    Okay, just took my leap of faith by submitting application to eHow/DS, assume they are together now? Decided it was not necessary to wait until the new year to begin my quest for the 2011 big money year.

    Had a good post written, but the captcha code didn’t function and lost it. This is a bit of a recap but now I lost my train of thought!:)

    Trying to overcome my Libran tendencies to delay, procrastinate, avoid, and general dislike for making changes.

    Like the image of life as a river, where we amble on a raft, stopping here and there, and as others join our journey periodically for a moment, a season, a year or more. No clue where it is going to end. Hope it ends at a rainbow, not a waterfall!

  • Grandma December 1, 2010, 2:41 pm

    Oh I feel the wheels of motion tugging at me to get moving on with things. Got accepted, now time to get into it.

    • Felicia December 1, 2010, 2:45 pm

      Awesome! Nothing is gonna stop you now! 🙂

  • Reena December 1, 2010, 2:57 pm

    Well, let me first congratulate Grandma. Allow me to join the party by letting you know that my first article for Suite101 was accepted. I was thinking of “planting those seeds” as I sent in the application and wrote my first article. Thank you for everything!

    • Felicia December 1, 2010, 3:49 pm

      Way to go, Reena! Congrats to you.

      I love hearing good news and I also like to see writers taking control of their earnings.

  • Ira December 2, 2010, 4:56 am

    I just had to come tell you about a leap of faith of my own…

    As you probably remember, I started doing the freelance writing thing 3 weeks ago now. In that time, I have earned just shy of $300. That’s counting, of course, all the places I have been writing for (textbroker, elance and suite among others) but for me, disabled for 4 years and being a general lump to myself, that is pretty darn good.

    I’ve also decided to put a lot more effort into Suite to see if I can get into the passive income stream offered there. I’m scared of it, but I am going to do it. I placed 3 articles there today and ended up with about 100 views, and again, for just starting there, I cannot complain.

    Anyhow.. sorry to waste space here lol but I just wanted to share in these small victories, and let folks know that if someone like me, who has been unable to have any income for 4 years, can leap in and do it, you can too.

    • Felicia December 2, 2010, 5:44 am

      Ira, that’s so good to hear. You’re not wasting space here. I love hearing success stories. All too often we hear the complaints but not the good.

      You are able to earn money with your disability and that tells me that we all can do it. What’s the difference between now and the 4 years you spent as a lump? I think the big difference is that you made up your mind to do something, and you’re doing it. Way to go!

  • Grandma December 2, 2010, 8:22 am

    Awesome Ira! That is wonderful news…all of it. We need to hear success stories from you and others; it helps motivate! Reminders are needed…I am wading through all the beginning stuff at ehow/DS right now, and I will say that I have to force myself to wade through those waters, mostly because it is not nearly as easy as TB waters.

    I do believe that trying and succeeding at new things opens windows and doors for those of us who have certain other limitations in life. And, even though there might be a mountain in front of you at one point, remember there are “passes” you can go through to get around to the other side. I once traveled the Oregon Trail, and still am in awe of what the pioneers did to settle this country, especially to the West. And they had no GPS, no laptops, no Internet, no cars and trucks, not even a paved road. They had mountains, thousands of miles of unknown territory, hostile environments, and tragedies. But they did it!

    Another thought to keep in mind is from Winston Churchill, who told students at Harrow School in October of 1941:

    “The pessimist sees the problems in every opportunity. Whereas the optimist sees the opportunity in every problem”

    “Never give in, never give in, never; never; never; never – in nothing, great or small, large or petty – never give in except to convictions of honor and good sense”

    • Felicia December 3, 2010, 5:53 am

      Grandma, I like the quote about the pessimist and optimist. I think I’ll add that one as one of my favorite quotes.

  • Grandma December 3, 2010, 9:24 am

    My own thought: Good ideas never grow old

  • Christina Crowe December 6, 2010, 3:57 pm

    Hey Felicia,

    Love the bird in hand scenario.

    This was a good piece of advice – don’t give up upfront pay altogether and make the leap towards residual income before you’re ready. Instead, write upfront articles and combine residual income articles in your schedule.

    I admit that I’ve been slowing down with writing for res income lately. This is a good strategy that I’ll try utilizing!


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