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How to Write Content That Makes You $5000-$10,000 a Month

by | Aug 21, 2023 | Writing

Everyone thinks they know how writing makes money.

Very few have actually done it. And an even smaller few — 0.1% — have made 7 figures from it. I’m in the latter category and I don’t say it to impress you or brag.

I tell you because I’m a practitioner of how to achieve the goal of making money from written content if that’s what you want. If not, that’s fine too.

None of what you’re about to learn came easy. I’ve published more than 5000 long-form articles on the internet and tens of thousands of social media posts. This comes easily to me because of the enormous volume.

What you’re about to read is the formula I use for my $ubstack which gets hundreds of thousands of views every month and has 92,000 subscribers.

1. A headline that may piss off the clickbait police

It’s easy to cry clickbait about someone’s headline when you’re in a bad mood. Clickbait is an invisible thing … and frankly it’s stupid.

By the letter of the clickbait law every best-selling book in history is clickbait. Subtle Art of Not Giving A F*ck, clickbait. 4-Hour Workweek, clickbait. The Ten Commandments, clickbait.

Headlines that aren’t bold don’t attract readers. Simple as that.

The goal is to attract a reader and then deliver on your headline promise. If you do that, they won’t have a problem with whatever headline you choose.

The only clickbait headlines you should stay away from are obvious B.S. and fake emergencies — “America’s economy is gonna blow up in the next 24 minutes — Kablamo!!!”

As long as you’re not doing that nasty stuff you’re fine.

2. An image you spent more than 10 seconds looking for

A lazy writer will never be a successful one.

You can’t pick some Unsplash image that’s been used 10 million times before and expect to be unique and have people read your stuff.

Choose a smart image as it says a lot about your writing. Use AI-Image generators if you really want to find some Whacko Jacko stuff.

Don’t go overboard though. No need to use a naked body or someone holding a rifle to their head. Just be tasteful. Try to make the image evoke the same feeling the content we’re about to read will give us.

3. An intro that’ll leave the reader with wet underpants

Some intros make me piss my pants. Here’s one

After I was convicted of murder and sentenced to 26 years in prison, when the earth dropped out from beneath me, and global shame rained down on top of me, I had my first ever epiphany.

I’m on the edge of my seat. All I want to do is cancel all my non-existent appointments with myself and read what this young woman has to say.

It took her three sentences to do it.

That’s what a powerful intro does. It says more than a 300-page book ever could. It has a great setup and a cliffhanger. If you want to see an absolute master in action then check out Linda Caroll.

If you don’t hook them at the start, they’ll never make it to the end. And you’ll make no money because you didn’t deliver.

4. The missing ingredient that has ChatGPT ready to replace writers

Writers should fear ChatGPT. They got lazy.

Informational content is a snoozer. Readers want to hear a story. Even if it’s short story that lasts for two paragraphs — don’t forget to insert them. There’s nothing worse than reading a how-to guide and going “who the F is this cat?”

If you want to go further then tell some of YOUR story. People go crazy for that, and ChatGPT can’t hijack your brain — yet. If readers don’t see a story they usually get bored.

Let Wikipedia spit out facts, you have to spit out stories.

5. Layer in plenty of emotion

So much writing on the internet is lifeless.

I just click away and so does everyone else. The best writing that makes the most money makes people feel something. There’s a trick to it.

At the start of your writing ask yourself, “How does this topic/event/person make me feel?” Then write your answer. It’s the gateway to emotion. Almost every article I read needs more emotion.

The top 1% who master this skill get paid disproportionately more. It’s not a trick — it’s common sense because we’re all humans.

6. Dare to solve a problem

Even personal essays do this, although more subtly.

Think about the reader. Don’t share anything without them in mind. If you told the story of your kid that died at 6 from cancer, then explain to us one lesson or takeaway the experience taught you at the end.

Takes 5 seconds but it’s worth more than 50 Bitcoin to the reader.

Writing that doesn’t solve problems isn’t urgent. And it’s hard to charge money for because it’s a luxury instead of a “need.”

Make readers need you.

7. Use some personality

We all have a personality except most forget to use it when they write.

Secret: write like you talk.

Or … record yourself talking then write from the transcript. Writers that do this stand out. They get the fans and bank the big checks.

  • Make up words
  • Make readers laugh
  • Make sentences rhyme (makes them memorable)

8. Take a stand and don’t back down like a wimp

Saying what you think can be controversial.

I shared my true thoughts about Elon’s X app and it scared me. I felt like people might judge me or think I wanna sleep with Elon in his SpaceX shack. But I hit publish anyway because it’s the truth.

There’s nothing wrong with being slightly controversial. Your goal in life isn’t to fit in. It’s to stand out by being yourself. If you lose your uniqueness your originality, imagination, and creativity go down the toilet too.

Stop hiding. Start saying what you think.

Where the money comes from

It’s that time in the show when I have to deliver on my headline promise. There are two ways to make money from content using this formula.

Writing is the product = 6 figures

If you choose this option then a paid newsletter is the way to go.

You package up your writing and sell it as a subscription. People buy it because they find what you write helpful and entertaining.

In this option you’ll trade time for money. It’s a slow start but compounds over time if you stick at it for 6+ months.

Writing is the warm-up to a product = 7 figures

Free writing is more sharable.

Few talk about this but I will. The real money from content isn’t made from the writing itself. It’s made from where the writing leads people.

There’s nothing sneaky about that either. 90% of readers will never buy a product you sell and that’s fine. It’s the 10% who want more from you and are willing to pay for it that count.

This option requires a bit more skill and preparation, but transforms normies into superhumans. If you choose this option then $5000-$10,000 will look like poo-change in comparison. Choose wisely.

Or start with option one and transition to option two over time.

Let’s wrap here and go get drunk

Writing can change your life with the right approach.

If you miss one of these steps then the writing world can look unfair. If you master these steps your life will likely change (if you can persist beyond the typical 30 days where people get frustrated and quit).

After 9 years doing this I can say with confidence it’s one of the best decisions you’ll ever make — even if you don’t make a dollar.

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For those who are tired of dragging through the day, who want to get back the fire they once had, who are ready to reclaim your natural energy… this is your book.

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