Calling all superheroes (AKA moms)! See how self-publishing stacks up to other side hustles.
There are plenty of side hustles out there, but how many of them are actually practical for moms? Food delivery or grocery delivery doesn’t work when you’ve got a screaming toddler to wrangle, and MLMs and pyramid schemes just lure you in with empty promises that land you in more debt. Then there’s publishing…
With the rise of self-publishing platforms like Amazon's Kindle Direct Publishing and IngramSpark, it's easier than ever to get your books out there and start earning royalties. And as a side hustle for moms, it checks all the boxes.
For one, it can be a flexible way to earn money. You can plan and publish on your own schedule and earn passive income from your books over time. Plus, if you're a stay-at-home mom or have a flexible work schedule, publishing can be a way to use your skills and creativity while still being able to prioritize your family.
That said, publishing isn’t necessarily the right side hustle for everyone. So, after reading this blog post, you get to decide what fits your lifestyle and goals best!
Wanna see how it all works and how to get started ASAP? Join our free self-publishing 101 webinar, where we show you real people and real results through a step-by-step framework that’s already generated over $50 million for moms, aunts, grandmas, and scuba divers all over the world.
Whether you are a working mom, stay-at-home mom, single mom, or just looking for some extra flexibility in your parenting schedule, publishing can be a great way to get your time back and get paid to do it.
Publishing allows you to work from home or on the go, which is perfect for busy moms—and let’s be honest. Is there a single mom on earth who isn’t busy? You can publish books about topics that interest you all from the comfort of your own home and work around your family’s schedule. Plus, the income potential can be quite high if you’re able to produce quality content that resonates with readers.
If you are a stay-at-home mom, publishing can be a great way to earn some extra cash while still being able to take care of your children. You can work on your publishing side hustle during nap times or after your kids have gone to bed, which means you won't have to sacrifice any of that quality time or miss out on any of your kids’ major milestones.
Let’s take a look at the facts.
As a mom, you have a lot on your plate. Between taking care of your children, managing your household, and possibly working a full-time job, it can be challenging to find time for yourself, let alone a side hustle. But with the right planning and time management, it's possible to fit self-publishing into your hectic schedule.
One of the benefits of self-publishing is that it's flexible enough to fit into small time windows. You don't need to set aside hours of your day to work on your book. Instead, you can utilize moments like early mornings to write a few pages or even outsource various pieces of the publishing process. By breaking up your work into small, manageable chunks, you can make progress on your book without sacrificing other important aspects of your life.
To make the most of your limited time, it's essential to prioritize your tasks and be efficient with the time windows you have, even if you wish they were bigger. Consider creating a to-do list with “high priority,” “medium priority,” and “low priority” tasks to help you stay on track and make the most of each moment. You may also want to consider outsourcing tasks like editing or formatting to free up even more time.
As a mom, you are no stranger to multitasking. You juggle childcare, household responsibilities, and your own needs all at once (though a lot of moms struggle with that last one). These skills that you have honed as a mom are incredibly beneficial when it comes to self-publishing.
Publishing a book while also taking care of your family and home may seem like an impossible task. Here are some tips that have worked for the moms in our student community:
As a mom, you have a wealth of experiences that are unique to your life. From raising children to balancing work and family, you have a perspective that is unlike anyone else's. These experiences can be a valuable asset when it comes to publishing stories that stand out from the competition.
By drawing from your life experiences, you can offer a fresh voice in the publishing world. You have a unique perspective that can bring a new dimension to your books. Whether you are writing fiction or non-fiction (or having a ghostwriter do the writing for you), your experiences as a mom can add depth and richness to your work.
One way to tap into your unique perspective is to focus on the challenges and triumphs of motherhood. You can publish books infused with your experiences surrounding pregnancy, childbirth, and raising children, or the joys and struggles of balancing work and family.
Another way to tap into your unique perspective is to publish books about your hobbies and interests. As a mom, you may have developed a passion for gardening, welding, crocheting, or kickboxing. You can get paid to share this knowledge and experience with others who are earlier on in their journeys with fitness, motherhood, etc.
Pro Tip: It’s okay if you’re not an expert! Just imagine you’re trying to help a version of you from five years ago. What are some tips you wish you would have known back then?
Digital and self-publishing platforms have enabled moms to write, edit, and publish their work without the need for traditional publishers.
Digital publishing platforms like Amazon’s KDP have made it possible for moms to publish their work in various formats, including eBooks, audiobooks, and print-on-demand paperbacks, and reach a wider audience all from the comfort of their house.
With print-on-demand technology, moms can publish their work without worrying about inventory or upfront costs. Print-on-demand platforms like Amazon KDP allow you to upload your manuscript, select your book's size and format, and publish your work in just a few clicks. Creating a secondary income on Amazon has never been easier.
Self-publishing platforms have also made it possible for moms to retain control over their work. You can choose your book's cover design, pricing, and marketing strategy. You can also track your book's sales and revenue using the platform's analytics tools.
As a mom looking for a side hustle with little to no startup costs, publishing can fit the bill. While traditional publishing can be expensive, self-publishing allows you to control the costs and keep more of the profits at every step of the publishing process.
Here are some tips for budget-friendly self-publishing:
The more complex your manuscript, the more expensive it can be to edit and format. Keep your manuscript simple and straightforward to save on editing and formatting costs.
Pro Tip: We’ve found the sweet spot for a manuscript to be around 30,000 words. Don’t be afraid to give newer freelance writers a chance, especially if your budget is tight. They need the experience and want to help you publish a quality manuscript!
There are many free or low-cost tools available for self-publishing. For example, you can use free software like Canva to design your book cover or use Amazon's Kindle Direct Publishing to publish your eBook for free. You can also connect with graphic designers who can work with all budgets on platforms like Fiverr.
Marketing can be one of the most expensive aspects of self-publishing. However, there are many low-cost ways to market your Amazon book, such as social media, book clubs, and email newsletters. Be strategic about your marketing efforts to save on costs while continuing to get the word out about your book.
One of the biggest advantages of self-publishing is that you keep more of the profits. With traditional publishing, authors typically receive only a small percentage of the book's profits. With self-publishing, you can earn up to 70% of the book's royalties depending on the platform you choose to publish your books on. Read our full breakdown of book royalties and how they work.
Being a mom and trying to turn a side hustle into a business can be difficult when you’re already doing so much in your day-to-day, which is why it’s important to have a strong support system and network. Joining online communities can provide you with valuable resources and connections to help you grow your side hustle.
Nowadays, there are plenty of Facebook groups for various niches and communities, including entrepreneur moms, first-time publishers, and fans of romance novels, just to name a few. You can use these online communities to gain accountability partners, ask questions, and even earn compliant reviews for your book to organically grow your readership.
Social media is also a great tool for networking and marketing your work. By leveraging platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn, you can connect with other publishers and potential readers. You can also use social media to promote your work, share your publishing journey, and build your personal brand.
One of the biggest advantages of self-publishing is that you have complete creative control over your work. As a mom with a side hustle, you can experiment with publishing different types of books and find a niche that resonates with your experiences.
With traditional publishing, you may be limited by the publisher's preferences and guidelines. However, self-publishing gives you the freedom to express yourself in your own unique way. You can choose the cover design, layout, font, and even the size of your book. This creative control allows you to showcase your work in the best possible way.
In addition, you can choose your own deadlines and work at your own pace. There’s no one else to answer to but yourself!
If you're considering publishing as a side hustle, you might be worried about the learning curve involved. While it's true that publishing is a learning process, it takes no formal education whatsoever, and even people with zero tech experience can pick it up quickly.
The publishing process includes everything from writing, editing, and formatting your book to uploading it to online retailers. Fortunately, there are many resources available to help you learn the ins and outs. For example, you can learn more about how to earn money on KDP without writing anything and integrating AI into your workflows right through this blog.
Pro Tip: Even though you’re a supermom, you’re bound to make mistakes in the process. This is okay! It just means you’re human!
You can read about some of the biggest self-publishing mistakes our co-founder Rasmus Mikkelsen made early in his publishing journey and how to avoid them in an exclusive interview.
One of the biggest advantages of self-publishing is the potential for true passive income—the kind that deposits straight into your bank account even during the months you aren’t actually working on your publishing business.
Once you've published your book and the work is done, it can continue to earn money for you forever without any additional effort on your part. Of course, this doesn't mean that you won't need to put in some work upfront to create a quality product, but it does mean that you can earn money while you sleep, take care of your kids, or pursue other interests afterward.
Here are some steps you can take to increase your chances of earning more passive income through self-publishing:
Here’s one mom who went from busy and overwhelmed to making money from her very first book!
Being a mom is undoubtedly one of the hardest jobs in the world, and it’s easy for most moms to get so wrapped up in everyone else’s schedules and needs that they forget to take care of themselves.
Just like welcoming a child into your life changes you forever, publishing might, too! There’s something extremely fulfilling about sharing your work with the world and watching the royalties and reviews roll in.
Sure, the money’s great, but there’s also a level of personal satisfaction and growth that comes with publishing that you can’t find in other side hustles.
Meet Mel. She’s a badass mom who started out in the AI Publishing Academy as a student and eventually grew into a coach with us. She’s helped hundreds of students (including many busy moms) reclaim their schedules, income, and freedom. All while raising kiddos of her own!
The steps to getting your publishing side hustle off the ground are simple.
Let’s break them down:
Before you start writing or before you hand over the reins to a ghostwriter, you need to decide what you want to publish your books about. Think about your interests and expertise. What topics are you passionate about? What knowledge do you have that others might find valuable? Or even if you don’t have any firsthand experience with a subject, what topics are especially popular right now? What’s something you want to know more about and research to get to know the ideal audience better?
Research is key to success in publishing. You need to know your market and your competition. Look at what other authors in your niche are writing about and what is selling well. Check their book reviews to see what readers feel is missing from the books. This will give you an idea of what readers are looking for and what you need to do to stand out.
Investing in your professional development is important if you want to succeed as a publisher. Take courses or attend workshops to learn about the publishing industry and how it works. This will help you make informed decisions about your career and skip over all the trial and error.
Start scouting out freelance writers, editors, and graphic designers you might want to work with in the future. This will help you publish quality books even faster without having to worry about sharing the copyright or royalties with a traditional publisher.
Once you have done your research and have a clear direction forward, it's time to get started. Publish your first manuscript (and then your next one, and the next one after that). Use social media and other marketing techniques to promote your work and build your audience.
We’ve established that publishing can be a great side hustle for moms looking to make extra money. However, to maximize your income, you need to take a strategic approach.
Here are some tips to help you make the most of your publishing side hustle:
Choosing the right platform to publish your work can make a big difference in your earnings. Amazon's Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) is a popular choice for self-publishing eBooks because creating an account is free. KDP also allows you to set your own price and earn up to 70% royalty on sales. Other popular platforms include Draft2Digital and IngramSpark.
Publishing in a profitable niche can help you earn more money from your publishing side hustle by matching the market demand. New niches enter the market every single week, and there are thousands of hidden gems right on Amazon just waiting to be tapped!
Effective marketing strategies can help you sell more books and increase your income.
Some effective marketing strategies for self-published authors include:
Selling your books in multiple formats can help you reach a wider audience and increase your income. In addition to eBooks, you can also sell your books in print format and as audiobooks. Amazon's ACX platform is a popular choice for creating and selling audiobooks.
Creating a series of books can help you build a loyal fan base and increase your income. Readers who enjoy your first book are more likely to buy the rest of the series. This is true for fiction and non-fiction!
Want to get paid to spend more time with your kids and family? Publishing can do that.
Want to make some extra Christmas money or take your family on a vacation to make some memories? Publishing can do that, too.
These moms were in your shoes. Overworked, underappreciated, and just plain stressed…until they discovered what publishing could unlock for them.
Now, they’re stress-free, living life on their own terms with no boss to answer to and no limits to how far they can grow their side hustle.
If any of their stories resonate with you, check out our free webinar to see how this can work for you!